A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.What exactly does "merry" mean? According to Merriam-Webster dictionary merry suggests cheerful, joyous, uninhibited enjoyment of frolic or festivity. I've heard the saying many times, "when mom ain't happy ain't nobody happy". So how do I become a mom characterized by a joyful heart who sets a cheerful spirit in my home when there are so many frustrations that come along on any given day to try to steal it away. I'll admit sometimes I feel like I'm a cranky mom more than I'm a happy one, but I don't want to be that mom. I don't want to be the mom who "rules by ill-temper", whom neighbors always hear yelling at her children or arguing with her husband. I want to be a mom whose happy heart is a balm to her husband and her children, whose joy spreads from her soul to theirs, whose home is characterized by peace, and whose actions are known for gentleness.
I've been contemplating this for a while. How can I make my home a merry one? What can I do to keep the everyday challenges of a stay at home mom from turning me into the mom who rules by ill-temper? It truly is a struggle for me at times. I find my mood, like a pendulum, swings from being happy one minute to being upset the next. Just this evening I got angry at my husband. . . over a batch of cookies. . . of all the ridiculous things to get upset about. Now that I've thought about it, I'm embarrassed at how I reacted and discouraged with myself. I don't want to treat the people I love so much in an unloving way. I don't want to be so self absorbed that I get all bent out of shape about silly, meaningless little things. Yet that is what I find myself doing all too often.
I have concluded that I am totally and completely helpless to be the wife and mom that I need to be without God. I must spend time reading and meditating on the Word of God. I must look into the mirror that is the Bible and see myself as I truly am; see the me that is hidden from every other person in life; the me that my deceitful heart wants to keep hidden even from myself. In that humbling experience I can allow the power of God to change me into the person that He desires me to be. Only in my humility can I possibly understand all that God has done and have a thankful attitude which allows me to truly appreciate the blessings in my life. It is so simple, yet so hard. I know this is true. From experience, I can see it's accuracy. So in my attempt to make a merry home, I must first start with me by dedicating time each day to spend in God's word, and having a heart that is supple to his molding.
If a sudden jar can cause me to speak an impatient, unloving word, then I know nothing of Calvary love... For a cup brimful of sweet water cannot spill even one drop of bitter water. however suddenly jolted. ~Amy Carmichael
Galations 5:16-26 So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.
The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
Jeremiah 17:9-10 The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? But I, the Lord, search all hearts and examine secret motives.
Psalm 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.