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Friday, October 29, 2010

Choosing Happy

Mornings in my house can be hairy. In fact they usually are. They are hectic times filled with scurrying, hurrying, searching and whirring. Mornings seem to beckon frustrations, emotions and total drama.

Some days my alarm clock sounds at 4:52 AM. I run four miles, have a quiet time, shower, greet my husband, wake the children, finish getting dressed, make lunches, sign notes, pack backpacks, fix a crock pot dinner and get everyone out the door. All before 8:00.

Yet still, even on those days, we are sometimes late. Late gets my blood boiling. When it’s my own fault and when it’s somebody else’s fault. Usually late is a combination of all things in the above paragraph going wrong. I mean throw some crazy rare cancer diagnosis my way and it's calm waters with smooth sailing but something as regular as missing the school bus and I'm totally ballistic. Why is it like that?

I get crazy. Emotional energy charges through me and in my frenzy I stop breathing air and start breathing fire. I start gritting my teeth and when I stop mean mama is suddenly screaming at the ones she loves. In these moments I hear lots of thoughts in my head. Unfortunately it can take awhile for my thoughts to determine my actions.

These verses all come into my mind as I’m morphing into mean mama. This saddens me and reminds me that I am like the Apostle Paul and what I do is what I do not want to do. I have such a problem letting the Jesus on the inside of me show. Do you ever feel this way?

For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Romans 7:19

The wise woman builds her house,
       but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down. Proverbs 14:1

A gentle answer turns away wrath,
       but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

They sharpen their tongues like swords
       and aim their words like deadly arrows. Psalm 64:3

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. Ephesians 4:32

A fool gives full vent to his anger,
       but a wise man keeps himself under control. Proverbs 29:11

Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit,
       for anger resides in the lap of fools. Ecclesiastes 7:9
And then this most surprising thought of all came.
This is the day the LORD has made;
       let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24

Now I often use this happy day verse on birthdays and other happy occasions. This verse punctuates the days that I celebrate very well. But it has never popped into my mind on a horrible no good very bad day like yesterday. So when it popped I took notice.

God in all His goodness reminds me to choose happy when it’s hard. Just because mean mama ruled the morning doesn’t mean she has to rule the rest of the day. So no matter what your morning is like, choose happy.

I’ve decided to meditate on these thoughts and prayerfully consider my mornings. I want you to share your secrets. How do you get everyone out the door on time? I need your advice!

Choosing happy,


Denise said...

Sis, we are only human, no super women here. Just be the best you can be, that is all God expects from you sis. Believe me, you are totally amazing. I love you.

Bernie said...

I can't imagine you intentionally being mean to any one Lisa, no one is perfect. I begin every morning with "this is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice in it" some days are easier than others for sure. Love Psalms........:-) Hugs

Leslie said...

Lisa, mean mama comes out here too and I CRINGE when I can feel her roaring her ugly head. Some things that I've found that have helped...

1. Pack lunches and backpacks the night before. I know some lunch things HAVE to be made the morning of(who wants soggy PB&J?) but anything that I could prepare the night before, I did.

2. Set the coffee pot to automatically drip in the A.M. and enjoy a cup before the kids wake up.

3. Accountability. My kiddos, well Shiloh anyways, will call me out. "Mommy, I don't like it when you're a growly-bear, mama"...convicting.

Emily said...

Great post Lisa! I SO needed to read this. Unfortunately mean mama has been coming here as well and quite frankly she makes me feel terrible.

Leslie and I think alike. I homeschool so I don't normally have hectic mornings like most moms. But on the few mornings we need to be somewhere I try to do as much as I can the night before.

I also have given my oldest (almost 7) permission to let me know when I'm being grumpy. If I'm yelling I've asked him to gently touch my shoulder and it reminds me that I don't want to do this. It helps. He calms me immediately and reminds me of the kind of mom I want to be.

And finally I have written in my notebook next to my to-do list this verse:
John 17:19 NLT
"And I give myself entirely to you so they also might be entirely yours." (Jesus praying about His disciples. Obviously, I'm praying about my kiddos!)

Thanks for being real and for the encouraging and convicting scriptures!

Gigi said...

Human failings happen to us all! But when it becomes a pattern we have to accept that we have chosen to act on those feelings and see how we can make changes for the better. Especially since those kind of days are painful for everyone!

Get as much done the night before as possible - clothes chosen and laid out, backpacks packed, lunches made, breakfast planned/table set, etc. Get the kids/hubby involved!! It helps streamline the morning and only takes maybe 1/2 hour the night before, if that...but it sure can lead to chaos in the a.m. if not done!! Even after all our kids were grown and gone, we continued our "pre-planned" routine...the week's clothes were chosen and ironed on the weekend, meals were planned and shopped for. Stress in the enemy of a calm life! Head him off at the pass whenever possible! ((hugs)) and blessings!

Stacy said...

Hi Lisa,
I don't know how any of you momma's do it each day....getting the kiddos out the door. I think that is one of the things about homeschooling I thoroughly enjoy, no hard and fast schedule to adhere to. The thought of doing all you do overwhelms me. I say, "way to go" getting up at 4:52! That alone is impressive.

And when the anger rises up, as it does in all of us at different times, take a deep breath, say one of the verses out loud and then try not to talk to the kids until you feel the peace return to your heart.

You're doing a great job. :)

Cindy said...

Thoughts of getting everybody out the door is rather bittersweet now that I am the only one who leaves the house in the morning. Son #1 has his own family, son #2 is on disability due to 'issues' caused by birth mother and hubby is on disability due to kidney transplant and mold growing in his lungs.
So, I get up alone, prepare myself for the day, get the house organized for the guys and out the door I go. Come home, cook, clean and prepare to do it all over again.
Hmmmm...sometimes I wish it was like those good ol' days gone by:)
Blessings for a peace-filled morning!!

Trudy said...

Oh dear Lisa...I so needed your words and His Word today! Really fighting that mean spirit a lot lately with so much going on in my household...this was a wonderful reminder that we have to choose happy, with God's help and guidance!

Blessings to you!

Oh, I hate being late too and it really gets my blood boiling also!

Patrina's Pencil said...

I needed these scriptures today. Thanks for sharing them. I struggle every day with happy :) But I still choose JOY.

Hugs, and prayers
Patrina <")>><

Anonymous said...

I found your blog today through another blog. I know that God wanted me to read your post. I feel like I have been mean mama for so long that my kids don't remember nice mama! It doesn't take much to have the ugly dragon appear with my kids when I have so much patience for others. Thank you for the verses. I am going to write them down, look them up and meditate on them today!