11.2.15

Learning patience from a glass of ice water



I've learned a lot from growing up with my dad. There were lessons in tables manners, lessons on boys, and endless lessons on life. Some of which I've chose to hold onto and some I've let pass with age and my own understanding of the world. But one of the most precious lessons I learned from my dad he never even knew he was teaching me. 

Teaching our children love through patience is something we all desire so deeply but it's also one of the greatest struggles we face. I know I often struggle to muster up enough patience to make it through the day with my kids. But as I was reminiscing with some friends I was suddenly struck with the awareness of a beautiful lesson my dad was now teaching me, unknowingly, on patience. 

I was sharing one of my fondest memories about how my dad used to carry me to bed as a young girl when I got too tired to walk and as he would leave the room I would call out to him and ask for a glass of ice water and every night, without fail, he would bring me that glass of ice water. The part the stuck out to me as I reflected on this as an adult was the fact that he never had the water waiting for me. Every night he put me to bed and waited for me to call out to him after he left the room and then he would bring the little glass of ice cold water. 

Now I'm sure you're wondering why I'm writing a blog post on a silly memory about water but really sit with it awhile. Because when I did, I started to see how beautiful the loving patience was in that simple act. I started to see how quick I am to snap at my kids for the smallest things or how even this situation for me as a parent, could have ended with annoyance and a quick, "you can drink in the morning". 

The more I put my dads situation together as a parent the more beautiful this little glass of water seems to me and the more humbled I am when it comes to my patience as a parent.

I saw my dad as a super hero as most girls do but in that sweet innocence I never saw the weight and struggle that must have come with raising a young girl on his own. And yet every night it never stopped him from bringing that glass of water. 

I am so thankful for the many lessons I've learned growing up with my dad but  I'm so thankful that those lessons never end. It gives me hope that one day the lessons I teach my kids will be a lamp for them when they don't even know they are walking in the dark.

I'm sure this small example of loving patience is God's way of revealing himself to me in a way that I can understand. I love how He takes the act of someone so dear to me and molds it so I can see His image in it. The way He sits with a lamp at my feet as I stumble through what I think is the dark just waiting for me to realize He's been lighting the way the whole time. His patience is so great and so beautiful that there is no way for us to fully understand it but He takes lessons like glasses of water to show us little glimpses of it. There is nothing more beautiful to me than seeing the glory of God shine through the little things in our lives. The fact that he cares enough to simplify things enough for us just so we can begin to grasp the greatness in it is amazing to me and shows his profound love!


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