It had been a rough day. One of my kids had been disobedient and in trouble all day long. Another bad choice by this child caused me to unleash words that were supposed to be of correction, but they were spoken in anger. I was furious. Didn't he get it? In exasperation I walked out of the room. I don't know how he found the courage to do it...but he followed me into the next room.
His next words cut through the hardness of my heart, "Mom, shouldn't you ask me to forgive you?" Ouch. He was right. The words I had spoken were not out of love but out of frustration. They may have been justified but they were not righteous. I wanted to say, "You deserved it" but I couldn't. I had been wrong and I had been teaching my children that when they made a mistake and hurt someone else they needed to ask for forgiveness.
God brought me back to the cross at that very moment. As Jesus hung on the cross, dying for my sins and for yours, He said, "Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing." Luke 23:34
I immediately got down on my knees and asked my son to forgive me. He quickly said yes and we hugged and then prayed together, with me asking God to forgive me for my harshness and asking him to help me be gentle and kind.
I am not perfect, nor will I ever be. But God is a loving parent who is gently teaching me, and so often it is through the eyes of my children.