Monday, October 25, 2010

So Much to Catch Up On!


I am definitely missing something in my life...a little free time to sit down at the computer and write my daily thoughts. And I am feeling ready to burst - with so many things to sort through. As I write, I find myself working through deep thoughts - or sometimes conflicting thoughts, and God is always so faithful to lead me to an answer. Without the discipline of daily writing (either here or in my journal), I am feeling a bit "cloudy".

So...I am going to try to return :)

But, where do I start?

I will start with something Joe said yesterday. Or should I start with Lincoln, now a big-brother in the family. Or maybe I should tell you about the middle school conferences. Or maybe, how God is silent in some areas of our live and clearly shouting in other areas. Or, I would love to tell you about the ministry and how my amazing husband is feeling the pull to leave business and get into full-time ministry himself (how amazing is that????) I guess I just need to start somewhere. Maybe this will be my list of things to write about this week....now, I just have to make time to do so!

So, driving home from church, Joe looked at me and asked, "Are we ruining our kids?"

He didn't have to explain the question, because I know exactly what he was thinking. This life style we have embraced, this radical way of living looks nothing like the world around us. Are our children suffering because of the choices we have made?

Do your kids miss out when they don't wear designer clothes or shoes? Do our children resent us for not being able to purchase the latest and the greatest whatever is out there? Are we ruining our kids by asking them to care for kids that are not their blood brother or sister?

The world bombards us and tells us we are bad parents. And even those in the Christian church make us feel like we are "going off the deep end." So, it is normal for us to question every now and then if this life we are living is going to ruin our kids.

I have to believe that the answer is a resounding NO! What we are teaching our children is to love others...some who are very hard to love at times. Why is that wrong? What we are teaching our children is to hold loosely to THINGS of this word. Is there something wrong with that? What we are teaching our children is how important their relationship with God is...that He is the giver and provider of life. Are we teaching them the wrong thing?

But because of the world we live in, these lessons are painfully learned. Frankly, it is so hard for a 13 year old girl to believe us when we tell her she is a timeless beauty even though she wears used clothing. It is hard for Harry to believe us when we tell him that we are storing treasures in heaven when all he wants is what all of his friends have. It is hard for Isabel to believe that we are richly blessed when I have to tell her that we can't afford for her to take dance lessons.

Joe and I make hard choices every day involving our kids. We are firm believers that our kids need to be at home...which means we say no to a lot of things. With 5 kids, if they all start doing after school activities, we would never sit down for dinner together. As it is, we take Wednesday night and say this in the one night we will not eat dinner together - AWANA starts before Joe gets home from work, so he takes that chance to have meetings. But, if we let George do cub scouts and Isabel do dance and Harry do football and Eleanor do horseback riding lessons...when would we ever be together? And, frankly...our kids are still so young? Why do they have to be away from home so much? When did it become "better" for kids to enroll in classes and leagues and activities that take them away from home most nights?

We refuse to buy into that. We believe our kids are better off being at home.

But...are we ruining them by believing this? What about high school transcripts? What about getting scholarships? What about making the varsity team?

And then, we buy them clothes from yard sales or thrift shops. And we ask them to make two pairs of shoes last as long as they can. And we buy plain colored folders instead of ones that bear the image of Hannah Montana. And we snuggle on the couch for the latest movie to come out on DVD rather than take them all to the movie theater. And we sit together at a crowded dinner table every night rather than adjust schedules and add stress to our lives.

At this point, I simply have to trust the Lord. God is doing a major work in my and Joe's lives. He is transforming us...and I am confident He is leading us down a narrow path. He has a plan...and He is re-making us in order for us to do the good work He has planned in advance for us to do. But...in that process our children are affected. If that is the case, I HAVE to trust the Lord. The plan can't just be about Joe and I, for we are parents. The plan has to include our children.

So, God...are you really asking me to trust you more? I guess I have no other choice...I have already given you permission to ruin my life...why not my children's as well? Honestly, I just can't wait to see who they grow up to be..because you must have a great plan for their lives as well!

1 comment:

Bear Creek Mama said...

Totally ruined - what better way to live!!!
I share the sentiment of wishing to share a hug and a long conversation and an even longer friendship with you. You are walking a narrow path and you inspire me to follow.
May you continue to reap rich rewards and oh so many blessings as you walk.