We’ve had a guest at our house for the last three weeks, so we’ve been having some touristy days. Yesterday we went to Carlsbad Caverns. It’s very nice, but it is a challenge since strollers are not allowed, touching is not allowed, and noise frowned upon. Actually my children were quite well behaved under the circumstances, but at the end of the day I was exhausted and feeling a bit of discouragement because they weren’t as well behaved as I would have liked to see. Ditto for the art museum last week.
But I was reminded about a conversation I had with my friend Kelly last week. Our mood at the end of the day is often dependent on whether our children have measured up to our expectations, which if we are honest is how we evaluate whether WE measure up to our expectations as mothers.
As I go to sleep tonight, won’t it be better to meditate on God’s faithfulness and mercy in my life and the lives of my children? When God is my focus, the circumstances in my life dim in the vivid reality of God and His Son Jesus Christ.
Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.
For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. II Corinthians 4:14-18
Lyn Marshall says
I don’t ever want to be inhospitable, but don’t you find that having guests in the house changes some of the family routines (timing of meals, sleep, e.g.) and can contribute to less than stellar behavior in our kids? To me, it makes things especially challenging, most especially when the children are younger. Of course, I am not intending to negate each child’s responsibility for his own behavior, but I am often struck by how routines like meal time, nap time, bed time, etc., contribute positively to children’s good behavior and vice versa. (I realize this wasn’t your focus, but you got me thinking. . . .)
I agree with you that it is easy to get our moods all wrapped up in how well our children have performed/behaved–good point. 🙂
Sometimes I think it is good for us to feast on (i.e., eat) our own words occasionally–as in, “my children will never do that!”–usually said, of course, before we had those dear children. 🙂
Lyn– I do think that having guests changes the dynamic considerably. And I do realize that taking children out to places that are out of their comfort zone really does stretch them. But in the back of my liberated mind, I have an image of the perfect “Ezzo” family and I’m falling short of this perception. Even though I am nearly certain my ideal is unrealistic, I’m still uneasy when my children misbehave. Does that make sense?
Shelley Gallamore says
At mom time I will lay out a scenerio like “the kids threw a fit in the grocery store” and say and that makes you a…and the whole room will say “bad mother!”. It is amazing how much we can be impacted by those feelings. But, realizing it is the first step toward bringing it captive.
This is a fun approach, Shelley. Thanks for sharing.