Monday, January 2, 2012

Not Resolutions, But Requests: Part 1

Today felt like the REAL first day of our sabbatical.  Christmas festivities are over, family have all returned home, gifts have been exchanged, money burning holes in pockets has been spent, and there are no more meals of complete indulgence in sight ~  to prepare OR to eat. I even took a nap today, which if you know me at all, is a rare and not-too-easy feat for this gal.  Before I took a nap, I took a walk and thought about the new year.  I prayed about what the Lord would have me work on, focus on, resolve to do...but nothing really came to me.  Then I came home, opened my Bible, and just read the next chapters of the books I'm currently reading, which today were Judges 11 and 12 (Jephthah's victories and tragic vows ~ wow!) and then Proverbs 14 and 15.  It was shortly after this that I fell asleep, and then two hours later that I wrote these things in my prayer journal...

It's a new year, Lord, and I'm not sure it matters all that much to you as you are so high above and outside of time, and yet I know that you at least consider it, as your children live in it ~ in time.  I haven't really felt you leading me to make resolutions or even goals for this new year, but I do desire transformation and renewed strength for the ongoing, the not-yet-accomplished journey of being a mom ~ and a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom at that.  Also, I pray that you will transform me and strengthen me to be a more loving, affectionate, and understanding wife, which is an even more ongoing, never-ending journey!  I read these verses today, Lord, and they really seemed to apply to these desires and my current struggles within my current callings:

"The wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands."
Proverbs 14:1
I know it is within me to "tear down" my house with negativity, discouragement, discontentedness, and a demanding of my own way.  Also, refusing to trust you and a refusal to see all of your grace and mercy around me leads to "tearing my house down."  But I also refuse to see how I've built my house up and loved and served my family well.  And so, give me perspective and encouragement in this as well and yes ~ strength, passion, vision, and endurance to continue in this "housebuilding" area.

This was the first of three things that I prayed and hoped for the coming year.  I think it stemmed from a realization that there are SO MANY things I'd like to try, like to pursue, like to spend my time doing ~ starting new Bible studies, taking seminary courses, traveling to see friends, decorating my home, sewing, reading new books, educating myself more on nutrition and exercise, sitting in a quiet house, writing, teaching, earning money for college tuition, and more, but....BUT, the call to homeschool, the call to be available to my kids and my husband on a very consistent basis, the call to create a nurturing home and learning environment there, the call to nourish them with healthy, gluten free food, and even more healthy spiritual food is not over yet.  (It's a LONG-term call, y'all.) I need His provision of strength and renewed passion to keep faithful to this mothering-teaching-training-feeding call when the desire that keeps creeping up is to serve my own needs and pursue my own interests and desires. I mean, isn't 16+ years long enough?  Well, no.  No, it's not.  It requires much more than that.  And marriage? It IS more a blessing than a challenge, but a challenge still ~ and an even longer call than motherhood (in a way) that requires lots of effort, failure, strained communication, and temptations to be selfish. These callings require a strength that even I ~ the stubborn, tireless perfectionist, hopeless idealist am NOT capable of, and so this was the first of three requests for the new year.
The other two prayers involve my tongue and my heart.  I'll share those soon...


Rachel said...

I love you and not only will pray these things for you, but for me as well! Love to you guys! Thank you for sharing!

Melanie said...

Love YOU, Rachel ~ and will pray along with you in this mama journey.