So, the internet still isn't working. (Then how, you ask, am I posting this? I'm on my husband's work laptop while he's out with a friend for the evening, using a unlocked network in the area).
Briefly tonight, the power went out twice and the laptop could no longer connect to the network and I just thought "huh... God must really not want me on the internet this week- would He seriously cause a power outage just to thwart my little plans?"
To be entirely real and vulnerable with you for a moment here, it's actually been a blessed thing for me to have an unintentional internet/blogging fast these past couple of days. I've been feeling quite stretched as I seek to keep God first, my family second, and a whole lot of other things from creeping up into a place of idolatry.
I know that I became unbalanced during the last month or so (and likely long before that), trying hard to do what needed to be done for our students (who were the most challenging ones that we have ever had), keep up with my blog, cope with a miserably teething baby and an extreme lack of sleep, a disobedient toddler (much of which I attribute to my own lack of schedule, lack of proper discipline and abundant poor attitude) and an absence of communion with my Savior. My husband suffered, my children suffered, my house suffered, and my heart has been anything but at peace.
Realizing all of this, I sent out the request for guest bloggers, which are all lined up and have put my mind greatly as ease already (thank you, thank you, thank you!). I was deeply challenged and convicted by Crystal's post on overcoming the worn-out woman syndrome, and purposed to put my time with God back to a first priority in my mornings. I had a heart-to-heart chat with my husband about how I was feeling, and even the future of my blog, ebook and all that jazz.
Unbalance does not become balance again overnight. Exhaustion rarely reverses itself quickly. The consequences of sin often linger and require much effort and prayer beyond the point of the initial conviction and repentance. God has so, so very much more to do in me yet.
Today I spent some extra time with my children and read a couple chapters of Little House in the Big Woods to them out loud. I marvelled (and coveted, I confess) at Ma's calm but constant work, her industriousness, her ability to just do what needed to be done. I recall reading a blog post many months ago, rejecting the idea of today's mother hyper scheduling her days and suggesting instead that we return to the practice of just being aware and doing what needs to be done, without the burden or expectation of a full-to-overflowing daily calendar.
I am a walking contradiction-- the modern housewife who homeschools, bakes from scratch, gardens organically, runs an online business, serves in the church, irons my husband's clothes and attempts to juggle it all while continually dropping at least one ball at all times, BUT wish that I was simply down to earth Ma, churning butter, hanging clothes out to dry, and mending socks to the tune of Pa's fiddle each firelit night. I often claim to have been born in the wrong century.
Providence, however, tells me that it is not so. Surely, God intended for me to live, work, struggle and grow right here and now. Right where I am. He makes no mistakes.
So to bring this rabbit trail of a rambling post back full circle to where it began, I'm so appreciative for these last few days of being internet-less... I'm grateful for the chance I've had to slow down, step back a bit and take a look at where things are at. There are things to consider, changes to make and areas to grow in. God has been gracious to reveal some things in my life that needed revealing, and I'm thankful.
Does anyone relate to where I'm at right now? Have you had times in your life when you realized that you were unbalanced and something had to give? What were the most positive changes you made during that time? Additionally, if you run a business or work from home, I'd love to hear what that looks like for you.