It was about 9 p.m. as we were driving home. My husband, John Mark, looked in the rear-view mirror and calmly stated, “I don’t know why, but there are blue flashing lights behind us.”
My heart sank, and my blood pressure went UP.
John Mark slowed down, pulled over to the side, and rolled down his window. All the while I was saying, “What!? I can’t believe this! You were going the speed limit. What did we do wrong? Cade, sit still and don’t talk. John Mark, this is ridiculous! Cade, face the front.”
The policeman came to John Mark’s window to request his license and registration and asked if John Mark knew why he was pulled over. Of course, he said “no.” The policeman went on to say, “Well, sir I see why you do not know the reason I pulled you over. The picture of your son is covering up the bright light signal on your dashboard. You were driving with your bright lights on.”
He went back to his flashing lights; and when he returned, he had in his hand an official warning notice. As we drove away, I began again:
“A WARNING! That is crazy! We got a warning for our bright lights being on!? I can’t believe that.”
In the moments of silence after my venting, I noticed Cade, our son, was very quiet. I looked to the back seat. He had his arms crossed, his knees up to his chest, and was obviously mad.
“Cade, what are you upset about?”
“I don’t like policemen.”
Well, there you have it. Mom’s venting and sharp words had taken root. My son, who normally looks up to and respects men in uniform, now does not like them. His attitude changed because of my poor example.
Yes…I felt quite small. If that was a test of showing Jesus, I failed.
“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Psalms 15:1-2
Every day we have opportunities to be Jesus to our kids, and every day the devil is going to throw us curve balls. Satan wants to destroy our witness. He wants to make the road to Jesus difficult for our kids to see. He will use our mouths, our choices, and our actions against us.
Oh how I wish I had responded differently in the car that night. As we drove home, I apologized and told Cade, “The policeman was doing his job. Because we had our bright lights on, we could have caused an accident. It was very helpful for the policeman to stop us.”
However, all the words I said on the backside could not replace the words I had spoken in the heat of the moment.
In Ephesians, chapter six, Paul reminds us, “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in heavenly places.”
We can start the day with Jesus, knowing He is going before us fighting the spiritual battle. He is fighting the devil on behalf of our souls, the souls of our kids, family members, and friends.
We are not alone, and we need Jesus daily in order to WIN daily.
Jesus, we love you and thank you for walking with us through this day. It is our hearts’ desire to be more like you. Help us to remember the power of words, and enable us to speak words that are encouraging and life giving in every situation. Help us to know when to stay silent and give us the strength to follow through. We are blessed to be moms, and we want to use our position to point others to you. Our eyes are on you, Jesus. Thank you for using us to build your kingdom. In Jesus Name, AMEN.
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