The past six weeks have been painfully busy. We have been involved with sports, major events, out of town tournaments, birthdays, and, just to add some spice to the mix, some fairly extended sickness.
So I finally emerged from my fevered state this week and started looking around my house.
With so many events piled up on top of each other, STUFF had been stuck in one place to make room for different STUFF for the next event. There are still Christmas boxes in the garage to be put away. There are borrowed party items to be returned. There are party items to be stored. There are bags to be unpacked and bags to be packed for the next trip.
And mostly there are the innumerable little tasks that are rarely apparent when they are done, but are glaringly apparent when not done. And trust me, for the last few weeks they have not been done.
And then two things happened, neither one pleasant. First there was the voice of the enemy screaming in my head, "See, you are a failure. You can't do all that needs to be done. You are probably the worst homemaker ever. You have all these ideas, but you rarely follow through. Your kids don't do all this stuff because you didn't train them well enough. YOU ARE A LOSER!" I, of course, very bravely responded by crying and repeating some of those phrases out loud to myself.
And then the second thing happened. I used one of the Enemy's Devices on my own family. One word of advice here. That is never a good idea. Never. Never. But I did. I started yelling and barking out orders. I harshly pointed out what should have been happening, what had been done poorly, what had been ignored. And then the Mother Martyr Complex kicked in. Now all anyone could do was duck and run for cover.
Here was the biggest problem. Actually, a lot of what I said was true. Most of those jobs should have been obvious to all the members of my family over 10. It wasn't brain surgery. You didn't have to break the code on the Rosetta Stone to figure out the jobs of maintenance were piling up and needed to get done. We don't have a maid, or a yard guy, or any other hired help. The only way for anything at our house to get done is for us to do it ourselves. So my problem was that I was armed with the knowledge that what I was saying was true and therefore I kept saying it.
But nothing I was saying -absolutely nothing- was said "in love". Ephesians 4:15 says, "speaking the truth in love"... Oh yeah. That is what I am supposed to do. That is what is always wrong with the Enemy's words to me. There is absolutely no love in them. In fact, there is usually at least a grain of truth in his words or they wouldn't be so hurtful, but there is never, ever love. God's words, even when they chasten, are always saturated with love. But what I was guilty of giving my family were words with at least a grain of truth and absolutely no love. I wish I had realized it then instead later after the dust had cleared. That is one of the hazards of tearing around in a huff- the "still, small voice" is difficult to hear.
Forgive me again Lord. Once again I am here with my mouth having gotten away from Your Heart. Oh, may it never be. Never, ever.
Truth + Love = Growth, Healing, and Harmony. That is much better.