Who's disobeying?

I plod to the bedroom for what feels like the 100th time and I'm counting slowly, all the way to ten, taking the edge off my biting tongue. SLEEP, child. Again and again I go in, explain, discipline, explain, lie the child back down. It seems endless. He could go on like this for hours (although I cannot). 

It is hard to know, especially with the psychological scars my children bear since my cancer, heart, and now PTSD problems have ripped me away from them to sit in a solitary hospital bed. It's hard to know if it's a real need or a child's disobedience.

There's an easy way to check. As you pull that crying child close, and he melts into your arms, and he asks between sobs for you to cuddle him, try it. Just try laying down and cuddling. My child immediately sucks in the sobs and gives me a wet-cheeked smile. I lay there for 5 minutes, and he is asleep.

Was he being disobedient? After all, he didn't obey my instructions. Or perhaps I was being disobedient in being harsh, unloving, and unwilling to change my naptime plans to lay with my son who was irking me to the core. This is the thought that changes everything. It means a messier house and sometimes meals get on late, but when a need arises, I have to tend to it. That is what makes recovery so hard at home. I have to lay myself down for the sake of Christ (and this family). He gives no caveat in the verses that tell me to take up my cross, or lay myself down as He did. He doesn't say, "Well, this doesn't count because you have an anxiety problem and this is obviously making your problem worse. I'll give you a pass this time. God ahead and be selfish". No. Instead He tugs at my heartstrings, softens my heart, and teaches me more about grace through parenting with each passing year.

No matter what: Faith, hope, love. And the greatest of these is LOVE. (I Corinthians 13:13)