September 21, 2007
She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, he praises her… Proverbs 31: 27-28 (NIV)
I always chuckle at speaking engagements when I hear the event coordinator introduce me as this award-winning author and nationally known speaker…blah, blah, blah. To those who know me best, I’m simply a carpooling mom of 5 kids whose husband rises to call me blessed if I can manage one monumental task…have clean underwear in his drawer every morning!
My life is not much different from any other woman. To be honest, some days when I think about all that needs to be done, I start feeling overwhelmed. Doing laundry, paying bills, answering e-mails or phone calls, returning library books, grocery shopping, packing lunches, making dinner, helping with that school project, writing a thank you note, buying a birthday gift, washing the car, and taking the dog to the vet. Whew! No wonder we keepers of the home have become masters doing many things at once.
Now, I’m all for multi-tasking but sometimes it can get us into trouble! Recently, while filling up at the gas station, I was trying to do so many things at once that I almost pulled away with the nozzle still attached to my car! Multi-tasking really does help me cross more things off of my never-ending to do list. But, I’ve found it’s not good to make it a habit when I’m with my family.
A wise friend once said to me, “Lysa when you’re with those you love - be there.” In other words, let the legacy you are creating with your family be one of love and attention, not a completed task list. Oh sure the jobs still need to get done but maybe we can learn to prioritize our to-do list, complete what we can and let other things wait. That way we can make sure that we are being what God designed women to be, the heart of the home.
Simple things can speak volumes of love and attest to our priorities with our families. When my husband comes home from work, I get off the phone. When I pick my kids up from school, I give them my full attention as they share a myriad of details from their day. And each morning I take time to read the Bible and talk to God first; even before throwing in a load of laundry or checking my e-mail. Then I can say with confidence to those I love, I’m really here for you.
Dear Lord, I dreamed my whole life of being a keeper of my home. Lord, I want to do this job in a way that honors You and showers love on those closest to me. Sometimes it’s hard having so many constant demands, but I know You can help me prioritize and complete my tasks. Will You help me know what needs to be done and what can be put off until later? Will You speak to my heart when I’m too wrapped up in my tasks and not attentive enough to my family? Help me create a legacy of truly being there for my family, in Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Women Who Do Too Much by Patricia Sprinkle
Take an honest look at your to-do list today. Prioritize your list into three categories: Must Do, Want to Do, Can Wait If Necessary. Then make an honest assessment of the time you are with your family and purpose to fully be there.
The One we need more than anyone else has so graciously given you His time and attention. How can you put aside a few minutes a day to give appropriate time and attention to those who need you the most? Work diligently today so that you can make proper commitments, not feeling so overwhelmed that you are compelled to break plans.
Job 7:17-18, “What is man that you make so much of him, that you give him so much attention, that you examine him every morning and test him every moment?”
Proverbs 21:5, “The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.”
Proverbs 27:23, “Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds.” (NIV)
Luke 10:38-40, “As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” (NIV)
Originally published Friday, 21 September 2007.