Posted in Homeschool Encouragement and Support

When Mom “Checks Out”

My husband can always tell what kind of day we’ve had as soon as he walks through the door.

If the kids barely notice him when he comes home, if they are running around the house screaming, and whining, and picking on each other – we’ve had a bad homeschool day.

If the kids are playing (somewhat) peacefully, if they are moving about (fairly) quietly, if they greet him excitedly when he comes through the door – we’ve had a good homeschool day.

He’s noticed (and he’s right) that our bad homeschool days are not usually due to difficult math problems, challenging reading assignments, or tricky science projects.  They’re also not usually due to squabbles between two or more of the kids.  For the most part, our bad homeschool days are directly linked to the lack of Mom-involvement in our children’s lives that day.  When Dad asks what we’ve done that day the kids respond with: “Mom’s been talking on the phone ALL day,”  –  or – “Mom’s been on the computer ALL day,” – or – “Mom dragged us around to a million stores and it took FOREVER.”

In short, our bad homeschool days are largely bad because I wasn’t being a good teacher.  I wasn’t being faithful to what God had called me to that day.

As homeschool moms we can, of course, be with our children all day and still mentally “check out”.  We can drag them with us to where we want to go.  We can be tempted to put their endless needs on hold while we chat with friends for an hour or more.  We can go through lesson plans quickly without really trying to touch our children’s lives, without really trying to listen to their struggles.  I know I can’t help but think sometimes, “What about me?  When do I get my time?  When do I get to do what I want to do?  When do I get my break?”

I think the disciples often felt this way.   In Mark 6:31 we read that so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat.  They tried to get to a solitary place, but the people figured out where they were going and got there ahead of them.  Finally, when it was late in the day, the disciples asked Jesus to send the people away to get some food.  Personally, I believe they wanted the people sent away because they wanted some peace and quiet, because they wanted a break, because they were tired of constantly being followed by the throng.

And yet, when the disciples agreed to do all that Jesus told them to do – when they gave all they had (5 loaves and 2 fishes), they saw God do the miraculous.  The children of Israel went away satisfied, and the disciples had time to themselves while Jesus dismissed the crowd.  (vs 45.)

Child of God, May God give you the grace and strength to be the best mom and teacher you can be to your children day after day.  May God keep you from “Checking out”.  If we continue in His plan, our children will walk away satisfied (and our husbands also).   We will witness our King do more than we could ever dream, and our Lord will finally give us the break we crave in His own good timing, in a way that is good for our whole family.

Proverbs 31:10 – 11 “A wife of noble character who can find?  She is worth far more than rubies.  Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.”

Proverbs 31:17  “She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.”

Proverbs 31:27 “She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.”

May God bless you with a wonderful, happy Thanksgiving!

Copyright November 23, 2011 by Gwen Fredette

All Scripture taken from NIV (New International Version)

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