Photo by RachelH_ on Flickr.
By Lisa Nordell-Detres
“Mom, Dad said ‘No’ to me!” Our three-year-old son came running to me one day to “rat out” his dad.
“Good!” I replied, knowing that what he wanted was not in his best interest. I honestly don’t remember what our son wanted so badly, but my husband and I were in total agreement that whatever it was would not be good for our boy.
Part of the job of responsible parents is to evaluate requests from our vast knowledge database of experience, or to put it simply, think about it and then tell the child whether or not he or she will be allowed to receive what was requested.
Sometimes, the child will be disappointed and that will be that. More often, depending on where you are and how many people are potential witnesses to the fallout; the child may attempt to throw a tantrum. I think I have seen them all, from whiny appeal to the all-out meltdown that requires a swift removal from the scene and heavy doses of love.
As much as we adults would like to think that we are above that kind of childish behavior, most of us would have to admit that we have at one time or another pitched a fit when our prayers to God were not answered in the way that we asked. How many of us have stood with our arms raised to the sky and wanted to scream, “Why are you doing this to me, God? Why won’t you give me what I asked for?” This is not the kind of outburst one throws from not getting the Lamborghini; this is more the cry of a wounded heart that has lost a loved one or the cry of despair when all the job leads have proved to be unfruitful and the unemployment is running out. God doesn’t want to hurt us; He loves us and wants what is best for us. Sometimes He has to correct us in the process, as Proverbs 3:11-12 (NIV) describes:
My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline,
and do not resent his rebuke,
because the LORD disciplines those he loves,
as a father the son he delights in.
God knows us better than we know ourselves and saying, “No” is part of our Heavenly Father’s job. Rather than breaking down or giving up on God, keep in mind that He has something much better planned for you. It is wise to accept God’s will and discipline, knowing that He always has your best interest at heart.
Lisa Nordell-Detres is a mother of four, grandma to two boys with a third on the way (!), a pastor’s wife and has worked in the garment and customer service industries in southern California. Besides writing, Lisa enjoys cooking, sewing, organic gardening, hiking, skiing and doing most anything outside.
Lisa was born and raised in Denver, Colorado, holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Fashion Design from Woodbury University and an MBA from California State University at Northridge. Lisa, her husband and their youngest child now live in central Oregon.