I didn't sleep much last night. Noah was up for much of the night...again. I'm tired. The first thought I had this morning was not "God, thank you for the sleep I got and for your sufficient grace to get me through today" but rather it was more like, "God, don't you know that I need--I deserve--more sleep than this?!? Especially since I have two energetic boys to tend to today...why didn't Noah sleep so that I could get the sleep I need?"
I am not predisposed to exercise much patience with my boys today. This was already clearly demonstrated in a very ironic way this morning. Knowing my weakness but also wanting to remain faithful in my quiet time, I opened up my study this morning to find that the passage would be Romans 2:1-6,17. I had a rich time in the Word, gleaning much from the Scriptures and finding myself thankful for God's gift of repentance to me. As I studied, Noah began fussing. My sin welled up inside and I sharply, impatiently, told him to Stop! In my heart, I was mad at him for first keeping me up all night and then distracting me from my Bible study. (After all, I'm trying to be godly here!) And then I looked down at one of my verse 4 in my passage for today, which says,
"Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?"
*I found myself being thankful for God's lovingkindness to us as sinners while almost simultaneously demonstrating the opposite quality to my son. Shame on me.
*What am I trusting in for righteousness? Why am I tempted to think that I can only succeed if I receive an adequate amount of sleep the night before? This attitude smacks of trying to do things in my own strength rather than walking by the Spirit. Of course I'll fail if I try to obey without the help of the Spirit.
*At the end of the day, there are no excuses. It doesn't matter how much sleep I got or how fussy my children were or any other circumstances. These various happenings are what God ordained for me that day.
*It is my own sin that makes me short-tempered...not a lack of sleep! The lack of sleep is just the circumstance that brought about the sin that was already there in my heart.
*I am called to demonstrate God's love to my children. I oftentimes fail.
*I find that I'm even more vulnerable to sin when I'm trying so desperately to do good and fight sin.
*God never sleeps. And He's still longsuffering. That's really cool to me right now.
*I'll take the opportunity for a nap today, if the opportunity presents itself (i.e. if I can get both boys down for their naps at the same time). Taking care of the body's basic needs allow more room for self-control when I'm tempted to sin.
*I've got a long, long way to go in demonstrating Christ-likeness.