I was so looking forward to getting into bed last night. You know those days when your muscles are aching, your mind is tired and you’re anticipating the moment of putting your head on your own pillow, snuggling into your cosy duvet and drifting off to…
There’s a person already in my bed, Goldilocks style. A very small person who is sleeping horizontally across my mattress (why do they do that- I’ll never know??).
She’s right in my spot.
Question is, what do I do?
1. Put her in her (own) place?
I mean, all I needed to do was lift her gently and deposit her right where she needed to be. In her own bed. And yes, Gina Forde would be clapping me if I did. (And just to confirm, I have done this, many times!)
2. Squeeze in beside her?
I mean, this is mummy and daddy’s bed, but I guess there’s kind of room for all of us… (as I quietly resent her presence). I’ve done this plenty of times too, all the while imagining all the Montessori-style parents of this world nodding in solidarity.
3. Give her my spot?
Well, this one is kind of radical. Sleep somewhere else? Really? Somehow I don’t think many people would be patting me on the back for that.
But I find myself smiling as I watch her; she looks so comfortable, so at ease. Do I want to disturb her?
No I don’t.
She can have my spot tonight.
Please don’t take this as an inspirational lesson on parenting (I’m definitely not recommending making a habit of letting your children take over your bed!) But looking at Eden lying so peacefully there in my spot reminded me again of a powerful heart principle that enables us to wholeheartedly celebrate the joys and successes of others.
Gladly and generously give up your spot for others’ growth and flourishing.
Even in those times where you feel someone has stolen the spotlight… swooped in on the promotion… claimed the credit… or received praise in your place. Yes, even those times.
So, in your heart, will you:
❤️ put them in their place?
❤️ try to squeeze in beside them while resenting the fact that they were there?
❤️ Or, will you be radical enough, generous enough, loving enough to give them your spot, smiling with delight as you watch them enjoy every moment of it?
‘Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.’ (Phil 2:3-4)