"You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness." Ephesians 4:22-24 (NIV)
As we get back into the routine of a new school year, I'm making a commitment: no more unglued mama mornings. I want our mornings to go better this year with less frustration, yelling, and chaos.
This idea developed last spring when we had a string of really hard mornings.
One day, as I pulled up to the school, the atmosphere inside the car was thick with tension. Not wanting the last words spoken to my daughter to be harsh, I tried to change the course of our conversation. "Sweetheart, I love you. I'm sorry we had a rough morning."
"We always have rough mornings," she shot back before slamming the car door.
Nothing quite makes a mom feel more successful than a little dialogue like that.
As I rubbed the stabbing feeling in my chest, I thought, Something has got to change. Each day I promise myself I won't yell at the kids. But each morning something triggers me and I lose it.
Ever been there?
It's not like we wake up in the mood to get frustrated with our people, right? I usually wake up in a good mood. But then the stress of getting everyone ready and out the door on time makes the crazy creep in.
This one can't find her shoes. That one needs a report printed and we have no ink. The bread for sandwiches is still at the grocery store because I forgot to buy it the day before. And to top it all off, I don't have any cash to give the kids so they can buy lunch at school.
The whining. The complaining. The feeling that I can't ever get it together. It all escalates and sends me over the edge.
I want this school year to be different. I want to be like Ephesians 4:22-24 describes: "made new in the attitude of my mind." The Greek word for "made new" is kaino. One of its definitions is uncommon. I want to be an uncommon calm in the midst of chaos and an example of peace for my kids. For that to happen, I came up with a plan:
Tell the world to wait. When I wake up, my mind is like a dry sponge. What I soak up first will saturate me most deeply. If I don't want to be consumed with the stresses of my day, I must put the world on hold to soak up what will renew my mind—God's Word.
Remember I'm managing blessings. If I want my attitude to be made new, I must keep things in perspective. While my frustrations seem big, things like lost shoes and less than perfect lunches aren't big problems. They are small aggravations that come with managing blessings.
Let my kids own their irresponsibilities. My kids' irresponsibilities will not become my emergencies. I need to communicate my expectations so they know they're going to have to own the consequences of their choices. For example, if they wait until the last minute to print their report and the printer doesn't have any ink, they'll have to print it at school or turn it in late. Either way, I can't own this situation and let it throw me into frantic, fix-it mode. I can let the consequences of my kids' choices scream, so I don't have to.
All of this is going to take some intentionality, and I doubt I'll do it perfectly. But I'm excited about trying. I'm excited to "put on my new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness." Which is another way of saying, I'm excited to have less unglued mama mornings and more peace this school year.
Dear Lord, thank You for the grace You give. I don't want to live in the same pattern of coming unglued anymore. Help me put these principles into practice. In Jesus' Name, amen.
Reflect and Respond:
Which of the following action points can you put into practice?
1. Tell the world to wait.
2. Remember you're managing blessings.
3. Let your kids own their irresponsibilities.
2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!" (NIV)
© 2013 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
630 Team Rd., Suite 100
Matthews, NC 28105