Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Little Things

I'd have to say the single most important thing in my life that keeps me sane and peaceful is my contact with HaShem. It is the air I breathe. There are a few other things that I rely on to get me through the day and keep me sane, and I thought I'd share them with you.

I wake up early and have alone time with YHVH

The Lord answered her, 'Marta, Marta, you are fretting and worrying about so many things! But there is only one thing that is essential. Miryam has chosen the right thing, and it won't be taken away from her.'" (Luke 10:41-42)

There is something quite profound about quiet time, especially in a house always filled with noise, especially in the morning before I start my day. When I wake up before everyone, I can catch my breath, collect my thoughts, and most importantly pray—this makes for a saner day :)

I make my bed as soon as I get out of it.

There is something about a made bed that 1. makes the whole room feel a bit neater and, 2. reminds me I am up for the day. I am less likely to lay back down and more likely to keep the rest of the room cleaner. I can't quite explain why this works, but it does. Just try it {and let me know}.

I do something active each day.

If I do not watch myself, I end up being quite sedentary and lazy. I have seen the consequences of this choice, in fact right now I am cleaning up the messes of my laziness, and I know I feel better, look better and act better when I have exerted myself. The same is true for my children.

We do not watch t.v.

I could write a whole post on this topic alone, but to summarize: I have no intention of competing for my childrens' attention and loyalty with the flippant attitudes and gimme-buy-me-entertain-me attitude promoted by the media industry. It is hard enough to train my children to be righteous and pure with the worldly influences in our own lives; adding activities that support what I am working against will do nothing good. Now this is not to say that we never watch anything, I am just very choosy.

When I buy something I give something away.

By nature, I'm a hoarder. I love to acquire, accumulate and collect. I'm also quite scatterbrained. These two serve as a lethal cocktail poisoning all of my dreams of having a clean, organized home. So, if I must buy something, or my kids must, I discard something already in my home. Many times the new item serves as a replacement for the old, so the exchange is simple.

My children have chores.

I was raised to believe that I did not have to contribute anything to my family other than my charm and intellect (*wink). I had no chores; my room stayed messy until my mother cleaned it; I was only required to focus on school so work could certainly not interfere. I could not do my own laundry when I moved out. I could not cook, iron, pay bills, or do any of the things a wife and mother {which I was at this time} should know. And I am worse for wear. I am determined to not make the same mistake with my children. And, as they will one day be providers of their own homes, I must prepare my boys to have a good work ethic and sense of duty. And, of course- division of labor is a bonus-- more able hands make less work for Mama.

I pray for those I love (and those I'm having trouble loving)

I cannot stress enough the importance of prayer. Prayer is more powerful than any words spoken, punches thrown or wars fought. I am a worrier by nature, so prayer comes almost naturally—instead of worrying, I pray :) My mind is a breeding ground for all sorts of crazy and obsessive thoughts so I just give them to the Lord.

"This is the confidence we have in [YHVH's] presence: if we ask anything that accords with his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us - whatever we ask - then we know that we have what we have asked from him." (1 John 5:14-15).

"Don't worry about anything; on the contrary, make your requests known to God by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving. Then God's shalom, passing all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with the Messiah Yeshua." (Philippians 4:6-7)

I clean the sink before I go to bed.

I gleaned this from Flylady, and it really makes all the difference!

I set things out for the next day the night before.

I am perpetually late {a trait of DH's that has rubbed off on me}, so I can't afford to not have things together. Trust me, though, I spent years trying to fly by the seat of my pants. And sometimes I flew, but I did it with a stain on my shirt ;) I have just found that getting things together with plenty of time to spare saves more unnecessary headaches than you can imagine.


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