I have to admit, I’ve collapsed into bed at the end of many busy days with a guilt complex.
I didn’t even stop and take the time to play with my children today.
How long HAS it been since I had a tea party with my girls?? Or played dress up? Or spent the afternoon playing outside with my little people?
Our children are generally sweet and pleasant (barring the usual “human” moments).
On fussy days, I’ve realized (after the lights are out) that maybe my son’s whining or my girls’ sour attitudes had something to do with needing some more mommy time.
Don’t get me wrong; my children are in the middle of most everything I do. From cooking meals to cleaning house and pulling weeds in the flower bed. They are always right beside me.
But there is just something extra special about Mama taking time to get down on the floor and color. Or play dolls. Or set up the Little People farm.
Debi Pearl says it this way, in her book Created to Be His Help Meet:
Some mothers treat their children as I treat my cows. I make sure they have good things to eat, clean water, and a place to exercise. If they show any signs of sickness, I attend to them immediately… Unlike your care of the cows, the training of your children is the deepest expression of your love for them.
To love children is to devote ourselves fully to their training… There are no neutral moments in a child’s life. Every moment is a time of continuous need and development.
I am blessed to be a stay-at-home-mama. No one would ever accuse me of neglecting my children. I am at home with them all the time, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
But is my heart truly at home with my little brood? Do my children know that their mama is interested in their play, their needs, their fears?
Does my husband know that my heart is in our home? That I am not pining away and withering inside by my perceived “unmet needs”?
Now, I am not talking about raising children who think their mama owes them every waking hour. A child-centered home is a recipe for disaster.
A Christ-centered home, in which a mother devotes herself unselfishly to nurturing and training her children, creates a secure haven for growth and training.
I want to leave you with a challenge from Loving the Little Years:
It is no abstract thing- the state of your heart is the state of your home.
You cannot harbor resentment secretly toward your children and expect their hearts to be submissive and tender.
You cannot be greedy with your time and expect them to share their toys.
And perhaps most inportantly, you cannot resist your opportunities to be corrected by God and expect them to receive correction from you.
Mama, do your children have your heart?