Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Re-defining success

Today was what I call a "humdinger" of a day! I am currently sitting at Panera typing on my hubby's work computer, trying to remind myself to eat my soup like a civilized human being as there are adults around me, watching me, probably wondering why I'm scarfing it down at the pace of a marathon runner (that's what I have to do at home if I'm going to get anything in me). Thanks to my wonderful husband for allowing me a few hours to get out of the house, re-group mentally and refresh emotionally and spiritually.

I did not jump into potty training full force today. Diapers are still being worn and may be for quite some time. Who knows? I liked Beth's comment about not having to worry about dating issues if we never decide to potty train! :) And, like Gretchen (Gigi) said, they'll figure it out eventually, right?!

Back to my humdinger day.
Given our computer is no longer in commission, I had to write my "to-do's" on paper today. Unlike days gone by, my list was only about 4 bullets long. I didn't think I was being all that ambitious. I had committed to making a meal for a friend who recently had a baby, and I had corn on the cob that needed cooked, de-cobbed and frozen (it was less than 2 dozen... not like 100 ears which people who are serious about freezing vegetables for the winter do).

The other things on my list I considered optional....like finishing, or even starting for that matter, about 7 loads of laundry, making something with the 6 peaches that are ripe and quickly going to rot on my counter, and taking the indoor trash to the outdoor trash can in the back yard. I didn't think that was aspiring to much. And, I thought I'd try to include the boys in on my cooking ventures as they typically are very enthusiastic about that. Yes, it would take longer to get it done, but it would be quality time spent with them and more importantly, it would keep them under my direct supervision and out of trouble while I worked. :)

Things didn't quite get off to a speedy beginning. By 11:30, I pretty much had nothing done. AT least it felt like nothing even though I had been literally spinning all morning trying to meet the needs of my children. By lunch, I was exasperated with my children and a bit fearful that I wouldn't finish the meal I had promised to my friend. At one point, I was trying to clean up the crumbs on the floor when my son jumped on my back. I yelled at him and felt immediate conviction that I had at that point grieved the Holy Spirit and sinned against my son. He was in need of discipline, but more importantly, I was in need of forgiveness and God's grace.

I took my son to discipline him but first asked for his forgiveness. Together, we prayed and asked for God's grace. This doesn't look quite as polished as it reads here when actually doing it with a three year old. But, it's not about appearances, is it? :)

God graciously reminded me of His truth, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." And, I sensed His Spirit say something to me that I've heard sooo many times from Him before, "I know what you need. Trust me." I got up from the floor (literally and figuratively) with fresh faith that He would enable me to do what I had committed myself to for that day.

Later in the afternoon, I had the blessing of talking with my dear and faithful friend, Laurie, who shared with me what a friend once shared with her about success. We must re-define our definition of success. It's not about what our house looks like at the end of the day or even what we look like at the end of the day (believe me, today it's not so pretty!). It's about having a greater appreciation for the gospel. It's about being more grateful for grace.

I'm definitely ending the day with a greater appreciation for the Gospel. Christ, the perfect Son of God, died so that I could have forgiveness for yelling at my son, so that I could together with my son talk to God, inviting His help for a situation that is absolutely impossible to manage without Him.

I'm ending the day more grateful for grace, the undeserved gift from God. In my 'brutishness', He still lavished kindness and blessing on my life by allowing my boys to take an uncommonly long nap, freeing me up to get the dinner together for my friend.

So, my house is a wreck. There are probably 4 loads of wrinkled laundry waiting to be folded on my bed at home. There is a sink so full of dishes that I can't see through my pass thru window and there are peaches rotting on my counter because I couldn't get to them today. But, I will go to bed knowing I had a successful day, at least in the eyes of my Savior. And, I will wake tomorrow and pray that you will awake, look at the day ahead and know it will be a success if we come to the end of it once again more grateful for grace.


FishMama said...

I do the same scarfing thing at Panera, too. "Glad" to know I'm not the only ones.

Put the peaches in the fridge tonight. Put the laundry in a basket and fold it in the morning. Cuddle your hubby, etc ;) Tomorrow is a NEW DAY!

Thanks for a good word.

(And wait on the potty training. It WILL come! Never fear...)

Zoanna said...

Great post, Bri. You are quicker to ask forgiveness than I am. I admire that.

I am POSITIVE that making dinners for other people is always done on the spiritual battleground. Why? Because the Enemy hates the Christlike sacrifice it takes. Undoubtedly while making a meal you are praying. Strike one against Him, you are dealing with logistical and paretning problems in the Spirit (after a give-in tot he flesh). It happens to me every time,no matter how "simple" I vow to make the meal.

As for peaches, toss them in a blender with vanilla ice cubes! The mushiness will be a plus!

Zoanna said...

I meant "him" (little h--Satan).

Zoanna said...

I also meant vanilla ice cream!

Beth Young said...

Bri, this was a really good post! It gave me such encouragement. You should get this published :-)

Danielle said...

Josh often tells me when I complain about not getting all I wanted accomplished: "Another day, another way."

You've got a great attitude towards your day that didn't go the way you wanted! That's always a victory right there!

Another idea for the peaches is to cut them up and freeze them. Then they can be used for smoothies or on ice cream later. That way you don't technically have to "make" something with them.

laurie said...

Ah...sweet success!!

Anonymous said...

as you said, god looks at the heart and not at the outward man. don't get hung up with the appearances.........you can have those with no fruit........go for the grace..........it causes us to be more satisfied with god than with our circumstances.........isn't that we are all desiring? gigi

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