We have been home a lot this summer, which is not the norm for us during the warmest season in Minnesota. Normally we take full advantage of being able to use every inch of grass exposed to us. We love having to mow instead of shoveling, going to the beach to swim instead of ice fishing, we love grilling barefoot or in our flip flops instead of dressed like an Eskimo. But, this year has been different. This year I have been tired and cramping more with this pregnancy and so I have laid low and being careful while growing our little one. The kid’s have had allergies which turned into colds. So, for one reason or another we have been home, after a while I began having cabin fever and desperately needing to see the outside world.
When I have been away from my friends and away from the world something weird happens, I begin to become more insecure, I begin to become less talkative. It’s weird how it comes about, but I have to slowly immerse myself back into society and back with my friends. I have learned to not be hard on myself and have recognized that I go in phases and spurts. I have also learned that God uses these times in my life, these times in my life where our lives slow down immensely, almost to a stop, because God has something he wants to teach us or because he is giving us rest before an uphill climb. He is giving us the stamina we are going to need to get through the next stage of life we are about to enter. I have learned to not push myself, to not push past what God is wanting to do in my heart and in our families lives. I have learned that God gives us times and seasons for a reason and rushing his hand only makes me more tired.
I have also learned in these times that I need to stop and pray for wisdom to learn what Abba is trying to teach me. Praying that I will absorb every ounce he is trying to lavish on me, so that I can teach it to my kid’s, so I can give the same encouragement to those around me. I am learning that our lives slowing down is not a bad thing, it is a time for reflection, time to enjoy our time together as a family. Spending time together as a family is not a punishment, quite the opposite, everyday is a gift, every moment a treasure. I often forget that my kid’s are my ministry and if I save the whole world and yet miss the mark with my kiddo’s and hurt them because I am off ministering to others and forgetting them, that to me is not ok. I’m not saying there is not a place for ministry outside of our families, although I believe for our family, ministry should be done as a family. I am saying that ministry can and should happen with the support of our spouses and kid’s. I have learned I need to also be careful taking on ministry if things at home are out of order. I need to be careful to not use ministry as a way to runaway from disorder at home or disorder in my heart, it can become just business in the name of ministry to ignore that which I really need to deal with. It becomes a spiritual band aid but the wound has not been healed, it becomes hidden.
So, I have become quiet and I’m not really sure why, but instead of fighting it, I have learned to embrace it and pray about it. Letting God lead me out of the silence when he’s ready. Letting God lead me and teach me what he wants me to learn. Learning that sometimes peace often comes in the quiet.