A harsh word stirs up anger, but a gentle answer turns away wrath.
I was over it. Exhausted. 7 days of constant activity and commitments, traveling twice within just days, a house in disarray. And a mama in need of rest.
I surveyed the disaster surrounding me. In an effort to make their own lunches, the boys had created an explosion of food and crumbs all over the counters. Dinner dishes graced the counters and table. Clean dishes filled the dishwasher in need of unloading. The family room had piles of ornament boxes from the recent tree decorating. Bathrooms and bedrooms were overun with piles of dirty clothes and evidence of water wars. To top it all off, we have been without a dryer for 2 weeks. I looked around at all the newly “dried” crunchy clothes to put away only to piece by piece hang the newly washed loads.
I hastily kissed the boys and escaped to my bed in utter defeat. I am not a slave. Why should everyone else have all the fun and I should go behind cleaning messes so they can do it all over again. It’s not fair! I huffed and puffed all the way to the bed, where I burrowed with a good book.
Steve opened the door. His face looked concerned. “You know it’s 7:30 right?”
“Yes.” I said it without making eye contact and a tone that said I want you to ask but I don’t want you to know I want you to ask.
“Are you ok?”
It started spewing before I had a chance to reign it back in. All the frustrated wife and mommy moments came pouring out.
“This just isn’t like you. You don’t curl up in a ball when things get tough. You fight through it.”
I made a few snide remarks, and to my surprise he didn’t fight back. What I expected was a response like this, “I cooked dinner tonight. I played Foosball with the boys. I helped decorate the tree. I bathed Andrew. What more could I possibly do? Don’t I deserve a break too?”
Instead, I got silence. But not a bitter, angry silence. I got one full of mercy and grace. I got a response I didn’t deserve. And he softly closed the door and left me to rest.
Proverbs 15:1 came to life. Steve answered me with gentleness when I didn’t deserve it and it turned away wrath. It softened me.
And the burning coals were heaped on my head when I came down an hour later to find a spotless house.
He gave me what I did not deserve.
Christ came to give us what we don’t deserve.
The season is upon us where we wait. We eagerly anticipate and long for His coming. May our hearts be stilled in awe as we reflect on His coming.
[box] Are you looking for a simple devotion to help your family focus on Christ this Christmas? Seeking Christmas offers a way to slow down and reflect on Him while creating family traditions. It’s giving the gift of memories to your family.[/box]