Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Be Careful Little Mouth What You Say...

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I am being convicted lately on not only what I say to my children but how it is said to them. I mentioned before that I attended a mini-conference last week and before I left to go the girls were asking why I had to go. I told them that they were going to talk about how to be a better mommy and daddy and asked if there was a way that I could be a better mommy to them. Laurianna thought for a minute and her reply was "I wish you wouldn't yell so much."


I'm not even going to try to defend that one. Which is very hard to do. Point is, I do yell in a given day, sometimes more than others. Is this something I want to instill in my children. Not a chance. So why do I do it - and how can I stop?

This morning has been one that I am not overly proud of. Two of our kids are sick and very cranky, I've been trying to help my brother get a resume together before a deadline...add in 4 children that all need attention NOW: diapers changed, tissues, noses blown, are all hungry...add some screaming frustration level was already going up, up, up...

Then my 2 year old dropped a heavy wooden object on my big toe - which is already super sensitive. It was the proverbial straw that broke the camels back. Did I count to 10? Laugh? Blow it off? I did exactly what I am trying not to do. Yelled. And loudly. My mouth went into overtime and I just launched into them. After the fact (and now still) I just wanted to cry (and I have). So this afternoon, I’m sitting here trying to sort through my thoughts and figure out what is going on with me. Yes, I’m overwhelmed. I’m tired….I could go on, but it still doesn’t excuse it, change it, or make it right in any sense.

One of the quotes from the conference I attended the other night: "I haven't yelled at my children in over 14 years."

That caught my attention then and is running through my mind now. Part of me is rather cynical at the statement. "Yeah, right! I'll give you a week with my kids and we'll see... the other part of me latched right on to that and promptly bought her book to read it to see what nuggets I could glean from her. I would love to be able to be 10 years down the road and say..."I haven't yelled at my children in 10 years."

Proverbs 15:1 says "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but harsh words stir up anger."

Anger truly is a choice that I have. If the phone were to ring, someone were to come to the door, we were out in public - my reaction would be much different than how it is when I am in the privacy of my own home. Hidden from the eyes (and ears of others) to see how I am. It shows the difference between the inner person and the outward appearance that others see.

Ouch again.

God has been using my children more and more to sift things in my life and in my heart relationship with Him. I'm really rather enthralled by it all. Happy that He is, but nervous at the same time in some ways. So thankful because there are things that most definitely need to be weeded out so that the beautiful can flourish - and right now there are some BIG weeds overtaking and overshadowing the beautiful. But yanking out the weeds is painful. Necessary. But painful. Some of the roots are pretty deep. Somehow this turned into a garden analogy.... :)

So, there is some stuff out for all of you to see. Painful but true. And sharing it is good for me on so many different levels. Because now...I have others that I am accountable to. Who are seeing into the real me...knowing my deep down, dirty stuff. And who will hopefully keep me open, sharing and honest with them. With myself. And most importantly with God.


  1. Wonderful, Honest post.

    I am going through the same thing. My prayers lately have been "Lord help me to be a better Mommy!" I don't want to yell. I don't want to look annoyed. I want to react in a way that the children aren't disrespected and hurt. It's not easy. I fail daily. But I fess up. I apologize. We move on. Hopefully with more grace, patience, and knowledge than before. I don't want my children to look back on their childhood with memory's of me yelling, or always being mad.
    So... good for you for making the choice to be a better Mommy. I'll be right there with you, counting to ten, taking deep breaths, putting myself in time out... whatever it takes to teach ourselves to allow our 1st reactions to be patient and loving. Not always easy.

  2. I second Valerie's comment: ME too!! it's all too easy to treat our children one way in public and another in private. How twisted is that?! Yet...

    God, create in me a clean heart. So that love pours from my mouth even when we are hidden from "the outside"!!!

    I'm so proud of you, my friend. So very proud. And so very going to be all over your booty about this one. *so expect it* And FULLY expect you to be on mine as well. HUGS


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