After slaving over a hot griddle in the midst of a Central Florida heat wave the last words I wanted to hear were, “Where’s MY Mickey Mouse pancake?!?”… “It’s on your plate.”. I was hoping to get away with it, after all she was only 4, and it was just a little mis-shaped between the ears. “It’s NOT Mickey, I don’t want it!”. Suddenly, I was struck with a flash of genius! “Are you sure you don’t want it?”, I got the pout and the head bob. “Mom, I’ll take it.” Ah, the oldest, people-pleasing child spoke up! “Great! Tory, you get to have the very first ever MINNIE Mouse pancake!”. Wails erupted from the 4-year-old, “But Tory already got a Mickey pancake! No Fair!!! I want a Mickey AND a Minnie pancake too!!!”. Success! Yes! I out-manipulated a 4-year-old!!!
Really Ellen? You call that success? Some flash of genius that was! Now I’d actually have to figure out how to make a Minnie pancake… on purpose! Like I really wanted to give her anything now anyway. It was hot, I was tired, I felt like I gave her everything I had and she still wants more. It made me angry, why couldn’t she understand everything that I’ve done for her.
That pancake episode was years ago and my overindulged 4-year-old is now a pretty decent (though still masterfully manipulative) 16-year-old. It struck me that I’m not much different from that 4-year-old when it comes down to it. I don’t really understand the fullness of what Jesus did for me, and I take his gift of Salvation for granted sometimes. I act self-righteous and deserving when really I’m not. I ask for more and get upset when things don’t go my way, and if I have to wait for something??? Once again I’m brought to the book of Ephesians, I think I just need to memorize it…
“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32 NIV)
“Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.” (Ephesians 5:1, 2 NIV)
Jesus gave his life for us even though we were undeserving. He treats me with kindness and compassion even when I throw a fit. I guess if He can do that for me, the least I can do is keep making Mickey & Minnie pancakes for Mady even if she doesn’t deserve them.