We ran a bunch of errands last night. Everyone was tired, some little ones crabby. Dear husband was graciously going from place to place so I could find some things I needed. We even went to Walmart, which I don't like and he DESPISES. He so sweetly helped me find what I needed, even bringing me different sizes to the dressing room. Did I mention he despises Walmart???
This man works all day, comes home and is rushed out the door. Handles all of the children so I can get what I need done. All the while just laying down his will. Dealing with a very tired and unreasonable almost 3 year old, again, so I can get what I need. Big trip to Costco, in and out of other stores.
We get home late. Children are not getting to bed as they should. He is the one who puts the children to bed, so the burden of all this is on him. He is growing impatient and is not handling things as perfectly as I think he should.
Recap, worked all day, rushed out the door for a trip that mostly revolved around ME, crabby children, all eight of them with us, confusion and chaos that just comes with a large family, a slightly less than supportive wife, Costco products everywhere, children not in bed when they should be, late at night, bible to read . . . you get the picture, right?
I am about to tell you how this SHOULD be handled and then how I actually DID handle it!
When he grew impatient and was beginning to 'lose it', I should have come along side him and helped him out! I should have said, 'it's okay, I have this one'. Pulled him aside and quietly given him some facts he didn't have on a situation so he might handle it differently.
How DID I handle it?
I continued going about what I needed to do and then, when he needed my support most, snapped (rather harshly) "Just an FYI . . . so and so really did this, not what you thought!"
But here is the really encouraging and redeeming thing in this whole yucky story. I was immediately convicted of how awful I was and what a horrible example I just was for the older children just sitting there with jaws dropped. Thank You, Holy Spirit! In the shower I was praying that God would soften my heart, make me able to separate him from the sin, go and repent to him. I didn't 'feel' anything different, as usual.
I got out the shower marched in the bedroom and without even thinking went right up to him and repented for being so harsh and not being his help meet in that situation. It was a very tender moment, we cried and prayed. I went out and repented to my children for my behaviour.
But wait! It gets better! Later, he said to me, "you melted my heart earlier". I was oblivious to what he was talking about. He said, "that was the first time you came to me first with a softened heart and repented to me."
OUCH! He was right. He ALWAYS repents first. I don't like that about me. I feel awful that it has always been that way. I've tried to, I pray, even in the middle of my hardness of heart and I can't ever seem to 'let it go'. But tonight was different! God had done something in my heart. Something broke, finally.
And to add just one more really cool aspect. Just that morning the Lord had showed me some areas of self-hatred, guilt and shame that I repented of and renounced. Normally, when Brian would share something like this with me, I would feel just awful about it and beat myself up for a very long time. Lament about how I wish I was different and apologize over and over again. Well, I started down that road and immediately recognized the self-hatred, guilt and shame and refused to go down under it! I chose to praise God instead of beat myself up and break the old pattern of thinking!
Two HUGE patterns were broken last night! I am not sure I will always handle it right, but in both of these scenarios it was a huge breakthrough. Maybe next time I might even get my focus off myself before a blow-up even happens. There is a novel idea ;-)
Press in ladies, continue to seek Jesus, trust HE is changing us from glory to glory!