"Enjoy the LITTLE THINGS in life for one day you will look back and realize they were the big things."


What blog is about Intro

Come on in and sit awhile while I talk about the "Little Things" in life. I will share my journey of everyday life.... homeschooling, raising my children, homesteading, gardening, health and wellness, and real life.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Hospitality vs. Judgement

Hospitality..... I love that Rossie and Tara seem to have this on their hearts lately to share. I grew up in a home where my mom never wanted company unless it was in "her plan"... which meant we were always missing out on enjoying company. I have always welcomed company in our little home and now in our bigger home. I must say that in hindsight I can see that I was a terrible host because I never really offered much more than an open door and fellowship. I wish I had realized I needed to be serving them up some drinks and snacks or dinner.... We do now, but I still am probably too laid back about it. I have a "make yourself at home" policy.. if you want a drink feel free to get a drink, etc., but I should be better at offering before waiting until I realize they are thirsting to death. LOL!

The last year has been different though... I have been trying very hard to figure out why... besides the fact that my house is always a mess lately. Our home is "lived" in and I am okay with that, so why do I not want company? I am one of those people that thinks everything has a place and needs to be in it... most of the time. I don't thrive well in chaos, yet chaos is all around me. I want to be calm and cool and collected, but I look around and I can't breath in all the clutter. I want the shelves dusted, but I can't seem to get it done along with all my other "jobs"..... and I could seriously go on forever here about "why" I don't want company like usual, but I think I have finally figured it out. It's not the mess and our chaos.... I have decided to put our kids and homeschooling them first, so the mess and chaos are gonna have to be here awhile... or, at least, until we work out the kinks in the system. My conclusion is....

I just don't want the judgement. I just don't want someone looking at all of it around me and judging me... and I am not just talking about our my mess and dust. I am talking about my decisions.... my decision to homeschool... my decision to limit TV time... my decision to cut back my kid's teen level cartoon consumption... my decision to stand up even against the grandparents for foul language... my decision to not feed more materialism into my kids than they already naturally have (via Santa, via birthdays.. and yes, we still celebrate, but I am trying to lower the expectation)... my decision to turn a "living room" into a room of learning chaos complete with everything we feel like acquiring for the cause.
So, that is it! It's the judgement that I have been avoiding... from everyone... even the friends.... because I am not doing things the way they do things... and not that they say it, but come on... they think we are crazy... or they do it, too; but they do it different... or their kids "do not do that"... We have been TOLD we are trying to "protect our kids from the world"... maybe so, but that is not why we homeschool them. We were trying to protect them before that decision. Every parent tries to protect their children. That is a natural part of parenting. We simply made the decision to spend our TIME with them. The conviction to continue homeschooling came AFTER the process began for us. Now we are under the constant watchful eye of JUDGEMENT. Are our kids well behaved enough? Are they socially traumatized by homeschool? Are we turning "Pentecostal"? (My brother asked that one)... They are all watching for us to BE WEIRD. Yet, ironically my brother-in-law made a comment when he was visiting from California in comparison to the other cousins that our kids were much more enjoyable to be around and interact with because they are more relaxed and confident children. He did not realize the had even said something so important to me. I mean, he thinks we are crazy, too... but he has quit questioning us (at least, voicing it).
Hmmmm... so now that I have that figured out I need to get some cleaning done because this is SO CRAZY, but in figuring that out I think I also figured out that I am letting it be messy and chaotic on purpose! Yikes! If I have a good excuse... like not having time for company, then I don't have to entertain them and be judged by them.... Whoa! Mindblowing!!!
So, ladies... thanks for making me thinking deeper than I sometimes want to. I have been struggling lately with hospitality issues; however, as I have read your recent posts on your blogs about hospitality I have thought, "Okay, now I'm going to figure this out." I enjoyed them and they were GREAT, but I would leave thinking, "well, that part is not my problem, though. So, why do I not WANT people over lately?" You made me think deeper about what is going on with me. In doing so you have helped me get to the bottom of this issue (and I also have enjoyed all the tips, too!).


  1. Shannon-
    I is perfectly normal to feel like you are under a magnifying glass when it comes to your homeschooling/sheltering your children. It is not the "norm" of society! It is "old fashioned" what we are doing! Not "with the times" I fell into this trap as well. And it took be a long time of being defensive to realize that I was blocking the Lord from showing himself to others through our "radical" decisions! yes, there are seasons to not entertain. Seek the Lord for when you are to enter these seasons! Do not strive for perfection! Be careful not to expect something from yourself even the Lord does not expect from us! I am a full believer that your home will tell a story of your priorities. The fact that you have turned your living room into a schoolroom only shows that you value this homeschool decision and the time and effort you are investing in your children! Maybe someone will see that despite the fact that you are a bit behind on chores, your children are well behaved, well rounded, growing in the Lord, and thriving. Maybe that will shed light on the fact that you have your priorities in order!!! You are doing a great job!

  2. Just found your blog, and look forward to reading more.

    Go ahead and rejoice in the fact that the Lord has called you to a "crazy" life.

    After our first 2 kids (boy and girl) everyone thought we should be done. After 3 kids in 2.5 years, everyone began to wonder about our sanity.
    After 5 kids in 4.5 years, everyone knew we had gone off the deep end.
    After 6 kids in 6 years, everyone stopped asking questions.

    Then ... the homeschooling began. Yes, we were certifiably crazy, in their minds. But, we knew that we were doing exactly what the Lord had called us to.

    That was 20 years ago. We went on to birth 4 more children (total of 10) and then adopted 3 from Africa.

    We've homeschooled for 20 years.
    We haven't watched television in 19 years.

    But ... our kids are "socialized". The young adults are living AMAZING lives for the Lord, traveling all over the world ... serving HIM.

    Most people "our age" have been enjoying their empty nests for quite some time. We are so glad that we don't have an empty nest. Our youngest is 7 ... we have a LOT of homeschooling years ahead of us.

    Seriously ... stopped worrying about the judgement. (I know ALL about that.) And ... keep living for the Lord and focusing on what HE has called you to.


    mama of many


I love comments and suggestions! I read them all and I am so thrilled you are taking the time out of your busy life to share your words with me! --Shannon

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