August 7, 2012 by Stacy McDonald
Have you ever noticed how difficult it is to have a good attitude and to speak kindly to others when you’re tired or when you don’t feel well?
We certainly can’t blame our sin on physical symptoms; we’re all responsible for our own actions—even if we’re tired or hungry or hormonal. And, God will sometimes call us to obey, even in physically difficult circumstances, giving us the Grace that we need to avoid sin. Similar to the mother who takes her toddler to the grocery store at nap time, and without lunch, I have a responsibility to not put myself (or my children) in a position where I’m very likely to have a hard time controlling my emotions.
“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)
So, if I know I have trouble guarding my tongue, speaking kindly, or having a cheerful attitude, what things might God use to provide for me a “way of escape”?
1. God’s Word
a. Faithfully study God’s Word (Psalm 119:105).
b. Memorize His Word (Psalm 119:11).
a. Sprinkle Scripture wherever you’re likely to read it (bathrooms, refrigerator, walls, bulletin boards, vehicles, coffee table, nightstands). This is especially helpful for moms in the season of little ones, when quiet, isolated Bible study may not always be possible (Deuteronomy 11:20).
a. Depending upon the season of life you are in, this will look different in each mom’s life. But, don’t forsake your fellowship with Jesus (Philippians 4:6).
3. Peaceful Music
a. God has given us our senses for a purpose. It has been scientifically proven that certain music causes peaceful emotions, while other music raises our heart rate and stresses our body. Certain music literally makes my brain feel chaotic.
b. Avoid television for some of the same reasons.
4. Healthy Meals
a. When your body is healthy and properly energized, you will find it easier to have a good attitude.
5. Protein Snacks
a. Blood sugar drops can make self control more difficult. Plan ahead, by making easy, high protein, healthy snacks to eat during the day.
6. Pay Attention to Hormone Fluctuations or Imbalance
a. Pay attention to when your cycle is coming and try not to plan big or stressful events during that time.
b. If you notice a possible hormonal imbalance, get it checked out. Out of whack hormones can make it very difficult to function properly. Read Mothering Under the Influence of Hormones to get an idea of what I mean.
7. Get Enough Sleep
a. Don’t stay up late unnecessarily when you know you’ll need to get up early. I have a very hard time having a good attitude when my children wake me up early, after I’ve stayed up too late!
8. Train Children to be Helpful
a. Good for you and good for them! Early training pays off later for the whole family.
9. Schedule and Discipline
a. Find what works for your family and stick to it!