A couple of weeks ago I wrote a short blog post that was vague to say the least.
You could read into it; you could take it the way the Lord wanted. But I did not provide a whole bunch of clarity.
I wrote on building your house, on choosing wisdom. I wrote “Today, wise woman, choose to build. Today, choose to build on the foundation, who is Jesus Christ the Lord.”
After mulling over those verses, knowing the post was as clear as mud, I have a couple of clarifying considerations.
I recently read “Life Giving Home” by Sally Clarkson – with her daughter Sarah as co-author, she leads you through Incarnational Living (what it means to live out Jesus) in your home, and she leads you through the calendar year, providing model + example of what it can look like for you, what it looked like in their home, to live out Jesus.
One of the (small) critiques of this otherwise fantastic book is that it seems like Sally largely forgets what the little-years are like; the temporary trenches of tiny-children motherhood. I’m sure, in the best way, she does forget, that the glorious portrait of home doesn’t remember each paint splotch that created it.
But I’m in it, and in need of some helpful home-building supplies. I want to live out Jesus in my home, to my family, but what does that look like, or, where’s my model + example?
Sally writes about the rhythms of her household throughout the year.
But something she doesn’t touch on – she can’t write about it all! – is the rhythm of the day.
Paul writes in Ephesians 5:15-16, “Walk circumspectly,… redeeming the time” and in Colossians 4:5 exhorts us “Walk in wisdom… redeeming the time…”
And the time you have is the moment in front of you. (James 4: 13-15)
I have learned to ask the Lord for my framework, or for my rhythm, for the season, for the day.
The season is (almost) spring, and here’s a glimpse into our day-in & day-out rhythm.
6AM I wake – coffee + devo
I sometimes try to get ready before the boys wake; sometimes I get up a teensy bit earlier than 6A and take a shower (sometimes)
7AM boys – happily greet them + pray / some mornings we get dressed and I am teaching Leland (4.5 y.o.) to make up his bed; sometimes we just traipse downstairs and then later dress and make beds, clean up upstairs
*Today, this timing is totally affected by the time-change; it’s 7:30 right now and my boys are still in bed 🙂 🙂 🙂 which I am TOTALLY embracing… 🙂 🙂 🙂 see!… it’s a rhythm, a framework…
7:?A breakfast + bible – I have learned to keep breakfast simple (and healthy) so that we can attend to the more important things of the day, like bible reading, and also like taking care of and playing with my boys / I have been reading the Daily Light to the boys and we review our bible verse (we use foundation verse cards from Fighter Verses)
7:45A team work – the boys help to clear the table, perhaps to wipe it off, and with any other items they can put away from breakfast in the kitchen / then, i ask them to play happily 🙂 (here’s where we begin our daily habit of reciting and praying Ephesians 4:32 to and for our sons) and I fold the load of laundry and perhaps start another one.
8ish AM It depends on the day, but I may get myself dressed, and/or get the boys dressed. I may prep for our day in – get school supplies ready, etc. or prep for our day out – pack and lunch and gather whatever we need.
(This little morning schedule is a lot different on “bible study” and “church” days)
9AM school / play / read books – my boys love to read books, often Leland sit on top of me, and though G starts in my lap or beside me, he typically gets up and plays quietly, but it’s funny, because he will repeat a sound or respond to a question “out of the blue” while I am reading, which is cute… and lets me know he is listening.
10AM with the pretty weather, OUTSIDE!
I will play music for the boys; in the car we listen to a CD of bible stories
12PM lunch – I love it when we can eat outside! it keeps the crumbs in the grass 🙂
1PM team work – clean up toys, etc. – ready for nap and read a book
2PM naps are by 2PM (that’s my aim 🙂 🙂 sometimes before 2PM, but I try not to do it after 2PM… sometimes it’s successful, sometimes not.
The rule for nap time is you have to stay in your bed and be quiet until mommy comes to get you. This helps LT who some days reads books. I give him a big ole pile of books. Often, he eventually falls asleep. Playing outside all morning or going somewhere fun helps nap time.
We talk about in our home having a rhythm of eating, playing, working, learning and resting, all while worshipping.
So, during nap, I might clean up a bit or put away that load of laundry (which I try to do during “teamwork time” after lunch…) but my goal during nap time on any given day is to rest. Sometimes I read, or take a shower, or dry my hair from taking a shower in the morning; sometimes I write. Other times I have a good ole text conversation with my sister, whose kids are also napping, and eat some chocolate 🙂 … Sometimes I take a nap!
At the end of nap, I get myself back together – brush my teeth, etc 🙂 🙂 🙂 – and begin dinner prep.
When the boys wake, we try to go back outside, and other times, we begin our after-nap time with a show.
Right now for my 4 y.o. and 2 y.0 boys, we appreciate…
Busy Town DVD . Theo DVD . What’s in the Bible DVD . (all available for purchase on Amazon) and on Netflix, Chuggington . Space Racers (one of my personal lesser favorites) . and I cannot remember right now what other shows…
I want them to begin to help me with dinner, but we have yet to get there 😉
Sometime between 5 and 6, Tyler gets home, we cook supper, the boys play – Legos, Kinetic Sand, Knights Playmobil,… whatever…
We eat dinner and do our family devotion : again, I am learning how to keep supper simple and healthy so that we can enjoy each other and family devotion. Family devotion is oftentimes short, sweet, and simple. Tyler will pray and then read from whatever bible book we are currently using – right now, Children’s Illustrated Bible (honestly, not my favorite, considering it’s entitled illustrated bible, and I think the illustrations are odd, but the book does include many lesser-known stories, and I appreciate that) … and he often reads while the boys are still finishing their supper. This came out of a desire not to end our meal time saying twenty(thousand) times “eat your supper/finish your food/one more bite” but just to relax, read to them,… which is sometimes not relaxing, honestly… because we do want them to be quiet during this time, and to stay in their seat… so there’s that endeavor… :)…. but again, the aim, the focus, the desire, is to enjoy family time and time together in the Word, so we endure,… and enjoy… dinner and family devotion this way right now.
We do our team work – clearing the table, taking out trash, starting dishwasher, sweep the floor… whatever the day requires….
And then the boys play cushion wrestle, or we go back outside, or we do game night – which is funny with our age boys!
Every other night, at this point in the season, is bath-night (baths are typically long and the boys play a whole lot, boats and with little toy animals…) and then books and bedtime quickly follow.
We read a few books and then pray, kiss the boys night-night, and pray to the Lord they stay in bed and quickly go to sleep. This can be a funny or a frustrating time, depending on how tired we all are. Our desire is that it be a sweet time, a slow and steady, good end-of-the-day time. And it’s a desire we STRIVE for and are LEARNING.
That’s how our whole day is – a striving, a learning… sometimes funny and sometimes frustrating. We pray pray pray it glorifies the Lord, we pray pray pray ourselves through the day. The only way we can make it is with Him. Praise the Lord HE says He will never leave us or forsake us, and even at night, He doesn’t slumber or sleep, but watches over us.
It’s these days, small and ordinary, that will slowly compose & make up the rhythm of our household. One day we hope, here or in heaven, to stand small and see what the Lord has built, big and for His glory.
By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches. (Proverbs 24:3-4)
*for the momma reading this who wants more details about whatever (perhaps, what my quiet time looks like or what coffee we like to drink :), just ask… I’ll be happy to tell you. I just couldn’t include EVERYTHING (like our meal plan or what we are going to eat tonight for supper…)