A miraculous event occurred this morning in my home. The skies opened up, the sun shone down and the angels were singing the Hallelujah chorus in unison. Had I not been there myself to witness it, I would not have believed it.
This morning, we were running late (not the miracle part). Three of us are under the weather so two of my children were running extremely slowly. One of my children told me a blatant mistruth. One cried before we drove out of the driveway. One forgot to brush their teeth so we had to turn around and go home (in case you haven’t deduced, we still aren’t to the miracle part). One forgot their instrument so we had to drive back to our house…again. Tensions were running high and everyone was waiting for my usual response to things that are unplanned and that inconvenience me; rage. But today, said miracle occurred. Today, I did not go there. Today, I was filled with peace. Today, instead of reverting to my default mode of blaming, belittling and making the fact very well known that I am being inconvenienced by everyone else’s failings, I was filled with grace. I told the one who lied to me that it was important that he/she knew that I loved them (I’m sorry, did that just come out of MY mouth?). I told the one who forgot to get her stuff out the night before that we would just talk about it later (and I even said it somewhat nicely). I prayed for all of them on the way to school (without subtly asking God to help them all be more responsible, more truth filled and less forgetful) and everyone got out of my car with a smile on their faces and in amazement that they had gotten to witness my out of body experience firsthand.
After I dropped them off I realized what had just happened and I knew immediately I must figure out what had made this morning different so that I could replicate it. What was it about today that made the difference? My schedule is crazy, I didn’t sleep well last night and the children did all the things that normally push me into psycho crazy mode. Yes, I did get up early to pray this morning. However I pray almost every morning and it never ceases to amaze me how I can be downstairs on the treadmill thanking God for my precious children and loving husband and in less than 2 seconds upon ascending the stairs someone has irritated me, done something to mess something up or something else that conjures up feelings completely contradictory to the prayers I said just a few seconds earlier. What else could it have been? I ate the same food and had the same amount of caffeine in my system so that wasn’t it. What did I do differently and how can I make every morning this grace filled and loving?
It is ten o’clock and I don’t have an answer to what happened today. I don’t know why some days, albeit few and far between, the Holy Spirit indwells in me and allows me to look a little more like Jesus. I don’t know why some days, despite my desire to have mornings with my husband and children that look like today, and despite praying about it before I begin my day, I am a raging, irrational, perfectionist mom who makes everyone around her feel defeated. But what I do know is this. God doesn’t love me anymore today when I was filled with grace and love for my family than He did Tuesday when I made my daughter cry, my husband frustrated with me and I wanted to crawl in a whole or move to Tahiti. God’s grace, love and acceptance do not change for His children – for those who love Him and find their purpose and meaning in Him. His love for me is not based on my performance and not only am I thankful for that, I also know that it is through truly grasping that that I am moving to a place where I am beginning to give that kind of grace and love to others a little more often.
“Dear Lord, thank you for a miraculous morning. Thank you that in forgiving the child who lied to me this morning you reminded me that you forgive and still love me for every lie, every piece of gossip and every sin I commit every day (usually before I even start my first cup of coffee). Thank you that although said child, me and everyone else who sins will have consequences, thank you that it is always covered in love and grace and to bless and teach us, not belittle, guilt and deflate us. Thank you that you are moving me up and to the right on the bar graph of grace and love and thank you for helping me truly BELIEVE how unfailing and unconditional your love is for me, undeserving as I am. Please help me to replicate this morning more often by your grace. Amen.”