A Hard Day’s Night

Both of my boys had colic as infants. On a good night, they might only sleep for a couple of hours at a time. Jean and I tried everything to get them to rest, including placing them on top of our clothes dryer, hoping the movement would calm them. Other nights, I would drive Trent – and two years later, Troy – around the neighborhood at two o’clock in the morning. But every time, as soon as I brought them home and lay them down – boom! – they’d start crying again.

I wouldn’t wish those struggles on anyone, but they taught me several important lessons:

First, those moments kept me humble and well-grounded. You realize how many parenting questions you don’t have answers for when you’re holding a screaming child at three in the morning.

Second, I developed more patience … and who among us couldn’t use more of that?

Finally, I learned to remain hopeful in the face of adversity. Psalm 30:5 says, “Weeping may last for the night,  but joy comes with the morning.” Effective parenting isn’t about leaping from one mountaintop of success to another. It’s often about surviving dark times until a light of hope begins to emerge.

You might not have a colicky newborn, but sooner or later something will rise up against you. When life gives you more than you think you can handle, remember: however long and dark the nighttime may seem, morning does eventually come. The sun will shine again.

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