My son is my priority blessing. He makes me smile, sing, snuggle and laugh every day. His life brings significant joy to mine, but he also challenges everything I know about discipline and consequences.
And, so I admit, I haven’t always implemented his consequences correctly. Like the time we stood in the parking lot of his preschool and I said, “if you don’t walk in the building then I am going to take away every one of your toys and put them in the attic.” Yes, I said that! And, yes, the toys went in the attic for two days.
Of all the consequences I’ve given, that will probably be one I’ll never forget. It was agonizing for the whole family. That night we sat in the living room with a three year old who had nothing to do other than run circles around the house. What was I thinking?!?
I’m not sure if my son learned anything from that experience, but I know I did. God taught me a big lesson.
The next day as little buddy was hopping and singing in the now toy-less living room, he suddenly noticed his grill had been left out. To be honest, I had only noticed the presence of the grill a short time before he did.
In a moment of delight, he turned and looked at me with a smile the size of Texas and said, “Is that a toy?”
Since the day he lost his toys my precious son had been focused on what was missing and failed to recognize what still remained.
Then I realized, I am often like my son. When life gets me down I often focus on my losses and fail to recognize the blessings that still remain.
John 10:10 says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (NIV)
I’ve come to learn the enemy delights in my discouragement; therefore, he continually aims to get my focus on anything negative. His schemes lead me down a spiraling path of desperation, despondency and defeat.
In these moments I have a choice, I can either focus on whatever is discouraging me or I can focus on Jesus. If I focus on Jesus His light shines into my moment and reminds me of the blessings that still remain.
By continuing in prayer, reading scripture and consciously focusing on the Lord I am able to rise again and see the blessings God has so abundantly bestowed on my life.