This morning I woke up and told Josh that I still had the headache from the night before and that I was so tired. Josh, in his very kind way, told me to just stay in bed and rest. He also told me to enjoy the day and not to worry about dinner…”we can just eat sandwiches.” He’s so nice.
Well, I did end up cooking spaghetti. However, I struggled with enjoying the day. I’m not a crazy clean freak by any means, but I do love when things are in their place. This morning there were many things not in their places; I had to talk outloud to myself (and scare the children) and say, “It’s ok to go to the pool even when there is laundry to fold and put away. It’s ok to go to the pool and relax even when you should make your bed and even though there are several items that need ironing and even though the kids have toys in the living room….” The only person in this house that functions best when things are in order is me! Mack said his dream house was one that never had to be cleaned. 😳
Soooo, I did go to the pool, and I did enjoy swimming with the kids. And we got back home in time for me to tidy up, organize a few things in the school room and start dinner.
At dinner Josh asked me how the day went. I was telling him that I had to talk myself into enjoying the day and leaving the messes here at the house. He asked ME, “Why??” And before I could attempt to explain myself, MACK pipes up and says, “Well, Dad, she’s just one of those people who has to have things clean.”
Excuse me?? My eight year old is eating the dinner I prepared and talking about me like I’m not in the room!! It was cracking me up.
But it was also a good reminder. I’m ok with the kids knowing that I like things in order. And one day, at their own house, they can live how they want. I do, however, want to create more margin in my life for times when it’s more than ok to not be cleaning. I am always straightening or telling kids to put this away or that away or asking whose junk is all over the stairs or why there’s a million legos in my foyer.
In our summer Bible Study, “Breathe” by Priscilla Shirer, we are discussing the principle of a sabbath margin and evaluating what it might look like to apply it to our lives. We’re challenged to ask ourselves what area of our lives seem to be controlling us. It’s interesting because one person may need more margin in their life so that they can relax and enjoy their family and NOT be straightening all the time and another person may need margin in their life so that they can have time to be at home and do some straightening and cleaning. One lady may need to learn how to STOP saying everything she thinks while another needs some margin in her life so she can say what she needs to say to her over-bearing family member. Margin looks different for each one of us. I’m enjoying taking this month of June to spend time on this topic. One person may spend every red cent they make as soon as they make it…margin is needed on when enough is enough, yet another person may be stingy and never want to spend or give because they want it all for themselves….again, margin is needed on when enough is enough.
In Leviticus, God told His people to work six years and then give the land a sabbath rest on the seventh year.
Leviticus 25:3-4 “Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its crop, but during the seventh year the land shall have a sabbath rest, a sabbath to the Lord; you shall not sow your field or prune your vineyard.”
Really? This passage begs the question, “But what will eat during the seventh year?? How will we provide for our families??
Leviticus 25:20-22 “But if you say, ‘What are we going to eat on the seventh year if we do not sow or gather in our crops?’ then I (God) will so order My blessing for you in the sixth year that it will bring forth the crop for three years. When you are sowing the eighth year, you can still eat old things from the crop, eating the old until the ninth year when it’s crop comes in.”
Wow!!! So when the children of God obeyed and gave the land a sabbath rest, then God would give them enough in that sixth year to carry them through the sixth year, the seventh year, and the eighth year when they were working the fields again and waiting on it to produce a crop! God supplies all of our needs. God sets up His ways of doing things, and we are blessed and cared for as we obey.
The margin, the sabbath rest, the boundaries that God desires for us to have are BLESSINGS for us. Sometimes the very gifts God gives us (ability to save money, ability to give money, knack for organizing, wisdom in seeing things the way they are and speaking truth, a gentle and quiet spirit, etc) can enslave us when we think we know better than God. We need the rest in order to hear His voice, in order to read His Word, and having room in our lives to hear from God is what leads to ultimate freedom. He gives us His perspective. He invites us to trust Him more.
I have so much to learn as it relates to sabbath rest. Sure am thankful to have a group of ladies to learn alongside! And I’m even thankful for that little eight year old boy talking about me like I wasn’t even in the room!