Ironically, the boys and I began a study on love this morning. During breakfast, I read excerpts aloud from a book intended for adults. With a little explanation and simplification, it was so applicable to the environment in our home. (The boys were surprisingly engaged as we brainstormed real scenarios.) Today we talked about love being patient. I've never really thought about the connection between patience and anger, but I'm realizing that it is quite significant. When I am quick to become angry with the boys or my husband, I'm not modeling a patient love. Instead, I'm likely letting my emotions take over in response to my own selfishness and impatience. A patient love instead, "brings an internal calm during an external storm. [Patience] fosters peace and quiet."(Kendrick)
So, as our school day began I couldn't stop thinking about these passages:
"He who is slow to anger has great understanding, but he who is quick-tempered exalts folly." Proverbs 14:29
"A hot-tempered man stirs up strife, but the slow to anger calms a dispute." Proverbs 15:18
"See that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always seek after that which is good for one another." 1 Thessalonians 5:15
Today has been full of opportunities to recognize/acknowledge ways we are not loving with a patient love. Whether it is has been settling a dispute between fighting boys "returning evil or evil," or even a Momma reacting with angry words to continued disobedience, it has been obvious that we need the Lord's help and I'm so thankful that He won't give up on me/us.
"...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Phillipians 1:6
So, more sleep is definitely in need. However, even with a full nights sleep I cannot in my own strength love my family the way God intended. I need Him and His strength to resist my sinful nature. And I need to cling to the promises that God is at work, making me new despite my many failings and set-backs. So thankful His mercies are new every morning.