T WAS FRIDAY AFTERNOON. I’D PICKED UP MY KIDS AND TWO of their friends from school, as it was my day to drive carpool. Our ride was quiet on my part, but filled with the loud chatter of two little boys and their tween sisters, recapping the week’s events.
Thankful for the long week now behind us, we dropped off our friends, and started the short trip home. Out of nowhere, my 6-year-old son says, “When I have children, I’m going to let them do whatever they want. I won’t punish them, and I’ll never yell at them.” I admit to being tired and a bit cranky and thought to myself, If this is his dig at his dad and me refusing to put up with bad behavior, he’s got another thing coming.
Choosing the overdramatic route to provide a retort to this comment, I said, “Well, if you don’t discipline your kids, they are going to grow up to be bad people. And they will probably commit crimes and go to jail.”
“Mom!” my daughter yelped.
But I was unapologetic.
A few minutes passed in silence.
“Mommy, please don’t talk about my children going to jail,” my son said. “It makes me feel bad.”
Wow, I thought in complete awe. My little boy already loves the children he hopes to have one day, without any knowledge of who they will be and if he will even have them at all.
And in an unexpected conversation, a first grader reminded me of Someone.
Someone who knew me before I was born and loved the thought of me so much He sent His Son to save me long before I existed.
I drove the rest of the way home humbled.
Wilona Karimabadi is editorial and marketing director for KidsView, which is Adventist Review’s magazine for kids. This article was published April 15, 2010.