Acting Quickly vs Acting Wisely

Disclaimer: This is a very late post. Meant to post this before Halloween, but, Mommyhood happened. Lol.

It was a happy day. I was on rest day, and the hubby and I decided to bring Seth to the mall. We haven’t spent much time together since I started working again (woot woot!!), and we’ve been looking forward to being together and just eating Jollibee. ❤ If you’re from the Philippines you can relate- Jollibee is happines to kids and to us kids at heart. ❤

Seth loves going to the mall especially now because Christmas is just around the corner. In the Philippines we start decorating in September. Christmas songs are everywhere! Lights are everywhere too. So whenever we’d go to the mall Seth would drag me to the ‘Christmas area’, where there are trees, lights and other Christmasy stuff. It is also nearing October, which meant scary stuff are everywhere in the mall as well. We don’t do Halloween like the Western people do, but there are still costumes everywhere.

After roaming around the Christmas decors, Seth and I went back to the mall entrance to meet the hubby. The entrance was filled with Halloween masks of all sorts, costumes, and the like. There was a man, around 50s, who was wearing a mask, just standing there, scaring the passers-by. We didn’t really give him attention because Seth was also excited looking at the scary stuff. But apparently this man was looking for attention. We were looking at the spiders and masks when the man wearing the mask touched Seth in the arm. It all happened so quickly; I wasn’t looking because I was showing Seth the spiders. Seth was so scared (I was carrying him), he cried and wanted us to go home. He was saying, “dada, drive the car! Let’s go home!” repeatedly because he was really very scared!

I didn’t pay that much attention to the man, but he quickly removed the mask and laughed. I did smile at him to show that it was okay. Then I focused on Seth, and so did his dad. We were telling him that it’s okay, it was just a mask and that the man was just fooling around. I even tried to wear a mask to show him that it was just something people (bored ones to be exact) wear to scare someone. Of course he wasn’t hearing me, he was too scared!

The man acted as if nothing happened. He didn’t even say sorry, he just walked away and wore another mask! Part of me wanted to go to him and ask him if he was happy he got to scare a little boy. But I didn’t. 

We left the mall, and then went outside. I was still upset and I felt like I didn’t avenge my son. I was also upset at Hans because he didn’t do anything either. I was thinking what I should have said to the man that would make him think about the seriousness of what he did (he was older than me, might I reiterate on that!). 

When we went home, I can’t move on from what happened to Seth. I was thinking if I did the right thing – not talking to the man and giving me a piece of me (you don’t mess with a tired mom of a toddler!). Of course I knew I did the right thing but I was still furious at him! I prayed and asked the Lord to give me peace. 

The next morning I came across Peter’s story. When Jesus was being arrested, Peter acted on impulse. He was upset and he cut part of the soldier’s ear on purpose because he acted quickly rather than wisely. And I am so guilty of that! My mom would always tell I react so fast- and that I am always easily angered. I always act on impulse. I refuse to count from 1-10 when something annoying happens because I want to be heard (my feelings demand attention. Lol). 

How often do we act on impulse? How often do we answer back to people who shout at us during traffic to defend ourselves? How often do we get mad at the fastfood cashier because our order is taking a long time? How often do we fight people just because we disagree with their opinion?

And when Peter did what he wanted to do, quickly, Jesus rebuked him. 

I am humbled. I wanted to teach Seth a valuable lesson of standing up for himself but I was taught and reminded to stand up for Christ instead.

Until now, whenever I’d tell Seth that we’d go to the mall, Seth says, “but mama, I’m scared of the man!”. I’d tell him Halloween is already finished, there is no more man, and that there is no reason for him to be scared anymore. Now the dialogue would be, “mama, finished Halloween? No more man?”. I still feel bad because of the incident but I feel even bad not for Seth but for the man, because he had to scare people (kids especially!) to be noticed. And I am grateful I was able to minister to him in some way.

Acting on impulse is one huge thing. Waiting to act on something is another. I thank the Lord for opportunities like that where I can practice patience and self-control. ❤ It wasn’t easy; we are just humans, after all. But we can, because He can. ❤  

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