Daily Gospel Reflection for November 8, 2018

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Today’s Gospel: Luke 15:1-10

I used to be a helicopter mom when it came to my kids’ homework. I monitored what was due when, and tried to teach them organizational skills, time management, and good study habits. I played it that way for years. Consequently, both my boys had straight As.

But there comes a time when our kids have to fly. Last September, I pushed them both out of the nest. Zack was in eighth grade; Mason was in sixth. I felt they were ready to apply all I had taught them, and strike out on their own. To inspire them, I dangled the idea of a big reward at report card time if they stayed straight A students.

Right out of the gate, Mason caught his stride and consistently applied himself. Not the case with his older brother. Zack took a casual approach; and his grades reflected it. Suddenly, C’s, D’s, and F’s became common marks.

As the trimester progressed, Mason continued to quietly do the right thing in the background, like a good sheep. Unfortunately, I barely noticed. I was too busy trying every motivational technique I could think of to untangle his lost sheep brother from the briers.

When marks closed, each of their report cards reflected their effort: Mason earned his reward; Zack did not.

Oh how I struggled with toeing the line. As unfair as it sounds, Mason’s reward was delayed and downplayed so as not to rub things in Zack’s face. It was a very difficult and uncomfortable situation all around.

I am hopeful that the day will come when Zack’s grades WILL improve. On that day, there will be no delaying or downplaying his reward. Instead, there will be a big old celebration when my lost student finds his way back.

Ponder:

Do I have one child who struggles, and one who does not? Do I celebrate more when the struggling child succeeds?

Pray:

Dear God, please bless my struggling child with whatever is needed to bring him/her back. Also, please remind me to to recognize and affirm my other child who consistently does the right thing.


Copyright 2018 Claire McGarry

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About Author

Claire McGarry is the author of the Lenten devotional “With Our Savior,” published by Creative Communications for the Family/Bayard, Inc. Her freelance work has appeared in various Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Focus on the Family magazine, and the Keys for Kids devotional. The founder of MOSAIC of Faith, a ministry with several different programs for mothers and children, she blogs at Shifting My Perspective.

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