Guest Post: Uh-Ohs and No-Nos ~ There is a Difference

~ Today I have the honor of sharing my dear, real-life friend Rachel Coltharp with the precious mamas here at LABB.  She has been one of those rare gems who continually mentor, encourage, and inspire me to live a better life for Him.  I just love her and I think you will, too! ~ 

Baby G is a great blessing to his three older siblings and to us. He is a bundle of energy that actually rocks the house with his laughter and mischievous ways. He is sweet and loving. He is also about to turn two.

You KNOW what I mean.

We have for the past year been using gentle correction methods with him. Like when he drops his food off the highchair onto the floor. But lately, the uh-ohs have mutated into something altogether different. The dropping became a game, not an accident. It then morphed into throwing. The accidents were treated as such. The disobedience has consequences. Not because I am a dictator, but because tiny seeds planted early grow into hulking habits later.

While not yet fluent in English, he has mastered manipulation and deception. Every time he intentionally breaks a rule, he tries to pass it off as an accident. After flinging a noodle or piece of oatmeal through the air to watch it smack with a thud against the cabinet then plunk down on the floor, he looks up at me with those huge baby doll eyes and says sweetly “Uh-oh, mom-mom.” But we BOTH know what it was: deliberate. And consequences follow.

Isn’t that just the way we humans like to play it? 

No one “sins” anymore, everyone just “makes mistakes.” A mistake is when you accidentally fall into a hole you did not see, that you were not warned about. But when you read the warning sign, ignore it, and THEN fall into the hole, that is no accident. That is choice. Sin has a payday, and that payday is death.

It is our duty as mothers to help our children learn the difference between mistakes, which are part of being human, and willful disobedience, which is a choice. Sin, in its seed form, does not always look evil, but planted in the heart and allowed to grow it produces the fruit of death. Don’t let little things go, in your heart or in theirs.

It is easier to pluck out a seedling than to uproot an oak.

Rachel Coltharp is a wife of one and mother of four. She is fluent in 4 languages: Infantese, Toddlerspeak, Teenlingo and Husbandism. She is a writer and public speaker who shares from her real life experiences, mostly mistakes and do-overs. She is a passionate follower of Jesus Christ and an avid disciple of the the Apostolic doctrine. She may be contacted at rcolt92@bcglobal.net or followed at rachelcoltharp.blogspot.com.

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[also shared at Women Living Well Wednesday]


  1. Jaime, this was a great post. Thank you for sharing!

  2. This is a fantastic post, and hits me right where I am right now. My oldest child is 2 1/2 and this is exactly where we have been for the past few months. Do you have any practical advice to share on how to pluck those tiny seeds in a God honoring (and effective!) way? I find my first reaction is often anger and I know that is a problem. I want to gently guide my children, but let them still know that I am serious that disobedience is not ok. Any advice from someone who has seen their 2 yr old grow out of this challenging phase?

  3. Dear Amy,
    I have 14, 12 & 7 year olds who ALL hit the NAIL DOWN THE FURNITURE times of being an inquisitive, determined, not-going-to-do-it-your-way toddler.

    When emotions runs high, judgment runs low. So having a PLAN for times when the rules are broken can keep you from morphing into a screaming, foot stomping, spoon throwing lunatic! Plan the consequences ahead of time. That way you are not just being MEAN because you are MAD.

    They grow out of these trying times.... time will work its magic. Keep the faith dear girl, remember it is only a SEASON!


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