It's a cold, rainy Sunday. Since we've had a collection of kids coughing for the last week and a half, we opted out of toting them through the cold rain to church this morning and have stayed home instead. I returned last night from a speaking engagement in PA, so I welcomed the time to just hunker down and do not much of anything.
There's a forecast of a big snowstorm heading our way. The kids are anxious to see if we will actually get any snow. I feel the urge to catalog their outerwear. Does everyone have hats, gloves, scarves, coats? Seeing as how it's officially March, I didn't think that would be necessary anymore. I spent the whole weekend bragging on my beloved southern climate in cold PA, only to be made a liar when I got home. That's what I get for opening my big old southern-accented mouth.
Today I hope to plan our school for this week. Curt was gone much of last week and, I will admit, I slack off when he's gone. Add some sick kids to that equation and it amounted to not much academia happening at the Whalen house. The kids did a bare minimum of school and I spent lots of time working on the release of our book with the publicists and also working on that pesky novel that I can't seem to leave alone. So, I know we need to get some serious schooling in this week. That's one of the things I love about homeschooling-- the ebb and flow of it, the way it adjusts to our lifestyle.
I have been struggling lately as writing pressures have mounted and I have been feeling that urge to have them in school so I can have some writing time built into every day. This, I have accepted, will always be part of my personal battle. My desire for things to be easier and simpler will motivate me at times to come up with "solutions." And yet, God seems to be moving me continually into that place of following His complex call on my life. Homeschool my kids and write and speak. Relying on Him to see me through it and not me to see myself through it, as I am prone to do.
I tend to offer up solutions to Him, as if He can't think of these Himself and might need my insight. I tell Him how much easier it would be if I didn't have to find sitters for the kids when I go speak. I tell Him how much I struggle with wanting to write when I need to be schooling. I tell Him that, if I had my druthers, I would spend every day in a cafe writing while my kids were tucked safely away in school. And He says back, "Well, sorry. That's not what I've called you to." And then He points out that I always do find a sitter for the events I need to be at. He reminds me that I don't always need to be writing-- sometimes I need to be sitting on a couch with my kids sharing my love of words with them. And always, always He helps me see that those long days to write will come later-- but my kids? They will never be kids again. If you miss that, He says, You can always do it later. But if you miss this, you'll never get it again.
These are the random things that are on my mind and heart these days. God continues to be patient with me as He and I hammer out the same old issues over and over and over again. He patiently puts His hands on my shoulders and points me back to where I need to be going. "You've wandered off again," He says. And I nod my head dutifully, making my feet plod in the way I need to go, obeying because He is faithful, and because I know that my Father does indeed know best.
(Want to read more about treasuring the time we've been given? This short post by Elizabeth is wonderful and thought provoking.)