53: A Flake at a Time
It’s a beautiful snowy day in Colorado. The flakes are big and falling slowly and the ground is covered in a fresh white blanket. It’s a perfect day to play “I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas,” to drink hot cocoa, and to sit by the fire.
It’s interesting how the snow accumulates over time. It always seems like when it starts to snow, the first hour or two doesn’t do much. The vast majority of the flakes melt away as they touch the ground. Nothing sticks. Then gradually over time a little accumulation starts here and there on the grass. It usually takes several hours before the streets get covered, and then before you know it the whole world seems blanketed in white.
Parenting can feel the same way at times. So much of our training and disciplining seems to fall to the ground and melt away. Then, over time, we start to see little glimmers of hope. Maybe some of it is sticking after all! Our hope is that over the years the accumulation of instruction will dramatically impact their every aspect of their lives.
However, it is easy at times to get discouraged and to think that none of our parenting is making a difference. We get discouraged when we see the grass sticking up out of the snow, but we forget that the snow is still falling. We focus on the insignificance of each flake rather than the impact of the storm.
Isaiah 28:9-10 They say, “Who does the Lord think we are? Why does he speak to us like this? Are we little children, barely old enough to talk? He tells us everything over and over again, a line at a time, in very simple words!” (NLT)
Children are trained this way, little by little, a line at a time, using very simple words. Or as another translation puts it, “Do and do, do and do, rule on rule, rule on rule; a little here, a little there.” (Isaiah 28:10b NIV)
I wish I could just go tell my kids to be perfect, they would obey, and that would be the end of it. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Parenting is a long, slow, tiring process. We need to take heart and keep pouring input into our kid’s lives. Even if it seems like it’s only a flake at a time, eventually we’ll see the impact of our consistent love and training.