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Long-Term Gain, Short-Term Pain

July 11, 2011

You would think I was trying to spray them with acid.

Or slather them in axel grease.

I don’t know who suffers more from the daily ritual of sunscreen – them, or me.

I’ve even gone so far as to explain to Scooby that if he doesn’t let me do this then someday, he might have to have chunks of his face removed. (Yes, I scare my children into compliance. Mother of the year.) Unimpressed and undaunted by my grisly vision, he still caterwauls like a dying cat every time I pull out the Coppertone Kids.

I’ve tried sprays and lotions and the one that looks like a big tube of chapstick…they hate it.

They also hate brushing their teeth. Again, someday you will thank me for making you do this. Because if you don’t, your teeth will rot and fall out of your head. Yes, they will. I’m not making this up.

Long-term gain, short-term pain.

Our parenting class that meets on Sundays after worship was discussing all the things about God that we’ve learned from our kids. Grace, forgiveness, compassion, to name a few.

And I started thinking about sunscreen and toothbrushes and I wonder…what disciplines am I caterwauling about now that God knows is going to pay me grand dividends in the future? And not even my eternal future – what good habits am I fussing and whining about that are going to lead to wonderful things in this lifetime? Because really, doesn’t He love me enough to enforce discipline now, just as I do my own kids, so that in the end, I will gain?

Really makes you think, doesn’t it?

Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This isn’t a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in. If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust? If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? As bad as you are, you wouldn’t think of such a thing. You’re at least decent to your own children. So don’t you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?

Matthew 7:11-12, The Message

In the meantime, if you have some nifty method for protecting kids from the sun without the pain and suffering (for us both) let me know.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. July 11, 2011 2:36 pm

    This one will preach, Sister Adelle! You have gone so far beyond green jello……
    Love the truth of this and love you!

  2. Papa Stone permalink
    July 12, 2011 4:53 pm

    Put sunscreen in the wading pool

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