Saving the Best for Last

Saving the Best For Last

You spent the day washing a multitude of laundry, cleaning the house, running several errands, along with a multitude of other tasks.  Now that it’s evening, you find your strength and your patience waning.  You find you are spent — emotionally, physically, and spiritually.  If you’ve taken the time to pay the bills, you may also find you are financially spent as well!

It seems that by the time we can get the evening meal on the table, we are weary and quite crabby.  Trying to make mealtimes special are at the bottom of our priority list.  We’re just trying to ‘hang in there’ and get supper finished, the dishes washed and put away, so that MAYBE (and that’s a big ‘maybe’) we can sit down and rest for a while.  Then, we suddenly remember — it’s bath night.  So much for getting some rest and relaxation.

While reading about the wedding at Cana in Galilee, I noticed it was the third day of the celebration when the host ran out of wine.  When the master of the banquet tasted the wine Jesus had fixed, he commented on how the best wine had been saved until last.

How many times do we find ourselves trying to cram three days of work into about seven or eight hours?  It’s no wonder that we end up ill-tempered and exhausted by the time our husband gets home in the evening.

It’s wonderful when we work so hard to get things done, always making sure that our family has clean clothing, and the house looks cozy for our husband when he enters the door after a long day’s work.  However, thinking back to your dating days, what did he enjoy then?  Pondering upon  when Dean and I were dating, it was that first-love experience of hanging on to every word he spoke, looking into his beautiful, blue eyes while we talked, and making sure he had my undivided attention.  I can remember the thrill of simply holding his hand while we walked through the park.

Back to our story, when Mary hears them talking about having run out of wine, she looks to Jesus, then tells the others to do whatever Jesus said.  It’s the same for us, in saving the best of our energy for the last moments of the day when our husband is home.  We need to learn to listen closely to the Lord, and discern what He wants us to do each day.  In my own life, on those days when I feel exhausted from the time my feet hit the floor in the morning, I know it’s best to only do what really needs done that day.  If I had planned to get groceries after we were done homeschooling for the day, I check my list to see if it’s possible to put it off until the following day so I can take a nap instead.  Then when my husband walks in the door, I won’t be on the verge of tears, or in the middle of a tirade — acting out of my emotions which are frazzled from exhaustion.  Rather, I can greet him, feeling refreshed and honestly being happy to see him, and looking forward to spending the evening together.

Can we start a ritual where we send the children to their room for some quiet time so we can be alone with our husband for a while?  Those moments of intimate talking may spark a fire (and energy) for other intimacy later.  I have personally found that tub crayons are a wonderful tool in getting Rachel to occupy herself for quite a while.  While she is in the bathroom playing, I can carry on a decent conversation with my husband.  Occasionally, we do hear, “Daddy, come look at what I drew on the tub!”

Even with our children, it’s important to save some of the best ‘wine’ for the end of the day.  And ladies, notice that I didn’t spell it W-H-I-N-E!  We can use the evenings to do devotions with the children.  This can work even if our husband doesn’t want to be involved.  You can gather the children in another room, giving your husband a little time to himself.  You may even opt to do story time with them so your husband has a break for himself.

When we are weary and worn, it’s too easy to want to ‘veg’ on the couch with the remote in hand.  It takes effort and discernment to work our schedules in such a way to leave us with the energy to ‘spend’ ourselves a little more in those evening hours.  That’s why we must do what Jesus tells us to do.  If we follow Him, we’ll find that we too, have saved the best ‘wine’ for last.
© 2004, Stacy R Miller


Peace in the Midst of Christmas Chaos

Peace in the Midst of Christmas Chaos


Working in a hospital requires that you work some holidays. I usually volunteer to work Christmas Day because we can easily adjust our schedule and celebrate our “Christmas at home” day another day.


Last year, I had Christmas Eve off, but my daughter wanted to open gifts on the 23rd since she isn’t a morning person. So on that day, as I headed home from work, I was in a festive mood, ready for our celebration.


However, on the way home, traffic was so thick, being that Christmas was only a few days away. People were driving with no regard for their fellow man. One man carelessly pulled out in front of me on a busy highway. Shortly thereafter, another vehicle started to swerve into my lane.

I was still trying to maintain my festive mood and remain peaceful in my spirit.


I noticed I only had a half tank of gasoline, so I thought I would do the smart thing and have it filled so we would be set for my trips to work and for a trip to the family gathering on Christmas Day after my shift was done. I scanned my card at the pump, only to get a message of “pump busy.” I had no idea why it was doing that, but didn’t trust it after that, so I waited until it cleared my card info and went to another pump, only to have it do the same thing. My hands were beginning to hurt due to the bitterly cold temperatures.


I decided to try another gas station, only to burst a blood vessel when trying to get the gas cap off. Now my hands were really hurting, and my festive mood was beginning to change to a very frustrated one.


As I headed for the final stretch home, I came upon someone who must have been having a lover’s quarrel. The car was off to the side of the road. With no warning, she quickly pulled out in front of me, then pulled over again when she caught up with a pedestrian who had just exited her car. Next, he darts out in front of me to get away from her. I slammed on my breaks, and my heart rate is escalating by this time. Of all things, the woman pulled out in front of me again!


By this time, not only am I frustrated, but I was desperate to get home. I just wanted to be safely home, in the warmth and comfort of my house, enjoying the presence of my loved ones.


Since I remembered hearing that we women often set the tone of our home, I reminded myself that it wasn’t going to be wise to show my frustration when I got home. I quickly said a prayer, asking the Lord to help me to adjust my attitude in the next two minutes before I reached home.


Thankfully, He was faithful to help me in my time of need. As I walked in the door, instead of venting my frustration, I voiced how thankful I was to finally be safely home!


In the midst of this blessed season, when circumstances around us can be very chaotic, it can help us to find things for which to be thankful, even when our emotions are rather frazzled and stressed.


A grateful heart can bring peace and comfort to your spirit in spite of your surroundings.

© 2014, Stacy R. Miller