Ephesians 4:32 – “NEVERMIND!”

The people closest to us can ruffle our feathers faster than any other. And though we should be kind to all, most certainly should we be kind to our family.

As a mother of tweens and teens, it can be incredibly exhausting trying to be patiently kind and helpful when a child is pushing back and resisting every kindness. Too often I let the pushback get to me and I default to my standard reaction: “NEVERMIND!”

I don’t think this is what Paul had in mind when he wrote, “Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)

Certainly in the case of parenting, disobedience or backtalk does need to be addressed. However, huffing “Nevermind!” and stomping off isn’t how God called me to do that, nor is it leading with a good example. I can’t wonder where my kids get it when I see them do this with each other.

Fortunately for us, God doesn’t give up on us and we won’t hear him yell “NEVERMIND.” God forgives us each and every time that we come back in repentance, and then He continues to show us kindness and lead us as He was before. God is also always quick to convict me when I’ve lost patience with a child, leading me back to forgive them for their behavior and ask them to forgive mine.

In the same way, we should show the same kindness to all those around in–not only our dear loved ones–being tender hearted and showing forgiveness instead of losing patience. We don’t know what’s going on in a person’s heart, and we can’t control a person’s behavior. But we CAN control our own behavior, showing love and kindness, and also lead the relationship by example at the same time.

Thank goodness God continues to do the same for us!

Amber Oliver

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