So here’s my confession…
I never used to understand the “boy mom” thing. I still don’t in some aspects (I’m sure I’ll get there though, my second boy is a wild one).
I especially never understood the way some moms described how their bathrooms looked after their boys had been in there. For almost four years I had an only child and although he is a boy, he was always a very clean, neat and orderly boy.I never once had pee in places it didn’t belong or broken pictures or huge messes. Everything for him had a place and he would freak out if things weren’t in order.
But then we very quickly added two more kids and he became a 7-year-old boy and apparently the toilet in his bathroom is just for decoration?! His towels can’t ever seem to find the hooks and his room… well, its crammed full of every scrap of paper and broken crayon he’s ever touched.
Tonight was an especially messy night. I was getting onto him about the bathroom after his shower. I don’t even know how what I walked into happened but it was like a monsoon hit and I was left to clean up the aftermath.
After putting him to bed with both of us upset something hit me. God laid something so clearly on my heart it stopped me in my tracks:
I shouldn’t care what the bathroom looks like or if the stairs are covered in soccer jerseys and shoes. I shouldn’t care so much that his towels stink and there’s pee on the floor.What I should care about is if he knows Jesus. I should care about the state of his heart more than the state of his temporary home. In light of eternity, it doesn’t matter if he picked up his shirts and socks or not. God cares about the condition of his heart, not his room.
After some serious thought and prayer I went back into his room and we talked. I told him I loved him and what God had laid on my heart. However, I also explained to him that by not doing the few chores we ask him to do he is not respecting us as the authority that God gave him. We talked about the responsibilities and things that God has given us to take care of and we need to be good stewards of those things, whether its our time, money or our home.
Lately I have been working on trying to balance my inner clean/control freak with being a person who lets go and gives control to God. I’ve been trying to focus more on showing my kids the love of Jesus more than the wrath of an angry mom whose house is unrealistically spotless. I’ve had to let go of a lot of my clean house issues.
When my husband and I first got married I would PANIC anytime I thought someone was coming over. We rarely had guests because it would almost make me physically sick to think about people being in my house and seeing a speck of dust or something slightly out of place.
Three kids and a lot of life later I’ve loosened up quite a bit. I still have mini panic attacks when I think about people coming into to my home but I realized that it was stopping me from having relationships. And if I don’t have relationships with other people (my kids included) how will I share Jesus with them?
I’m not sure what my son will take away from this evening but I’m thankful that God used such a normal life moment to teach me something that I pray will have a lasting effect in my heart.