Not long ago, my husband and I were getting so caught up in doing things, while the children & the ministry multiplied before us, that all the fun was gone from our lives. There is nothing new about being busy while serving God! You forget what God advised NOT to do. Just like king Solomon did. God specifically asked him not to multiply horses or women. He did exactly that over time. When great & wise fail, we bound too.
Then we came to a brilliant solution. We thought if we don’t have money or time to go fun places, we at least could got out for a coffee every week to talk. And we did. It is amazing how a little effort could revolutionize relationships with your spouse. There is something special about consistency.
Christians tend to miss out on the obvious. A friend, with much regret, once said: ‘It never crossed my mind to pray for my children’s spouses.’ There was such spiritual maturity about her at the same time.
Even in a Christian marriage, it is vital to be in love with Jesus first. Isn’t that plainly obvious? Yet, emotions could be as ‘a slow released bomb’. Women are blessed to feel and experience like no one else. But this feelings: Danger- don’t enter-ground of a woman can be such a weak spot. I believe that is exactly where the enemy attacks on the evil day that the Bible mentions: ‘Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.’ We know it, yet the enemy strikes a bulls-eye every time!
An encouraging thought
I encourage any mother to make the most of the opportunity while your children are under your roof. (And I mean mother, not parent: in some Christian circles women are not allowed to pray out loud while men are working. Yeah, right) Years ago we hosted a Swiss student. He came on his bike all the way from Switzerland. He was obsessed with ecology. He would not fly on the plane. He would rather take 6 days to reach England with his camera & tent on his bike. I was amazed.
What was interesting he came from a family with a Christian heritage. His grandparents & parents were believers. He wasn’t. I was puzzled. He wanted to practice English & I was determined to get to the bottom of his unbelief. He shared with me that he went to church on Sunday. Most of the week he and his dad talked about environment, pollution, nature and ect. He has not mention much about his mother. That itself speaks a little bit. If she had a massive spiritual input in his life, I think he would mention her. I can’t tell you how sad I felt the whole time while he stayed with us. Let’s not waste time producing children that are talented & knowledgeable in everything, but God’s truth. Invest in your kids while you can. That is one thing no one will ever regret.
The most effective way that I found to upkeep my spirituality, and particularly be right with my children, is to fast from time to time. The desire that I have for God’s word & prayer is incredible during fasting. The anger that rises in my heart is towards the right things that God hates, not irritation with my children. You can have a liquid fast (drink whatever you want) & even pregnant & breastfeeding mother can do it. (I was pregnant while fasting once & didn’t even know it) I mention all my children by names to the Lord. I pray that each one of them will walk with the Lord! This brings such comfort & assurance that you can’t obtain any other way. I pray for toren apart families where children get caught in the mess of brokenness. The Lord reminds about people you haven’t thought lately. Instead of judgement (because while you fast, you must first of all judge your walk with the Lord) compassion floods & reality of hell. The urgency of time is so high because your flesh is mortified & your spirit leads you. God left us with such powerful weapons as women. You could be a housewife who moves nations by fervent prayers & fasting, not even leaving the house. I love that perspective.
Here some of the benefits:
- you naturally pray & read more (cooking & digesting food takes so much energy)
- you are doing everything slower, so a speeding ticket is not an option
- you don’t gossip, argue or talk unnecessarily
- your stomach shrinks, so you don’t overeat later
- your body feels relieved from toxins/fat/extra salt & ect.
- you become spiritually disciplined once again
- all secular books,films & other rubbish doesn’t appeal to you as much
- after the fast (you realize how hard work this is) physical exercises are much more appealing.
- particular fears are dealt with
- you are able to identify more naturally about those are oppressed & unjustly treated.
I hope & pray that anyone who reads it would be persuaded to do it more often.