The day had been hard. not like lowercase hard, but like uppercase HARD. Attitudes sank all my best efforts teaching school, long division wrapped it's nasty tentacles around all of us and pulled us under. Long division for one kid, working on verbs for another... present, past and past participle. The 3rd wants to go play football in the yard and totally ditch all book work. Mix that with a 3 year old who very much wants to test all boundaries... he is pushing hard for his own way and upon sitting down for dinner after a pretty exhausting day declares "That looks nasty, I'm not eating that" Oh my. Why the constant battle? Am I alone here? I don't think I am, but I think sometimes we make the wrong assumption that we are the only ones struggling- or that everyone else has it all figured out or can pull it all off in an effortless way.
We plow our way along through chore lists and devotions. My prayer being that God would be present in this mess and this chaos, because at the heart of things we really are trying to honor Him in what we are doing. It isn't pretty, it isn't perfect or even close to perfect, but it certainly IS an act of service. We teach, and study and laugh and honestly sometimes cry. But when the subjects get marked off one by one, we learn and we grow and we bond more than we probably realize. I love having all four of them home... Not that everyday I literally love it... somedays I hate it, but when all is said and done I'm grateful for this opportunity, because in the middle of tears and joy we aren't just growing in knowledge that comes from textbooks but I, for real, have a front row seat to watching these little men grow in their knowledge of the Lord and in their relationships with Him. I have had the privilege to hear the word sounded out after trying and trying and trying to read it. I have had the privilege to see a heart of true repentance over an attitude, or some other sin struggle. I have been humbled to ask their forgiveness over my own attitude. I've answered questions through a Biblical worldview during every single subject studied and I know that is laying for them a foundation to continue building on. (that's the big picture goal that honestly fuels my desire to keep at this- it makes my heart soar to think I am give them a Biblical view of science & history?!) This is raw, and ugly and beautiful and glorious all wrapped up and I get to be part of this. God has asked me to teach my boys, my husband has entrusted this HUGE job to me, and the boys have walked this road with me day after day, year after year. Looking back it is the hardest, awesomest thing we've ever taken on! It thrills me! It overwhelms me and has taught me in such authentic rubber hits the road ways how God truly is our strength for what our days hold. Not just knowing that in my mind, but knowing it because I've experienced it!
I think I have just a little glimpse of God's love for us, His children, in a better focused way because just like I choose to spend the messy, hard, exhausting days with my kiddos. He wants to be present with us through life's journeys too. He loves us, and isn't trying to ditch us, pass us off or ignore our temper tantrums over minor things that someone said to us. He genuinely cares. He cares enough to want to do DAILY with us. He doesn't just want special occasion events with us, He actually chooses to do the grueling right along side of us. We all know that to do daily life with someone is a whole different level than any other kind of relationship. What happens between 4 walls and a roof is as real as real-life can be... and He longs for this kind of friendship with each of us. It is something I take forgranted, much like I take forgranted these years schooling all my boys.
Life is a blink, a vapor... get real. Live real-life, be authentic!