I don’t think he means to be this way. He just doesn’t know exactly what to do with frustrated feelings. He’s only six years old, after all. His continued whining, complaining and downright disobedient behavior had officially gotten to me Sunday morning. Less than an hour before, my neighbor offered to take all three of my boys to 7-11 for free Slurpee day. (Upon her arrival she learned that none of the Oklahoma City metro locations were participating.) (Of course they weren’t.) I really didn’t want to take this treat away from him, but quite frankly, his attitude was far from acceptable and the blessed trip to the local convenience store seemed to be my only leverage. “Seth, please go to your room. You will not be going to 7-11,” I calmly replied. (Emphasis on calmly, thankyousokindly.) “But, mom, I’ll be better. I pwomise,” he began to beg. After a couple of minutes, I firmly let him know that he needed to go to his room. He stomped all the way there. The old me would have just sent him to his room, gone up to have a good “talk” with him, told him to stop it and then gone ahead and let him go with his friends. Not this time. This time I held firm to my decision despite the fact that it was killing my ever-lovin’ heart to do it. The superhero in this mom wanted to sweep in and save the day. But, I knew that if I didn’t begin to deal with this issue of his now, the same thing would happen the next day. And the next. And the next. After my other two boys left for their well-earned treat, I decided to go up and talk to him. He didn’t even acknowledge me when I walked into his room. I asked him if he was mad at me and he simply nodded his head in the affirmative. I tried my best to explain to his little mind that his actions caused this, not mine. I told him that I really needed him to obey me and stop whining, complaining, arguing and being disrespectful to me. As I gently shared with him my heart, big tears began to well up in his eyes. He was anything but comfortable with what was happening. And then I saw it. He let loose and they poured down his face. I asked him if he felt bad for treating me that way and he said yes. I scooped up his 48-pound body and hugged him like I hadn’t seen him for years. And he cried and cried and cried. I began to sing a song over him: I’m forgiven because you were forsaken. I’m accepted, you were condemned. I’m alive and well, You’re Spirit is within me because you died and rose again. Amazing love, how can it be? That you my King would die for me. Amazing love, I know it’s true. And it’s my joy to honor you. In all I do, I honor you. Within minutes, his tears subsided, peace fell upon him and he hugged me tighter. I don’t want my sons to just throw out an “I’m sorry” to someone they’ve wounded all the while watching the latest episode of Spongebob Squarepants. No, I want what God wants which is a broken and contrite spirit that recognizes their sin. That day, Seth knew what he did and his spirit was broken over it. I don’t expect that to be our last encounter like that, but hey…it’s something, right?