I don't like the words never or always...although I am guilty of using them at times. But really, they are usually not used in nice contexts. And what human is always one way or never another way?
Take the rant by my four (almost 5) year old just now. "You spend all your money on food. You never buy us toys." (This was not said in a tone of gratitude that we always have plenty to eat.). Then as her crying got louder, she angrily said, "You never do anything for us." What, might you ask, caused my sweet girl to get upset. Well, her mean mom told her that she needed to get dressed. I explained that we were going to eat lunch soon and then head to the park/splash pad. Apparently, feeding her lunch and taking her fun places are not on her list of how she wants to spend the day.
(Anyone want to borrow a 4 year old for the day?) ;)
This has me thinking... While I hope I am more mature than my 4 year old, I still have little meltdowns when things don't go the way I think they should. I still complain (in my head, sometimes out loud and sometimes in prayer) when things are hard and when I don't understand why things in life turn out the way they do. I often forget to give thanks to my Heavenly Father for my many, many blessings. I am so very blessed and compared to so many, my challenges are small and my Father does so much for me. I still have times when people ask me to help them when I want to say no because it isn't what I want to do that day. (But I'm learning that if I can help and I say yes, then I am glad I did when it is over...service does bring joy). And just like I have forgiven my four year old for her temper tantrum because I love her and because I realize she is young and still learning, my Father forgives me. He loves me even when I am spoiled, ungrateful or selfish. And calmly, He tries to teach me what I need to know to find joy. And when I throw my next fit, He will forgive me again, take me calmly by the hand and lead me along. How thankful I am for His loving mercy. Because while I sometimes lose my calm when dealing with my children, He is infinitely loving, forgiving and merciful. He is the type of parent I am trying to be. When it comes to God, I can use the words always and never. With Him, they do apply.