“I’m the boss applesauce!” This is one of my new favorite mommy sayings. But I have to confess that I stole it from Judge Judy. I can’t even say it is a show I ever watched. I just remember one commercial where Judge Judy said this to one of the plaintiffs who was getting out of control. It made me laugh so hard! And so now I have WAY too much fun using it with Adeline . . . almost daily. It is my silly way of telling her that I am in charge now; I am the decision maker; I am the boss. It helps me not to be so serious, but keeps things light.
It is music to my ears when her cute little voice says, “You’re the boss Mama!” or “Okay! Because you’re in charge Mama!” Of course the other end of that spectrum is her personal claim to the boss-throne, “Ok, Mom, I’m the boss now.” or “I’m in charge so listen up.” Throughout the day we go back and forth from her accepting me as the boss, naming herself as the boss, fighting with me over who is in charge, and once in awhile allowing someone else (like Popi, Tia or Nana) to occupy such a prestigious position such as boss, or the one in charge.
In short, when she is ready to listen and likes my ideas I hear, “Right!, Because You’re the boss Mama!” This is followed by a little smile since she understands this makes Mama happy and knows she is being a “good listener”. But when she is not a fan of what I have to say, or has her own ideas that far surpass those of her mere mother, then I hear, “No Mama, I’m the boss right now . . . because I’m in charge.”
Sometimes she confuses our roles, our jobs . . . who is the boss. She is not ready to concede to me as the “capital B boss”. She is three, so according to her Mom does not necessarily equal boss . . all the time. She is not ready to hand me full authority. She has convinced herself (and tries to do the same with me) that she stands a chance at being the Boss.
We do not see eye to eye here. (for obvious reasons)
Sometimes I think we might do a little bit of this with God. We pretend like we stand a chance at being the Boss. We give him control over our lives . . . until we want control back. We make him the boss . . . until we want a shot at it again. We know that God knows best . . . until we know a little bit more about what we need than Jesus does. We acknowledge his way is the best way . . . until we have our own way to try out first. We put him in charge . . . until we want to be in control again. Back and forth.
Adeline often places herself in the position of “boss” when she is bargaining for something she wants; when she is determined to get it; when she just knows it is the best idea ever. It looks a little something like the following conversation.
Adeline: Mama, I think Maisie wants to play with this toy (takes Maisie’s toy out of her hand to replace it with another toy)
Me: I don’t think so, Maisie looks pretty happy with that toy.
Adeline: (switches out toy anyway) Nah, she likes this one better.
Me: Adeline, please don’t do that. She was playing nicely with that one.
Adeline: But she wants this one.
Me: No, love, please give it back to her. I am the boss applesauce. And I am asking you to give it back.
Adeline: No, I’m the boss, apple sauce.
Me: I don’t think so girlfriend (imagine lots of hugs, kisses, and tickles for fun). I (pointing to myself with a fake serious face) am the boss apple sauce, because I am the Mama.
Adeline: But I am in charge . . . because I am.
Hmmmm, how many times have I been round and round like this with God????
If you think about it, Scripture makes God’s role pretty clear, ours too. I think we know who the boss is, we just don’t always like it because we have to hand things over to Jesus. It takes trust. It takes patience. It takes faith. And let’s face it, we don’t always have these all down pat. But think about it. The Bible constantly reminds us who God is, and who we are in light of the Father. What we can do on our own, and what He can do instead. The Psalms are an example that point to God as the boss. Don’t they? I mean, the idea is that God is in charge. The point is to trust in Jesus. The aim of faith is to hand it all over to God. Psalm 37:7 says it like this,
“Be still in the presence of the LORD, and wait patiently for him to act.”
God is the one who acts. I simply need to be still in His presence and wait patiently, Simple? Yes. Easy? No.
But God is the one with the plan, the way, the truth, the light, the peace . . . the stillness. He is the boss. And not a boss like the one who orders us around and writes performance reviews on us. No. He is the boss like I am the applesauce boss. I mean this: being the Mom I know better what my daughters need than they do. I know that Maisie can’t stick everything in her mouth, even though she wants to. I know that Adeline can’t eat 4 pieces of chocolate before dinner and still finish her meal. I know when they need rest. I know when they need to eat. I know what type of clothes to dress them in according to the weather. I know what is best for them way better than they know themselves. I know their needs and I do everything and anything I can to meet those needs. I am the boss. The one who acts. They are the ones who wait upon me, who trust in me, and who depend on me.
So even though it is hard, uncomfortable, and at times tough to understand, we are the ones who must be still and wait. God is the one who acts. He is the one in charge.
As a mother, a pastor, a wife, a sister, a daughter, and a friend . . . this is super hard. I don’t like being still and I dread waiting.
But I must.
Because when I don’t do this, I am overstepping my bounds and going round and round with God about who is the boss, who is in charge, and who knows best. And truth be told, I am never gonna win this one. The answer will always be the same. The result will never change.
God will always be my boss . . . applesauce.