Tuesday, March 4, 2008

MOPs Lesson

I am so thankful for MOPs. Mrs. Bacon always seems to be talking straight to me in the Bible study time. Today she was talking about bitterness and how it effects us and how it effects other people. Bitterness is not something I think about a lot. I wouldn't necessarily put it on my list of sins that trip me up. Believe me, I have many on that list, but that wasn't one of them. But the more Mrs. Bacon talked, the more God showed me my heart. I have been starting to harbor bitterness toward my husband and my daughter.

You see, once I met my husband, all I've wanted in life was to be a wife and mother. I love my husband and daughter with all my heart, but life isn't perfect. We all tend to get this picture in our minds of the perfect husband with the perfect kids, in the perfect house, etc. Then, when life doesn't measure up to our perfect standard. we (or at least I) start to harbor resentment. Dan doesn't do things the way I think he should, or Katelyn decides she's going to throw a fit in the middle of the food court at the mall. Life is not perfect. You all know what I'm talking about.

I started resenting Dan because he got to leave in the morning then I was left with the crying child. I began resenting Katelyn because it's impossible to make a "quick" run to the store. Everything with a toddler takes planning and thought. Do you have the snack and juice so she won't scream as we're going down the grocery aisle. Do I have a change of clothes for her when inevitably her diaper leaks all over her pants. It's those little things that just start to add up. Can I get a witness?

But Mrs. Bacon shared a verse today, Hebrews 12:15 that really hit me. "looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;" It hit me. The bitterness that I had toward my husband and daughter was starting to effect them. It causes distance in my marriage. My temper is quicker to flare over minor things. My nerves are shorter so I'm more likely to raise my voice. The bitterness is not only eating me up, it's hurting those I love most in this world.

Mrs. Bacon encouraged us to learn to be grateful in those times we see the bitterness creeping in. I've always prided myself in being a thankful person. I write thank you notes for gifts given to me and services performed for me. I thank God for the things He provides. But how often do I thank God for the fact my husband has a job that is making a difference in eternity? How often do I thank God my child was born healthy and has no health problems? How often do I thank God that I have more clothes in my closet right now than a majority of the world will have in their entire life? It's so easy to be thankful for the gifts people give us, or our house or other tangibles. But when we get down to those things that aren't exactly how we think they should be, that's when it gets hard.

My goal this lifetime is to become a grateful, thankful mom. Thankful that I will have stories to look back on and laugh (see earlier posts). Grateful for memories I have ministering alongside my husband. Thankful for the time being my daughter wants to be with me all the time. Just thankful for all things, even when it's not perfect.

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