I thoroughly enjoy Ann Voskamp‘s writing at A Holy Experience.  Every one of her posts leave me encouraged and challenged.  Challenged to be a better wife, daughter, mother, friend, and child of the most high king.  A while back she wrote a 10 Point Manifesto for Joyful Parenting.  It is hanging in my kitchen and I remembered one of the lines this morning as my kids went particularly crazy and were not getting along….before we even ate breakfast.


4.  “Today, when stress mounts, I pray to dismount it with gratitude. My stress management plan will be intervention with verbal thanks. I can only feel one feeling at a time, and I choose to give thanks at all times. Fight feeling with feeling!”


Parenting is a daily challenge.  Will I take the shortcut and choose discipline for the purpose of changing their immediate behavior, or will I take the high road and train their hearts toward love and godly character which doesn’t necessarily require much raising of the hand or voice?  I think we will have a free day today.  The house is in a bit of disarray and the boys need to go outside and run free for a while.  School may or may not happen today, but there’s always tomorrow and tomorrow we will have sunshine and Daddy.  The boys love Saturdays because Daddy is home with us all day, uninterrupted.

So today I am dismounting the rising stress level in this testosterhome with gratitude and grace words.  I am thankful beyond words for my three precious sons.  I am thankful that His mercies are new every morning; even for me.  I am grateful for a washing machine, dishwasher, and cleaning supplies that will leave my home clean and inviting when Daddy comes home this evening.  I am thankful that my husband has a job and that I was able to go to the grocery store this morning and fill our cupboards with food, knowing there are people all around me losing their homes, jobs, and livelihood.  Thank you, Lord, for grace beyond measure.