The kids and I pray in the van every morning in the parking lot before I drop them off at school. Normally, it’s the same thing every morning: “Dear Lord Jesus, please help us to have a great day at school…” blah blah blah. This morning, my 7 year old son prayed that “Mommy doesn’t get mad today.”
Knife in the gut. He had gotten in trouble twice that morning, and it’s possible I may have had a sharper tone than I intended.
Also on the agenda this morning, his class was in charge of Mass (meaning they do introduction, all the readings, petitions, etc.), so he was assigned to do the first reading. He did a great job, and later on in Mass, we start singing, “Hail Mary, Gentle Woman.” For those who haven’t heard this song, here are some of the lyrics:
Gentle woman, quiet light, morning star
so strong and bright,
gentle mother peaceful dove
teach us wisdom; teach us love
I got it, God. I was no “peaceful dove” this morning. Mary is the prime example of a perfect mother, so how can I be more like her? What can I do to teach them wisdom; teach them love?
It’s a daily struggle, but here’s today’s list:
- Pray. Really pray from the heart. I love it when I see pictures on Facebook of people with their coffee and Bible studying and praying in the morning. I’m sure if I just focused on my prayer life more, everything else would be much simpler.
- Be aware of my temper. I am about 7 months pregnant, and sometimes that becomes a good excuse to become annoyed with people, even my children. Even though “getting annoyed” isn’t exactly a sin according to the Bible, if it makes me angry or causes me to dwell on that annoyance, I count it. I’m not one to blow up on my kids, but sometimes my words come out much more sharply than they should, which was definitely the case this morning. I need to be aware of what makes me annoyed/angry and control my words.
- Be forgiving and ask for forgiveness. Enough said.
- Be humble. Ugh, this is a constant struggle for me… I was about to share a lot more, but this is a very public place, so you can just all make your assumptions about the things that go on in my head sometimes. I have written about humility before, and I should probably post Mother Teresa’s Humility List on my bathroom mirror so I can read it every morning.
- Enjoy my kids. This really shouldn’t have to be on my list, but it’s there for a reason. As a stay at home mom with two kids in school and two kids still at home all day, I feel like we’re constantly running with such a rigid schedule that still revolves around naps and meals. On our busy days, it’s easy to lose focus on these precious gifts that my children really are. Today, I’ll enjoy them. I’ll laugh at their jokes, be proud when they do something hard (like read at Mass), truly listen, and let their joy soak into my soul.
I could add 100 more things to this list, but that’s it for today, and I’m sure I’ll need this reminder (and Jesus) again tomorrow.
Lord God, thank you so much for the gift of these awesome kids and the joy they bring to my life. Come into my heart as I deal with the everyday with them. Help me to truly be a “gentle mother, peaceful dove” and to teach them wisdom and love. Amen.