you know that i am a wrestler... right? well, not in the traditional sense. but in the Biblical sense. i wrestle in my mind. and i keep wrestling with this idea of still being a stay at home mom and wondering how we are going to afford college. and wrestling with the idea that i might have no marketable skills (is blogging a marketable skill?)... 18 years at home. making dinners. making beds. picking people up and taking them other places. sitting in my car waiting for kids to audition for all state chorus. then taking them to cross country practice where i sit in my car some more. before heading to soccer practice with other kids... while i sit in my car some more. i mean there was the geniusness of figuring out how to combine dawn dishwashing soap and vinegar to fully clean my bathroom (but i stole that idea off of pinterest. is stealing ideas off of pinterest marketable?)
i wrestle a lot with who i would be... could be... if i was still in the world of paychecks. of how our kitchen could look. the vacations we could have gone on. the college choices my children would have. the cleaning people i could hire to clean my bathroom with dawn and vinegar.
but through it all i am learning to "lean not on my own understanding" and to trust God for things. for His timing. for the job He will bring at the perfect time. He must still want me at home (not loose on the streets. He is the only Wise God.) cooking. making beds. combining dawn and vinegar in the bathroom. sitting in my car. listening to podcasts of sermons...
INSPIRATION FROM ELISABETH ELLIOT
“…When women – sometimes well-meaning, earnest, truth seeking ones say ‘Get out of the house and do something creative, find something meaningful, something with more direct access to reality,’ it is a dead giveaway that they have missed the deepest definition of creation, of meaning, of reality. And when you start seeing the world as opaque, that is, as an end in itself instead of as transparent, when you ignore the Other World where this one ultimately finds its meaning, of course housekeeping (and any other kind of work if you do it long enough) becomes tedious and empty.
But this is what we so easily forget. … We have meekly agreed that the kitchen sink is an obstacle instead of an altar, and we have obediently carried on our shoulders the chips these reductionists have told us to carry.
Those who focus only on the drabness of the supermarket, or on the onions or the diapers themselves, haven’t an inkling of the mystery that is at stake here, the mystery revealed in the birth of that Baby and consummated on the Cross: my life for yours.
The routines of housework and of mothering may be seen as a kind of death, and it is appropriate that they should be, for they offer the chance, day after day, to lay down one’s life for others. Then they are no longer routines. By being done with love and offered up to God with praise, they are thereby hallowed as the vessels of the tabernacle were hallowed – not because they were different from other vessels in quality or function, but because they were offered to God.
A mother’s part in sustaining the life of her children and making it pleasant and comfortable is no triviality. It calls for self-sacrifice and humility, but it is the route, as was the humiliation of Jesus, to glory.” - Elisabeth Eliot
here are some reasons why i am STILL a stay at home mom. they are to remind me of why i do what i do... and how GRATEFUL i should be to still be able to do it...
* because i am not at my best when multi-tasking
* because i get cranky when i have to rush
* because i have an all-or-nothing kind of mentality. i don't do anything half way.
* because i know that the days are long, but the years are short
* because i want to see what a long term investment looks like (and my bank account isn't going to show me that...)
* because i have learned so much in the last 18 years at home
* because there will be time for a career later. maybe. hopefully. God knows i will need one.
* because i have been there for every first day of school. and every last day. and most of the days in between.
* because I want to give my family the best hours of me (which are few and far between)
* because i rock at cleaning bathrooms.
* because through the service, through the non-recognition, through the countless times i have to be the woman in the background i am starting to maybe be a little more humble. and need a tad bit less glory.
* because my husband supports this decision. because he makes enough $ so that we could actually have this option for so long. because he thinks i rock at bathroom cleaning.
(based on this list found at steadymom.com)
i have been DEEPLY Fulfilled spiritually, emotionally, mentally by being and stay at home mom. or in my case a "stay in the car" mom. just not financially. though i have learned how to budget (no comments from adam on this), how to stretch a dollar, how to cook and not eat out. and how to be content with our un-updated house. i actually like my 1960's kitchen counters. most days. because they mean that i am home to set out meals on them.
“Homemaking is not something that stands in the way of our deeper fulfillment;
it becomes the ground that feeds it.”
~ Shannon Hayes, Radical Homemakers: Reclaiming Domesticity from a Consumer Culture
but just wrestling with what the future holds for me. i have (Lord willing and the creek don't rise) many years ahead to do something new and different. or i can stay at home (or in the car). i love having the time for Bible study with my "more mature" ladies group (every group of ladies is more mature than me. this one especially so.) i love being able to devote a few hours of time for corporate prayer for my kids and their schools. i like lunching with friends. teaching youth Bible studies. being available to run a book or a lunch up to school. driving cross country runners to practice. volunteering in the kids school. filling backpacks full of food for hungry middle school students and their families on fridays. finding cleaning tips on pinterest. all things that i would miss if i was gainfully employed.
so i wrestle. but most of all i try to rest. knowing that He holds the future in His hands... and that He will provide.