It was one of those days. It all started out nice enough. Got up before everyone else, enjoyed some coffee with my Bible study, the kids were still asleep after my study was over so I was able to relax a little longer and check my email (of course I should have picked take a shower, but you know.) Once the kids got up it appeared that they had woke up on the wrong side of the bed, all the peace and warmth I had been feeling earlier that day went by the wayside. I was getting frustrated.
When I was getting them dressed for the day, they were wiggly and irritated that I was changing them on what was a very cold morning. My goal of always speaking in a gentle voice to my kids was quickly diminishing and I was giving into my own irritability, which in turn was making them more grouchy(hmm wonder why?) Anna had been particularly clingy and grumpy that morning, and I was rushing around like a crazy woman trying to pick up the house and get myself cleaned up since I had a doctors appointment to be at by noon. I was not in the mood to deal with an uncooperative child. However, as I was brushing my teeth that morning, I felt a familiar pull. A conviction. Why should my kids be in great, accommodating moods every day? When did having a clean house to come home to at the end of the day become more important to me than seeing to their needs? Why was I so surprised when my 2 year old threw a temper fit over his cereal, and my one year old decided she didn't feel like taking her morning nap? They're toddlers, and God has placed me as their mother to love, guide, and yes discipline and train them. But I also know that God has given me these kids to conform me to be more like Jesus, and I am very aware of my need for Grace every day as I try to figure this mothering thing out.
As I was standing in the bathroom, I felt like God was telling me that I could either choose to act just like they were, or I could stop what I was doing pick up Anna and sit beside Jack while he played. Thankfully, God gave me the grace to stop. I wrapped up my little girl in her pink blanket and sat next to Jack while he served us dinner from his kitchen set. After about twenty minutes of this I remembered there was something that really did need to be done that day before I left for the doctor, I braced myself for the crying to begin again, and reminded myself that there was a right way and a wrong way for me to handle those situations. However, there was no crying. The kids were content to play for a little bit by themselves. I am positive that this won't be the last time I mess up and get my priorities mixed up. But at least I can look back on this day and be encouraged that by the grace of God I can always choose to enjoy my kids.