How do you know that you have had a good day? There are three words in the Scripture that are often used together and these three words can be a wonderful measuring stick for the atmosphere of our family. They are righteousness, peace and joy and come from the following scripture.
For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace, and joy
in the Holy Spirit.
On those particularly bad days I look back on the day and have to admit there has been no joy in being with my children today. When asked “why” I would have to say that it was a hectic day where nothing went according to plan, where the noise level was incredible, where there was constant tension between all family members (this sounds like no peace!).
In accordance to the above Scripture the next question I would have to ask myself is “Was there righteousness in my home today?”
We need righteousness in our homes and peace will be its fruit. We need peace in our homes and joy will be its fruit. We can’t do this every day, all day, by ourselves. The Scripture says, “In the Holy Spirit”. This means the Holy Spirit is there for us to help us in these areas.
Joy – Do I have a cheerful outlook on life, do I have a calm delight for my days, can I rejoice daily for my children, because of my children and with my children?
Peace – Do I have a spirit of peace and well being in my home, is there quietness and rest and harmony as we all live together – adults and children?
Righteousness – The dictionary defines righteousness as morally upright, without guilt, without sin. The Bible tells us that each one of us is a sinner which is why we need Jesus. When we accept Jesus and his gift of forgiveness, God then sees us as righteous – just as if I’d never sinned (just-if-ied…). Our response to this gift is that our desire becomes to be more and more like Jesus, to live our life along the lines of “What would Jesus do”. Is our heart to become more and more like Christ?
If you can say yes to these questions, then the Kingdom on God is in your home. For me personally I would have to answer with a yes – qualified by “sometimes”, “most times” or “getting there”! And this is fine by God too – as long as we are getting there with the Holy Spirit. All these things need to be done in the Holy Spirit, that is, in the power of the Holy Spirit, with His help because we can’t do it by ourselves; not by our own determination or ability, or organization, or knowledge but by the power of the Holy Spirit who lives in us.
It becomes very obvious when there is a lack of peace in our home or in our relationships. At such times, I need to ask myself if I am living my life the way I know Jesus would want me to. Am I living in righteousness?
Here are some of the things that reintroduce peace into my home:
- Watch my commitments. God wants me to stay focused to the tasks He has called me to. When I carry too many responsibilities I can’t do my God-given ones with a whole heart. It is a matter of keeping my priorities straight.
- Be on the alert for bad attitudes in my children and nip them in the bud at first appearance. This means I have to be with my children, not in my own world doing my own thing, first up in the morning, as their day starts.
- Charity starts at home is a often quoted piece of advice. There is truth in it. We need to be aware of the needs of our family – of our husband, of our children. What will bless them today? To think of that rather than the chores that need to be done can change an attitude; this will in turn change an atmosphere.
- To remember at all times that my husband has the best of intentions towards me – be slow to take offense
- Pray with my children at times of conflict and difficulty – bring God into the situation. This not only teaches them that God is ever present it calms my spirit too, helping me to see the real issue at hand rather than my inconvenience.
- Find time to have a Quiet time – just do it! It is tricky being a wife, a mum, a homemaker, and a homeschooler all rolled into one but we must never forget we are a child of God first.
Let us therefore
follow after the things which make for peace,
and things wherewith one may edify another.
To follow… as I read this Bible verse that tells me to follow after the things that make for peace I have this sense to pursue these things that make for peace – possibly even at great cost.
Am I prepared to follow – to pursue the things that make for peace? Am I prepared to cut down on my commitments, change my habits, change things in my life, even to my own initial hurt or loss (or what seems like a hurt or loss) in order to bring peace into my home?
Over to you…
How do you know you’ve had a good day?
Do you want to be Heart Focused in all you do?
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