Angry words erupted suddenly from our backyard, and by the time I made it to the door, my youngest daughter was off and running. I found her riding her bike around the court unsuccessfully trying to vent her anger, and knowing she was in trouble. "Oh, Meggie," I sighed as I approached her. "What was all the yelling about?"
"It was their fault! All their fault! They made me SOOOO ANGRY!!" spewed her words.
"Hold on, Honey," I cautioned. "You know you always have a choice. No-one can make you say unkind words, and no-one can force you to scream them at the top of your lungs."
"I know," she admitted, deflating. "I know."
We parked her bike and sat side-by-side on the deck as Megan recounted her side of the story, tears streaming down her cheeks. I pulled her onto my lap, wrapping my arms around her. "We need to pray for God to help you"
"I DID!!" she sobbed, her little body shaking. "I did pray! And God didn't help me! He didn't help!"
"Oh, Meggie," I breathed. "God's ways are so different from ours. Sometimes He takes our anger away right away when we ask, but more often He teaches us little-by-little how to handle it. God knows we're going to get frustrated, that we'll be tempted to do and say things we shouldn't when we get angry, but He also promises to provide a way out a right way, a better way than shouting and saying hurtful things. The hard part is learning to listen for God's still small voice in the midst of our anger, before we say and do wrong things."
"I should have walked away or asked you to help," Megan quietly admitted.
"Mmm hmm, and I know that's pretty hard sometimes. But you did something very right. You prayed when you got angry, and that was exactly the right thing to do. What's hard is feeling so much anger and not sinning because of it. And you know what?" I whispered, holding her close. "I don't always get it right yet either, but I am getting better, and you will too."
Megan slowly turned her face toward mine. "Mom, will you pray with me?"
"Absolutely." There could be no greater honor, no greater privilege than to pray with my child for God to work in her life, pruning, shaping and molding her into the woman He created her to be, a woman with hope and a future, a woman destined to bring Him joy and reflect His glory to a watching world.
Sitting in the afternoon sun, we held hands and prayed, then it was time for Megan to apologize. "Will you come with me?" she asked.
"Absolutely." As Megan tearfully apologized for what she'd said, her sisters reached out and pulled her into a three-way hug. A truly beautiful, poignant, powerful moment. A moment of forgiveness and restoration. A moment where God's truth met human sin and His love covered all. A moment to hold in my heart and treasure.
Cindee Snider Re lives in Sussex, WI with her husband, their five children, two cats, and two Shichon puppies. She enjoys quiet evenings, long walks, good books, homeschooling her kids, and lots of good, strong, hot, black tea.