Monday, February 2, 2009

A Parent's Prayer

Dear God, I was so cross to the children today! Forgive me. I was discouraged and tired - and I took it out on them. Forgive my bad temper, my impatience and, most of all, my yelling. I am so ashamed as I think of it.

Oh God, the pathetic helplessness of children! Their innocence before the awful monster - the enraged adult.

Hours later, I can still see the fear in their eyes as they scurried around, trying to appease me - thinking my anger and maniacal raving was somehow their fault.

And how forgiving they are, hugging me so fervently at bedtime, kissing me good night.

I want to kneel down by each of their beds, wake them up and ask them to forgive me. But I can't. They wouldn't understand. I must go on living with the memory of this awful day, my unjust tirades.

All I can do is straighten a cover, touch a small head burrowed in a pillow and hope with all my heart that they will forgive me.

Lord, in failing these little ones whom you have put in my keeping, I am failing you. Please let your infinite patience and goodness replenish me for tomorrow.


Author unknown

I came across this prayer back when I was the stainless mother to only one or two perfect children. The first time I had to pray it, I wept and wept. In fact, every occasion for which I have to trot out this little gem, I weep. I never thought I would be a mother who had to say these words and I hate myself for it.


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4 comments:

  1. I think we've all had days like this. Very well put. It's amazing how these little ones keep on loving us despite it all. Just like our Father!

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  2. I'm so sorry that you've had to trot it out! I have my own that I pray that I think I'll post soon in solidarity. I'm not proud to say that I behaved poorly towards my children this morning - lacking patience, lacking appreciation, rushed, angry. I'm going to give them huge hugs when they get home and tell them how much I love them. We all have these days...

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  3. You know what strikes me about that photo? It makes me sad for that woman. I want her to forgive herself and to know that she is loved. Then I realize . . . that's me in the picture! And I need to forgive myself and rest in the knowledge that I, too, am loved by God and by my children.

    Really great post, Michele.

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  4. I don't recall seeing this post before. What a humble prayer confession, and one I unfortunately relate to from time to time. Thanks for the precious post.

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