Dear Lydia,

Today we had a first.

We spent most of the morning on the couch in our pj’s. We read lots of books and made a craft. Then I had to look up some phone numbers up on the internet and make some phone calls. You stayed next to me and played with your craft box and read. In between phone calls you looked at me and said, “I want to change clothes.” I shrugged and said, “OK, when I’m done, we’ll change.”

A minute later you were quite agitated and said, “I want to change clothes!”  And then you blurted out, “I’m hiding something from you! I’m hiding something from you!” You said this with your hand covering a part of your pajama pants. I thought maybe you had gone to the bathroom or drawn on your pants. Then I saw a tiny hole.

“Lydia, did you cut a hole in your pants with your scissors?” I asked.

You just nodded with tears in your eyes.

The dots all connected for me and I tried to speak gently, “And you were trying to hide it from me? That’s why you laid on the floor to read? That’s why you asked me to change clothes?”

Another nod.

I caught you up in my lap and had you sit face to face with me. “Lydia do you know the 2 things you did wrong?” I asked softly. You nodded in the affirmative again. “You cut your pants. Which you know you’re not supposed to do. We only cut paper. Then you hid it from Mommy. You shouldn’t hide anything from Mommy. Do you know what that’s called?”

You just stared at me.

“It’s a lie. And lies make Jesus so sad. They make me sad.”

This whole time all I could see was your sweet contrite face. And all I was thinking was, “Should I discipline her? What do I do?!”

So, I finally said, “I’m not going to punish you. We’re going to pray and you can ask Jesus to forgive you…remember our F verse? ‘He forgives all our sins.’”

You were really crying now and did not want to voice a prayer to Jesus! So, I prayed for us instead. I thanked God that you had such a tender heart that even in the midst of sin, you chose to do right.

This whole time I was still frantically wondering, “Do I punish her?!” I finally decided that instead of changing clothes I was going to make you wear the pajamas until it was time for us to go out later tonight. You were horrified. You were crying and crying, pointing at the hole in your pants, “I don’t want to wear these!”

You were so sincere and so remorseful. I honestly tried not to smile because you were so beautiful. And I said, “This is what we’re going to do. Let’s take your pants off and we’ll throw them in the trashcan, ok? This is just what Jesus does. When we ask him to forgive us, he throws our sins away and never remembers them.”

It was a long walk to the trashcan and you held my hand tightly the whole time. We threw your pajamas away. Never to be seen again. Just like your sin.

Lydia, I know you won’t remember this day. But I hope you remember this: that Jesus loves you. He takes your sin from you when you ask. And he dresses you with new clothes. (Isaiah 61:10) He sees you as his perfect daughter.

Just as I do.

love,
Mommy

amanda-sig-3

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9 Comments

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9 responses to “Dear Lydia,

  1. Aww… for some reason, this post brought tears to my eyes!

  2. Kathy Hill

    SO sweet. And I cried too. You handled it beautifully. And, she will remember it. You made it a powerful experience, and taught her that to lie is wrong. Maggie still remembers this lesson, and she was younger than Lydia.
    Good job, Mom.

  3. This is beautiful!

  4. Aw … that’s so sweet!

  5. Amanda, this was beautiful. So creative and yet, such a perfect illustration for your young one! I wish I had thought of this type of solution for the same types of situations over the years.

  6. I’m crying. That was beautiful. She is so precious! For her heart to be hurt, knowing she did wrong, but knowing she hurt you too, and then you forgiving her so quickly cannot be summed up. So many of us fly off the handle at such trivial things. This is a much better lesson for all. You are a wonderful mom, and grown-up lady.

  7. Way to go, Sweet Mom. It’s obvious that the Holy Spirit was leading you to parent Miss Lydia today. Exactly what she needed to understand. And thanks for sharing with us. This spoke to me on several levels at once. Gracias.

  8. charmin24

    Oh my word, Amanada – I’m teary, too. What a beautiful way to illustrate God’s love and teach a powerful lesson – in a meaningful way! I pray that God will help me to see that kind of moment with my children and show me how to use it…

  9. This made me cry too. What a beautiful lesson you’ve just taught Lydia! Thank you so much for sharing this, it is truly appreciated!