Ok, so lately I've had some people comment that I have it all together, or they don't know how I do it, or I make this "motherhood" thing look so easy. Let me start by saying, I'm the chief of all sinners, my kids disobey, my house gets messy, I snap at the kids, there are stamps and coloring on my walls, I often wonder what it would be like to sit, by myself, at the beach (or anywhere for that matter) without children crawling on me. With all of that said, as I ponder these remarks and try to figure out why they make me feel so uncomfortable I realized a few things.
Growing up I was homeschooled from 3rd grade to 12th grade. I was 1 of 5 kids, the second oldest (oldest girl). I had a lot of responsibilities and chores. I remember, OFTEN, being told, "if you don't work you don't eat" or "go to the ant you sluggard." One of my best friends growing up was 1 of 9 kids, she had a lot of responsibilites too =) I remember that a lot of my friends didn't like coming over to my house because I was still responsible for all of my chores or taking care of my brother and sisters, but when Christa came over (or I went to her house) we would make a game out of it, pretend to be "mommies," and get our work done while having fun. I also remember watching my mom and dad work. They work hard. I still marvel at their work ethic. They demonstrate a servants heart and servant leadership. I had amazing examples. So, with all of this said, I was talking to my mom the other day and she said something profound. She said that her goal in raising me (us) was that she wanted us to be 10 steps ahead of where she was when she got married. When my parents chose to homeschool all of us their main concern wasn't that we go to Harvard or become a neuroscientist, their goal was that we have a heart for Jesus and what He loves. That we would learn to be servant leaders, that we would learn to run a household and raise children who love and serve the Lord, that we would learn how to die to self each day and think of others as more important than ourselves. That we would desire to bring glory to our Savior and make an impact for His Kingdom. My mom also said having children and homeschooling is probably used more for the parents edification and sanctification more than the child's =) I can truly say, in my case, they have succeeded. When people look at me like I have 7 heads when I tell them we are planning on homeschooling our kids I quietly think about what my parents have said and demonstrated to me in my life. (This is not to say their is anything wrong with sending your children to school! I have always wanted to homeschool and love teaching and seem to thrive in chaos =)
So, yes, because of my amazing parents (and my amazing husband who contributes immensely) I feel like, right now, where God has me, I am good at what I do. I love being a wife and mom. I'm excited about the new challenge of educating my children. I love the challenge of seeing if I can accomplish everything on my to-do list (never happens!!!). I love hearing my sweet girl (who makes me more like Jesus everyday) tell me she loves me, out of the blue. I love Jude's drooly, slobbery wet kisses and claps of delight over the most random things. I love the hilarious stories from my oldest, and I love watching my handpicked little boy take initiative and pick up Jude's toys "to help mommy so she will be happy." I want to be able to help my children be 10 steps ahead of me when they grow up. So, I will work hard at equipping them to work hard (and find joy in it), to serve others expecting nothing in return, to die to self, to desire to bring our Heavenly Father glory above all else!