Autumn can be a particularly busy time for homeschooling families. With lessons to coordinate, a household to manage, children to nurture, and 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 and 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 and disruptive to family unity or to your own sanity and peace—then by all means, I encourage you to sit down with your husband and re-evaluate things! Your health and 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 and home.
We want to stay close to the Lord Jesus Christ, #1. That's everything. We love Him; we want to read His Word, and spend time in prayer worshipping and praising Him. We want to bring our petitions to Him, asking for His blessing and 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, and that THAT is our ministry. We desire to help, love and respect our husbands. Do we sometimes fail? Yes, of course, but -with God's help - we desire to have improvement, and 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, and 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 and mothers.
Activities and commitments can be assessed while we're keeping those three priorities in mind: Heaven, Husband and Home. Honestly, I think it is way too easy to err on the side of doing too much, leaving no margins in our lives...and 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 and 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, 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!