Thursday, April 22, 2010

You've Got to Ask the Right Question

I am trying to teach my children to ask the right question.
Because, you see, I am selfish. And if they don't learn to ask the right question, they're never going to like the answer they receive.

Let's see if you get what I'm saying.

If you were - oh, my son - and you wanted me to go outside with you and throw the football around (Even though I might, uh, break a nail!), should you ask:
Mom, do you want to play football with me?
or
Mom, will you play football with me?

OR, if you were my daughter and it was time for you to do the dishes, and you wanted me to read to you while you were doing your chores (Even though I had just spent enough time in the kitchen making dinner.), should you ask:
Mom, do you want to read to me?
or
Mom, will you read to me?

Do you see the difference?
Do you understand why it's important for my children to ask the right question?

If they ask me a question which begins, "Do you want to...?" chances are the answer is going to be, "No."
Because I am selfish.
And if someone is asking me to do something that wasn't my idea, and isn't centered around me and my comfort, I probably don't really want to do it.
Just bein' honest! *grin*

BUT, God is refining me. He is teaching me to say NO to my selfish desires. (Doesn't mean the selfish desires are gone. Just that He's helping me to say NO to them.)
Therefore, if my children learn to ask the right question, (i.e. "Will you...?" rather than, "Do you want to...?") there is a much greater likelihood that my response will be, "Yes."

Soooo, until my little darlings 'get it,' I'll keep following up their Do-you-want-to?s with, "Honey, you've got to ask the right question."

And, actually, I'm kinda wondering if there might come a day somewhere in this refining process when I'll be able to answer even the Do-you-want-to?s with a YES.
Now, that would be truly amazing. Don't you think?


Karen

15 comments:

Leah @ Point Ministries said...

Will have to ponder that. first time i've ever thought about it.

Leah

Anonymous said...

Something to think about for sure...

Blessings,
Debby Ann

gianna said...

i totally understand! Of course I don't WANT to. But I guess I will.

luvmy4sons said...

LOL! LOL! Yes! Yes! Yes! What more can I say! Hugs! *grin*

Irritable Mother said...

Leah - Happy pondering! *grin*

Debby Ann - It's fun seeing my kids think about it, too. Hoping they'll even learn by this little quirk of mine that we CAN say NO to our selfish desires.

Gianna - I figured you would understand. FOUR. Girl, you amaze me.

Leslie - And you, my kindred spirit. There isn't much more to say, is there? ((hugs))

On Purpose said...

This is in line with my reading of Mark 9 this morning...Jesus please continue to fill me with the strength and power to be unselfish...its a struggle for me!

O Mom said...

Wow, I never thought about it like that....It does seem much harder for me to say No, when thry ask it that way. And I hate it later when I do say No, in hindsight I always think why didn't I just do that???

Irritable Mother said...

Nichole - So thankful that His strength meets us where we struggle.

O Mom - That's just it. When they ask if I want to and I say 'No,' I'm just being honest. And I don't really feel bad about it.
But if I say 'No' to a quesiton of willingness then I'm being selfish. And that's what I'm trying to put an end to!

Sara K. said...

Karen, your honesty is SO refreshing!!!!!!! I can definitely relate. :)

Irritable Mother said...

Sara - I'm glad. :)

Amanda said...

This hit home probably a little more then I would have liked!

Blessings-
Amanda

P.S. IN a good way. :)

Blessed With 4 said...

Karen, I totally relate. I have been having a teaching this week from our Heavenly Father on selfishness ;p
Ouch, pruning hurts :D

Irritable Mother said...

Amanda - I'm glad it's in a good way. *grin*

Betty-Jo - Hurts, yes. But soooo worth it! And God knows what He's doing. He's a Master Pruner!

Angie Muresan said...

Karen, you crack me up! I'm in bed reading this and laughing so hard the bed's shaking.

Irritable Mother said...

Angie - Whew! For a minute there I thought I was going to be in trouble.
I thought you were going to tell me you were in bed laughing so hard you, uh, had to change the sheets. LOL!