The Cabbage Lesson

Jul152009_0002web

The kiddo has some challenging personality traits. He's strong-willed, impatient, and a perfectionist.

The past weeks have been downright frustrating for me as a parent. He's been grumpy, irritable, lazy and just downright unpleasant to be around. So he lost "screen time" for a while along with some other punishments. 

One of the main frustrations has been his attitude with his art and piano lessons, both of which he loves, but lately he's had a horrible attitude and has a complete meltdown if he makes a mistake or if his teachers try to correct him. That perfectionist tendency coming out. And if you aren't careful when trying to correct his mistakes he almost can't handle it. When my sister and I took him bowling he did decent the first game considering he had never played before, but the second one he didn't do so well and had a meltdown.

So punishment was dealt. And he's doing much better. One morning when watering his plants I went out and talked to him about his cabbage. 

I reminded him how he brought the cabbage home as a little plant and he planted it along our driveway. It was small, but God sent the rain during the spring and when summer turned a bit dryer he's been going out to water it each day himself. I asked him how long it has taken the cabbage plant to grow from that little plant.  So I told him…

"God didn't make that cabbage plant a huge cabbage plant to start with and it's still growing. Your gifts and talents God has given you are not going to be perfect right away. He doesn't want you to be perfect. No one is ever perfect. You have to nurture and grow and allow God to help grow those gifts he's given you. It means working on them and practicing. It's not going to happen over night and most likely it's something you will be practicing for the rest of your life.  No one can do something perfectly the first time they try something."

I went on to tell him that God expects us to nurture our gifts with a good attitude and without complaining.

Did my little speech make an impact? Maybe a bit. He is doing better with his attitude. I hope using the cabbage he has planted and worked so hard to keep alive helped. I know his cabbage plant doesn't look perfect and who knows how much longer it will last, but he doesn't exactly know what a cabbage plants looks like so I decided to keep that news to myself. I didn't want him to feel like he failed. He'll learn that soon enough.