We've started a new series in Sunday School called "Living a 'New Testament' Church" that is pretty "deep", for a lack of a better word. Not your basic "Jesus loves you" or "Be good this week" lesson. (And I, for one, am SO happy we're taking this detour away from the Lifeway books. Not that they're "bad" -- I'm just ready for something a little more challenging!) Some things that I'm thinking about from both Sunday's lesson as well as the Sunday before:
- What am I doing to promote unity in my church?
- Am I making going to church into a social activity or does it mean something to me (am I taking something away and actually USING it?)?
- Am I living Christ not only to the world but, perhaps more importantly for this stage of my life, am I living Christ in front of my children?
And that's just the beginning. I also read this from a fellow homeschool mom's blog:
- Can we really expect our children to shun screen time (TV, computers, games) in favor of books if we are constantly checking our email, reading message boards, or *gasp* blogging throughout the school day?
- Can we admonish our children to finish their work in a timely way when we can barely get dinner on the table by nightfall?
- Can we honestly reprimand our kids for letting projects go unfinished if they can look around and see a half-dozen incomplete projects (sewing, crafting, writing, cleaning) of our own making?
- Can we chide our children for letting their work pile up until it is overwhelming when we are dealing with a mountain of neglected laundry every Saturday?
- In short, if we are disorganized, scattered dilettantes, can we really expect anything better of our children?
As if my mind wasn't full enough, I've started a new book. "Genesis of a Legacy: Raising Godly Children in an Ungodly World" by Ken and Steve Ham. [Ken Ham is the president of "Answers in Genesis" -- www.AnswersInGenesis.org] It's a doozy and not a "light read" by any stretch of the imagination. One question that stuck out to me went something like this:
- Are we disciplining our children in order to get or not get what we want out of them (behavior modification) or are our homes places that nurture sancification in our children, where we discipline them to change their hearts, not their actions?
Nurturing sanctification in my home? Never thought of that. [Side note: Our former pastor told me that when I'm worn out from disciplining my kids or going batty and my grace and patience are being tested, look at them and tell them "I'd like to thank you for participating in my sanctification today". I thought that was funny -- should boggle their little minds!! :)]
Now the question becomes:
WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?
It's like doing First Place (which is turning out to be a joke this session). I'm frustrated with my quality of life (read: I'm fat and I know it and I really don't like it but I really like to eat) but that's not getting me anywhere. I can't seem to take that first step. Reading a parenting book -- or reading the Bible -- is only so good. If you're not going to put anything into practice, if you're not going to be changed by what you read (especially when you're reading God's word), then why are you wasting your time? That's what it basically boils down to -- am I wasting my time and burdening myself with guilt (guilt over not being a good mom, wife, or housekeeper; guilt over still being overweight and not taking the steps to loose; guilt over not studying my Bible or praying like I should) or am I actually going to DO something about it this time? Do I want my kids to grow up lazy like I did? Do I want my homeschooling efforts to be just enough to get them by or do I want them to excel? Do I want my marriage to be one that is successful or one where the years drag by and we end up basically just tolerating each other? If any of these things are going to happen, it's going to take change and change refers to action. Yes, change and action -- the 2 worst enemies of the lazy person!
And on that note, I'm off to find out why John is screaming and to get Timothy out of his crib 'cause he's screaming, too. :)
Oh, and by the way, we're snowed in up here!!