This school year has been going splendidly so far and we are 18 weeks in. Surprisingly, it’s the first year that I really tried hard to cut back on unnecessary curriculum and/or workbooks that I just knew would take up lots of time and provide little benefit. The children are still on target, which is what matters in the end.
The Lord laid it on my heart a few months ago (just before we moved) to give Sabbath schooling a try. Basically, moms who use this system plan steady, thorough loads of school work for six weeks and then follow that up with a seventh whole week of rest – hence the name Sabbath schooling. This goes year-round, and ends up leaving about a month or so of extra vacation time in addition to all the Sabbath weeks. Many families use that Sabbath week for fun projects, catching up on household chores and organization, stocking the freezer with once-a-month-cooking meals, doctors’ appointments, etc. Just about anything can go during the Sabbath week, but it’s mainly a time to rest, recover, sleep in, and enjoy family time together without school work being a part of the day. I know my personality very well and I often push until complete burnout. I never considered the thought of taking a break after “just” six week so school, but we are currently going through our first Sabbath week and I have to say that it is wonderful! We seemed to hit the break right as we were all getting a little glazed over with our studies. It’s a nice difference in the routine, and of course since it’s summer we’re spending a lot of time swimming, eating watermelon, and lounging around in the cool basement on hot afternoons. I like that I have been able to save some household projects for this week that usually would burn me out even more if I tried to fit them in during regular school days. It has been a new experience to remind myself that I’m going to have plenty of time to tackle this or that odd item and it goes on a list for the Sabbath week, when we rest from our studies and let our minds and hearts get a fresh breeze through them. This new discipline has been and will continue to be a great way for me to gauge how I’m letting myself rest.
Ah, rest, that elusive thing that never seems to find itself cloaking my shoulders. We found out the very night before we moved that we are expecting our seventh baby. I’m about fourteen weeks in and have been really struggling with extreme exhaustion more so than I did in my other pregnancies, but thankfully I have had little morning sickness. My body has seemed to stop right around 5 p.m. each night and I have to collapse on my bed as I cannot express a coherent thought after then even if I tried. We have determined that this is not twins, which is honestly a bit of a relief, though it would be wonderful to have multiples again if I ever had the opportunity. Of course, Abba knew that I would be carrying another baby when He led me to try Sabbath schooling, and I believe the extra rest is going to make a huge difference in this pregnancy. As it is, I’ll just be finishing up this school year when the baby arrives, which is another tremendous blessing. I have a strong sense that God really wants me to experience entering into His rest with this baby. Seven is the number of fullness, completion, and perfection. God’s complete rest is available to every believer and extends beyond the sanctification in Egypt all the way into the Promised Land, where we actively experience His making us know we cannot do anything except by His power. The possibilities with a Sabbath school are endless as I ponder this seventh baby and the rest the Lord has for this mama’s heart. Are all these sevens and Sabbaths and rests a coincidence? I think not.