By Cynthia Rey
We have all experienced the feeling of longing for something out of our reach; be it something material, a loved one, or a particular goal. We’ve all longed for something.
Our early years flew by, and now we find ourselves with families of our own, perhaps still longing for something. That can certainly get tiring, wouldn’t you agree? Who would have thought we would possibly be giving up careers and personal dreams in order to stay home with our children full-time?
We sacrificed. We chose to go without the extra stable income, more grownup interaction, and on occasion, our patience. There have been times we were unable to join our friends for a lunch date because we simply could not afford it. We might have even dreaded birthday parties because we would have to somehow purchase someone a gift.
While some of us might have started our own home-based businesses to supplement our husbands’ wages, it has still been a sacrifice to stay home. It sure seems as if we have missed out on much. We might even grow resentful or depressed. These issues of the heart need to be addressed and dealt with as soon as possible, lest they, like yeast, permeate our homes and exhibit themselves in our words, actions, or lack thereof.
What we fail to see during these times of frustrations, though, is the treasure that comes with staying at home; a wealth so coveted by many, yet achieved by fewer families these days.
Have you truly considered the irreplaceable, priceless time and memories that have been granted to you and yours? Perhaps you have. It’s important that we remember our priorities.
The wealth gained by living on one income cannot be measured or counted, as you already know (but might have temporarily forgotten). It is not financial wealth. It is far more rewarding. It is a wealth that cannot be earned, yet it is made. A fountain of wealth, granted, and entrusted to us, by our Creator.
There is wealth in the time of sowing: We instill our values, morals, and God’s Word into our children. We teach them life skills that help our families’ routines and livelihood, which will benefit them by teaching them the importance of their contribution (among other things), and how to be self-reliant when they get older. They will remember us being there. The lines of communication can be more intentionally kept open. Knowing that every day has the potential to impact our children’s minds and habits will compel us to give them the best of us, while relying on God’s strength to see us through the struggles. There is wealth in this.
There is wealth in the reaping: No work we do for the Lord will be in vain, and the prayers, time, and pain invested in our families will undoubtedly produce lasting fruit. The work that goes into maintaining a homestead, or keeping any home running, although exhausting, can bring families together. Although the daily chores will seem repetitive, and never-ending, the seasons will come and go, revealing a tapestry of moments, woven securely together to provide a covering of unity, irreplaceable relationships, memories, depth, lessons, and love. There is wealth in this.
There is wealth in the Sabbath year of rest: When we have seen the fruit of our labor, and God’s presence, every step of the way; when we are at peace, and can be glad for the years we struggled through, while giving God thanks and honor, we will enjoy a season of rest, to some degree. Like the Biblical Sabbath year of rest for the land, planting and plowing will cease, at least in the sense we were accustomed to. We will cultivate by watering, weeding, and pruning, resting from the hustle of the previous years of lard labor, yet not forgetting its blessings. There is wealth in this.
There is wealth in all of this. Please, believe it.
Let us not be parents that sacrifice emotional stability and precious memories at the altar of convenience. We will never regret the extra time we took to listen to our children’s incessant questions, stories, and even fears. We will never regret caring for our homes in ways that, to many others, might seem exaggerated, or unnecessary.
Our choices are best made when they honor God, and our families.
One income certainly makes things more challenging, but it also forces us to spend wisely, be creative, and allows us time. There is so much wealth in that. It is a wealth unable to be measured, counted, or contained. We are wealthy, indeed.
Cynthia Rey is a wife and stay at home, homeschooling mom to a 10-year-old son and her wonderful niece and nephew. She ministers to children, women, and young adults through
Faith Outspoken, striving always to be a woman after God’s own heart.