Devotional Thoughts · homemaking

Anger and Death

I have been chipping away at the meekness Bible study I’ve been working on. I recently completed chapters on organization, anger and dying to self.  I found all of these to be relevant in my battle to overcome my lack of meekness.

Disorganization steals a meek and quiet spirit by creating  unnecessary chaos in our lives. How often have I groaned with displeasure upon opening a closet in my kids’ rooms and being greeted with toys, clothes, and books falling out? Too many! My response is usually not one of meekness! I’m learning through the study that by dealing with such clutter and disorganization, I can greatly reduce my non-meek responses. Of course, there will always be the unexpected mess or periods of disorder in my life, but if it is seldom, I am more likely to deal with it in the right way. I have recently, after prayer and discussion with my husband, invested in a new chore system for our family. I will try to post my thoughts as we implement it in the coming weeks. I’m hoping we will all be well adjusted to the system by the time our fifth blessing arrives in July.

Anger is something else that I deal with all too often. Most of the time, I don’t show it outwardly, I just think angry thoughts and huff and puff. But, it’s still anger. Usually, I get angry when I am tired or very stressed about something. For instance, I find myself getting angry very easily when I am packing to move or to go on vacation. Messes, interruptions or questions during such times distract me from my job – to pack – and I do not respond quietly.

I have also found myself getting angry when my children forget a task or chore that I have assigned them, or if they perform the work poorly. Mrs. Maxwell pointed out that this anger is caused by having expectations that are too high for my kids. If I expect them to do the job perfectly, and they do not, I am angry because my expectations are not met. If, however, I expect them to need reminding or extra training, then I will not become upset when that is needed. This was an eye opener for me! I am praying about this, and trying to become aware of my expectations for each of the children and checking to see if I am expecting too much.

I’ve also found the chapter on dying to self very helpful. Many times, my meekness flies out the window when I feel abandoned, neglected or invisible. I begin to “make a show” by being angry just to get some much needed help. In these moments, I am placing myself above everyone else, and not dying to self. I am trying to meet my own needs rather than the needs of others. I need to do better in this area, as well. I am blessed with a husband who tries to lift the load for me, when he can. At night, he often bathes the little girls for me, since bending over is hard to do for a woman who is six months along in a pregnancy. He will also help me fold laundry at night or clean up after supper. I asked him if he did these things because I griped to him, or if he was just doing it to show love. He said it was to show love – though I know at times I have complained about my jobs. I must be careful to guard my tongue concerning my work. I am asking the Lord to help me to do my work with a cheerful heart. (I’m also asking for more energy so that I will not get tired so quickly! 🙂  )

Recently, I received some bad news, in fact it made me upset. Without thinking first, I allowed others in the family to see my disappointment and frustration. I failed the test! This wasn’t a situation involving my children or disorganization or anything else that is covered in the Bible study. It was just one of those times when I should have responded with a meek and quiet spirit -or at least walked away until I had regained my composure – but I didn’t. I am so disappointed in myself that I failed, yet, I am glad that I caught it right away and made it right with the Lord and my loved ones. I am glad I noticed it so that (I hope) I will not make that mistake again.

But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. – Psalm 86:15

I’m so thankful for my gracious, long-suffering Savior! Thank you, Lord, for putting up with me.

Valerie

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