Monday, May 11, 2009

Moms are Sinners, Too

I woke early yesterday morning and started preparing for the day. As I was showering, I heard the phone ring. "Yes. She's in the shower; I'll have her call you back when she's out."  As I overheard more chit chat between my husband and his mother, I was thinking, 'But I don't have time to call her back! It's Sunday morning, and I have to prepare lunch before we go to church, finish my hair, clean my shoes, etc.' It's not that I didn't want to talk to my mother in law- I just had so much to do.

I was in the middle of blow-drying my hair when Verne entered the bathroom. I was upside down when he announced, "Abigail wants to make you Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins for breakfast, but she wanted your approval before she started." Sigh. I looked at the clock. 

"Okay,  but tell her not to double the recipe, and you need to supervise."

Famous last words.  

Two minutes later, Verne returned. "She's doing great. Don't forget to call my mom."

As I entered the kitchen, Abigail was filling muffin tins. "Did you spray the pans?"

"No. The recipe didn't say to."

I bit my tongue, grabbed the phone, and started to call my mother in law. As we talked, I  threw some make-up on, and got the needed supplies to clean my shoes. I still needed to call my mom, too. 

I briefly talked to Grandma and my mom, but felt like neither were really listening. My aunt was in for the weekend to celebrate Mother's Day and Grandma's birthday. Mom was busy cooking breakfast for everyone, and the kitchen was noisy. 

Just as I hung up, the oven timer sounded.  Abigail grabbed the muffin tins from the oven and placed them, still full, on the cooling racks. "Happy Mother's Day, Mom. Your breakfast is ready!" 

"Abigail, you can't leave the muffins sit like that; they'll stick. "

By this time, I was busy making ham barbecue. "Collin-help your sister."

As it turns out, the muffin tins should have been sprayed, and the muffins wouldn't release. Collin and Abigail sat digging muffins out of the tins. Crumbs were everywhere, and the tins were still half full of muffin. 

I lost it. 

"Verne! I asked you to supervise! Now the kitchen's a mess, and the ingredients are wasted!"

"I did supervise! I told her to spray the tins and she didn't listen!"

So, Mother's Day morning was a fiasco. Abigail was trying to make me a sweet breakfast and I became angry, yelled, and hurt her feelings. Verne and I were fighting, and it wasn't even 9:30 AM. 


I took Abigail aside and apologized. I told her that I had been wrong to get angry, and that good mommies don't act that way, which just made her cry harder. "But you are a good mommy. I couldn't have anyone better than you." Which made me cry harder. 

I asked her to come eat with me, and told her that some people just eat the muffin tops anyway because they think they're the best part. She sniffled, blew her nose and joined me at the table.

Other than not greasing the tins, she'd actually done a great job. The muffin tops were delicious! Why had I made such a fuss in the first place? 

Because I'm selfish. Because I was angry that I had to hurry all morning long. Because... I'm a sinner. 

We made it to worship in the nick of time, and I felt awful inside. I'd confessed my sins at home, and asked for Abigail's forgiveness, but I hadn't asked for forgiveness of my heavenly Father. Just as we were about to participate in the Lord's Supper I remembered that Christ died for sinners. Me. I was welcome at His table because I felt remorse, and repented from my sins. What a blessing!

After worship, we had to hurry once again. Our church was singing for another group at a nursing home, and we didn't have much time to get there. As we were lining up Autumn whispered to me, "You look sad."

"I am."


"Because of this morning."


We often feel grief for what we've done. We don't need to keep asking for forgiveness, but asking for help with our grief is another thing altogether.  I prayed. And I prayed some more. 

And all afternoon I felt waves of grief come and go. Tears stung my eyes several times as I glanced at Abigail, and she smiled back at me. How could I be so gruff to someone that I love so much? 

And today? I still feel grief. But less than I did yesterday. Grief can be good though. It reminds us not to repeat our mistakes, and it's a reminder I'm taking to heart. 

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, 
and the truth is not in us. 
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins
 and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  
1 John 1:8-9 ESV


Becky K. said...

Thank you for your honesty. Too often I catch myself being unkind to those I love the most.

Those are the times when I must humble myself and admit that I am a flawed human being too.

Thank the Lord for His love and forgiveness!

How sweet that you had custom muffin tops for breakfast yesterday. I'm glad they were good!

BJ said...

I have this sort of thing happen more times than I care to admit-thank you for sharing this.

~~Deby said...

oh are so real...we all have these days...or these moments with those we love..or even a cashier...where I have had to apologize for a bad attitude..I am so glad that we have the Holy Spirit that convicts, that doesn't let us *get away* with our sin.....that is what sets us apart from the world...
you are a great mom, I can tell...WE can tell...
and you are normal...we all get like is the flesh..and we are in the process...God is so faithful...and our family and friends so if we weren't just so hard on husband always tells me I am too hard on me....
It sounds like the muffin tops were delicious...

Persuaded said...

whew... tough post to read, because i am right there with you. it is so hard being a mom because our failures and faults have such a profound effect on these little people that we love *so* much. if only we could be perfect, right?

Susan said...

I had a time of sitting on the +pity poty" this week-end, too. BUT GOD is faithful and just to forgive us our sins!!!

Terri said...

I too had to apologize to my children for a bad attitude on Sunday. I thank God that His mercies are new everyday!

swansdepot said...

Thank you so much for sharing that with is easy to forget sometimes that none of us are perfect, that only God is perfect. Moments like the one you revealed to us are so painful when they occur, but they make us truly aware of and humble before God's great love.

Mrs. Rabe said...

Oh I have been there so many times! I am learning, but it is such a hard lesson!


Abounding Treasures said...

Been there ... done that ~ more often than I wish I had.

As Deby pointed out, I'm so thankful that the Holy Spirit convicts me and doesn't let me get away with sinful behaviour!

This verse gives me great comfort in times like these:

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." [1 John 1:9]Blessings to you and your dear family, Tracy :o)

Rachel said...

I needed to read that - thank you!

Momma Roar said...

Yes, thanks for your honesty, Tracy.

This was a good reminder for me as well - I know your children are so blessed to have you as their mother and you are such an example to me!!

Tracy said...

It's nice to know I'm not alone in the rotten-mother's-day boat. I could've done without the expectations on the day.

In fact, I'm having a hard time figuring out if I'm hard to please, have expectations that are too high or if I just live with a whole bunch of selfish people. I haven't figured it out yet.

Deb said...

Echoing the thanks of the other commenters - this was very encouraging.

Ways of Zion said...

thank you for sharing that, I needed to read it!

Kristy said...

Oh, I can identify. Sunday mornings, especially. It can be our hardest morning, and takes extra grace and mercy to get to church with a true smile on our faces. Hope today brings wonderful sweet moments together with your children.

~Karen~ said...

Same here. It's a fact of life that we get stressed and short-tempered. We're not perfect. (surprise!);o)
Not only do we have a forgiving Lord, but our children always seem so eager to forgive. How's that for blessings?!

Mrs. Anna T said...

Tracy, thank you for sharing this with us. We all have our shortcomings. How wonderful that the Lord, and our beloved husbands and children, are so wonderfully, generously forgiving. Without a great big dose of forgiveness, not a single relationship would pass the test of time.

Marilene said...

Looking at the issue from the practical point of view:
My muffins always stick, no matter how much butter goes in the pan. This admitted, I just use paper cups! ;)
Once I wrote in a book I gave to Paulo, in a time when we were facing a tough moment of our lives. I wrote: "Someday we'll be able to laugh about this."
Remember to laugh...

Tammy said...

Oh, that stings!

...Isn't the Lord good to deal with our hearts at times like that? He is so patient and loving. I totally relate to your post.

SarahF said...

Tracey, thank you so, so much for these words. I can't express how grateful I am for your sharing them.