Sometimes I yell...

This morning I yelled at my kids...again. I really hate it when I yell at them. I see their little faces change--their eyes squinch up, and then the tears come.
My mother never yelled. Apparently that's not true--she says she did yell at me sometimes, but I don't remember. Will my kids forget the times that I lost my temper with them? God, please, let it be so!

But in the meantime, I apologized shortly after. I replayed the events that led up to the yelling...I asked myself: where/when/how could I have acted differently so as not have lost my cool?

These words popped in my mind: "Be slow to anger, quick to listen, slow to speak."

I recalled who spoke first in this situation = me.

I saw my son's clothes in a dirty wad at the bottom of his closet. I fumed...and said aloud the first thing that popped into my mind, "Are you kidding me?! How many times have we told you to put your dirty clothes in the hamper? Now you have nothing to wear because they didn't get washed. Uggggh!"

That wasn't the worst of it. The yelling came later, after the situation had escalated, and I realized...it was my fault. I wasn't slow to speak, and I wasn't slow to get angry. I was actually angry immediately and speaking simultaneously. It was for this which I apologized. My son should get a consequence for not following instructions, but the consequence shouldn't be my wrath. We had just had a special Valentine's Day breakfast and expressed our love, and now 5 minutes later I was yelling at my littlest boy. How does that communicate love?

It's because of my constant failings and because of the grace and love that exists through Jesus, that I keep reading the Bible. It doesn't make me perfect, but it helps me grow in love. They're found in 1 John 1:9. although in my moment of reflection, I didn't remember the reference numbers, (I googled it later)...also I remembered them in reverse order. It actually says, "Be slow to speak, quick to listen, slow to anger."

The Bible says that the Holy Spirit will bring to mind God's words and will lead me to all truth and righteousness (it doesn't say anything about remembering reference number are perfect word order). ;o) It also says that I get to choose whether I allow Him to do this. God doesn't force Himself on me. He says, "Let the Spirit of Christ rule your heart and mind." He says, "Renew your mind."

I gotta get out of my own way and let Jesus love through me! He is faithful every time!

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