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Are you even trying?

So often I utter these words to my kids, frequently in anger. Because when I ask them to complete a task, especially one that is well below their ability it is frustrating when it doesn’t even feel like they are making an effort.

They just stand there, eyes glazed over or flop around on the floor like a seizing fish. It is one of those buttons that gets pushed daily and I’m still figuring out how to moderate my response to.

Yes, I could help them. But I my brain runs ahead too a theoretical future where they can’t take care of themselves, where I am still picking up laundry for my 23 year old and my 30 year old still needs me to cook her meals.

But it’s really unfair.

Because I have a loving Father who sees me. He sees when I try and when I don’t even bother.  He knows my heart and my attitude. He can tell the difference between when I’m phoning it in and when I’m giving it my best but failing miserably.

When it comes to my kids or even the other adults in my life, I obviously can’t depend on omniscience to help me discern their motives. But I can extend them the benefit of the doubt. I can assume the best about them and provide my help, sans the judgement and frustration. That applies especially with my kids.

So before I utter those words in frustration and irritation, I can stop and reassess and choose to try harder myself.