Now, I usually am very careful when I claim this verse because in our generation, it can be an "excuse" to pile on more and more and more and more.....And I have to admit, I have been the "chiefest of sinners" in this area.
"Should do this."
"We really need to do this."
"Everyone is doing that (who IS everyone anyway???)
I have often put unnecessary pressure on myself to volunteer, participate, be involved in ALL things available. I have felt guilt when I have said "no" or when we "skipped out of things."
But, praise God, He has taught me to slow down, how to say "no," and how much is too much. I have learned to let the peace of God rule my decisions. If, as a believer, I am to experience the "peace that passes all understanding" in "all circumstances" (as Paul did), but am feeling "stressed out," then something is wrong. I am either depending on SELF to do the things He is calling me to do, or I am doing things that are out of His will. Ladies, for me, this revelation in and of itself is a MIRACLE! I was the mom who stayed up to 3 AM baking sugar cookies for a preschool class, decorated with each child's name in icing calligraphy!!!!! Crazy! One of my first revelations was that soccer was NOT mandatory, and if Andrew didn't like it, we didn't HAVE to do it!!! God has delivered me from this worldly mindset and it is a miracle! I have had to say "no" to kids at times, volunteer coordinators, and friends. There is a temptation to feel guilty, but when I am filled with the Holy Spirit and depending on Him to lead me, I have been released of that!
Now, after saying all that, I have to say what my miracle was last week! With 5 kids, there will be times when life is busy. And for some families, our lives may seem crazy. That is why I have had to learn to depend on God to show me WHAT and HOW. We had so much going on, but by His grace, I was able to "do all things through Christ who strengthens me." I was able to do the things He was calling me to do, completely at peace, NOT STRESSED out, without any occurrence of Monster Mom. I didn't yell at my kids. I didn't "lose it." Thank you, Lord, because that is a miracle for me! Our week started out calmly with soccer practices Mon. and Tues.
On Wednesdays, we host an after school club with 6 girls (2 of my own) called "God's Girls." It is so fun! We read a bible story about a woman from the bible, learn a verse, journal, and make a craft. This is Aly with her prayer journal basket we made.On Thursday, we had a birthday party for Aaron, who turned 5. I used to have a children's birthday party business, so I had all of the pirate party supplies. What LOOKS like a lot of work, really wasn't! And, Iris, I did NOT make that cute cake! I was tempted (but knew it would have been too much to do- thank you, God!), but purchased it from Target!
On Friday, Aaron' preschool class took a field trip to the garden center. I helped drive to the field trip and had a great time! We came home and took a nap!
And later the same day, we had a family roller skating party to attend. By this time, Aaron had had enough and had a major meltdown at the roller rink. Again, by God's grace, and knowing that this little guy had done one too many activities, we "let him be." The "old me" might have been embarrassed and made him put on his skates, but not the "new me"! The old has gone and the new has come, praise God! We gave him some space and he had fun pretending to play pinball. Afterwards, we came home and snuggled and watched a movie. Everyone but Dad and Ashley fell asleep in the middle of it!