For the past few days, Chloe’s been rude. She’s been moody. She’s been downright angry.
Things came to a head this morning when she turned over Cole’s cereal bowl. Chloe didn’t apologize, nor did she even act like anything had happened.
Cole told Amy and Amy corrected Chloe.
Chloe pitched a fit. She blamed Cole. She blamed Amy. She made excuses. The only thing she didn’t do was acknowledge her mistake — which was all it was — and apologize to Cole. So Amy sent Chloe to her room.
As she stomped down the hallway she yelled, “You love Cole more than you love me!”
Then she slammed her door.
At this point, I decided to intervene. I walked into her room and sat down on the bed next to her. I asked her why she was acting this way lately, and why she’d treated Cole so meanly this morning.
Then I broached the subject of her new faith. It would have been easy to throw it in her face and say, “How could you act this way? I thought you were a Christian!” But I refused to use her newfound faith as a weapon against her.
Instead, I asked her about her understanding of her new faith. Is this how Jesus would want us to act? How does he want us to treat others? She admitted her behavior wasn’t as it should be. I told her that she should treat others the way she wanted to be treated (Matthew 7:12), then prayed with her and together we asked Jesus to help her do that.
Chloe left with a better attitude, a better understanding of how she’s supposed to act and the knowledge Daddy will pray with her about the things going on in her life. It took more time than just berating her for not acting like a full-grown, fully mature Christian. But then again, she isn’t one.
Neither are any of us. We often forget that. We often forget no Christian is perfect and we’re all still learning and are or should be striving to be better.
We also forget some things may be going on in a person’s life that causes them to respond in a certain way. After Chloe left the room, a thought occurred to me: She’s been on prescriptions recently. I called the pharmacy and asked. One of the medicines she’s taking causes, you guessed it, irritability.
The Rev. Parrish Myers is a local minister living in Braselton. His column appears biweekly in Sunday Life and on gainesvilletimes.com/life.