I've recently had the blessing of being involved in a small Bible study with two other homeschool moms. We are working our way through Carolyn Mahaney's excellent book Feminine Appeal. The chapter for this week was a much needed reminder and very convicting!
Titus 2:4 is the verse around which this chapter centers ... the mandate to women to love not only their husbands, but also their children. The idea here being that "love" actually means to delight. Mrs. Mahaney makes what was for me a very eye-opening statement ... Although many mothers are committed to caring sacrificially for their children, they sometimes neglect to enjoy them (emphasis mine). How often do I get so caught up in the details of being wife, mom, taxi driver, homeschool teacher, etc... that I miss out on the pleasures of a relationship with my kids?
But my plate is so full! Where do I find time to do more than I already am? Oh sure, one more thing to feel guilty about! Questions I regularly ask myself ... especially after reading this week's chapter. Fortunately, the author goes on to point out that our only genuine source of refreshment ... to be able to delight in our children, as well as serve them ... is from God. Daily time alone with Him is the only way to acquire the strength needed to carry out this task of mothering.
I can say without exception that this one discipline ... of carving out quiet time alone with God each day ... has had the greatest impact on my ability to hold it all together as a homeschooling mom. It has never come easy ... and I am rarely 100% successful in a given week ... but it is well worth the effort.
One of the closing statements in this chapter has stayed with me this week ... I am convinced that no one has more potential to influence our children to receive and reflect the gospel than we do as mothers. And in spite of how huge this task may appear to be, I can be encouraged that God's grace is greater (2 Cor. 12:9).
Keep on Keeping on . . .