I long for a simple life. When I quit working outside of my home to homeschool our boys, I thought it would give us a simpler life. Less noise. Less rush. Fewer outside noises. In some ways, it did bring those things, but in other ways, we have just as much "stuff" in our lives as anyone else—homeschoolers or not.
We still have to go to the grocery store like any other family. We make trips out for dog food, soccer practice and games, the occasional play date, homeschool meet-ups, home group, trips home to visit family, church on Sundays, and fiddle lessons.
My oldest son started taking fiddle lessons when he was just four years old. He's eight now, so for the last four years we've invested an enormous amount of time, energy, and money into his gift. About a year ago my youngest (now 6) started taking lessons too. As a mama, there's not a whole lot that brings me greater joy than watching them work together to create beautiful music.
That's why, when I heard that our local Pregnancy Center was hosting their annual fundraising banquet with a Beethoven theme, I asked if they might like to have two little fiddlers be a part of the program in front of around 600 people.
(Some of you are puzzled right now, trying to figure out how fiddling and Beethoven go together. Let me assure you, a violin and a fiddle are the same instrument. The only thing difference is how you play it. Our boys are actually taking violin lessons, we just like to call it a "fiddle" here in the South).
Of course, they said "yes," and so we started a four-month preparation for this performance that has literally kicked. my. tail. and left me asking myself, "why in the WORLD did I offer to do this??!!"
Ode to Joy?
The last week of preparation in particular was grueling. We practiced our arrangement of Ode to Joy approximately ten times a day, forsaking normal schooling that week for the sake of working hard to be a blessing to a worthy ministry. The boys worked hard, but this mama was left completely overwhelmed and over her limit.
You see, that performance wasn't the only thing on our agenda that week. Mama (that's me) also released a brand new ebook earlier called How to Control Your Emotions, So They Don't Control You (a mom's guide to overcoming). Yes I did. And it was a bit on the crazy side. Yes it was.
I don't think I've ever experienced so much stress all in one week. My boys waltzed through it without batting an eyelash. I don't think they were nervous at all, but heaven knows I was nervous enough for everyone.
Truth be known, I was wiped. And when I get wiped, I struggle to control my emotions. Little things bother me that wouldn't otherwise, and it's a major effort to keep from snapping at everyone around me. That last week before their performance, and ironically, the same week my book about emotions launched, was a perfect test of the subject I was trying to communicate and inspire other women with. There were a few times I failed just a little, others where I almost failed, and one time I failed royally. But overall, I was able to embrace the simple truth of Proverbs 9:6:
"Leave your simple ways, and live, and walk in the way of insight."
You see, I've allowed my emotions to control me too many times to really enjoy it anymore.
I can tell when I'm getting ready to enter the danger zone, or as I like to call it, the downward spiral of emotions. But for a long time, I didn't really care. I thought I had a right to feel any way I wanted to, whether my feelings were accurate or not, simply because they were my feelings.
I've learned over the last few years that this way of thinking is not only unbiblical, but also highly destructive. What I can see with my eyes and feel with my heart isn't always the truth. In fact, if I'm feeling out of control, I've probably embraced the lie that what I want is more important than glorifying God in every situation of life.
God gave us our emotions as a barometer—something to alert us that there might be something off in our surroundings or in our hearts—but He didn't give them to us to rule our lives, or dictate our behavior.
He wants to rule our lives.
And when we're in Christ, we already possess the power to overcome. We just have to choose it. (click here to tweet that!)
That's what my new little ebook is all about—taking the power to overcome that Jesus died to give us and choosing to honor Him with our emotions. The MOB Society is giving it away for FREE today only! The offer ends at midnight tonight (9/24/13), and you'll receive your free book via email on 9/25/13. So hurry, click here to grab yours, and get started in the fight to overcome.
Note: If you're having trouble accessing Brooke McGlothlin's site to find out how to get your free ebook, you can click this direct link. In order to get your copy, you must be signed up for the MOB Society newsletter (it's the only way we can humanly handle so many downloads!). Once you confirm, you'll receive your downloadable copy of the book via email tomorrow. Thank you!
Brooke McGlothlin, The MOB Society (FOR moms of boys, BY moms of boys)