Autumn can be a particularly busy time for homeschooling families. With lessons to coordinate, a household to manage, children to nurture, & a marriage to maintain, sometimes it's hard to juggle everything! Keeping the family's calendar is often an extremely challenging task, especially later in the fall as Thanksgiving approaches.
I know that there are many meaningful activities for our kids, such as: co-op classes, church activities, sports, music, art lessons, etc. All of these are good things, of course, and can truly enrich the homeschool experience in many ways -- as long as they're manageable for you, too. I don't want you to forget about yourself! I mean, moms are the ones driving & taxiing the children around town in most cases! We must be careful not to over- commit; otherwise, something will give; it might be our health, our kid's health, relationships... you get the idea.
If outside activities become burdensome & disruptive to family unity, or to your own sanity & peace -- then by all means, I encourage you to sit down with your husband & re-evaluate things! Your health & well-being is important! You're in a key position! You're valuable!
Over the years, it helped me to keep in mind what Pastor John MacArthur said about priorities for mothers. It's so basic. The 3 priorities are: heaven, husband & home.
We want to stay close to the Lord Jesus Christ, #1. That's everything. We love Him; we want to read His Word, & spend time in prayer worshipping & praising Him. We want to bring our petitions to Him, asking for His blessing & help.
The next thing is to really make our husbands a top priority. I think that (as wives) we often forget the fact that God made us to be suitable helpers to our husbands, & that THAT is our ministry. We desire to help, love & respect our husbands. Do we sometimes fail? Yes, of course, but -- with God's help -- we desire to have improvement, & to work on our marriages.
Once, while in line at the grocery store, I was chatting with the lady behind me as I was putting my stuff onto the counter. The twins weren't with me this time. The lady asked me what I did. I guess she meant, "What do you do for a living?" My response was "I help my husband, teach my children, & manage my home." .... Silence.... I learned that I shouldn't look for encouragement at the grocery store. The world thinks we're crazy.
Now, I'm not saying that we shouldn't have areas where we serve, minister or help in the church or neighborhood. Quite the contrary! Actually, it's great to serve our own neighbors --I'm just saying that we need to put our husbands before our children, our jobs (homeschooling), and church activities.
Our homes are our domain, our workplace -- a place of creativity and beauty (well, not always - but you know what I mean!) -- given to us by God. We take seriously all the duties given to us as wives & mothers.
A book I absolutely love is called Verses of Virtue - The Poetry and Prose of Christian Womanhood compiled and edited by Elizabeth Beall Phillips from the Vision Forum (www.visionforum.com). Extolling the blessings of being wives & mothers, it offers inspirational poetry & positively beautiful verses from Scripture. The book also contains my personal, all-time favorite poem by Strickland Gillian, The Reading Mother.
Back to the calendar -- activities & commitments can be assessed while we're keeping those three priorities in mind: Heaven, Husband & Home. Honestly, I think it's way too easy to err on the side of doing too much, leaving no margins in our lives.... & there's nothing virtuous in having a crazy, fast paced, no-room-to-breathe schedule!
I guess it's all about balance; So, let's pray & ask God to help us as we plan the months ahead. I hope that the following verses encourage you:
"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might."
"The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good and not evil all the days of her life."
-Proverbs 31: 11-12
"Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it."
Have a splendid day. Talk to you tomorrow! As always, with God's help, keep being a great mom!