For some reason, I have not been able to get the idea of a thermostat out of my head. In particular, when it comes to mothering.
Nate has been out of town since Thursday and if I am honest, I spent the first two days of it much like a thermometer. The temperature in the house would rise and I would rise right along with it. Attitudes would rise and mine would rise right along with it. Voices would rise and, you guessed it, mine would rise right along with it.
You see, a thermometer simply tells you what the temperature is. It is very helpful, but it doesn’t do anything to change the temperature. A thermostat, on the other hand, reads the temperature and then turns on either the heat of the AC to bring the temperature back to its desired range.
In my mothering lately, I have been working to be more of a thermostat and less of a thermometer. Cranky? Maybe we all need a snack. Bad attitudes? Let’s get some time outside. Overly exhausted? Let’s sit here on the couch together and read a book or watch a movie together. Is mom annoyed? She likely needs to put her phone away for a while.
And to be totally honest, I have needed (and often neglected) to meet with God. For perspective, grace, forgiveness, strength…the entire gambit. I just can’t do the whole mom thing on my own. And I’ll never do it perfectly.
But little by little, I’m seeing the need for me to change, one degree at a time, the temperature in our home when it gets out of sync. It’s nothing earth shattering, but it’s really been helping me these last few days. By God’s grace, I am the captain of our little ship. I am called to be the thermostat.