“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 1984&
As the new school year approaches I’m making a bold commitment: No more unglued mama mornings. In other words, I want our mornings to go better this year with less frustration, yelling, and chaos.
I started thinking about this last spring when we had a string of really hard mornings.
One day, as I pulled up to the front of the school, the atmosphere inside the car was thick with tension. Not wanting the last words spoken to my middle school daughter to be harsh, I tried to change the course of our conversation before she headed into her day. “Listen, I love you. I’m sorry we had a rough morning.”
“We always have rough mornings,” she shot back before getting out of the car and slamming the door.
Well, 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 to myself, “Something has got to change. Each day I promise myself I won’t yell at the kids in the morning and yet everyday I do. I don’t want to. But each morning something happens that triggers me to just lose it.”
Ever been there?
It’s not like we wake up in the mood to get frustrated with our people, right? I mean honestly, I usually wake up in a pretty good mood. But then the stress of getting everyone ready and to school 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 dog just had an accident on the new rug because no one listened to my instructions to let her out. The bread for sandwiches is still sitting on the grocery store shelf because I forgot to buy it yesterday. And to top it all off, I have no cash to give the kids so they can buy their lunch at school.
The whining. The complaining. The feeling that I just can’t ever get it all together. It all just escalates and sends me over the edge.
Well, I want this school year to be different. I want to be like our key verse today, “made new in the attitude of my mind.” The Greek word for "made new" is kaino which has as one of it's definitions: uncommon. Yes, that's what I want. I want to be an uncommon calm in the midst of chaos and an example of peace for my kids in a world of pressure. If that’s going to happen then I’ve got to get a plan. Here’s what I’ve come up with:
- 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 soak up what will renew my mind instead-God’s Word. Even if it’s only for 5 minutes, I’ve got to put the world on hold until I’ve checked in with God. If you want something to kick start you in the right direction, check out the FREE 5 day quiet time guide “No More Unglued Mama Mornings”.
- 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, no ink in the printer, and less than perfectly packed lunches aren’t big problems. They are small aggravations that come with managing blessings. I’m managing blessings. Oh God, help me see that.
- Let my kids own their ‘irresponsibilities’. My kid’s irresponsibility will not become my emergency. I need to communicate my expectations to the kids so they know they are 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 has no ink, then they can’t print their report. They’ll either have to figure out how 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 let the consequences of their choices scream, so I don’t have to.
All of this is going to take some intentionality and I seriously doubt I’ll do it all 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 a fancy way of saying I’m excited to have less unglued mama mornings and a lot more peace this year.
Care to join me? If you'd like to take the free 5-day "No More Unglued Mama Mornings Challenge," click here.
Lysa TerKeurst is a New York Times best-selling author and daily blogger at www.LysaTerKeurst.com. Her new book Unglued: Making Wise Choices in the Midst of Raw Emotions is available wherever books are sold.