Tuesday, May 15, 2007

God's To-Do List

I remember reading in The Lies Women Believe about the idea we women have that there is just too much to do in a day. The author’s argument with this was that our only job to do during the day is what God asks us to get done that day. No more, no less. That really struck a chord in me and in fact was one of the factors that led to us bringing Alex home to Homeschool. After reading this, I began a concerted effort to spend more time focusing on the kids. After all, right now, they are my primary concern and, as a stay-at-home mom, my primary “job”. I remember about a week after taking this important message to heart, I was talking to Mark on the phone and telling him, “You know what? When you really spend real, quality, prolonged time with the kids, they are a lot of fun! They are really neat kids!”

So what was the problem? Well, there were a lot of things going on during the day that served as distractions from my primary job, yet they were things that I could easily rationalize: An hour of TV – after all I do, I deserve a break; a couple hours surfing the web – I’m researching homeschooling topics in order to better challenge the kids academically; hours of household chores – come on, all these chores are part of my job as a stay-at-home mom; hours spent scrapbooking – well, now, you can’t argue with that since I’m putting precious memories into albums! And so on. But with all of these extra things going on, the kids were being ignored. Moreover, when these important tasks of mine were interrupted, I would fly off the handle. And anyway how exactly do a spotless house, intriguing lesson plans, and beautiful scrapbooks reflect if the kids are unhappy and feel less than important?

Now more than a year later, I’m finding myself indulging in a lot of the same old habits. And, of course, there are new habits, namely writing curriculum in order to contribute financially to this family. I had a moment of enlightenment last night lying in bed; actually, I should just admit it was certainly the Holy Spirit showing me that I really haven’t been sticking to God’s To-Do List lately but rather making my own and then stumbling through the day. When you make your own, you go from task to task never feeling completely satisfied at the results. Then suddenly the day is gone and all you can do is gaze at your sweet, precious sleeping kids and pray that you’ll do better tomorrow.

For me, tomorrow is here and it’s been a good day. You know what? God’s To-Do List today included some light housekeeping, but I still have laundry stacked on the couch. That's OK. And God’s To-Do List no longer includes curriculum writing for me, at least not with such a strict deadline. After all, God gave me a wonderful husband who completely provides above and beyond for his family. Spending quality time with the kids and guiding them in Life is by far a better investment.

God’s To-Do List for me today:

1. spend time with the kids

2. serve the kids and make them feel important

3. pray for the kids

4. pray for my husband who is traveling

Only 4 items on the list? I think I can handle that!

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