I was struck recently in listening to a conversation between my pastor and his mom … she said something along the lines of, “Our kids don’t have a small sized Holy Spirit in them; they have the same sized Holy Spirit that we do. They can hear from God.”
Everything in me paused as I realized that in some ways, I have not trusted God enough with my kids, and in effect, I haven’t trusted my kids with God. This story reminded me just how much this needs to change.
It was last summer. My 8 year old boy often resembled a 14 year old girl those days (and still). It’s as if he was PMSing constantly. He is brilliant and thoughtful and introverted and at the flip of a switch he can dive headlong into an emotional cesspool of despair and defiance. We’ll just say life is an adventure.
After several days of being at a loss of how to reign in his extreme emotions. I signed him up for a week at Camp. A little space was going to be good for everyone.
This particular camp demanded a 730am drop-off out in the country side, so early rising was in order. At 640 on day 2, my little man woke me with guns blazing. Cue whisper-yell (thankfully he was aware of sleeping baby next to me} “MOM! MOM! I only have 20 minutes and that is not enough to get my socks on, brush my teeth and get in the car!” Sleepy eyed, I looked at him, half hearing, half praying this was a dream. I then closed my eyes without saying a word and laid back on my pillow as he sighed heavily and stomped out of the room. I think I prayed that the Lord would soften him or help me, or maybe both. Five minutes later, a little voice came from the side of the bed. “Mom? I am sorry I talked to you that way. I was just excited about camp and worried I din’t have enough time.”
An unsolicited apology from a fiery boy elicits compassion and immediate action from a tired mom ANY DAY OF THE WEEK. I leaped out from under the covers.
“I forgive you! Let me help. lets go!”
A half hour later, as we drove into the countryside, I asked him what had happened earlier to cause his heart to change. What made him come back and apologize?
“I don’t know,” he answered.
“Did you hear something? A voice, a thought? What happened?”
“I don’t know, I guess I just thought I should come and say sorry.”
“Tuck! That was God!”
“No it wasn’t.”
“Yes it was! We don’t hear God audibly, with our physical ears. The Holy Spirit speaks in our “thought voice”, and is the one who helps us and brings us to repentance. It was that spirit that cut through all the other thoughts in your head and gave you the idea to apologize!”
“Well then it wasn’t very powerful. I could have just said no,” Tuck replied.
“Yes… but you didn’t. The Bible says God’s voice is a still small voice. He is always in control, so he doesn’t have to get loud. And he loves you enough to give you the choice to disobey, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t still in charge. Sometimes you and I get loud when we want to be powerful, but we both know that sucks the love right out of our relationship and nobody likes that kind of voice. God doesn’t need to get loud to prove he’s powerful.”
“YA, he’s not a control freak like us.”
“Ha! Nope. Remember Joseph and all that bad stuff that happened? Probably a lot that God didn’t think was good. But God turned it all around. He even used all the bad stuff for good! Now that’s power, when you can take disobedient people and wrong actions and still turn everything out for good.”
“I know what God’s voice sounds like now…”
“What does it sound like?”
“It’s the only one in there that is powerful and calm.”
“Wow, Tuck… Yes. Yes it is.”