“We’re doing this because we love you. This is the best thing for you. You’ll thank us later.”
I never REALLY understood what that meant. I mean, I knew it wasn’t just my parents’ way of justifying their decisions. But, I didn’t understand what they were really trying to say to me.
I assumed that this trip would teach me something, but I wasn’t quite sure what. Currently, I am relative-hopping through Southern/Central California. Throughout my journey, I have experienced many things that have made me think. So far, I (accidentally) stepped into a dirty pond, snuck my younger cousin into a restroom* at a fancy restaurant, went to a drive-in movie, and went barefoot in a public* restroom.
A few times, the kids will make a wrong choice and I will help correct it. For example, one of my cousins will cry when they lose the game Joshua and I are playing with them. After encouraging the child and making sure they know that no one can win every time, I start to think. What if I was like that? What if I was the one throwing a tantrum “just because”. It really makes one start to wonder. During these times, Joshua will reassure me that I was not indeed like this, or at least not a lot. 🙂
After dinner, we had some dessert. Most of the kids had popsicles, while one switched off taking bites of his aunt and uncle’s ice cream bars. Will was growing tired of only being allowed to take small bites, so he did what most kids would do; he asked for one of his own. At almost the same time, the nearest aunt and uncle told him no, and that it would give him a tummy ache. Here come the waterworks!
Will tried to run away and pout, but I took his hand and sat him down. Below is out conversation.
“Will? Why are you crying?”
“They wouldn’t let me have my own ice cream. I can finish my own!”
“I know you can, Will. But do you know why they wouldn’t give you your own?”
“Because they love you. It would give you a tummy ache if you ate a whole one. They know what’s best for you.” (Sound familiar??)
So, you see, I was acting a lot like my parents! Now, it was my turn to play that card. Sometimes, we think we know what’s best for us. But, we really don’t. Guess what? Sometimes, even our parents don’t know what’s best for us. The only person who can really be sure is God.
“For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.”
*The words “fancy restaurant” require the use of the word restroom as opposed to bathroom.
*I do not completely neglect hygiene; we were at a water park. That justifies my choice, right? 🙂