It starts as most mornings start around here.
The breathed prayer to start the day.
Up before the sun, a cup of coffee, splash of creamer.
The fixing of breakfast with eyes half closed.
The wrestling of children from under covers, herding them to breakfast.
I wish I could say that all things are pleasant in the morning.
That we hold decent conversation while scooping our oatmeal. Sometimes we do.
But sometimes we don't.
Someone is looking at someone weird. Someone's foot is on someone else's chair. Arguments over who gets the bathroom first.
I know I can't be alone in this.
Those mornings that just have that funk.
I wish I could say I rise above it and keep a calm, controlled demeanor despite the squabbling siblings.
They're pushed, prodded, propelled into the car. Bookbags, lunches, permission slips.
And then they are dropped off at school. And I turn from the last peck on the cheek and declarations of "Be brave! Be kind!"
I turn and face the silence of the car. The silence of shame.
What was the big deal? What did I feel was so important that I needed to speak in that tone of voice?
In the quiet of my drive, the things that seemed so urgent just 15 minutes before, all seem so trivial now.
Where do I go from here? How do I reconcile this? I know that I am a soul, wrestling against my flesh.
And sadly, so often, the flesh wins.
I know this is how I am. But I also know that I have been called to rise above that.
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.
For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
So what I inadvertently picked up that morning: pride, self-love, trust in self. I lay it back down at His feet. A broken person, once again reminded that nothing within me can do good. I seek to turn my mind to Christ, and what matters to Him. Setting my mind on things above, not things of this earth.
And as I move through my day it seems to work. Seems to run a bit smoother.
But it's close to 3PM and my 'training ground' approaches.
Three children. One mom. Post-school time of day.
Another grace-filled chance to set my mind.