As my candle burned long into the night with a cup of hot tea in hand, I planned for another week of homeschooling. My eyes were heavy and my body ached for soft bed but I was determined to not let my candle go out because there was more work to be done.My planning is interrupted by a blessing. Blessings, it seems, have their own perfect time schedule. I almost missed it due to heavy eyes but it captured my weary heart… Psalm 127.
Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.~Psalm 127:1,2
I could almost feel the fog lift and my eyes see truth. My mind calmed and my body was finally given permission to rest. The words echoed in my mind and pricked my heart. My work was in vain.
Had you asked me if my work was for the Lord I would have said yes.
Had you asked me if I felt serving my family was serving the Lord I would have said yes.
Had you asked me if I felt joy to serve I would have given you a firm no.
My efforts and determination were coming from me and not from allowing the Lord to work in me. My late nights were due to a mismanaged and over-committed schedule because I wanted to be super homeschool mom. After all if God called me to homeschool then it would require hard work so I did the work. I did the work. I had my marching orders and I marched….alone.
The steam above my tea was fading like the joy in my heart. I was growing weary. …he giveth his beloved sleep. I was becoming faded. ...he giveth his beloved sleep. My head was heavy. …he giveth his beloved sleep.
We work so hard to provide our family the best of us. Of course there is nothing wrong with that unless you are doing it alone. Do not labor in vain. Allow the Lord to give you the plans while you hold the hammer. Otherwise, you family will not get your best but a faded mom who longs for a soft pillow. Give your burdens to the Lord so you can sleep. A lack of sleep can lead to illness and depression. At best we are lackluster and at worst we lose contact with joy. We end up drifting through our days. We end up feeling unappreciated. We end up feeling alone. We end up resentful.
I know there is much work to be done. I know you want to be what God intended you to be. I know you strive to tend to your family while it is yet night and work into the night as your candle goeth not out. But God did not intend for you to be weary. He did not intend for you to miss your life. He did not intend for you to go it alone. Give your burdens, your sorrow and your schedule over to the Lord. Answer your pillow and feel the warm embrace of your blanket and rest knowing the Lord will take care of it. Your family needs the best you not a faded you with heavy eyes and a pale heart.
Richele is a homeschooling mom to four children and author of Under the Golden Apple Tree. Daily she cleans up Play Doh, teaches the three “R’s”, and praises the Lord for the blessings. Her goal is to encourage moms to grow in the Lord and feel the privilege of their role.