Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Looking into someone else's window

I saw this picture of a little girl looking into the window of a family (not her own) having a nice dinner and having a wonderful time together. I don't know the story behind it, but it very well could have been me. I often peer into other's windows (figuratively speaking mind you) and wish I had that kind of family or husband or sweet respectful children like those I see at church, at the store in line, in the doctor's office, etc. I will sometimes wistfully look at other families and wish I could have the same kind of peace and happiness they seem to have. I don't wish for the material things that others have as much as I long for the peace and loving atmosphere that I see in other families and which is often lacking in [me] my own family.

I know that all families have their "issues." What I may perceive as "something better" may not always be better. That's not to disparage those families; it just helps me to keep my rambling thoughts in perspective. I am also mindful that much of the peace depends upon me. Romans 12:18 says, "If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men. [emphasis mine] and I understand that a lot of the peace that I desire does depend upon my attitude, my choices and actions.

I've heard it said that mothers are the barometer in the home; if a mom is in a tizzy about something; their children will often respond (or react) accordingly. If she engages her children in a warm and loving manner, more often than not, they will respond the same.

There's a quote in a book called "If" by missionary Amy Carmichael that says,
“If a sudden jar can cause me to speak an impatient, unloving word, than I know nothing of Calvary love, for a cup brimful of sweet water cannot spill even one drop of bitter water however suddenly jolted.”
I remember that quote usually AFTER my words spill out in anger, frustration, bitterness. I am not always the best example to my husband or children, and I find myself having to apologize and asking for their forgiveness quite often. I know that this season of life has been permitted for reasons which I have not yet discovered. I know in my heart that I need to look to Him to meet my needs and to help me become more content. I also need to become more proactive and change the things I know I have control over.

Dear Lord, please change ME and help me not to be concerned about any changes in my husband or my children or anyone else. Only then will I be able to learn more about this true spirit of contentment that You have trying to teach me these past few years.

1 comment:

Hope T. said...

I saw your comment on AIM blog and I came over and read all your posts. I just want to tell you that you are not alone in these struggles. I can relate to so much of what you say here. I, too, just want peace for Christmas. I, too, am "out of sync" since I have a high schooler and a baby and several sons in between and so instead of fitting in everywhere I feel like I fit in nowhere. And I, too, want to become filled with sweet water rather than bitter; to focus on my own attitudes and behavior instead of saying "if only THEY would change". It can be very lonely and alientating when it seems like everyone else either has it all together or hides their struggles well behind a nice facade. Thanks for sharing some of your thoughts. For me, having another mother share an honest behind the scenes look at life is really, really helpful.