19 November 2009
Is This A Test?
We try to learn a few verses together as a family.
I write them on the chalkboard wall near the dinner table and we read them out loud together before each meal.
This week I wrote out James 1:19-20 - "Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires."
And let's just be honest.
When I picked this little nugget of a verse I was targeting a handful of sometimes short tempered, angry-word-shouting siblings.
I was trying to preach when I should have been quiet.
And so maybe this day just serves me right.
Because I have wanted to be angry today. A lot.
At little things. At big things. At every thing.
Because this day seems to have been full of problems, mistakes and inconveniences.
Like Magnus putting his two gigantic paws on the counter and knocking down a wooden bowl that I really loved that was a gift from Kevin's mom. It broke into four pieces.
Like Mosely complaining that "all we ever do in school is read! I wish we never had school."
And like my ridiculously weak eye flaring up again, causing me pain, forcing me to wear my glasses and making me ultra self-conscious about my appearance.
Like the computer making a rather loud and annoying humming sound all morning while not allowing me to access my photos.
And like my poor Wilder sporting a fever tonight.
Like one particular small boy I know choosing to lie despite my provision of ample opportunity for truth-telling.
And like one toddler I know exercising her vocal chords loudly and boldly during any sibling conflict, of which there were a-plenty.
Like misplacing the all-important notebook of school schedules.
And all of this occurring the first day of my husband's business trip.
When I introduced the verse to the kids on the first day, I told them that it was a message for all of us, not just them. And I told them that this was something we could gently remind one another of any time we saw one of us struggling with anger. "You can even correct Mommy about her anger, as long as you do it kindly and respectfully," I said to them. (What was I thinking?)
And how many times I have heard a little sweet voice beside me today, patting my shoulder or touching my hand, "Mommy. Slow to anger. Remember? Slow to anger."
Yes. I remember.
Is this a test or something?
No, not exactly.