Confession time: I am a whiner! I mean, no kidding, I could make a career out of whining I do it so well.
Like most parents, we try hard to teach our children valuable life lessons. We look for teachable moments where we can help our kids see God in real and tangible ways. One of the things we have noticed our kids doing (like all children are prone to do) is complaining. And oh how it irks me! It especially gets under my skin when we are out doing something fun and they are complaining. Here's how a typical conversation may go.
Mom: We are going out for dinner tonight.
Child # 1: I want to go to McDonald's.
Dad: Sorry, we have already decided we are going to Chick-fil-A
Child #1: Waa, waa, waa, I want to go to McDonald's.
Child #2: Waa, waa, waa, I want to go to Don Pablo's.
Child #3: Waa, waa, waa.
(Okay-he has an excuse, he's allowed to whine at 7 months).
Mom: Are you whining about a blessing?
Are you whining about a blessing? That question usually straightens them out. If not we will remind them that we can stay at home and eat peanut butter and jelly.
A similar scenario happened today. One of my dear friends got married today and we went to her wedding. She was so beautiful and the day was just gorgeous. But on the way home I heard "waaa, waaa, waaa, I'm hot". Now before you go criticizing me for being an insensitive mother consider this: if it is cold, if it is snowing, if it is raining, if it is windy, if it is foggy, if it is sunny, if it is cloudy, if it is dark, my children will complain about it. I was at my wits end with the whining today, so being the mature 30 year old that I am, I asked them if we could find anything else to complain about and began whining right along with them. That was actually rather effective as well, as they were so humored by mommy's whining that they forgot that they were hot. In fact, child # 2 said, "Mommy, you're not supposed to whine."
Are you whining about a blessing? We have all heard the saying, "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery", right? Well, as I have been particularly convicted about my own whining lately, I really wish my children were not imitating me in this area. But after looking at my heart, I know they are. I set the example and the tone in our household. And I am a whiner! Waa, waa, waa!
This was really brought to my attention most recently with our vacation to Florida. My husband hinted at this a couple of posts back but didn't share the whole story. I will spare you the details and will just give you the highlights.
#1-we missed our first flight-wa!
#2-we missed our second flight-waa!
#3-we got on the third flight but it was a really small plane and we couldn't all sit togehter-waaa!
#4-we got separated at O'hare-waaaa!
#5-I flew by myself with 3 kids (thank goodness they are angels!)-waaaaaa!
#6-My darling husband, flew first class by himself, eating chilled salmon, warmed nuts, and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies-waaa-aaaaaaa-waaaaaa!!!!
#7-we spent an entire day (and $1300) in the ER-wawawa!!!!!
#8-we didn't get to go to the beach-WWWWWWWWWWWAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!
You can hear it now can't you? Well, my parents (who were housing us for free) did. And my husband (who was on his first vacation in three years because he works two jobs so I can be at home) did.
Most devastating of all? God did. Are you whining about a blessing? You are on vacation with the family with which I have blessed you. Are you whining about a blessing? You are in beautiful Fort Myers. Are you whining about a blessing? I have provided the means for you to be here and for you to relax and rest because I love you and know you need it. Are you whining about a blessing? You have wonderful parents who are willing to take care of these precious little ones I have given you so that you can enjoy the husband I have given you. Are you whining about a blessing? See I am giving you beautiful weather and you are in the water every day. Are you whining about a blessing? You have not had to cook or clean for an entire week. Are you whining about a blessing?