February 11, 2010 Loser. . . . Loser
Our baby is three. I don’t really know how that happened so quickly. You have probably often heard of the terrible twos, but for her it has been the terrible threes. She is stuck in an age that she wants to be babied, but she also wants to be independent. There is no way she is going to go along in this family without a voice of her own, and lately it seems to be more on the screechy side.
Alan and I have determined to crack down more on her discipline. You must understand she is not stubborn, although at times lately she seems so very strong willed. Compared to her sister, she is quite easy going. In other words, she responds to discipline. T. did not, for the longest time. She thought it was cute and funny.
So last night, as I was driving the kids, she begins in her three year old tantrum. It actually had started over being buckled. She wanted to hang on and not be buckled, and I wouldn’t let her. It continued to unravel as we were driving into a fit of anger (her, not me). So I reached back and swat her on the leg. It wasn’t very hard, because she sits right behind me, and she was hard to reach.
The light turned green so I had to go and she didn’t stop. I think what got to me was her telling me she is the boss. Before long I pulled over, opened her door, but she was already broken. She knew what was coming. She said, “loser, loser,” through a face full of tears.
It caught me off guard. I had no idea what she was talking about. So I asked like four times. Finally she articulated, “I’m a loser” (meaning herself). I did what most moms would do in that situation. I gave her a big hug and tried to assure her that she was not a loser.
On our way, she continued to insist that she was a loser. Then it hit me. “Do you mean that mommy won. Am I the winner and you are the loser?” I asked.
“Yes,” she cried.
I had won. It felt so good for her to admit it. After four children, finally one of them would openly admit that I had won a battle.
Kids hate to be wrong. They despise the feeling that they are not the boss. Later thinking about this my mind immediately went to Christ. That is exactly how we are with him. We don’t want to give up control and the right to be right. I want to be the boss of me.
That kind of thinking is the opposite thinking to eternal life. Jesus said, “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for me will save it. What good is it for man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?” Luke 9:24-25
In other words, for me to gain eternal life (be a winner) I must first become a loser (to the things I want).
Paul says it this way, “But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish that I might gain Christ.” Philippians 3:7-8