New Years is a time for setting new goals. We really all already have goals…we just don’t necessarily look at them as goals all the time.
More gentleness is one of my goals for this year. One day it seems like I have all kinds of patience for my kids. They can be putzy (which kids really are), and needing help for every last thing and I’m not one bit irritated. Then the very next day (or hour) they are doing the very same thing and I am annoyed, bothered and angry with them. I was thinking about why that is.
I think it comes down to the fact that I am perceiving the kids as blocking my current “goal” at that moment.
I am often frustrated with the kids as I am heading out the door and trying to beat the clock. The goal: be on time (or at least don’t miss the whole event LOL). They are blocking that goal. The lost shoe becomes a huge frustration, and I act toward my kids in a disrespectful and very “ungentle” way.
When I am trying to finish up an email and the kids are arguing I am often less than gracious in how I handle it. The goal: finish the email.
When my children are disruptive and disorderly in public I get frustrated. The goal: look like a good mom with good kids.
I’m trying to sit and rest while some children are sleeping and others are outside. Inevitably, someone wakes early or a glove has fallen off a little hand for the 12th time. The goal: relaxation.
So, what if THE goal changes in all of these situations to: lean on God to be the best mom I can be? Can the kids block that goal??
We are running late and my goal is to be the best mom I can be? Can I do that while we are running late? Maybe that means re-evaluating and getting up earlier the next time. Or maybe that means that I take the time to deal with whatever the kids need at that moment and we are late. See, I can be gentle if the goal is to be a good mom because being a good mom may mean being late in a certain situation.
My goal of finishing the email changes to be the mom God has created me to be, and maybe I won’t miss that teachable moment. Or maybe it’s time to train my kids in a quiet time for their good as well as my ability to accomplish things. The kids aren’t in the way…the email is in the way.
What about those disorderly children in public? If I discipline out of the motivation to look good, then that isn’t for my children’s best interest. If I do it to help them learn obedience or self-control because that is what God calls me as a mom to do then I am focused on them and not on me.
The change happens when I’m not reliant on what my kids do any more. I’m only responsible for how I respond to them.
This is something that I need a constant reminder on! So, when I saw the “Gentleness Challenge“ over at “Women Living Well” I thought it would be a great chance to be reminded throughout the month of January. You can read Courtney’s “Gentleness Challenge” by clicking the button below.