Over Spring Break one of our main goals was teaching Story how to ride her bike. We have been the worst bike parents to child number four in our home. Our oldest, Cayden, had a bike before he could walk and was learning with training wheels closely after learning to walk. Things are just different with child number four. Story actually received a bike last Christmas. As in Christmas of 2012 people. It had training wheels and everything. We took it to camp and of course the $10 training wheels lasted about one afternoon before they were shot. Since then Story has been bike-less and we haven’t been motivated to do anything about it because she is perfectly happy on her cute little scooter. Fast forward to last week and my sweet boys were determined to get their sister on her bike. Deacon & Amos took all the initiative and took off the broken training wheels and they are the ones that taught her how to ride her bike. I was so proud of her and overflowing with joy for the way my boys took their sister under their wings and taught her something new.
A few days later we were riding our bikes down to the park and Story convinced me that she was ready and she knew how to brake. For some reason braking is what gets most kids. If the brakes are on the handle bars they aren’t strong enough, and if they are on the feet then they just plain forget to peddle backwards because that just doesn’t make that much sense. This had been Story’s number one hang up, but she showed me a few times and I felt she was ready.
Off the street we go. About one minute into our walk I look up and Story is flying down the street. It was like a movie and I was the panicked mom running down the street after her. I was screaming at her, and screaming at Cayden and anyone else that would listen to help her stop. I kept screaming “BRAKE – PUSH THE PEDALS BACKWARDS!” and she kept moving. Literally faster and faster right in front of me. The biggest hang up to this whole fiasco is that she was heading straight into an intersection where there was no stop sign for traffic going past. As I raced towards her, I watched my baby girl fly into that intersection and two cars slam on their brakes. My boys jaws dropped as they stood at the stop sign waiting for me like they always do. By the time I reached her she had someone drug her feet enough that her bike stopped in the middle of the road.
I was a mix of mad and scared all in one. Mad at her for not braking (as if it was her fault) and scarred that she almost got hit by a car right in front of me. I thing my upset heart scared her just a bit and we talked a lot about braking and that maybe she wasn’t ready to ride on the road quite yet. Despite the fact that she nearly died she was so mad that I made her walk her bike to the bike trail we were headed to. She kept trying to convince me that she could brake and that she had just forgotten in that moment how to do it. Of course there was no way I was putting her back on her bike in the street, but she was still putting up a fight for it.
I thought about this story the other day when I was reading Hebrews 12, and how a father disciplines his child. Although I wasn’t really disciplining her, but yet keeping her safe, I still resonated with this verse that says: “For the LORD disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives. It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his Father does not discipline?”.
I love Story so much that there was no way I was letting her bike down the street right then, and although she was mad and thought it wasn’t fair, I wasn’t budging because of my love for her. I was actually withholding something from her that she held so dear because of my love for her.
As I read this chapter in Hebrews I was thinking about all the times the Father has disciplined me and how in the moment it isn’t fun, and doesn’t even feel right sometimes, but yet I trust his word when it says: “but he disciplines for our good, that we may share in his holiness.”, because in the end that’s what I want friends. I want his holiness. I want to be made to look more like Jesus. I want my life to not grow weary or fainthearted, but yet I want my Father to mold my life for his good.
When my life seems out of control and things just don’t seem right, I want to hold fast to the truths that I know: “For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Friends if you are in the midst of pain let’s cling to what he promises: peace, righteousness, holiness. He is a good and loving Father that loves us so much he’s producing these things in us.