“Did you do your chores? Why are you down here eating breakfast if you haven’t finished your chores? What have I said a million times? Do I need to say every morning exactly what to do….”
This has been my tone for some time now with my children in the morning. I see them pouring cereal or popping bread in the toaster and instead of “Good morning, I love you today” I’m quizzing them on their obedience, ready to send them back to bed.
I have been reading James, and today was when I opened to chapter 4. God had something to say to me before I started my own chores or making toast for myself.
“What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions[fn] are at war within you?[fn]” James 4:1
I felt a prick of conviction and God wasted no time in trying to wait on me to figure out what he was using this passage for in my life. My desire for obedience, a clean upstairs and not having the responsibility of reminding my children for instructions took the throne of my heart and was producing quarreling and fighting towards my children.
I began to reflect on why the mornings have been hard for me to look forward to lately. It’s been hard because my misplaced desires request to be the king for the day and instead of taking them captive and holding them up for observation side by side with scripture, I invite them in and join me for my morning coffee and together we fret about how this day will begin once the children wake up. My passions are at war within me. And so, I quarrel and fight with my children.
But, just as Joel 2 promises that God will restore the years the locust have eaten, I trust he promises to restore the few hours of the morning the locust have eaten as well and gives us grace to begin again. He will rescue us and remind us of our calling if we open his word. He will lift our eyes and remove the desires and passions from joining in on our morning coffee and replace them wih himself.