This is What He’s Put Before Us

Today is The Day of Atonement, the holiest day of the year for some. Over the past ten days or so, I’ve been reflecting on my life and ways I can make some changes to better serve God.

We’ve been on quite the roller coaster ride over the past three years.

We’ve moved twice while working towards debt freedom. Our current home is a lovely little cabin tucked into a hillside.

We purchased this home thinking it would be a good investment property. I really didn’t think we would be here too long once our home in South Carolina sold. What I didn’t realize was the conviction I would feel to put our house sale proceeds on this home instead of putting it towards a more “suitable” piece of property. This is what my husband wanted to do, too. Our mortgage now sits at $33,699.

While our mortgage balance may be low, oh how I miss having a larger piece of property. I really don’t like our current parking situation. I have hardly anywhere to garden. I really want to set up a new greenhouse, but where? Our children can no longer ride their bikes. I definitely will need to get creative while living here!

It’s kind of funny, since one of the #1 things I was looking for in a home was a flat yard. Since I thought we would be living here temporarily, I didn’t even take the yard into consideration.

And seeds of discontentment have taken root.

Never mind the fact that the nicer pieces of land that we’ve “owned” in the past didn’t even belong to us. They belonged to the bank and carried a hefty mortgage. I’ve conveniently forgotten how crushing a large mortgage feels.

And ladies, I know just how wrong my thinking is.

Those seeds of discontentment are covetousness. It is a sin that needs to die.

You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”

Exodus 20:17

Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,”

Hebrews 13:5

Looking longingly at home/land packages that I think will better suit our needs will not get me anywhere. This is what He’s put before us. The Father believes this small hillside cabin fits our needs perfectly. Otherwise we wouldn’t be here. And who am I to question Him?

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:19

Today, on Yom Kippur, I’m asking the Spirit to help me put this sin to death. The Lord has given me all that I need. He has given me a lovely home to care for. He has given us a path to debt and mortgage freedom. If we are here long term, in time we can implement terracing, Lord willing.

The Day of Atonement is all about repentance. I’m so grateful that our God offers His mercy freely to those who turn from their sins.

Lord willing, I will share how we recognize this day with our children sometime soon. I misplaced some of our Feast day things during the move and last night I was left scrambling to put something together for them. The Feast of Tabernacles is coming up and I shared what we’ve done in previous years here.

Blessings, ladies!

Resting in My Role as Wife and Mother

Being a wife and mother is the most blessed “job” in the world in my opinion. There is nowhere that I would rather be than with my family!

Right now we are enjoying the season of winter. To an extent, our lives have slowed down. It is so nice to spend dark evening cuddled under a blanket while simply enjoying each other’s company!

But resting hasn’t always come easy for me. Even now, sometimes I feel like I must deprogram from the idea that I should be doing more.

But really, what is this more that so many speak of? Could there be anything greater and more important than raising our children for God’s glory? Is there anything better than being fully present for our families? I really don’t think so. So why do we listen to the voices and the insignificant things that will one day mean absolutely nothing in the scope of eternity?

When I feel myself being pulled in the wrong direction, I turn to God’s Word. His Word speaks truth into every possible situation that we may face. Scripture tells us to rest in Him, and to remain content, or to rest in our earthly calling.

But godliness with contentment is great gain.

1 Timothy 6:6

I must admit that sometimes my lack of rest stems from covetousness. I might feel like my family should be entitled to a certain type of vehicle, or a certain size home.

And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

Luke 12:15

But really, when we lose our life, that is when it is found in Christ. We recently downsized and gave up a lot of material possessions, but now I am experiencing rest and freedom like never before. I haven’t worried about our finances, or the need to make extra money through my Etsy shop. Resting in my calling as a wife and mother has come naturally once realizing that “one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”

Mama, you are doing enough if you are simply a stay-at-home mom. There is nothing better. There is no greater calling. We are called to walk out the Gospel in our marriages by respecting our husbands, and the Lord partners with us to bring His children into this world. How beautiful and amazing. You can rest in this truth.

Learning to be Content {with My Husband’s Income}

As a Christian, contentment is one of the keys to living a joyful and full life.  And yet, much too often I find myself always wanting more.

We are bombarded everyday with advertisements.  For me, the especially lovely things, such as the Pioneer Woman Slow Cooker, catch my eye.  On Instagram this week, I shared a photo of my new slow cooker.  Then another acquaintance shared a picture of The Pioneer Woman’s new mixer.  My first thought was, “Oh, I would really like that!” Something clicked in my head at that moment.  I realized that this is the mentality that has kept myself, and other women, stuck in the workplace at times.  I want to be fully available to serve my family, but sometimes I feel like I have to keep my Etsy shop open for us to stay afloat.  Now, there is nothing wrong with having an Etsy shop.  But if I am relying on the shop to fulfill my need for “extras,” then there might be.

The Proverbs 31 woman was frugal.  But at the same time, her family didn’t want for anything.  I cringed a bit this week when I added up my purchases.  Besides the slow cooker, I bought two dresses on Amazon, and several items from Mary & Martha.  I also placed an essential oil order.  Three of the oils were needful for health purposes in my opinion, but did I really need the Citrus Cream blend?  We are due to close on our home in Georgia in a few weeks, and I can tell that I’m slipping just a bit when it comes to pacing my purchases.  All of the items were good and lovely things, but they were not needful.

Once we become debt free besides our mortgage, I still want to keep the frugal mindset that I’ve had for the majority of this year.  Our money is a gift from God, and He wants us to be good stewards of it.  I believe with all of my heart that He has ordained our husbands to be the providers of our families, and He will equip us to be content with our husband’s income.  We have made a few drastic changes this year.  I’m driving a van with more miles on it than ever before, and we have downsized into a home under half the size of our last home, if you count the finished basement.  We shop at sales and consignment stores.  At the same time, right now we have two mortgages.  We have our children involved in too many extracurriculars, and our trip to the town that they are in is a 100 mile round trip (hello, gas money!)  I really need to reign in our spending until our house officially sells, and we have a very healthy savings account in place.

Being a keeper at home, and actually being present in the home, is so important ladies! It is our calling if we are a wife and/or mother.  Looking at what we have with a thankful heart is a big step in the right direction.  In most scenarios, we can rely on our husband’s income to support our needs.  God will meet our needs when we truly cling to Him, and repent of our discontentment.  This is a lesson that I’m still learning!

I recently made a bare-minimum budget, and realized that once our home in Georgia is officially sold, we can make it on under $3,000 per month if necessary.  We are a family of ten.  If we can do it, then anyone can. I hope to share more about why it is so important that we are keepers at home at a later time.  This is part of God’s perfect design for the family, and we should embrace it with a content heart.

Thank you so much for stopping by! I would love to connect with you on Facebook. I’d also like to invite you to my Mary & Martha Facebook Page, or to look at beautiful and inspiring Mary & Martha home decor. It is a such a blessing to serve you!

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