A Hot Mess of Sorry

The differences between our two children is mind-blowing, absolutely mind-blowing!

Our oldest is a quiet observer; our youngest is a charming talker.

Our oldest loves cozy time at home; our youngest loves the aisles of Target.

Our oldest has incredible self-control; our youngest is stealing jelly beans at 9 AM.

Our oldest prefers personal space; our youngest can’t get enough of your lap.

Our oldest reminds me how to parent; our youngest is re-defining how I parent.

Seriously, I could spend a good chunk of time highlighting their differences, but I really ought to finish this post and attempt a much-needed shower before the stench threatens to stick forever!

Suffice to say, they are siblings that share few similarities!

And just when I think I have discovered all the north’s and the south’s and the east’s and the west’s of their personalities, I stumble upon another–further reinforcing their uniqueness.

Last week, I found another north and south.

Rewind to last week…

Kneeling in front of our youngest with her hands in mine, I patiently explained in my “I’m-not-kidding” voice (the one that you use when you call your child by their first, middle, and last names from the top of the stairs) why stomping her feet when asked to do something is a “no-go” and a “no-do” in our casa.

As I chided and corrected, she hysterically wept. With tears the size of blueberries and a nose that looked like a snot faucet, she threw herself into my arms. “I sorry, Mommy. I sorry. I sorry, Mommy. I sorry.”

Girl was a hot mess of sorry.  

What in the world?!? Girl, we are JUST having a CON-VER-SA-TION!!! That’s it. Nothing more and nothing less. Pull yourself together or I’ll give you something to…

I was completely thrown for a parenting loop.

And why was that?

Because her brother NEVER, EVER…EVER… responded like that. NEVER.

I hugged her; I held her; and I repeatedly forgave her but nothing, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, was consoling her conscience and easing her soul.

Following me around the house with a pouty lip and a tear-stained face, she clung to my legs and hovered at my feet.

“I sorry, Mommy. I sorry. I sorry, Mommy. I sorry.” 

Over and over…over and over, she replayed her offense and repeated her guilt. She was truly a broken record of brokenness, and my heart was sad.

Her once-appropriate guilt was quickly entering into the inappropriate  land of shame, and I was feeling overwhelmed by it.

Why wouldn’t she believe my words? 

Why couldn’t she trust my heart? 

Why shouldn’t she accept my forgiveness? 

It was over…LONG over.

I had moved on and moved past, but she hadn’t.

She wasn’t “letting go.”

And as I meandered the house with a 23 lb. of brokenness on my leg, I couldn’t help but think that I, too, am often a lug of brokenness clinging to my Father’s forgiving leg as I repeat and replay the sin that’s already been forgiven. 

I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. 

I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. 

I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. I’m sorry, God. I’m sorry. 

Over and over again, I rehearse my wrongs and beg for His forgiveness but for the first time in like…EVER…like in the last week, I wondered if my Savior feels (even a little) of how I felt when my words weren’t believed, my heart wasn’t trusted, and my forgiveness wasn’t accepted. 

I wondered.

And as I wondered why I (so VERY much like my daughter) struggle to move past my sin and trust His work and accept His grace, He kindly pointed out a passage of Scripture this weekend that reinforced the completeness and finality of His forgiveness.

You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross. Colossians 2:13-14

It was true; it WAS absolutely true.

I WAS dead in my sins and in my sinful nature

BUT God, in His merciful power…

made me alive,

forgave it all,

canceled the record,

took it away,

and nailed it to the wooden beams.

Because of His blood, and His sacrifice, and His righteous holiness, I no longer have to cling to my sin and enter the land of shame. 

Why?

Because He said, “IT IS FINISHED,” and it was is. 

Oh, Father, would you help us to confess our sins and embrace your grace, remembering your blood paid the price for the sins that we no longer have to carry in shame? We want to believe your words, trust your heart, and accept your forever forgiveness, but we need your grace for that, too. 

The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
    slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
    nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
    or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
    so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
    so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

As a father has compassion on his children,
    so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
    he remembers that we are dust.
The life of mortals is like grass,
    they flourish like a flower of the field;
the wind blows over it and it is gone,
    and its place remembers it no more.
But from everlasting to everlasting
    the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
    and his righteousness with their children’s children—
with those who keep his covenant
    and remember to obey his precepts.

Psalm 103:8-18

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