On December 14, the little stuff just didn’t matter to me anymore.

The whining.

The fussing.

The nagging.

Not sharing.

All of the “toddler stuff” that would wreck my nerves some days just didn’t matter any longer.

That day, I couldn’t arrive at my son’s school fast enough. I sat in line with quivering knees– anxious for him to run up to the car and squeeze my neck before climbing into his car-seat. My son is a kindergartner in public school– just like many of the 20 children who were ruthlessly executed at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

That day I thought about my frustration because my son would not listen and stay in his bed the night before. Or because he was moving super slow–dragging and whining–not wanting to get ready for school. Out of pure exhaustion, I watched myself grow tired and weary and more overwhelmed at what was becoming a horrible routine.

As a mom, I’m the first to admit how wrong I often get it. I yell sometimes. I allow myself to get frustrated beyond a point that I should with my toddlers. I’m impatient and I get upset when my kids don’t “get it” or listen the first time. But that day, December 14, that all changed for me.

That day he ran up to our van with beaming bright eyes and his heavy backpack. All I could say was, “Lord, forgive me for all those times I let the ‘little stuff’ get in the way of the true love that’s deeply embedded in my heart for my children.”

You know what love I’m talking about. The love you felt the first day you learned you were expecting and that grew with each passing day after they were born. It’s a love for all children. For their safety. For their health and strength. For their protection. It’s why the news struck us all in such a personal way.

We’re all mourning. Our hearts are all shattered and December 14 will be a day many of us will never forget.

My prayer is that our King, our eternal Master, will soften all of our hearts and help us parent our children with great love and affection. And, that we will not let the “little stuff” overshadow the true love that we have for them.

I need less frustration, more love, more hugs, more deep affection to parent my children the way God trusts me to. The “little stuff” isn’t that important.

May the Lord speak to us all about how to love our children more.

You might also like:
:: Newtown, Light in the Darkness
 :: How to Talk to Our Children about Disasters – Part 1
:: How to Talk to Our Children about Disasters – Part 2
:: How to Talk to Our Children about Disasters – Part 3