Preaching , Teaching & Writing

Planning a Little Joy into Your Daily Life

“What do we need?…Not to neglect our own needs while devoting ourselves to those of others and not to neglect the needs of others while being engrossed in our own.” Francis Fenelon

Do you know that with all the careful planning and organisation you put into your family, that you need to be as intentional about planning a little fun and joy into your daily life too?

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Planning fun into your routine is not only essential but is spiritual. Do you still remember how to play? How to laugh so loud that your jaw hurts? How to enjoy yourself and how to be silly?

Or do you find yourself  overextended…exhausted and crumbling under all the duty, responsibility and obligation that your role demands?

If that is the case, we are certainly headed for a spiritual meltdown, a mental collapse or an emotional breakdown…

It’s true that there is no career quite like motherhood.  There is nothing as challenging, as demanding, and as taxing as our roles are as mothers…

But when a mum learn to infuse a little play, a little laughter and a little break into her day, she is caring not only for her spiritual and emotional needs, but she is allowing her family to thrive and blossom with her…

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The one basic prerequisite for having ongoing strength daily is to learn to replenish your joy in the Lord.

I sometimes think of the task of motherhood as a long marathon that requires the fittest stamina, the most enduring heart and a growing godly perspective.

Coming to God is coming to a well for a river that does not run dry…

There are many many times I caught myself being grumpy, grouchy, fretful, touchy and moaning about my hopeless situation and my alienation from the rest of the world. 🙂 

It is true that sometimes in the never ending cycle of feeding,cooking, cleaning, caring, changing, teaching, fetching, playing, instructing, disciplining children, that the heroic mums in us tend to forego our own basic needs that make us human…things like a good sleep, a break, recreations, friendships, exercise, a good laugh, feeling good.

Somehow in the midst of all these other “more lofty” goals, these needs do not seem as important, or spiritual, or deserving…

But this is exactly where we lose the joy of motherhood, and this is when life becomes all about duty.

We need to be mindful not to get stuck in a rut, both in our schedules and in our mindset. We need to allow for the variety and simultaneity of life to add a little spark of vibrancy into our day to day routine.

Plan to do something different every few weeks…plan to learn a new skill…be intentional about growing yourself…try a new recipe…set a new goal…plan for get together with another mum who is a pro in make ups or hairdos…plan for coffee with individuals more proficient than you in other areas of life…get yourself mentored by more experienced mums…plan for a little reunion with your spiritual family…get outside of your church box and really minister…

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I sat down one day and listed out everything that would add that extra  spark in my daily life.

Taking away the unusual highs of expensive purchases or half yearly vacations, I learn to look forward to what is a daily routine of my life.

And I’m so happy to discover that yes, there are many things in my normal
day that I really do enjoy…and I have learned to build these little joys into the routine I have with the kids.

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Many times we need to come to the Lord to have a break in our thinking…

Sometimes we confuse spirituality with spending many rigid hours with the Lord, when what is really needed is a heart to heart, spirit to spirit, intimate connection.

Think of what would reinvigorate your times with the Lord…

In the 116 tasks that I carry out daily (in all seriousness…), it’s very easy for me to slip into feeling of  overwhelmed and snowed under…but I learn that there are 2 key arsenal in my toolbox when it comes to time management.

First, to have a flexible structure for the home. This may sound simple, but really it takes a bit of art, creativity, consistency and wisdom to make your routine works for you.

When you get a rhythm in your daily routine, the menial can be your pathways to the lofty!

Structuring your family’s day is really one underrated tool in a parent’s toolbox.

But when you are living life in the fast lane- right in the trench of motherhood, you better learn to make time your friend and your servant.

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Secondly, I learn that when I plough through the never ending and ever piling tasks of maintaining the home and running a household, and not coming to God for strength, my vision becomes tunnelled and my strength waned.

Time becomes a two dimensional component where it is continuously subtracted but never multiplied.

A strange but wonderful phenomena happens when I come to the Lord with my constrains – He brings me to a place of abundance, a different dimension of time altogether!  

He calms my anxious heart and then allows me to rule with Him from a place of abundance, of strength.

It is a place of rest, and a place of reigning.

Static time stops and dynamic time begins…

It may be the same 24 hours, yet those hours are drenched with riches, creativity and strength!

When mums are hopeful, satisfied in life, empowered and filled with the joy of the Lord, we give our family the gift of one who is truly bountiful in her spot in life…

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For any tired mums out there, here’s a little gift for you. Check out this book called “A Joyful Mother of Children“. It has many practical tips on how to maintain your sanity and restore calmness in the midst of mothering!

Psalm 36:8 – “They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights”

And don’t forget to make it your goal to LAUGH today!

x

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