“Not nice Dadda! Not nice Momma!” my son said very emphatically.
On one hand it’s great that he’s able to express his emotions. I can imagine another toddler taking a toy at daycare and my son replying that way. It’s better than a lot of things that come with this age – biting, hitting, kicking, and slapping and the like.
The problem is, we’re his parents and while yes, we are capable of being “not nice,” he’s misusing the intention of this phrase with us. For example we need to put something up so we can pick him up and take him where he needs to go and we are greeted with a “No! Not nice Dadda!” and sometimes a finger point to boot!
So we are currently trying to determine how exactly to guide him towards good uses of the phrase. It’s a weird mixture of him honestly thinking we aren’t being nice and we as parents knowing that we had to take him to do this or that at the time and the toy couldn’t come along in that case. Sometimes “nice” has nothing to do with it right?
How many times have we said “Not nice!” to God? I realized again in this father/son relationship I have that my son is doing to me what I’ve done to God many times. Something happened and I looked up to God and said in a 35 year old yet completely child-like manner “Not Nice God! Not cool! You shouldn’t have done that!”
Which again it all depends on context right? God can more than handle me telling Him that I don’t think He’s being nice. He definitely has GRACE for such a thing. But is there a better way to express my emotions to my Creator and Father than pointing my finger at Him and declaring His actions to not be “nice” or for my best? It’s worth a thought or two.
As far as my son goes, we’ve decided to try and teach him to say “I don’t like that.” when addressing us in those situations. Perhaps we’ll graduate to “I don’t think that’s nice.”
It does make you think though about how God treats us with Grace and allows us to share how we feel with Him as we mature in Christ. It also makes me want to think a little harder about the words I use when I talk to God in those times.