At this the Jews there began to grumble about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven.” They said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, ‘I came down from heaven’?”
As single parents, it can sometimes feel as if we hear a lot of grumbling; we can be subjected to our kids‘ complaints, the criticism of our ex‘s (our kids‘ other parent); we can hear complaints and other concerns expressed by friends, family members, teachers, employers, etc., while most may be well meaning, we may not always find these comments helpful.
We cannot keep everyone happy; but that is not our job! Our job is to raise our children the best we can, and not to be too hard on them, their other parent or ourselves in the process. Even if being a single parent wasn’t our first choice, now that we are, we can see this opportunity as a gift, as well as a challenge.
As single parents we have the opportunity to build a strong bond with our children, as we are there to play with them, stay with them when sick, dry their tears and listen to them, even when they grumble.
As we guide our children through life, not every decision will be popular, and grumbling is a possibility, it can be part of parenting, and while some may say it is a sign we are doing a good job as a parent; it can also be frustrating.
When the grumbling (even from ourselves) gets to be too much, we can always turn to those around us, and ask for help. Talking with another person can help us to let go of our own frustration, and help us to learn from any grumbling or unhappiness we may hear. If we listen to the grumbling with an open mind, free from anger, we can learn patience, and maybe even discover a real issue that can be addressed, situations which can be changed, and wisdom to be gained.
Let us Pray:
God, even when we hear grumbling, help us to avoid falling into anger and help us to look beyond our own frustrations, to please help us to see the great gift you have given to us, in allowing us to be single parents, and forge a strong bond with our children. Please help us learn from the experience of others, to be able to learn lessons from grumbling, to help us to grow and become better people and better parents; and empower us to turn our grumbling into praise.