Change The Mood In Your Home!
Do you use a timer when cooking and baking? Are you like me? If I don’t use my timer, I end up with burnt offerings. I am usually doing so many things at once, that I’m prone to forget that I have put something in the oven. Often I’ll put the bread in the oven to bake and then come downstairs to my office to answer Above Rubies letters. If I don’t bring the timer with me, I’ll forget all about it – then guess what kind of bread we have to eat?
Recently, I found another use for my timer. It all happened as I was reading the Word one morning. I was challenged by Colossians 2:7, NAS where it says we are to be "overflowing with gratitude" or as the King James Version says, "abounding with thanksgiving." Not only are we to have a daily "attitude of gratitude" but to be overflowing and abounding with gratitude. What does this word ‘abounding’ really mean? The Greek word is ‘perisseuo’ and it means ‘to super-abound, to exceed, to excel, to be in excess – enough and to spare, over and above; it goes beyond that which is necessary.’ Wow! I was challenged! As I continued thinking, I was reminded of how God’s Word encourages us to praise the Lord all day long! Not only are we to be overflowing with gratitude and thanksgiving, but we are to be continually thanking and praising the Lord.
‘How can I continually praise the Lord?’ I thought. ‘How can I constantly have an overflowing spirit of thankfulness?’ I find that I get taken up with what I am doing and the hours go by without thinking about praising the Lord. As I prayed and walked up and down our long driveway (this is where I take my morning prayer walk) God put in my mind the idea of my kitchen timer. Yes, that’s it. What a great idea! Thank you, Lord.
I decided to put the timer beside me as I work on the computer, or when I am busy in the kitchen preparing meals, or cleaning. I set it for half an hour. As soon as it rings, I stop for a minute or two and thank and praise the Lord. I then set it again for another half an hour. Now I am getting into a habit of continually thanking the Lord all through the day. It changes my whole day.
I’m sure you’ll find this a great idea too. You can set the timer each day as you work in your home with your little ones around you, or as you teach your children. When the timer rings, stop for a moment and thank the Lord together. Encourage your children to thank the Lord too. What a wonderful way to teach them to live a life of constant thankfulness and gratitude. Establish this habit pattern in the lives of your children.
By the way, this idea is not just for the days when everything is going great. It’s for the trying and difficult days too. This is when you need the timer the most! Maybe the timer will ring just as the children are fighting and squabbling. This is the very time to stop, hold hands, pray, and thank the Lord together. Maybe the timer will ring just as you are ‘blowing your stack’ and the house is in turmoil. Oh what a blessing to have the timer! You are reminded to stop, repent of your attitude, and praise the Lord instead.
Maybe you are not very happy with your husband about something. The timer rings! Stop and think of five good things about your husband and thank the Lord for him. Or perhaps there is an urgent matter for prayer in your family or for people you know. What a great idea to have the timer ring every half-hour to remind you to pray.
Maybe the timer will ring when you are in a slough of self-pity. This is just the time to praise the Lord. Of course, you may not feel like doing it. Don’t worry. Feelings come and feelings go! Don’t let your life be governed by your feelings. Thank the Lord anyway. 1 Thessalonians 5:23 tells us that God’s perfect will for our lives is to thank Him in every circumstance and at all times.
I’ll never forget the first time God used this scripture to speak to me. It was about 35 years ago when we were first married. I was four months pregnant with Wesley, our first baby. My husband, Colin, left me in New Zealand to serve the Lord on a mission in the Philippines with Tell the Nations Crusade. The horrific part was that I didn’t know when he was coming back. They didn’t know whether the mission would take them three months or three years. In my emotional pregnant state I imagined that I would never see him again. I wondered whether this baby would ever see his father. I was heartbroken.
I went home from airport devastated. I cried inconsolably. Then the Lord spoke to my heart; "Do you want to do my will?" "Yes, Lord," I sobbed. "Then thank me, for this is my will concerning you," I heard God whisper to my heart. Because I wanted to be in His will, I began to thank the Lord for taking Colin to serve the Lord. I didn’t feel like it. I felt the opposite. I thanked Him in cold-blooded faith. I continued until I really felt thankfulness entering my heart. I won the victory. From that time, I lived in the joy of the Lord. God was good and Colin safely returned shortly after Wesley was born.
Dear wives and mothers, I trust that you will find the timer a wonderful idea in your home. You might even need to purchase a couple of extra timers, and keep them in different rooms. Set it every half-hour. Make it a habit of your daily life. Let love, joy, peace, praise, worship, thankfulness, gratitude, forbearance, forgiveness and longsuffering super-abound in your home. Remember, the word means ‘to overflow with more than is necessary – above and beyond.’
AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE ALL DAY LONG
"I will bless the Lord at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth." Psalm 34:1.
"My tongue shall speak of thy righteousness and of thy praise all the day long." Psalm 35:28
"In God we boast all the day long, and praise thy name forever." Psalm 44:8.
"My praise shall be continually of Thee…I will hope continually, and will yet praise thee more and more." Palm 71:6,14,15,24.
"Let my mouth be filled with Thy praise and with Thy honor all the day." Psalm 71:8
"Give thanks always for all things." Ephesians 5:18-20.
"Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving." Colossians 2:7 NAS.
"Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." 1
Thessalonians 5:17, 8.