Losing sight of what really matters...
The autumn half term break has arrived - and I'm so glad its here. Its been a busy first term back looking at secondary school placements for son 3, college for son 1, new home ed curriculum for son 2 and making sure son 4 doesn't feel left out! But in all this busyness of life I seemed to have lost my sparkle, the reason for why I was working so hard...
Life has been busy with 2 birthdays in the immediate family and 3 in the extended, plus our wedding anniversary (with more birthdays still to come) and not forgetting the ordinary busyness of everyday life. Sons 3 & 4 did their first sleepover at church and son 3 went on a weeks activity residential with his school. He even has his leavers sweatshirt and he'll finish primary education next summer. I've been feeling stressed and tired, and I think on reflection I can see why - this has been an emotional term. My mind has been everywhere, sorting, organising, thinking and preparing. Trying to make and help make decisions for my children's future, to be their advocate and parent can be a big weight to bear.
I've not been the easiest to live with, along with the above we've had car troubles and I've felt the weight of not earning. Husband is currently working in Malaysia so its hard to be a carer, a mum, educator and home manager. My plate already feels too full. I think when life gets busy it can be easy to throw out self care, dwell on the negatives and become agitated by every small thing and start to try and take on more than we're meant for. I don't write this to justify my feelings but actually writing it out helps me to see it for what it really is - a busy season. Finally, when my own strength had gone, I laid my thoughts and anxieties at the cross and prayed. He reminded me...
1. I'm blessed to be able to be at home and care for my family - this is a privilege and important work. I want to do this. I wanted to be a stay at home wife and mother and I am. It can be hard and difficult to see your self worth but it is a valuable work. Thank you Jesus!
2. There really is absolutely no point in comparing myself to others, we are on completely different paths. We all have different opportunities and circumstances. Live the life you have, rather than the one you don't.
3. I choose to home educate my son because his struggles at mainstream school were damaging to all of us. I can remember fighting for a specialist placement for my first son and it was hard. Unfortunately the system makes it even harder now. I wanted to put my energy and time into him, rather than a system that doesn't serve anyone. This way his future is brighter and it is only for a season. Thank you Jesus that I have this choice.
4. Learning to be content with what we have. Re-looking at the budget and remembering what/how we prioritise our spending and why. I worry about future proofing finances but I believe God is saying Trust Me for your future. (Also links to point 2).
5. I don't have to be strong - God has me. I don't have to have the answers - God does.
When bad days come, don't forget the choices made and why. I am not trapped by circumstance. I made choices for this season and this season will end. Some days are hard and some are not, but God is my helper, my provider, my salvation, my father and friend. He will help me. I do not need to worry for He will take care of me.
I lost the joy and felt my choices were taken from me because I forgot why I made these choices in the first place! I was so busy doing things, I forgot the importance of why I was doing them. I then started to look at other peoples lives and saw how great everything was for them, which can be so deceptive! When I saw it for what it really is, the heaviness lifted, the worries gone. I was reminded of who God is and who I am - I am in awe and blessed. He is almighty, powerful and Holy (He's just the greatest). I am a daughter of the King, a loved and precious child.
2 Chronicles 20:6 And Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD before the new court and said, “O LORD God of our fathers, are you not God in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. In your hand are power and might, so that none is able to withstand you.
1 Peter 2:9 However, you are chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, people who belong to God. You were chosen to tell about the excellent qualities of God, who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light.
Isaiah 41:10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my right hand.
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