May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. 2 Thessalonians 3:5
Yesterday was a cranky day. I’m talking a beating my fists against our formica counter tops and screaming, “I hate my children!!!” cranky day. Now, before you call the division of family services, you have to understand that I really don’t hate my children. In fact, after my tantrum I asked a prayer of forgiveness and assured God that I didn’t really mean it, that I loved my children and really wanted to keep them around. But, if he (God) could see fit to instill better listening skills within them and make them revel in clean-up rather than mess making, that would be really fantastic!!
In my defense, I had mopped water off the bathroom floor twice, given the children enough food to keep a prize steer fully satisfied, picked up about 500 Trio blocks, endured a 45 minute fit over fruit snacks, cleaned most of a roll of toilet paper from the bathtub, broken up several fist/foot fights and gone grocery shopping where I tried to give my children to one of the store owners as free labor. All of this was done to the ear splitting background noise of little boys playing superheroes and chipmunks. Really, it could have made Mother Teresa have a mental breakdown.
Tired, unhappy with myself and my 4 year old who was still wide awake at 10 o’clock at night due to an unanticipated nap in the evening, I decided we would both go for a drive. I strapped him into his car seat, turned on K-Love, and set off down our dark and quiet country roads. For awhile, all I heard from the radio was “blah, blah, blah”… And then God showed up. Through the darkness of the middle of nowhere, God came through loud and clear in the form of David Crowder singing, “How He Loves Us.”
In those moments of quiet worship, God reminded me of all the little ways he had been with me through my cranky daze. I saw his hand at work in the life of our family, felt how much he loves us, and was filled with the peace that only he can bring. God helped me to let go of my crankiness and gave me the assurance that tomorrow, indeed, would be better.
And it is. No, my children have not suddenly morphed into cherubs who, when not picking up and cleaning, sit quietly with their hands in their laps awaiting their next instructions. But my attitude toward them has changed. Instead of going into Medusa mode at the sight of breakfast cereal shoved into a cup of apple juice and then dumped onto the floor, I quietly cleaned up the mess and informed them that there would be no Spiderman cereal tomorrow morning. As I was cleaning the kitchen and saw a cord being dragged from the bathroom to the living room, I stopped the snapping beast within and calmly held out my hand for the hair dryer which I replaced in its place of residence. When hundreds of books were dumped from a bookshelf I politely informed the dumper that he would no longer play with his chipmunks today if Mommy didn’t have some assistance in picking up the mess. And, instead of seeing a living room cluttered with blocks and dominoes, I am able to smile at the creativity of my boys building a swimming pool for their Batman toys in the middle of the living room floor.
It is now 11:25 A.M. I’m praying that the peace of Christ which transcends all understanding can last another 10 or so hours so that we will all be spared another cranky daze!!
Blessings and Peace,