Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Jonah days

I am a huuuuuuuuuuge fan of "Anne of Green Gables".  I have read every book in the series, more than once. (actually, there's a summer reading plan I could take up!)

One of her little catch-phrases that I love, is her reference to having a "Jonah day".   One of these days when things just do NOT go the way you planned.  When you begin the day in a bad frame, and it just keeps getting worse.

You know the kind of day I mean. Right?

Yesterday WAS one of those days.

I could try and makes excuses, like Jonah did, for why my day didn't go well. However, excuses would be all they were.  There is never a good excuse for the way I dealt with my day.

I think that it's good to be transparent.  If for no other reason than to let others know they are not alone in having melt-down moments.

So, here goes.

I didn't feel very well yesterday.  Kind of achy, flu-like, non-specific yucky-ness. My arms ached, my head ached, my neck ached.  I wasn't up long, before I decided that, like Simeon, I needed to go to sleep.  So he went to bed, and I went back to bed. When I got up I didn't feel much better and Simeon was kind of grumpy.  I did some basic Monday jobs (admin and laundry), and then started thinking about lunch.  However, on the way to starting this job, Robert called me on the phone and asked me to do some jobs for him.  I started, as he asked, and then started on the the French toast for lunch.  Now, this requires concentration, and watching a frying pan.  As I was just beginning my own, having already made the children's, Robert phoned again.  Rather than brushing him off, I gave him my undivided attention and left my lunch.  Without turning the heat down.  Off I toddled, trying to be a willing and uncomplaining help-meet, to do the job, whilst also holding a grumpy, crying Simeon.   Only to discover, after doing the job for Robert, that my French toast was burnt.  VERY burnt.  And, I strongly dislike burnt food.

Did I calmly tip it in the bin?  Try and rescue it?  Start again?


I did not.

*cringing whilst typing*....

I THREW it across the kitchen floor.



*blushes with shame*

You ladies would not, I am sure, EVER throw French toast across anywhere.  ESPECIALLY not in front of your gob-smacked children.

The shame of it.  To do something so atrociously infantile, and in front of my children, who I am supposed to be training up in good behaviour.  Which does not, I add, include throwing food across any place AT ALL.

I picked up the spare pieces of French toast that I had cooked, and which were not burnt, and marched off to eat them.  WHITE bread, no less - that I knew would give me gas later.

I felt so sorry for myself.  I blamed everyone but myself.  Telling my children that they should have smelled it sooner and told me.  (Children, no less, who were quite intently eating their own lunch - and rightly so)  Thinking that "if only I didn't have to drop everything for my husband".

The SHAME of these thoughts!!! I had NO-ONE to blame, but myself.  I am the one who is control of my thoughts and actions - not anyone else.

*I* didn't turn down the heat.  *I* didn't calmly deal with the situation.  *I* didn't use gentle words to speak to my poor, unsuspecting children.

It didn't take long for me to calm down and see the error of my ways.  To see that there is never a good excuse to go your own way, and react in a rebellious and childish way.

Oh, how sinful and foolish I had been.  Over a lunch.  LUNCH.

The moment we take our eyes off the Lord, and start to feel a sense of self pity, things are never going to go well.  Whether it's something as silly and insignificant as burnt bread, or something bigger that the Lord allows us to go through.  We need to keep our mind upon the Lord, and He will give us peace about the situation we are in.  We need to look to Him and find what we are to learn in the trial, and not react with anger and rebellion.

"Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee"
Isaiah 26:3

My mind turned away from the Lord, and away from the right way to behave. It turned to my own self-pitying and selfish thoughts.  Hence, the disaster.

I REALLY wasn't a very joyful keeper at THAT moment.

I am so thankful, however, that God is gracious.  That I was able to turn my mind back to Him, and rescue my day.  To be able to repent of my awful behaviour and achieve something more worthwhile -  (cleaning out underneath one of the girl's beds...no small feat.....).

No, I didn't get everything done that I would have liked, but I took little "bite-sized" tasks, and got them done.  And, I gave the children cereal for tea.  Yup.  Cereal.  The breakfast type.  After all, French toast had included egg, cheese, milk, bread, and tomato ketchup on top.  Yup, that about covers all the main food groups at lunch time.....

And, you may have noticed, my matriarch didn't quite make it in this Monday.  But, she's almost ready to appear NEXT Monday!

Just like Jonah, I was able to turn things around by turning my heart back to the Lord, and seeking to obey and honour Him. Praise God for new starts.

And, like Anne says "tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet"!


  1. awwww - hugs - those days are horrible. You are definitely not alone and in confessing and repentance is your restoration. You also gave your children hope, they now know they too can have a meltdown but be restored. They also now know even mums lose it sometimes, and for those who will be mums it is a reassurance they will not always be perfect *that* is a sign of a supermum; and you are one of them!

  2. Thank you for sharing your experience. I know those days. I think we all do. I have also thrown things. It's shameful, but we go through this because we need those reminders we can not do it on our own. It is on those days we try to - we fail.

  3. Thank you for your honesty! I think we can safely say we all have days like that!! Good lessons in your reflections :-)

    Dawn x

  4. Whilst none of us wants to be showing our children a bad example, it is much, much more important to teach your children that 'Christ Jesus came into the world to save *sinners*', than it is to try and train them to be 'perfect'. Give me this any day (not that I'm advocating chucking your lunch on a daily basis ;) ) rather than some 'works religion' which will devastate our children's souls.
    Grace, grace, grace - that's what it's all about. :)