Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Raspberry Tea Bath

I know that you're probably thinking "where is she going with this blog title"....just wait, once you read the blog you'll understand.

This past weekend I had lunch with a friend. The lunch went great. We talked, laughed, shared stories...you know just having a good time. Well, as we were finishing up the waitress accidentally knocks over my glass of raspberry tea and it spills all over me. No, I didn't go into panic mode, I actually sat there a minute trying to process what had just happened. However, the young lady did go into panic mode and quickly went to get towels. We requested a manager and he came over in such high spirits and said, "I heard what happened. I heard that you had a raspberry tea bath".We all laughed but my thought was, 'now what are you going to do about it'. He informed me that the meal was on him and that he would take care of the dry cleaning if necessary.
During all of this I was really thinking about how the waitress felt. Did she at all think that I was going to be disgruntle or irate because of her accident. This was the perfect time to show compassion and grace. As we were leaving the restaurant, I stopped the young lady and gave her a tip. She immediately said that she couldn't take it. I then said, "well can you at least answer a question" she said yes and I asked her if she had a relationship with God. As I was asking her the question I continued to hand her the money. She smiled and said that she did. I encouraged her to continue to grow in her relationship with the Lord and remain strong. She then seemed relaxed and accepted the tip.
You see, she forgot about the pleasant service that she had provided. She provided great customer service, very attentive and full of smiles. She did the work that her employer expected her to do. But, she allowed a mistake to become a shadow over the positive things that she has done. We do the same thing. There are times when we forget about the good because we have allowed ONE bad moment to spoil everything. God has told us what we need to do in this life and yes we do make mistakes. Me sharing the gospel with the young lady was a way restoration. God shows us this kind of grace and restoration daily. When we make a mistake, He shows us grace by allowing us another chance to do it right.
Hopefully my actions will remind the young lady that no matter what, you can't give up. Although a mistake was made, she still needs to continue doing what is expected. I tell you, that no matter how many times you fall, GET BACK UP!! Continue on the journey God has so graciously given to you. He has already laid out His expectations, now Let's do what He expects Us to do.

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Other Parent

Many single parents are in the situation to where you are probably feuding with the other parent. Regardless who has custody, there is a battle. It all comes down to expectations. Each parent has some sort of expectation(s) for the other. The expectations usually come down to finances and time. In other words, child support and visitation. The custodial parent expects the non-custodial parent to pay a certain amount of child support regularly and to spend time with their child(ren) and the non-custodial parent expects the custodial parent to use the child support a certain way and to spend a certain amount of time with their child(ren). When those expectations aren't met, the battle begins. Usually this brings on other issues that we expect the other to deal with and adjust to. It's an on going battle until one gives in and submits to the other. But how often does this happen?

I've learned throughout my time as a single parent to lower my expectations. Not to say that the other parent isn't meeting them, it's just so that I can stop myself from being upset. I also realized that eventually the children will see and come to understand what is going on. I just need to do my part. I also must be an example as well. Being an example means to show respect at all times and to love when I don't want to. Yes it gets hard but it's not about me.  As time passes, it gets easier. The headache also decreases, lol. Are there times when the other parent frustrates me.....YES, but I learn to put it in God's hands.

God continues to remind me to love. God reminds me that He is loving me when I do things that He doesn't want me to do. God is the perfect parental role model. When things get rough with the other parent, think about how God loves you. Think about the times when God, our Father, guided you through your circumstances. Think about how His love, restores. Hopefully this will give you peace and the strength to make it through the times of single parenting and struggles of dealing with the other parent.

Be Blessed!