In today’s busy world, there are so many things clamoring for our attention, that it seems rare indeed, to find contentment at home. Society and culture shouts at us to enroll our kids in every thing, start a home business, don’t miss any deals at the store, maybe a side job, hmm? Well, I have done all those things – of course they are not wrong. But the thing is, are they necessary? Are they the best? I have been pondering this a lot the past few weeks.
I started a side business this summer, offering photo sessions. I also make custom cinchas for cowboys. In the past, I have done couponing, Tupperware®, and even started a business of making gourmet pickles and selling them at the farmer’s market. I have dabbled in many more money-making ventures, and ideas and projects. I love to research an idea and work hard to get it off the ground. So, I totally am coming from the perspective of been there – done that!
But something I have noticed in every venture… if it takes me away from home a lot, or if I am at home but it takes a big chunk of alone-time – my kiddos suffer. When I am trying to do too much, I get tired and then I tend to get grumpy, annoyed or frustrated easily. When I have a lot on my mind, I want the kids to just go away and play nicely. Ha! When do kids do that, I ask you?!
I’m being pretty open here, folks. It’s hard to admit. It’s hard to give up my ‘dreams’. It’s hard and unpopular to say that I can’t have a flourishing side business because I am not good enough to do that and be a loving mom, at the same time. But I see more and more women throwing all their energy into money-making ventures, under the guise of ‘following their dreams’, and ‘not settling’, and lots of other self-centered nonsense. YES. I do believe God gave us dreams for a reason. I do believe that often our desires and purpose are intertwined. I also believe that there are many times that He wants us to wait. To learn some deep lessons of life as hidden homemakers before we can be used effectively for Him.
I can’t say where the line is for you. Maybe you ARE superwoman, and have your ducks all in a row. But I doubt it. Probably somewhere there is a mountain of laundry you were too tired to face, or a desk piled high with papers you need to file, or a child feeling unloved because your ‘passion’ took you away from them again over dinner hour. There might be a husband who is a teeny bit lonely, deep down, but wouldn’t dare touch your ‘passion’. You know where your limit is. I know mine!
I am not saying you shouldn’t do things you enjoy, or start a side business. But NEVER at the expense of your family. Of course it looks different for every family. I see some women sitting at home, bored and lonely, and wish they would start a side business! But the point is – don’t take on more than you can handle. Make sure your family gets your best, not your leftovers. Even if you don’t have children, your husband and home should take precedence. Learn to find contentment at home, cleaning, cooking, creating a place of rest and beauty.
I am still learning when to say no, and when to say yes. I want to give my children a deep memory bank of wonderful home memories… mom in the kitchen cooking, mom reading to them, mom laughing and playing, mom working in the yard… all those simple things. They only have one mother, and we only have a few years before they are grown and gone. Let’s make every day count!
Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,” Hebrews 13:5