Recently I’ve been stretched a little thin. My wife often asks me how I balance home commitments, family, friends, work, and other a slew of different things. My response is usually the same, “I just do.” It seems whenever I finish a project or endeavor, there’s another one right behind that one.
This weekend I purchased a small bay boat that needed some updates and repairs. While working on the boat, I started to get overwhelmed at the amount of work still left to do. I then started to take an inventory of everything and I began to become upset. Add to this the fact I was running low on sleep, and it became a dangerous combination.
After finishing the repair and cleaning up, I still had yard work left. As I worked on that, I noticed the kids had knocked over the pool acid, and it fell all over the contents of the storage bin. Upset, I loudly called for them. The two responsible came out.
I then proceeded to lecture them on responsibility, organization, and a ton of other things. As I spoke to them, I noticed I was harsh. Everything I said was in frustration on something I’ve repeated hundreds of times, but they never seem to learn.
They looked at me and apologized, and soon afterward, I felt terrible. Yes, the kids were at fault, but I went overboard. My erroneous response to the situation was a mix of frustration, fatigue, and forgetfulness.
Frustration because I’ve said things so many times I wish it would sink in. Fatigue because I was physically tired, thus causing me to make bad decisions. Forgetfulness because I need to remember they’re still learning and most importantly, I forget how our heavenly Father deals with me.
Next time before responding to a situation like this, I’m asking myself if I’m frustrated and/or fatigued and remind myself how I am often at fault and forgiven by my heavenly Father when I mess up.
Answer and Journal the Following
Read and meditate on Ephesians 4:26-29.
What’s your usual response to stress? How do you deal with it? Be real; be honest.
Pray and ask God to prepare you in advance before you’re in a stressful situation. Determine how you will respond. Be specific.
Bonus: Share this with a fellow brother and have them hold you accountable.