Thursday, September 1, 2011

About Susan - an introduction to "Defrump your Heart"

I am the wife of Aaron (since 2003), the homeschooling mom to Riley (4 years), Silas (2 years), and Jonah (the baby), and the actual real-life friend of my fabulous co-bloggers Lauren, Audrey, and Amber -- whew!! God has blessed me with salvation by grace alone (Ephesians 2:8-9), and I work hard to try to improve and travel along the road on which He has placed me (I Corinthians 7:20).

As a homekeeper and help meet, I fail miserably struggle to maintain some semblance of order, while including spontaneity and fun along the way. It seems that there is a special, super-secret balance between a strict, schedule-following, cleaning nazi, and an anything-goes, chaos-ruled, wild woman. Apparently the key is moderation (Philippians 4:5), and I’m working to keep a good balance instead of going up and down on that see-saw. And all this time I’m working on myself, I’ve got these other people and relationships around to deal with. It can drive a woman seeking perfection (nasty word) insane!

Something I see all the time both in my life and in those around me is a tendency to get in a rut in our relationships (“frumpy with our dears”). We go from day to day just letting things happen, allowing special moments to slip by unnoticed, and forgetting that God made us to be relational. We as women bear the responsibility to carry the relationships in our lives (no pressure or anything), and when we aren’t intentional, we get “frumpy.” So, what can we do? We gotta have goals! “Shoot for nothing, and you’ll hit it every time”, “Reach for the stars, and you’ll land on the moon” (or something), and all those other motivational poster sayings from our classroom days, right?

For example:

I want my husband to believe me when I tell him that he is the most important earthly gift I’ve got, and I want to show him through my actions (I Corinthians 13). I’m commanded to respect and revere him (Ephesians 5), but making him feel adored and like I remember the (sweet, funny, smarter-than-anyone-I-know, handsome, all-around amazing) man I fell in love with and married takes more thought and planning with the distractions of home, work, and kiddos to drag us apart. I’ve learned a LOT over the past few years about communicating, respecting, and being a help meet, but I feel like I have become frumpy when it comes to keeping things as fun and light and attractive as they were early on in our relationship (before all those turtles crept onto the runway).

I want my kids to grow up happy and thankful, knowing that we love them, and that no matter how life treats them, God loves them more, and He has a rescue plan for them if they ask (John 10:10, Luke 19:10, John 3:16). It is important to me that my kids learn more than just the three Rs, and I spend a good bit of brainpower, effort, and prayer time organizing and preparing to teach them lessons and life-skills. I don’t want them to see me as a task-master but as a fun-loving companion and nurturer - (again with the balance thing). While plenty of moms out there are struggling to be “Super Mom” (totally been there, too), my goal is to be an “Abiding Mom”

I want our family to thrive, sharing our lives with each other and those around us. I want to be intentional about our positive times together, about opening our home in hospitality, and about reaching out to those who could benefit from our experiences. We may not know anything useful much, but even if it doesn’t benefit others as much as we’d like to think, s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g ourselves outside our comfort zone is always a good thing.

I want to be a good neighbor, opening my heart to friends and letting down walls that keep me from welcoming new individuals into my life. I want people to know that I care and I want the best for them, and I know that takes effort (for me at least; I apparently missed out on whatever makes that come naturally). It seems easier to just have my own little world that I live in with my family and closest friends, but I'm also called to reach a bit further (Go...all nations..." Matthew 28: 19). More stretching....

So, you can join me in the coming months, and share my defrumping journey of intentional relationship-building. I want to defrump my marriage by infusing it with exciting, yet frugal, dates and other purposeful activities. I want to defrump my parenting by being intentional about spending short periods of one-on-one time daily, as well as longer weekly “dates” with each of the older two. I want to defrump our family time by coming up with creative activities that benefit not just us, but also those around us. And I want to defrump my friendships and interactions with others by making more of an effort to actively share kindness in creative ways.

I’m hoping this will benefit someone else, but in the meantime, having to document this stuff is going to be a kick in the pants to do what I’ve been meaning to do for a long time. Accountability, people -- that’s what this is!

God bless!!

1 comment:

  1. Just found y'all's blog and really like it!
    New followers! :)