Frustrated Father

Regan: I got pineapple.

Tanner: No, you didn’t; you got tropical punch.

Keaton: Yeah, that’s tropical punch.

Regan: I got pineapple.

[Two more minutes of debate]

Daddy: [Angrily] Stop it. Quit arguing over nothing. Regan’s juice has pineapple in it. You are all right.

Tanner: [Reading ingredients] contains apple, grape, and/or pineapple.

Daddy: [The sound of me pulling out some hair] Sigh.

In moments like these I often get on a high horse of being extremely frustrated with my kids and amazed that they can find a reason to argue over the most trivial of details. Or, they will find themselves competing with one another over meaningless matters. And there are the times where they simply don’t get their way and they respond with sulking, a tantrum, or some other childish behavior. My frustration level heightens quickly.

But I’m reminded by my Heavenly Father how quickly my emotional ups and downs could frustrate Him. I can, just like my children, be in a meeting with others and not “get my way” and immediately go into a sulk. I may not show it like my children do, but I carry it inside me for quite some time, letting it out like a sniper firing bullets at whomever falls in my sights until the mood leaves me. Not only am I hurting myself, but I’m not trusting the Lord, and I’m often striking out the most harshly at my wife and kids. It’s a horrible pattern of behavior and my ungratefulness demonstrates the level of my faith.

Lord, may I like Paul say I have learned the secret of contentment in any and every situation: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:11-13. And may I demonstrate to my children that secret well.

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