Well, the week without David and Joshua was quite a rush! It went by fast, and it has been so nice to be together with the girls and little Jonathan. We played and read and spent an afternoon sewing with our wonderful sewing teacher Linda. Actually I sewed and the girls did "fabric art" with Linda - they had so much fun! We also had friends over and guess what? I painted the school room! It is a lovely warm brown color (mostly) with some bright yellow accents - so relaxing. My dear Nathan gave me an entire evening to paint, and then I finished up on two separate early mornings before the children woke up. The problem is that now I am excited about painting, and I don't want to stop painting :0. The original paint on the walls is flat, and any touch or smudge on the walls is sooo vivid. I can't wait to get color and shine, both to hide dirt and make the walls easier to clean. Easter weekend was spent with family in Illinois, where we "chilled out" and retrieved the boys.
I wrote earlier about working on some heart issues with the children, and the Lord zeroed me in on the importance of loving and serving each other throughout the week. This article by Beka Pearl has some great ideas, including Hero Cards, which we have begun to implement this week. The concept is simple. The child who is focused on loving and serving his siblings/family may be awarded a "Hero Card" for the day. If they earn 5, they are to "take out" the family for ice cream. Of course the family gives much praise to the "hero" who made such a wonderful treat possible :-). Rebekah Joy is so excited about the whole thing, and has already earned one!
I have found such joy in speaking to the children about our purpose, which is to love and serve each other and bring glory to God! Each and every action that we take should be to this end, and liberty from the bondage of self is surely found in this steady undertaking. Really thinking about the reason for our activities is such an excellent activity for our minds; sloughing away the drudgery and making way for the true blessings of the Lord. When I speak to the children about this, I am speaking also to myself, and this focus is so needed for me right now. Camilla wrote an excellent article which gels perfectly with these thoughts. You'll have to read it to find out why, but I can't get the picture out of my head of a robot chanting mechanically, "What about me? What about me?" I am also challenged to come out of me and get behind the child as a servant, meeting his perceived needs instead of giving him what I think he needs.
In closing, I sing...
"For by him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in earth visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions or principalities or powers, all things were created by Him and for Him." - Col. 2:16