My dad & The Ingalls

(Originally posted on The Bullard Pack blog on 3/18/10)
My oldest 2 girls and I recently began our year long reading commitment of the “Little House” series, beginning with “Little House in the Big Woods.” During one of our recent conversations of a “Prairie Primer” question, we discussed the difference in chores done by the Ingalls family and the Bullard Pack.
Even though their family is from a different century, the work required to keep their family functioning is very similar to ours. Except, of course, we have the luxury of modern machinery to help us do our chores much faster, and with less physical labor!
The topic of most interest to us was what they DIDN’T do. On Sunday- that is. They didn’t do any chores. They didn’t work in the fields. They didn’t drive the buggy to church (b/c hitching up the horses would require work). They didn’t cook any meals (they ate cold food leftover from the day before). They believed in and obeyed what God said in His Word about having 1 day of rest, and 6 days to do your work.
So how come I always forget that????
When I was younger I remember my dad used to raise his voice to my mother, sister and I if we were “caught” doing chores on Sunday. He would gently remind us that it was the Sabbath day, and it was to be Holy. Come to think of it, he continues to remind me & my sister of that!
I tried to follow my father’s example after I got married.
Then we had a baby (obviously you can’t leave a newborn to tend to herself all day on Sunday…..right?).
Then came another baby.
Then came serving at church (sometimes 3 services on Sunday).
Then came another baby.
Then we moved & had no responsibilities on Sundays for a while.
Then we found another church home & began serving again (only 1 or 2 services on Sunday)
Then came another baby.
Now, we are doing church at home & traveling to another city to help lead worship once or twice a month.  
When I try to rest on Sunday, my mind wanders:
“I might as well get a jump start on the laundry that is piled up…..”
“The house is a mess, what if someone “drops by?”……”
“All the dishes are in the dishwasher, someone has to empty it…….”
“There’s “nothing” to eat…………I guess I’m make something for the family………..”
“I forgot to pay the bills !!!! …………..”
“I need to prepare for this week’s bible study…………….”
“What activities do the kids have scheduled this week???? ……………………”
“I need to go to the grocery store…………….”
Then I get up and go DO it!!!!
Of course, after a period of several weeks………it happens………..MELTDOWN!!! I realize I’m over committed (& so are the children), I’m tired. I’m sick –literally. I can’t fall asleep, or stay asleep. I’ve had NO rest.
After the crying, I begin asking myself the question: What needs to go????
My first answer came from talking with my husband this past Sunday: No more chores on the Sabbath!!! Period.
Then, I got my second answer from my mother this morning.
We were sitting in the living room, sipping our coffee & chatting (while I was simultaneously checking fb b/c a friend called to tell me there was an inappropriate post on my wall!). After a few moments, my mom simply said “you know Jodie, THAT requires a lot of time and attention.” I quickly replied: “I know, I know…BUT, it’s a great way to stay connected with people…………” And then it sunk in (later, of course- yeah, it might be a good thing, but my life is running over with all kinds of good things. Good things are what rob my time and distract me from focusing on the GREAT things that I am supposed to be doing, to fulfill my purpose, in Christ).
Exodus 20:  8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. 11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
So what are some of the things that are keeping you from RESTING ? Do you have too many good things to do during the other 6 days, and they are spilling over into the Sabbath???
Wonder what my dad and the Ingalls would say about that????
– Jodie

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