Since Valor (or Nate, we’re still in talks about what we’re calling him) was born I’ve been re-learning the lesson of priorities.
With Valor’s birth, our family took a break from our regular hosting responsibilities (6 gatherings each month), we cut back on other hospitality and we had no outside-of-the-house activities going on. Things were quiet in our house and I was surprised at the change.
In all the busyness that I called ministry, I had forgotten how delightful and enjoyable my children were.
I had neglected to take the time to sit down and just be with my children because I was too busy with everything else.
We have always been very conscious of not being too busy, of not over-scheduling. We’ve always been conscious of relationship building. Compared to everyone else in America, our lives are very simple. But, in the lull after Valor’s birth, I realized that things had slipped.
Somehow, slowly, bit by bit, things had crept in; not bad things, they were good things. Things that blessed our family and, I pray, blessed others (Bible study, hospitality, preparing meals for others). Things that will continue to be part of our life, but things that are secondary.
Life wasn’t bad or hard in the midst of the busyness. The children were sweet, cheerful and obedient. I was tired, but functioning and happy with everything we were getting done (and we were getting a lot done), BUT we were so busy doing things and helping others that we weren’t (or at least I wasn’t) taking the time to really focus on the primary relationships in my life.
Our family was together each day, but we had a long to-do list and we needed to hurry in order to get it all done.
I didn’t take the time to just be present.
I need that. I need to stop and be present. I need to accomplish nothing.
I’m a do-er. I do things. I blog, knit, draw portraits, cook, clean, plan, homeschool, paint, wash clothes, decorate, read, research, sew.
I do things.
But Valor’s arrival has taught me that sometimes not ‘doing things’ may be the most important thing I can do.
It’s gotten quiet here on Raising Olives and that’s because I’m busy not doing.
I’m rocking babies and listening to teens. I’m taking 2 hours to make ‘quick’ bread with my little girl, so that she can do everything “all by herself”. I’m reading “Green Eggs and Ham” and I’m trying to savor the moments because having a 16 year old will make you realize that time goes quickly.
Our circle doesn’t end there. We are, once again, hosting gatherings and welcoming others into our home, but God has reminded us again of our priorities, the concentric circles of our ministry and we’re trying to pay attention.
And the blessings of paying attention? My words are inadequate. My husband, these children, our community, they bring more to my life than I can ever express. It’s beyond all that I could have asked or thought and getting better everyday. My life is full, God is good!
You may also be interested in:
- Your Child’s Heart Requires Time
- 6 Distinctives of our Homeschool
- It’s the Process – Learning to love the little things
- Musing on A-Musing
- Family Worship