Today’s Gospel: John 7:40-53
My son, Mason, started middle school in September. As you would expect, he started copping an attitude at the same time. It’s gotten to the point where looking at him sideways puts him in a mood. He also can’t seem to focus on a task and follow it through from beginning to end.
After picking him up from an overnight at a friend’s, I asked him to unpack his bag and put everything away before he moved on to the next thing. Two seconds into the task, he was doing nothing but standing still and sulking. I assumed he was mad because I was forcing him to unpack. I lost my patience.
When I finished lecturing him, he said, “No. It’s not that. I just realized I forgot my slippers back at my friend’s house.”
Mason LOVES his slippers! They are these huge, furry, bear paws with claws that light up when he walks. He’d only gotten them a few days before. I felt his pain; and I felt like a heel. Despite knowing the old adage “Never assume…,” I had done just that.
In John 7, the chief priests and Pharisees want Jesus arrested for what they assume He’s saying and doing. Nicodemus challenges them by pointing out that they’re condemning Jesus without first asking clarifying questions, and then hearing Him out. They ignore Nicodemus’ challenge; but I can’t.
If I truly want to be a good mother to my children, I have to stop assuming anything. I need to ask them clarifying questions always, and then take the time to hear them out before I react.
Do I condemn my kids before hearing them out? Can I vow to always ask clarifying questions, no matter what?
Ever-patient God, please help me to suspend my reactions until I have learned all I need to know, in any given situation.
Copyright 2018 Claire McGarry
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