Get Plugged In

My children will tell you that I woke up grumpy yesterday. I really wasn't very nice. By the time I sent them off to school, I owed them an apology. I was out of sorts for most of the day -- overwhelmed by all the things I need to get done, frustrated with the rearranging of my schedule caused by circumstances entirely out of my control and just generally unhappy with a lot of my current circumstances. It took me until my drive home from hockey last night to figure out what my real problem was.

You see, I'm a lot like my laptop. I can carry my laptop around from room to room without plugging it in -- for a while. But, after about two hours, my laptop will run out of battery, and it will be useless until I plug it back in. I'm the same way. I can go for a while without really being plugged in to God. I can coast on what I already know. I can even feel like I'm plugged in. But, if I'm not spending daily time studying God's word and talking with Him, I'm eventually going to run out of battery.

That's what happened to me yesterday. After having a wonderful Christmas season with my family, my little world got so clogged with sick kids, work responsibilities, church responsibilities and kids' activities that I unplugged myself from the source of power. I put off having a daily time with God. We missed church several weeks in a row for illness and games.

Until this week, I was able to rest on the laurels of my past relationship with God, but yesterday, my foul mood, was directly related to my disconnecting myself from the source of power. Colossians 1:9-11 says "We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience." That's what I want -- to be strengthened by God's power. But, I have to make the effort to plug myself into that power.

Parenting is tough. My oldest daughter this week has been a bundle of conflicting emotions. It's state testing time at school, and she always ends up being a basket case from the pressure. I know this is the root of her attitude, but this week I didn't tap into God's wisdom to deal with it. I dealt with it on my own -- and not well. When she needed me to be understanding and patient, I was intolerant and impatient. Now, we all have those moments when we don't react the best way to our kids. But, I know that this week my reactions stemmed from my lack of connection to God -- not from a simple misjudgment.

So, today I want to encourage you to get plugged in to God. I spent some time talking with God yesterday and will be plugging in with Him again this morning. Because if we're trying to parent our kids under our own power, then sometimes we'll get it right but more often we'll miss the mark. If you've unplugged yourself from the ultimate source of power and wisdom, it's time to plug yourself back in.