She is gentle
as she wipes each tear, calms every fear;
She is patient
with all spills, arguments, and messes;
She is kind
in her training, teaching, molding;
She is faithful
to point their little eyes Heavenward;
She is at peace
with her role and responsibilities;
She is joyful
at each touch of a little ones hands;
She is lovely and beautiful
because she is a Mother.

I don’t know about you but that doesn’t always reflect how I am as a mother. I am often too tired, run down, and stressed, which often leads to one grumpy mama! So how do I change my focus? How do I get to the point of being a patient, joyful mother? Assuming I am not alone…I have put together just 3 small things you we can do to redirect our outlook. This is by no means a fix-all or an easy 3 step plan to improving your status as a mom. It is simply 3 baby steps to letting go of the stressed out tired mom syndrome and growing toward a more gentle, patient, joyful mom.

1) Seek Him. God never intended this job to be easy nor did He ever say it would be easy. As a matter of fact, the pain of motherhood literally begins in labor. But just as the sweet relief of the delivery is over and we are holding that precious child in our arms, God can and will deliver us from our daily frustrations. But we have to seek Him! He can’t help if we don’t ask and we won’t find joy if we don’t lean on His words. Open your Bible. Feel His presence. Be washed in His grace, love and mercy. And pray fervently.

2) Take a DEEP breath! There is nothing wrong with walking away for a minute, taking a nice refreshing deep breath, letting it out S-L-O-W-L-Y (praying while doing so) and going back to face your latest challenge. So the next time you walk into your child’s room and find a mess on top of a mess, walk away and come back after a refreshing breath of air. And if you really want to freak your kids out, you might try (may be hard if you are one that likes things all neat and tidy–that would be me) sitting down among the mess and just asking, “so what are you playing? Can I join in?” They may look at you with a weird Mom-has-lost-her-mind face but once they know you are serious about having some fun time with them, they will giggle with delight. And you will have avoided an explosion of mass proportions and have fun while doing so. Don’t miss these little fleeting moments!

3) Look at the BIG picture. Remind yourself of this great calling God has for your life. I am convinced that there is not another job out there that is more rewarding or fulfilling. That is not to say that it isn’t tiresome, lonely and just plain hard. But God gave you your children. He opened up a way for you to understand just a small part of His love for you, His child. Can we reflect that same love to our children when they are fussing over a toy? Can we extend the same grace He extends to us every single time we fail? Remind yourself of His love and grace to you the next time you grow ever so aggravated at your child’s mistakes, disobedience or just plain childishness.

Lord, I pray that today and each day after, that You would guide my thoughts, my actions and reactions. Allow me to see more and more of Your love for me and help me in turn shower that kind of love on my children. May I be ever mindful that spilled milk or toys all over the floor are not the focus of my days. Teaching them to love You, to seek Your will and be ever faithful to You, Lord, is the goal. Grant me patience when I am ready to scream, wisdom in the training, strength to endure, and a joy filled heart that my children may see You through me. Amen.