It’s one of my constant enemies, showing itself victorious just when I’m beginning to feel a sense of satisfaction that I’ve beaten it once and for all.
Last week it reared its ugly head several times in the space of a few hours. One daughter’s careless exuberance led to a plastic cup full of fruit and its sticky juice being spilled on the floor. The other daughter wore a nice piece of clothing outside to play – and returned half an hour later covered in dirt.
What caused my frustration? I suppose it was the inconvenience I saw being caused for myself. The matter of cleaning up the apples, though, was simple enough since my daughters helped. As for the clothing, I know how hard it is to find modest outfits. When I fear something being ruined, the money isn’t as much of an issue as is the time it will take to find something to replace it.
I’m certainly never proud of myself when I allow frustration to creep into my voice and my actions. I know I’m responding improperly to the situation and am certainly not setting an example that I want my girls to follow.
I Corinthians 10:31 says, “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” So even when I think I have a right to be frustrated – I don’t. My impatience is not going to bring Him glory, but will only show how highly I think of myself and how my time or desires have been infringed upon.
This week, when frustration comes knocking, I want to take the Sword of the Spirit and wield it at will to defeat this enemy.
Do you frequently find yourself struggling with frustration? Do you have tips for dealing with it?
Jennifer @ Just Peachy in Dixie says
How do you always seem to know what I need to hear? As a homeschooling Mom, I find myself frustrated more than I should be. I'm going to take a deep breath before I let my frustrations get the better of me, and do my best to remember our school days don't have to be perfect every moment! Don't get me wrong, most of our schooling runs smooth as silk. It's just some days I can see in her eyes that she's just hearing, "Blah, blah, blah…" while smiling and nodding. 🙂
Thank you again for another great post! Just what I needed to hear before my DD and I begin a new week.
So glad you found this helpful! Dare I say that after writing this post yesterday, we experienced some bedtime frustration at our house???? I must say that it's not always easy to "practice what you preach!"
Mrs. Stam says
It's a battle, I often need to look deeper into what really makes me frustrated, is it the sin of the offender or my own sin!
Really when I expect perfect obedience from our children (and of course they will fail at that) I feel like a "not good enough mother" but then I search deeper, and find that I think I deserve "then to be obedient" often pride gets in the way other time lazyness of me having to clean more , discipline again etc….
then God reminds me, it not ALL ABOUT ME!!!!
taking a deep breath
Children are not a burden but a blessing
so when I feel the frustration coming,I have to remember my identity in Christ and fighting the lies that are in the core
I really was hoping that, at the end of your post, you would have a magic bullet for getting rid of frustration. *Sigh* Wouldn't that be nice?
h. rae says
I posted similarly to this very topic today. What a coincidence. Life's little inconveniences can really get us down. Sometimes, for me, just having to get up is a chore. LOL My energy wanes, I sit… and realize I need something in the other room. Frustration rises.
I think this post was for me today… thanks!
Yes, I, too, need to see what is at the root of my frustration that I might deal with it properly. As you say, our children certainly are a blessing!
Yes! I'd need at least one a day! 😉
You're welcome! And trust me, it was for me, too!
Wow, coming of a weekend of gritting my teeth endlessly at interruptions…this was definitely something I needed to hear and think about. I think frustration is a key signal of when I get my priorities out of whack–whether it's putting a clean house over time to help my kids in a craft project, or putting mommy reading time over family story time, or even just feeling unappreciated because no one "likes" the dinner I just spent two hours fixing…it all points back to my own troubled spirit. Thanks for sharing.
Oh, yes, this is something I battle. When it comes up I know it's from my own selfishness-a reminder to die to self.
Frustration? With 2 little girls? Nope, I have no idea what you are talking about.
Sigh. Oh my!
A few months ago I started talking very quietly when I felt that I was getting too frustrated or angry with whatever was happening. I'm pleased to say that (so far!) it has worked. By keeping my voice and tone quiet, I am not getting so worked up, and since I am not getting worked up, neither are my girls.
It's a work in progress – but so far, so good!
Great advice! I think consciously controlling our voice helps us keep the rest of our bodies and emotions under control, too.
I pray as ugly frustration creeps up on me – the kind of frustration that has power over me. I pray for God to help me speak with kindness and to love Jane with patience, just as He does with me. That is always sobering for me.
I will say that not all frustration is wrong. Kids can wear us thin, and sometimes it's because they are being careless and/or defiant. In these moments I want to show Jane that her choices are not the best and that it makes this mommy unhappy. In these moments I'm still praying for His help in speaking with kindness.
Isn't that so true?! Certainly God treats us with patience and love in spite of our repeated transgressions. I can always know I'm parenting properly when I follow His example in dealing with me.
New Day Grace says
Thank you for this post. The Lord spoke through it to me. I heard it at just the right time 🙂
New Day Grace,
So thankful that it was helpful to you! May the rest of your day be blessed!
Sometimes I am so ashamed of the ways I allow my frustrations to show through with my family. It is comforting to know I'm not the only mommy with this failing, even though it's not a good thing that we all struggle with it, so thank you for sharing so candidly, Tracey. I appreciate your openness and honesty. It doesn't seem to matter how much we love having babies and little ones, we still get frustrated at the inconveniences they cause from time to time… Definitely something to work on! 🙂