Saturday, August 2, 2014

Leaving the Activity Filled Lifestyle

If you want to be a keeper at home, one of the first things you need to do is step back and honestly evaluate where you might be giving away too much of your time and energy. If the various activities and commitments in your life are leaving you too worn out to meet the needs of your husband, children and home, then something has got to go. Obviously, it's not going to be the husband, children and home!

Take a good look at your calendar. how many hours will you be away from home in a typical week? Can you remember the last time you spent at least two consecutive days at home? Are you cheerful every time you pack up the kids, walk out the door and head off to the next meeting, lesson, outing, appointment, practice, etc.? Are your kids happy? Or, do you look at your busy calendar with dread and are your kids crabby and cranky when you are out so much? Do you manage to keep your house in a reasonable state of order? Does your family sit together around the dinner table more than two times a year? Does your husband get enough of your time and attention?

These are all questions I stopped to ask myself many years ago because I was burned out and frustrated and I needed answers. I decided to take a hard look at what the bible teaches about women. What I found was a portrait of quiet, humble commitment to excellence in domestic life. I finally admitted to myself, my God and my peers that I really didn't enjoy involving myself in dozens of outside activities. I realized that I needed to be home most of the time if I wanted to aspire to that biblical ideal.

And so, I began to disconnect from the activity-filled lifestyle which was modeled all around me. I had no idea up until that point the depth of satisfaction waiting for me in the daily work of the "homestead" life.

I have experienced real joy in the simple act of baking a healthy dinner for my family or sweeping the floors once again. I have heard the voice of the Spirit whisper in my heart while I did nothing more than quietly hang a load of laundry on a warm spring morning. There is a deep sense of purpose and contentment in this humble work which can be found nowhere else.

In his book, The Pursuit of God, A. W. Tozer had this to say ~

The simplicity which is in Christ is rarely found among us. In its stead are programs, methods, organizations and a world of nervous activity which occupy time and attention but can never satisfy the longing of the heart.

This easily describes the majority of Christian women I have known at one time or another, including myself. We seem to be prone to the "Martha Syndrome," always busily rushing about trying to live up to the expectations of others or those we load on ourselves. Truth be told, many of us are just wiped out.

This is not a life of servitude or drudgery. Nor is it about having the perfectly appointed home. If joyfully embraced, this home-centered life will lead to
freedom, peace and fulfillment. We will become the wife and mother 
we were created to be.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
Matthew 11:28-30
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