Referee --- that is my current occupation. I am constantly breaking up fights between my two children, ages 8 and 5. Mom, if you are reading this, I am so sorry for all those fights you had to be the referee for! I am feeling your pain now. UGH. Fights at breakfast, fights before breakfast, antagonizing, retaliation, tattling, tears, denial. Then, when they are not fighting, they are at the opposite end of the spectrum, being goofy and loud and silly, which ultimately leads into someone crossing the line, and you guessed it! More fighting!!!
I am sure all moms struggle with their kids fighting. My husband is lost because he has no siblings. He asks, "Is this normal?" I answer, "Yes it's normal, but it's driving me crazy!"
What to do to teach my children to get along with each other? Well, I am still working on it, but I can tell you that God is really teaching me patience and reliance on Him during this season of my life. I have to go to Him to ask him for peace, for reassurance, and for some ideas!! At times, I think, "Lord, are any of the values we have been teaching to them sinking in? By this behavior I would say NOT!!!!" Then the doubts come about my parenting skills. You know how it goes.
But I know that if I remain in His word, he will make me "strong, firm and steadfast." (1 Peter 5:10. That in the middle of the battle, I can breath a word of prayer to Him and my spirit will be renewed. If I go into the battle wearing the full armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-19), I will prevail instead of my doubts and frustrations. That with His help, the words of my mouth will be acceptable and pleasing to Him, not negative and bitter towards my children.
Here is a little idea I had last week to help my kids put God's word in their hearts everyday, and it helps every morning start on a more positive note as we discuss the verse of the day. And it looks pretty darn cute on my kitchen wall especially since I got it for ten bucks!
Teaching them to love one another is not an easy job, but it is one of the most important jobs I will do in my life. I cannot imagine doing it without God leading the way.