Hi My SUMite Friends,
Well if you’re anything like me, you’re in the middle of the busiest part of this Christmas season. It’s this time a year that most of us feel overwhelmed by all of our added responsibilities, such as buying gifts, wrapping gifts, shipping gifts, decorating, etc. etc.
And for me specifically, I feel emotionally, spiritually, physically worn out.
But this last week I discovered real power of one of the fruits of the spirit, self-control. And this is how it played out for me. Most of you know that last Wednesday, I flew to Virginia Beach to be interviewed on the 700 Club Interactive program. Prior to leaving, I met with my local critique group on Tuesday which was fun, but it turned into a late evening. I woke early the next morning to fight traffic to get to the airport in San Diego. I then boarded a flight to Atlanta, Georgia, where weather delays kept me from making my connecting flight to Virginia Beach. Therefore, I arrived finally at my destination at 11:30 PM. I think I finally went to sleep at 1 AM East Coast time.
I was up early to prepare for the morning interview. It was a blast. I’m completely humbled that I was allowed to share with a broad audience the hope we have as believers in Christ for our marriages and our families. Following the interview I had a quick lunch with some of the staff from CBN and then it was off to the airport for a cross-country return flight.
I arrived in Atlanta, and wouldn’t you know it, I again had a flight delay due to mechanical issues. It’s at this point, when you’re sitting on the floor in a very busy airport waiting for a flight that the fatigue of the last two days sets in. Exhaustion overtakes and patience with people and circumstances is often stretched to the breaking point. Can anyone relate?
It’s often at these times when my normal, cheerful, self can become short in patients with other people. But for some reason this time it was different for me. I kept hearing the word over and over in my head, self-restraint.
Hmmmmm, I think the Holy Spirit was speaking softly over me that entire evening. Finally, after a five hour delay, I finally boarded the plane for a five hour flight home. I retrieved my car and then it was a one hour drive on the freeway to finally arrive at home about midnight.
What is interesting to me is that normally when I arrive home utterly exhausted, such as I was this evening I adopt an attitude that it’s okay just to let my control over my emotions go. And I don’t reign in my attitude of exhaustion and my short temper when I walk in the door. It’s as if I’ve given myself permission to be mean and ugly with my spouse, just because I’m home.
Throughout this long trip home, while at the airport, while sitting in the seat on the flight home, I managed to maintain a smile and reign in my frustration and tiredness, determined not to take out my emotions on another person. So when I finally arrived home, I looked at the door from the garage into the house and before I entered it, I said to myself, “Self-restraint.”
I was determined to walk into the house wearing maturity and self-restraint and to have a pleasant yet tired conversation with my husband. And I guess this self-restraint attitude was born out of my experience of returning home a few months ago exhausted from traveling. And I walked in the door, unrestrained, fight ensued, and the one who was truly hurt and even more frustrated, was me.
I walked in, I smiled. I unpacked and then kissed him on the lips. I crawled into bed. No fight. Just love....
All was right with the world.
"Thank you Holy Spirit."
So in this season of perpetual joy *grin* perhaps I could share with you two little words that the Holy Spirit likes to speak: Self Restraint. Sometimes just whispering them to yourself will keep you from lighting your house on fire.
James 3:6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.
On another note: I just want to thank everyone for your prayers for me as I traveled last week. I felt them. I also felt as though God allowed me to shine a light upon the thousands of us who are spiritually mismatched. There’s a growing awareness in the body of Christ, as well as pastors, and in the general church that there are many women and men who are living in a mismatched marriage.
And what I really love the most is that they are discovering that we, the SUMites, have so much to offer the church, our families, our husbands and our communities. I stand amazed at the love of God for those of us who walk in this crazy, wacky, mixed up journey of the spiritually mismatched. I love you have an amazing day. Love and hugs, Lynn
(If you missed the boradcast, there is a link in the sidebar now.)
Photo Credit By artur84, published on 16 April 2013
Stock Photo - image ID: 100159152