Cammy's three-year old son, Gavin, sat at the breakfast table with a bowl of oatmeal in front of him. Multitasking, Cammy left the room saying, "Gavin, Mommy wants you to stay in your chair and eat your oatmeal while I put on my makeup."
A few minutes later, Cammy came back in the kitchen, saw the empty table and heard Gavin's voice say, "Open you mouth for a big bite!" Following the voice into the living room, she arrived just in time to see Gavin pushing the close button on the DVD player and as it closed, oatmeal squished out the edges and dripped onto a pile forming on the carpet. It obviously wasn't the DVD player's first bite.
Cammy's immediate thought: Gavin just destroyed our DVD player We can't afford a new one What had been a clam morning, quickly reframed itself into a financial burden. Anger welled up inside, threatening to spill over on her son.
At this moment how would you respond?
God cares about these little details in your life and wants you to come to him for help. Psalms 55:22 says, Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken. (NASB)
What if, instead of lashing out at our children in moments like these, we use our anger as a cue to send up a "rocket prayer" for help and perspective on the situation? Rocket prayers are a quick silent prayer that are not necessarily pleading with the Lord to change your child's heart, but to change your heart in difficult or explosive situations.
When you send up a rocket prayer, you are giving God an invitation to be Lord of that moment, to give perspective you may not have otherwise. The calm our prayers bring allows us to see childish mistakes in the right perspective and deal with the real issues at hand with loving discipline. Taking that moment to release our anger to God allows us to teach them important lessons without squelching their creativitiy and indeendence.
Cammy could have easily given Gavin harsh discipliine, but had trained herself to call on the Lord in times of trouble. And he answered her with his peace.