Hello, dear reader, and happy new year!
It has been nearly a year since I’ve written in this space, and had I known then, I would have given you warning or at least a note. But we don’t always know when a tug may come for us to go, only that when we sense it, we should, as Frederick Buechner puts it, “go with our lives where we most need to go, and where we are most needed.” And so I have obeyed the calling toward home and homeschooling with a fresh gladness and intention the last year, putting aside nearly all forms of public writing for a time, including this humble space. Once again, without warning, here I am.
The reality about growing as a person––as we each are doing––is that I only ever consider change in one dimension, perhaps the growth of a habit or skill or friendship, expecting the other parts of me to remain constant. The same can be true of my children. I notice one facet of their life that needs closer attention, maybe something to do with a skill or study or their character, but I cannot always understand or see the way greater attention in that area will affect the rest of them. Change to one aspect of our personhood does in fact change the whole of us somehow. We are not gadgets with parts to tinker or perfect; we are souls, richly inhabiting bodies for such a brief whisper in time. Our growth is not always linear; our progress is not solely in one direction. And I am learning more each year to receive each day, each need in our home, each desire and effort with grace.
We now have four young adults, growing with rapid speed physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It’s such a rewarding season in parenting, and also a time-consuming one. So much is happening within each one at once in this season, requiring more active listening, patient encouragement, and mountains of wisdom and discernment. Liam graduated from our home/school and we have since transplanted him to a quaint college across the country, which may as well be across the sea. We miss him. He has been home to visit twice since and now arrives home with a backpack, skateboard, and warm hugs, brimming with ideas to discuss and questions of how to make certain meals. Home has new meaning now for him and for us.
The Psalmist writes, “Teach me to number my days that I may gain a heart of wisdom.” We do not always need more information to know how to live or which voice in our lives to obey. We need wisdom. And one way we can can grow in wisdom is by counting our days, by remembering that our life is precious and what we do with it matters. As we look to a new year, filled with fresh aspiration and anticipated growth, I hope this space will continue to serve you as you seek to make the most of your own. Thank you for being here.
With warmest gratitude,