There are a lot of projects going on in our home at the moment. Between repainting the living room, bathroom and dining room, we are gearing up for two weddings, three birthdays, celebrating Easter and two trips to Michigan. Basically, March is packed!
There is one change that is very near and dear to my heart. At the end of this month, I will no longer be a volunteer leader in our youth group. This has been such a difficult decision for me but one that I think will change the course of our family for the better. I have been pouring over this decision for the last year or so, going back and forth on what I should do. To be honest, every time the thought came in my head that I should back out, I got a huge sense of fear. Outside of our home, my whole world revolves around the youth group.
My friends are other youth leaders.
Who will I be friends with now?
I know nothing other than teaching teens and walking through life with them.
My relationships with teens are precious - where will I see the fruit of my labor in an almost immediate sense?
What will Jake and I have in common other than the kids?
Will I be jealous of the time he spends away, feeling left behind?
Will I be completely out of the loop?
What will become of our marriage?
I have stayed awake many nights thinking of such things. Without making this too long of a post, I realized that I needed to back out when I took Cole to AWANA at church the other night. Through watching other kids interact with their moms, I saw things that we don't have. Again, it would be an entire book (as if it isn't already!) if I tried to explain what I saw. Really, I'm not sure I can explain what I saw. But it was something that is missing between my kids and me.
I really feel this is due to the fact that we are constantly on the move. Every day, Cole asks, "Where are we going today? Who's coming today?" These might not be annoying questions to you, but they are to me - most likely because we are always going somewhere or having someone come over.
Don't get me wrong - I love that my kids love the church and that they enjoy being there so much. I love that they are comfortable with having many different people in our home. These are things I hope they love their whole lives. But when they look back on their childhood, I want them to have a sense of home. I want them to - much like our blog title - celebrate the ordinary of everyday and be able to love home, even if other people aren't always here. I want to sit and build puzzles with them, play outside and make dinner without having a pending outing looming in the back of my head. I want to get bored at home.
This is the first time I have felt a peace about stepping out of ministry in the church. Providentially, Jake has a peace too. We both struggled with the idea. However, we both feel it is in the best interest of our kids. I can no longer put my ministry with the youth kids over the ministry of being a wife and a mother. My kids have to come first. By stepping away, I will have one more night at home with our kids, won't have the weekend events or the missions trips to find babysitters for. Jake has given me the awesome privilege of coming on trips of interest to me when I want, which I am so thankful for. This is one of the great perks of being the youth pastor's wife!
I won't be stepping away from outside ministries altogether - I will be doing a Bible study with a couple of girls and will be actively involved in our Sunday morning study at our church beginning this fall. Between those opportunities and the fact that Jake plans dates for us every month, I know that we will still be partners in crime in every area of our lives. I'm excited to be more of a behind the scenes person, opening our home to students and leaders and loving them through prayer. This will be a new season of life for us, but one I'm looking forward to seeing God work in.