Originally published Monday, 19 February 2018.
I would go on record to say that I believe that we are the busiest generation of parents that this world has ever experienced! My goodness! Just about everyone in this time and generation is BUSY! Are you busy? If you’re a mother, do you think that you might be getting too busy for your kids?
I’ll tell you, it’s like being busy is the new “in” thing! Let me say here that there is absolutely nothing wrong with being busy doing what God has called you to do. Quite honestly, we do have work to do. However, that does NOT mean working 14 hours a day and 6-7 days a week, my sister. As mothers, this is when the problem comes in - when we become too busy for our kids. And I don’t think God ever intended for it to be that way. Do you?
With that being said, let’s talk about how to get things back in order at home as it relates to child-rearing in a busy generation…
Working from Home – Set some work hours/time boundaries. If you were working a day job, you would most likely be working an 8-hour day, with a lunch break (which you do need to take), and with a scheduled time to clock off. Occasionally, you may need to take an assignment home, but most likely that wouldn’t occur every day or week. So, you have to consider this when you work from home for your business or ministry. Consider your clock-out (cuff off time) and try to stick to it as closely as possible. Your kids will love you even more for it!
Also, because you have the luxury of working from home (I know all about this, because I work from home), take a nap when you can. Re-energize yourself before the kids get home. In addition, consider exercising, and planning your meals and family time for the evening. It’s best to plan ahead, instead of picking up fast food or spur of the moment meals. If so, then your family will start feeling like the leftovers!
Another thing is don’t forget to add some extra love breaks in there! Remember what 1 Corinthians 16:14 says, "Let all that you do be done in love." So give that random hug or kiss on the cheek. Take a break from the grind and bake some hot chocolate chip cookies for them or cut up some fresh fruit and place it in a bowl for all of you to share over what happened at school. If you homeschool, do it once your kids’ work is done. Most importantly, don’t forget to pray with and for them and add a little devotional time before bed. The goal here is to be intentional when life gets too busy.
And if you have older children, like teenagers, take him or her out for coffee or their favorite dessert, or have some sofa-talk time. Find out what's going on in their world. You could also have them join you in the kitchen and talk while you're preparing dinner. Be creative! For your older adult kids (if you have them), take a break, pick up the phone or pay them a visit to see how things are going in their world. Show that you care - because you do. Keep in mind, "Love shows itself in action." (1 John 3:18)
Work Outside the Home – Do what you do at work and then come home, sis. In other words, be home when you’re home. Leave work and the stress of it right where you left it. Your kids need you. They don’t understand your workload, so don’t try to make them understand. They’ve had a long day too at school, and now they’re home. Again, be intentional with your kids.
So, when you pick them up (or when they get home off the bus) consider taking them for an ice cream cone or frozen yogurt, the park (swing with them), or take a quick ride and talk. Also, when you guys get back home, everyone can take their shoes and sock off, and kick back for a little while! It’s time for everyone to relax. Unwind.
And if there’s homework, give them a little break time (as well as for you). It’s totally okay. After that, then have them get to work. Another good thing to do is to time their homework. That way, you or the kiddos are not up later than you want to be. Again, don’t forget to pray with and for them and do a little devotional reading with them before bed.
Ministry – God loves you and your child or children. And guess what, sis? He would want you to love, nurture, and spend time with them, as you do ministry. Your first ministry is actually your family anyway. So, balance it out. If you want your kids to rise up and call you blessed as Proverbs 31:28 states, then do the things that will cause them to rise up and call you blessed. ;-)
Again, yes, we have work to do to help bring others into the Kingdom of God, put food on the table and pay bills. Yes, we want to encourage the body of Christ in weekly church service, vocation, and fellowship, but we also have families to love on and tend to. I believe our good Lord is the One who gave us our families and the ministry work to us. Our job is to balance it out.
In closing, I want to encourage you to plan that quality time with your kids, whether older or younger. Be intentional. Plan for it. Write out your ideas. Be creative and do some new things that your kids would never expect.
They want you. They need you. To them, your work schedule, ministry roles and responsibilities, and time away from them on social media and beyond, doesn’t matter too much in comparison to your love and time spent especially for them. So, what are you going to do about that busy schedule of yours, sis? Do you think you can un-busy yourself for your kids? I believe it will be well worth the effort for them and you.
Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s be ready from the Inside Out!
QUESTION: Do you feel like you've become too busy for your kids, sis? Do you feel like you need to get a handle on things and balance it all out? If you need advice or prayer in this area, you can email me directly @ firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you and praying for you.
ALSO, my NEW 8-Week Study Guide and Video Teaching Series from my book, "IDENTIFIED: Knowing Who You Are in Christ & Moving Forward in Your Purpose” is FINALLY available!!! Purchase here.
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