The Mommy Negotiator

Katie

Ah, sweet moments here this morning. I had to take a pic to document this. Isn’t it the BEST when siblings get along and play together?!😍

Laura
Laura

Totally! That’s so sweet. I love it when my boys are doing something altogether. The sweet giggles and conspiring murmurs warm my heart.💙 Until the sweet turns into sour and howling screams… sigh… 😒

Laura
Katie

Ugh! I know what you mean.

Laura
Laura

It can happen so quickly… one minute joy and a millisecond later it’s like World War III (I might exaggerate slightly).

Laura
Katie

You mean like one minute they are sweetly building a farm with all their animals and the next moment ….

Laura
Laura

The animals become flying projectiles?!

Laura
Katie

YES!‍🙈

Laura
Laura

Lately the boys have been playing football 🏈 in the backyard. It always starts off so well. But then someone gets too rough or a bigger brother exerts his physical prowess or someone turns into a bad sport and says something hateful.😡

Laura
Katie

Same exact thing happens here. Next thing I know there is a full-on wrestling (or screaming) match. Why does that always seem to happen?!

Laura
Laura

Your guess is as good as mine. But it is a lot of work to be the conflict negotiator! Not a role I imagined when I thought about being a mom.

Laura
Katie

And yet a role I find myself in so often!🙋

Laura
Laura

And it’s one that is pretty important in the whole scheme of training our children in the way they should go. And it gives us a lot of opportunities to talk about choosing to love one another and not hate each other.

Laura
Katie

That’s very true. And I guess my kids aren’t so different from myself, huh? My first inclination is to fight for what I want, when I want it. It takes some training and practice to choose to love and consider someone else’s perspective.

Laura
Laura

You have to want to see it another way first. And that is so hard to do myself let alone to teach.  I want my kids to really be on the same team in the long run. There’s so much out in the world that they will need to rely on each other for.

Laura
Katie

Right! So, how do I go about trying to teach them to look out for each other?

Laura
Laura

Well, I certainly don’t have that answer, BUT MAYBE it isn’t such a bad thing for them to fight and learn how to work out their disagreements with each other

Laura
Katie

They definitely will face situations their whole lives where they have to work out conflicts. Maybe what they are doing now with their siblings is preparing them for adulthood??

Laura
Laura

I think you may be onto something there. We are in a Bible study that is studying 1 Samuel right now. This week we did the chapters where David is anointed as the next future king of Israel. Do you know that Samuel passed on the first 7 brothers until he got to the youngest brother David?  I mean, can you imagine what David must have gone through? How those older brothers might have teased and tormented him?! 😳

Laura
Katie

That takes sibling rivalry to a whole new level, huh?😜

Laura
Laura

And then when “little” David (maybe a teenager) shows up to bring his big brothers food on the front lines of battle and then that little pipsqueak of a brother not only fights the giant Goliath, but kills him in the name of the God of Israel?! The Bible doesn’t say, but I wonder if that changed the hearts of his brothers? Made them see David in a new light?

Laura
Katie

I’ve never thought about that before!

Laura
Laura

Can we help our kids to see each other in that new light? To help them use these sibling squabbles to really learn who God made the others ones to be?

Laura
Katie

So they can see how each of their siblings has unique gifts – and when they all work together, they can make a great team!

Laura
Laura

Yes!! They could be such a force for peace in the world when they work together. I know this seems like crazy talk when I can practically hear them fighting in my sleep. Do you think there’s hope?

Laura
Katie

There has to be!! I think our kids are sloooowly learning how to be a team. How to communicate, how to forgive, how to cooperate. And, maybe, what they are learning about bringing peace to their tiny corner of the world right now will translate into being grown-ups who look for opportunities to spread peace, too.

Laura
Laura

So what you’re saying is that though we may be in a season of “hate” and “war” now, we are preparing them to live their lives in a season of “love” for others and in “peace” with those around them? That makes the title of conflict negotiator seem a great honor and privilege.

Laura
Katie

Yes, it does! I can’t think of any higher honor!

Laura
Laura

Wow. Talk about new perspective. For me that is! It’s not going to be easy, of course, but knowing that you are there with me (and every other mom of more than one child), sure does make it a little less daunting.😌

Laura
Katie

Oh, I think I hear someone screaming!😳 Time for me to play the negotiator again – but with some renewed hope and purpose!

Soaking in the Truth

Scripture to encourage you:

  • “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: … a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4b, NIV)
  • “Behold, how good and pleasant it is when brothers dwell in unity!” (Psalm 133:1, ESV)
  • Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:31-32, NIV)
  • “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God.” (Matthew 5:9, NIV)
  • “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.” (Philippians 2:3-4, NIV)
  • Read the story of David in 1 Samuel 16-17.  

Music to inspire you:


Readings and Resources to come alongside of you:


Related Posts on Texting The Truth:

Living Out the Truth

Ideas to try:

  • Pray for a new perspective on the skills God is sharpening in your children through the sibling rivalry conflicts. Ask God to help you in your role as conflict negotiator to train your children how to disagree and then resolve conflict. Especially pray for yourself or find another mom who could pray with and for each other about seeing with new eyes the reason your children argue, fight, disagree. Ask God to show you how to train them because it’s probably different for each family.
  • I (Katie) have found that my kids get along best when we carve out extended time to just be together as a family without a schedule or agenda. Conversation during family meal times and playing outside have been important for relationship-building in our family. And we love board games. I feel like they give just enough structure to help everyone participate and have fun, while minimizing the arguing. Find out what works best to help your children connect with each other (it can be different for every family!). Be intentional about making time for those activities.

Treasured Products we love:

{These suggestions are ideas from novice moms. Sometimes our life situations need more. In that case, seeking out professional help is the right call.}

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