I was reading in 2 Corinthians the other day... the part about where Paul is talking about how they worked while among the Corinthians... and his disappointment in them.
"We have spoken freely to you, Corinthians, and opened wide our hearts to you. We are not withholding our affection from you, but you are withholding yours from us. As a fair exchange - I speak as to my children - open wide your hearts also." (v 11-13)
It got me to thinking, there are times, as a Mom, that I get frustrated with my children. Paul was perhaps upset with his spiritual children, yet he didn't give up on them. I needed that reminder. I wasn't currently upset with either girl when I read those verses, but they reminded me of times in the recent past when I have been upset. There are times when they withhold their affection because they are mad at me. Might I have withheld my affection from them in my distress? Perhaps I had.
I do not want to put a stumbling block in front of them.
I thought about how God has never withheld his affections from me - praise HIM - for I an often not very lovable. If I choose to pursue a life like Christ, then I need to remember to have my focus on eternal things, not on how I feel at the moment.
I am hoping this realization of how God, as my perfect Father, greatly bestows His love and grace through Christ, will remind me to not withhold my affections from my own children.
If you've been struggling with your children recently, take heart. God understands the struggle. Paul understood the step-by-step daily relationships we are building. You are not alone.
Do not withhold affection from your children, even when they make wrong choices. Remember the great love and grace extended to you by your Father, and extend the same to them.
Praying for peace for your family!