I am doing the bible study book Walking with God in the Season of Motherhood right now with a group of ladies from my church and the topic this past week was on patience and kindness. This is something that I have been struggling a bit with recently, maybe it’s the pregnancy hormones, maybe it’s the way the kids can act CRAZY and just do dumb things at times, but I have been finding myself losing my cool a lot more than usual…at least until I read that chapter.
To be honest, nothing in the chapter was “new” to me, I’ve read enough books, mothering tips, scriptures, etc. BUT it was a great, and well timed, reminder on the importance of ME needing to show greater patience. Because, let’s face it, there are times when I feel like I am going to go crazy! In those times, patience and kindness are things that don’t always come naturally, it takes intention, and there’s always room for growth in this area.
When people hear that I have (and homeschool) six children with another one the way I often get the comment, “You must have so much patience!” I wish! It’s true that I have had a lot of practice in needing patience…does that count? I still have to constantly keep myself in check in this area. Patience is something I really pray for on a regular basis!!
During the moments, or even seasons, when I’m finding it hard to have patience, it helps to take a step back and really look/think about the situation. What about life’s current situation is making me stressed and leading to impatience? Is it because I’m not giving us enough time to get out the door and that leads to rushing? Are there discipline issues I need to work on with some of the kids? Am I not getting enough sleep? Am I trying to do too much? There could be several things that are just out of your control but identifying the things you can change can really help. And sometimes just recognizing that patience is an area that you need to and want to work on makes a big difference.
James 1:19 says “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.” For me, remembering the part “slow to speak” helps a lot. If I take a minute to think before I respond I can react in a calmer manner than if I just snap at someone or say the first thing that comes to mind. (This can apply to responding to your husband as well as your children) Slowness to react…
Although one of the biggest reasons I work hard to have patience is that I want our home to be a peaceful environment and I want our children to feel loved unconditionally, another very important reason is because kids need to be taught patience. How can I expect them to demonstrate kindness and patience towards others if they are not seeing it led out in daily life? When my kids aren’t being kind and patient with one another then maybe that I means I need to make sure I have been showing those things to them myself…ouch!
“Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage-with great patience and careful instruction.” 2 Timothy 4: 2
I liked the questions the author of the bible study included at the end of the chapter to think on as a guide on how you can pray for and apply the lesson:
-Which child most needs your compassion and understand today?
-In What area do you most want to grow in patience?
-How can you actively extend kindness to your children today?
What is the Lord teaching you in this season? How is He at work in your heart as you are mothering your children?
As mothers it is our job to teach our children by setting the example. We need patience and kindness to raise our children and they need to learn patience and kindness to become Who God has made them to be.
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