Friday, September 26, 2008

House Maintenance

What a week!

Normally I look forward to when my husband has a business trip. . . . . . . now, that didn't sound right! :) Let me explain . . .

I have 5 kids - ages 4 through 13 - I have 1 husband - and thankfully we are down to just 3 pets. :) I am on the Steering Team for our church's MOPS group, on the board of an adoption group, have my hand in and eye on several other things, and generally tend to go above and beyond in waaay too many things that interest me (and there are waaaay too many things that interest me . . . I need a few lifetimes to do them all!)! Let's just say - I am way too busy!

So, when my husband says he is going away for a few days, it's not that I won't miss him or don't want him to go or don't love him . . . . it just opens up a couple hours each day where I can be by myself. I am an introvert by nature. . . . .bmeaning - I get reenergized by being alone! So with a house full of people and pets (and chores and messes, and unfinished projects, and projects I WANT to start - but know I probably won't finish . . . .) - those few hours in the week to myself can be quite energizing and refreshing.

Not this week.

I didn't really see those hours. Where did they go? I know I had them somewhere . . . maybe. But they are definitely dwindling down with my oldest (now a teenager) staying up later and later (he has his parent's "night owl" gene) and feeling quite chatty during that time.

This was just a rough week - emotionally, spiritually, physically, mentally and more. I won't bore you with all the details - but suffice it to say I have felt our house being under attack (spiritaully) all week. And without my husband here to support me and "fight" in this battle (I'm sure he was from his hotel room . . . I hope) - I stayed pretty weary and drained all week.

Today I was laying on my bed - half trying to take a nap this morning (as I've had about 5-6 hours sleep a night - while ususally waking up 2-4 times during those few hours) - and half trying to talk with God.

"How am I supposed to handle this all? What am I supposed to do about (these certain issues)? Did I miss your will/leading in something? Should we change what we are doing? . . . . . God - I am exhausted and all I REALLY want to do each day is to spend hours with you! But if I did that - then nothing would get done around here!"

"Yes it would" I heard God say. And I knew . . . I knew what He meant.

It wasn't the cooking, cleaning, chores, MOPS agendas, projects, etc that would get done . . . . it was the "house cleaning and maintenance" that needed to be done within my family - spiritually, relationally, emotionally, etc. It was the spiritual battles that would be fought and won, and the promised land that would be taken as promised. THAT is what really is so much more important!

I know that. I do. I know it deep down in my core. Then why do I chose to clean up the house instead of spend that precious time "cleaning up my house" spiritually?!

I did throw up alot of prayers this week. It's not like I didn't pray or spend some time with God. It's that I didn't really send time resting/soaking in His presence - being rejuvenated and refreshed . . . strengthened. I didn't fully listen (I guess) to this great military strategist on how to fight the battles that came (and will still come). I said alot of "HELP ME LORD!" and "Forgive me God" prayers this week. Those are good - and they do work. But in a week like this - that was not enough and not what I (or my family) really needed.

I am sorry Lord. I DO want to spend time each day - cleaning and maintaining my "house". Help me to not only do that every day - but to do it effectively . . . with power, strength, peace and love!

Unless the LORD builds the house,
its builders labor in vain.
Unless the LORD watches over the city,
the watchmen stand guard in vain.
In vain you rise early
and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat-
for he grants sleep to those he loves.
Sons are a heritage from the LORD,
children a reward from him.
Like arrows in the hands of a warrior
are sons born in one's youth.
Blessed is the man
whose quiver is full of them.
They will not be put to shame
when they contend with their enemies in the gate.