Last week I experienced a great object lesson with the children. We were eating breakfast and I had to step away for a minute. I gave them very clear instructions to sit and finish their cereal and that I would be right back in a few minutes. At the time we were eating from our pretty glass bowls.
While in the back I heard a big crash and I knew there was broken glass. As a general rule, we are to always stay seated while eating, especially if I have to step away for a moment. When I came out there was glass all over the floor. I looked at the mess and immediately ushered the children out so I could get up the glass. Of course I asked what happened and who was playing at the table. After getting the details from the offenders, I told them to go sit on their beds and not make a sound.
As I was getting up the broken glass I looked and saw that the floor was in need of a good scrubbing, something I'd rather not do. I had to move the table and all six of the chairs out of the dining room, I vacuumed and swept up the glass along with the cereal and then began to get on my hands and knees to scrub the floor.
When I got up I was rather pleased at the results. I had a very clean floor, something I had not seen in quite a while. So I thought to myself, had I not been forced to move the table and chairs and get down here to get this glass up, I may not have seen how much this floor really needed to be mopped.
By this time I was able to talk to the children in a calmer voice and I called them into the living room. I explained that I was very upset because they were disobedient. I told them that they knew they were to stay in their seats and not get up and play around like they did and hence cause an accident. I also reminded them that some one could have been hurt if glass had cut them.
Then I began to talk about God and our disobedience to Him and how He shows us grace. I told them that He still loves us even when we mess up and that when we are sorry about disobeying Him that He is able to turn things around for good.
I told them that I had not realized how much the floor needed to be scrubbed because the table and chairs were always there covering those parts of the floor and that sometimes in our disobedience other things are uncovered that need attention.
I explained to them that this accident caused me to see what I needed to do and that as a result what was a bad situation turned out for the good. I showed them the clean floor and the box with the broken glass. If not for the broken glass I told them I may not have cleaned the floor the way it needed to be cleaned. I assured them that it was OK and that I forgave them for their disobedience and stressed grace. I told them that no matter what God and I are always on their side.
Now I am not an advocate for being disobedient but this taught me that sometimes in God's grace a good thing can come from our making mistakes. God can uncover deeper issues in us and turn things around for us.
This weeks object lesson.