My eyes were tired as we pulled off of the interstate and onto the worn asphalt road that ran next to a field exploding in cotton blossoms. I clutched the steering wheel tighter as the sun dipped below the horizon.
“Mom, are we almost home?” A wiggly toddler raised her eyebrows at me as I caught her gaze in the rear view mirror.
“Almost.” My tone was flat. We had spent many hours on the road this week, and I think we were all ready to sink into our beds.
A few days later, I looked at my planner and sighed. A change needed to be made. I just knew it did. But at the time, leaving the never ending cycle of children’s activities seemed nearly impossible.
I mean, wouldn’t my children suffer if they were not in x, y, and z? Would they fall behind their peers? And since we are homeschoolers, isn’t “socialization” necessary?
This internal battle wasn’t new. In fact, I had been fighting it for probably about fourteen years. I’m terribly stubborn, and I had ignored it for far too long. I finally put my stubbornness aside, and waved the white flag. The LORD has been so gracious and patient with me! I’m sad to say that it took Him moving us to a kind of remote area for me to fully realize His desire for me and my children to both rest and to discover the joy of remaining at home for the majority of our time.
Our homes can be redeemed with rest. I’m not talking about just any rest, but His Rest. While reflecting on American culture recently, it occurred to me that we as a nation have completely gone astray from the will of God. Many well meaning believers (myself included) have looked to the culture surrounding us and decided that busyness is good, or even godly. Productivity is equated with being “a good steward,” and so we willingly shuttle our kids here, there…well, everywhere, thinking that what we are doing lines up with God’s will.
A verse from Isaiah really spoke to me recently.
This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.
Our Great God, the Holy One Of Israel, says that in repentance and rest is our salvation. In quietness and trust is our strength. While all of this verse is extremely important, it struck me as quite amazing that the words rest and quietness are used here to describe our salvation and our strength!
The LORD wants for us to rest, ladies. We have His permission to slow down! In fact this is His will for us! I wonder what Israel was like at that time. Were they like us, always moving from one passing fancy to the next? The LORD wanted them to rest, but they would have none of it! Were they always moving, sometimes missing His still, small voice? I fear that just like the Israelites, we are too involved with the things of this world. I fear that we have replaced God’s wonderous blessings with things like media, music, and just about any other amusement we can think of.
For about one and a half months now, our family has been decompressing. It hasn’t always been easy. Sometimes I or my children might feel antsy. Like we are supposed to be doing something, anything, but remaining at home. But as I’ve combatted this lie, I’ve noticed something beautiful happening. Simple moments have come to life. We’ve had more time for Bible study. My life has recharged, and I’m realizing a deeper meaning to being a keeper at home.
Remaining at home most of the time seems counter-cultural, but do you know what? I think this means we are headed in the right direction. The events that take place within the home are a precious gift, just waiting to be discovered!
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