I yelled at my kids this morning.
It was during the morning shuffle. You know, the hour where you somehow get your kids out of bed, into clean clothes, looking (and smelling) presentable, and hopefully (maybe) also fed before corralling them into the car and dropping them off at school.
The morning started out pleasant. Sure, we’d all slept in a bit, but there were hugs and snuggles and encouraging words. And then, I noticed it was time. Correction, past time for us to leave.
And that’s when I started to yell.
I yelled at those precious children whom I really love. I knew the moment the loud noises came out of my mouth that it was wrong. And yet, I didn’t know how to stop it.
It’s easy to believe in those moments that I am a bad mom. I’ve failed. The day is ruined: it’s going to be a bad day. The end.
But… is it? What do we do when we realize we’ve made a mistake, when we’ve journeyed down a path we actually don’t want to take?. Are we stuck there? Or, can we make a new choice that leads us in a different direction?
Once in the car, I told my kids we needed to spend some time praying on the way to school. Still pretty upset, I assigned them different prayer topics: Joy, Thankfulness, and that we could “be a family who is on time.” Insisting my kids needed to pray: maybe not my finest parenting moment. But as the adult, I figured I ought to start the prayer time.
And what flowed out of my mouth was…confession.
As I prayed in the van, with little ears listening, I repented. I told God I was sorry I lost self-control and that I yelled. I cared more about being on time and how I looked in the school drop-off lane than I cared about showing love and patience to my children. I asked Him for His grace and forgiveness. And then, I asked my kids for their forgiveness.
What do we do when we realize we’ve stepped out of God’s best for our lives? We stop, and we ask God for His forgiveness and His direction. James 1:5 says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” God desires to help us live out our lives in ways that honor and please Him. He delights in assisting us and redirecting our paths back to Him.
Here’s What I know
When we have a bad morning, it doesn’t have to be a bad day.
When we have a rough couple of years, it doesn’t have to be a lifetime.
We can make the choice today, right now, to invite God to help us make the choices that change the trajectory of our lives.
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