I thought about this as I made a simple list of activities I wanted to make sure to enjoy with my kiddos this summer. The list somehow didn't include cleaning, maintaining a spotless house, or striving to live in "perfect-town". That doesn't mean that daily clean-up routines aren't still in place, that laundry isn't getting done, dishes are left on the counter or that our home is complete and total chaos. What is DOES mean is that my kids are my priority this summer.
That translates into popsicles in the sun, setting up a slip & slide and sporting my suit to enjoy it with them, hikes, campouts, bike riding, climbing trees & practicing bb gun shooting. (which I can proudly say my 6 year old totally rocks at!) I am actively making a point to be present in their days, to get to know each of them on an individual level... what they like, dislike, what really brings out that thrill of life in each of them.
|Backyard sprinkler on a hot summer day|
To talk about important morals, in a very laid back setting... daily devotions on our porch in the morning sunshine while sharing fruit and yogurt smoothies. Picnic lunches as we marvel together over God's beautiful creation. Watching the lightening out our living room window and then playing hide and seek in the dark when the power went out! Realizing the simple, plain and total truth that each day that passes they are growing up before my eyes- I have truly been gifted 3 little blessings who some how aren't staying little for very long. I want to make the most of the days we share together- to work our butts off picking up the house so we can get outside and enjoy the day together. I am mindfully not just trying to "get through" the day anymore- but believe me when I say that place is very familiar to me in the not so distant past. A place where I honestly treated my boys more like burdens than blessings... God is teaching me otherwise, but that means setting aside my own selfishness on a moment by moment basis.
|Bible reading and smoothie time!|
It is an honor to share my time, energy, focus and attention with these little guys- an honor that will all too soon be a memory. I want to actively build a foundation that lasts not just for this life- but build up a foundation that has roots running to eternity. I want to teach, mold and nurture these little souls that mean more to me than words can describe.
So far this summer I have learned that even during the super challenging days- there are little moments of peace. I am choosing tho focus on these moments. I have learned that my 6 year old can honestly out run me in races, and that I don't stand a chance if he is "it" while playing tag. I have learned that my almost 4 year old is awesome at bike riding. I have learned that my 2 year old can climb a pole to the top, do the slip and slide with more coordination than I could have guessed and is basically fearless- not a totally good quality when jumping from high places. I have been in on tender moments of prayer, of witnessing true repentance when they are learning from mistakes and how to swallow my own pride and admit when I am wrong and ask them for forgiveness. I have seen them buddy up and actually be really good friends to each other- trust me, some days I feel more like referee than anything else. Moments of friendship, concern or true brotherly love give me hope! God's grace runs true and deep through our home- we need it, depend on it and ask for it. I truly am absolutely nothing without Him. His strength is what gives me the energy to keep up with these guys and I am at a point in my life where I desire authentic faith more than anything. I long to live a life that when the rubber hits the road, when things are rough, the days are long and challenging, we are still living in His perfect joy. His peace is above our circumstances, and I am working on claiming that in my every day life.
I look forward to all the things I know these guys will teach me as we share the rest of this summer together- and I am actively going to choose to appreciate each day I share with them.
|My husband and boys enjoying the sunset while camping|