I had a splendid trip to Georgia to visit with my parents, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited about coming home! Georgia put on a beautiful autumn show for me with all the colors I’ve missed for over 17 years (can you believe that!?!), my parents doted on me suitably, my mom and I had a great visit to our little country estate–the Biltmore mansion–, I enjoyed seeing so many friends and family members, I got to teach my mom’s Sunday school class one Sunday, and I had a super turnout for my Coffee with the Author two Saturdays ago.
But…as Thanksgiving approached, I began to get excited about preparing my own home for the big holiday, making our traditional Thanksgiving feast, and spending quality time with my own nuclear family of four–the one that doesn’t revolve quite so tightly around it’s nucleus anymore, but will be restricted to the confines of my watchful eye for at least a day or two later this week. I was one happy mama getting on that airplane and heading back to my corner of the world.
Then I walked in the door of my house.
Sure, the thrill of my homecoming stuck with me a little longer as I kissed on my beautiful daughter, petted the doggies who obviously had come to bitter terms with my disappearance and were overjoyed to see me, and settled into the familiarity of home. But as I began to look around at the house, my joy turned into dismay then weariness and then frustration. My house was, is, a mess. And I had gone from excited to overwhelmed in just minutes.
Now I am praying about my attitude and trying to get on board with enthusiasm again. It’s amazing how quickly our attitudes can change, isn’t it? When circumstances drive our emotions they can take us on a fast and furious ride of ups and downs.
But we can choose to stay off that roller coaster. We don’t have to be people who are up when all our ducks are in a row and then quickly out of sorts when our ducks get away from us. We can resist the temptation to be mastered by our emotions. How? By being led by the Spirit instead.
It’s a choice–letting the Spirit be in control, that is. He’s there, but we can take over, or, worse yet, let our emotions take over. Or we can yield to Him and allow Him to produce love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control in and through us.
I came home with joy, but my messy house drained me clean of it in a matter of minutes. I came home ready to do a little good and be a little kind, but that left too as I stewed over the mess I had not made but now had to clean up. And self-control was hanging in the balance, ever so tentatively, ever so fragile.
But I’ve chosen to yield to the Holy Spirit this morning. I’m going to get up from here and dwell on Truth, serve my family with the love of Jesus, and allow Him to infuse me with His enthusiasm…because mine has waned. And I am convinced that He will restore my joy, give me a rekindled love for my family, help me do a little good, and keep me under control.
Do you ever have to take your nasty emotions to the Lord like a ripped garment or a broken necklace and ask Him to fix them? Do you ever feel yourself sinking and cry out to Him so you won’t end up at the bottom of the pit of self pity? Boy howdy, I do! (Can you tell I’ve spent some time in Georgia?)
So here’s to living and walking in the Spirit today! Here’s to letting Him infuse me with something good instead of me wallowing in something putrid. And here’s to whipping this house into shape with a little love and joy!
Have a blessed day!