We exchanged some gifts with my sister’s family when they came for Thanksgiving. We didn’t open them, we just wanted to save on shipping … And have a deadline that forced us to get some of the shopping done early. Of course, once we spent the day setting up the Christmas tree and other decorations on the weekend, Avery was ready to open her gifts. I had a difficult time turning down her repeated advances. Wouldn’t it be fun to open just one gift? After all, I was curious what was under the wrapping, too. But my husband was firm. And rightly so … We should wait. Christmas is a long way off still, so I was thankful she hasn’t asked about the gifts today.
Today’s society is all about getting what you want when you want it. Everything is “fast-acting,” “instant” and at the “lowest price of the season” so it is increasingly difficult to model patience for our kids. But it is just as valuable a characteristic as always. Our pastor today defined maturity as “delaying pleasure even while enduring pain.” My daughter is not always going to get what she wants–from us or from the world or even from God. I want her to learn to live by God’s will and timing and not her own. She can’t do that if she is always getting her way. I still have a lot of work to do in this area myself, but by taking opportunities to teach our kids patience, we can impact them spiritually in a positive way. Just wait.
“The end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride.” Ecclesiastes 7:8