- Would you mind giving me a lift?
These pictures represent two VERY different kinds of rides! We live in the country so every chance we get we group together to save gas. This particular time was not was not a good time. I had planned it out so carefully, I was going to go get my haircut while the boys went to football practice. I thought it would be ok with everyone but cramping the style and changing the plans of a 17 year old boy is serious business. First the time change that he had to be there, 2:00 instead of 3:00. Ok, I'll drop you off. Secondly, I would be driving his car, you know the one. The one we are paying insurance on, bought for him and now because he is jobless, paying gas for him to haul himself and his little brother around to football practice and anywhere else he wants to go, apparently. (time for Deep breath) Now you would think it would be no big deal, he drives my car when the need arises....it was a big deal.
So here are some tips if you want to "share the ride" with your teenage son.
1. Let them know PLENTY ahead of time....mainly so they can figure out a way to finagle out of it. Putting things on them at the last minute is not a good thing....especially when they have made MANY plans that you don't know about that they plan on springing on YOU at the last minute. But we are seeking peace here....so plenty of warning.
2. Be prepared for them to say no that won't work for me, please figure out something else to do. (time for Mini lesson in give/take relationships....not take/take relationships or give/give relations.)
3. Try to understand their "I'm so frustrated with you" attitude and see things from their side; me, myself and I and what's best for me!
4. Gripe them out! Say things you don't mean, lay on the guilt trip.
5. Make it your ambition to remind them at least for the next 5 times they ask you for something, about the expensive price you paid, (attitude, guilt, disrespect, etc). In other words give them back exactly what they gave you....that will teach them.
REWIND: Most of the above I did do. I was not prepared for all the drama and attitude and instead of taking action I reacted. If I had stopped and thought about exactly what my reactions would have cost, (words I regretted, making ME look like the teenager,) and what it would accomplish-nothing, I may have done it differently.
1. Pray and practice Gratitude
2. Guard my mouth
We all love grace so much...when we are receiving it, but when we are giving it, yuk. It's tough stuff. Even Jesus Christ, when he stretched out his arms to pour out grace upon us, he was spit on, whipped, and rejected.
When we stretch out our arms to show grace, when we lay down our lives, our rights, our agenda, we are going to get stepped on...but the righteousness of God will spring forth.
James 3:17-18 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace.