I read an article in a parenting magazine recently entitled "The Tyrannical Threes". We are certainly experiencing that pahse with our little boy at the moment! The "terrible twos" just didn't happen, but right now we have a little would-be-tyrant in the house. And when he finds that he doesn't always get his way, the tantrums are spectacular.
As was the case this morning, right as I was about to sit down at the table with my husband for a few minutes before he went to work. Master 3 wanted me to come and do something he was quite capable of doing himself, and started yelling and stamping his feet when I wouldn't jump to attention as ordered. Ignoring him became impossible and he was put into time out. That wasn't very effective, either, and our quiet time together was marred by the sound of the walls being kicked and a rising crescendo of hysterical screaming. When the door was slammed violently against the wall, I went to him and laid down the law in no uncertain terms. Then I sat down and took him on my lap. The hysterical anger subsided a little, but he couldn't stop crying. After a bit he managed to sob, "Mum, I just want to tell Jesus all about it in my heart."
I held him close then, and prayed aloud. He stopped crying at once, and I felt him relax. With a final sob, he put his head on my shoulder and said, "I'm sorry I yelled at you, Mummy. Jesus will help me to be obedient now." And with that the thunderstorm passed and the sun has been shining since!
"Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: casting all your care on him; for he cares for you.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour: whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brothers that are in the world.
But the God of all grace, who has called us to his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that you have suffered a while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen." 1 Peter 5:6-11