Thursday, August 27, 2015

My Wrestling Match(es)

I am wrestling through some things in my life that I’ve been convicted of while attending the 'Wrestling with God' series here at Flatirons.  

Come to find out, I’m just too darn serious all the time! I take everything too seriously in life, not enjoying the moments and seemingly just “getting through” the current stage of my life. When I think of the mom I’d like to be, I envision a woman, arms spread out wide, head thrown back, spinning around in a field of wildflowers and lost in pure joy, much in resemblance to Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music. I don't know about you, but this is a drastic difference compared to my life. 

In reality, I know the day-to-day demands much more of our lives as women than this ideal scene provides. We don’t have time to frolic around in an open field for hours on end. Heck, we hardly have time for a quick shower and fixing our hair! However, we do have the pleasure of savoring God's beauty in all the areas of our current life, the life we are living...This. Very. Moment. For me, the application here is that I must remember to take the time to see the beauty. 

I rush around all day, trying to make sure everything on MY schedule gets done the right way, many days not even once stopping to enjoy The Lord's creations, or to ask Him what He might have planned for our day. It is Our day, right? Not just mine? I wake up each morning with the goal of getting everything completed as efficiently as possible and then when something inevitably doesn’t go the way I had planned, I get anxious. This unexpected deviation from my schedule throws off my day and I quickly become discouraged. It would be one thing if this irritant only affected me, but the sad truth is that the things we wrestle with often fall onto those closest to us as well. My kids end up the recipients of my poor attitude. 

I get it, we are all busy. I'm taking legal classes at our local community college while homeschooling my youngest and will start working with a professor for a contract position with the American Bar Association next month. Those things are all important and they deserve a good portion of my focus and attention. However, those are not the MOST important things. If I am taking all of those too seriously and not taking the time to study God’s Word, further my relationship with Him, enjoy my kids growing up and to make it a point to interact in quality time with them throughout the day, then I am failing as a follower of Christ in both of those areas.  

I can’t think of more loving way to treat my kids than to see to it that I make God my first priority of the day. If I do that and trust that He has a better plan for my day than I do, He has proven time and again that He will make everything else in my day fall into place. I don’t have to spend hours fussing over MY plan or schedule, just for something to inevitably throw it off. Of course, I need to make and keep a routine and much planning of time are necessary in every home, especially one homeschooling with a parent also in school. However, there comes a point when enough is enough and we have to trust that God will lead us through our days, blessing our decisions to follow Him first, while loving those He has placed into our lives.  
I have been given these amazing opportunities in this time in my life to be home with my kids, schooling one of them and attending college (something I never thought possible for me before). I don’t want to just “get through” these next few years until things are “easier.” If I wait for that in order to enjoy my life, I will be waiting forever. Life is not easy; God never promised that, and I want to enjoy all the parts of my life, even though I am busy. Taking time to have a tea party with my daughter and her imaginary friends might throw off my groove for the morning, but where is the joy if I choose to decline her sweet invitation to connect?  
My house has not been full of joy as much as it should be but that has started to change. I am learning to take the time for that Nerf gun war. I'm taking my eyes off the textbook or computer screen for more than just a few seconds to acknowledge my son’s awesome LEGO build of the day. I've been missing out on too much, and God has made it abundantly clear that He does not wish for me (us) to be busy all the time and specifically told us to rest for an entire day! I'm not honoring that command by being too serious and squandering opportunities for quality time with the one's He has entrusted to me.  

When my mom calls and wants to have coffee, am I going to be able to make myself available when I’ve scheduled every ounce of time I have? I'm much more likely to accept an offer to meet up if I've left a bit of wiggle room throughout my days. This means I'm learning to say 'no' to certain opportunities that aren’t right for our family at this time and am seriously looking at our current activities to see what aligns with the way God is leading our family. We are called to love one another and that doesn’t coincide in life so well with the self-centeredness of hours of activities. I won’t be able to be available to open up my home to the dear friend that stops by because her marriage is on the rocks. God won't be able to use me to encourage her if I have to decline. In short, I want to leave a bit of room for God to send opportunities my way instead of trying to plan my own. He knows way better how to plan my day than I do anyway ;) 

My house doesn’t always have to be spotless and if I don’t get the floor mopped tonight because I chose to play Frisbee outside with the kids until dark, that’s okay. Dare I say, that’s awesome! I would much rather my kids remember having a fun, exciting mom that lead them in the way of Christ, rather than a stressed out mom that had to have a clean house in lieu of spending time with them.  I know that if I have my routines in place and do the basics it’s good enough for us. Then, I have the rest of the moments of the day to worship, pray, enjoy the kids and get our work done while laughing, smiling and thoroughly enjoying our limited time together.  

Savanah is a daughter of God and mom of two beautiful children. She can usually be found digging around the garden, leading online Bible studies or educating her children and herself. She has an affinity for wildlife and could spend her life exploring God's creations. 

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