365 – Life is About to Change

365…That seems like so many days, but the years are flying by.  Somehow I woke up and have an 11 –year-old and an 8-year-old.  What?!?!  I thought they were babies.  I came to this “time is flying” realization last winter.  Some time after the new year, I began to realize that my days were filled with teaching 11th grade, taxiing my kids to various activities, volunteering at my church, grading papers, and having a token conversation with my husband each evening.  The treadmill of life was rolling out of control, and I couldn’t seem to turn it off or even slow it down.  Dance, baseball, Awana, violin, more dance, care group, praise band practice, grading papers, club meetings, committee/board meetings, softball, cleaning, mowing, volunteering…. my family was and is up to our ears in scheduling and activity.  Around the same time last winter, circumstances divinely converged, and God placed a calling on my heart to pursue the creation of an after school program at my church.  I know, I know – as if I needed one more thing on my crazy schedule. In the midst of this, I was tethered to technology, fighting migraines, and missing being a mom and a wife.  My conversations with my daughter, Hannah, were limited to the time to and from dance.  My conversations with my son, Owen, were irregular to say the least.  And, my conversations with my husband were about “necessaries” like money, kids’ schedules, our schedule, dinner menu…blah!  Something had to give…and still does.

Ultimately, I turned to the only place I know to turn in times when I can’t seem to successfully micromanage every element of my world: I turned to God, asking him what I needed to do /what I could do to slow us down.  On the outside, our life is perfect – a typical family (with some cute kids:) living the American Dream.  We live in a quaint, small community in a nice house; I drive a mini van, which is often filled with kids.  I teach at the high school a few blocks from my house, my husband works from home, and my kids attend the elementary school right by my school. We even have a dog and cat, Gansey and Sophie.   PERFECT, right?  By culture’s standards, yes, our life is great, perfect, amazing. But, I no longer wanted to be on the cultural treadmill with the rest of the world.  It took only a few conversations with my husband and children to realize they didn’t want to be either.  So, what to do?

For starters, I prayed and prayed and prayed some more.  I sought counsel from a family counselor, two pastors at my church, and a good friend who had made this realization long before I did.  Obviously, I am leaving out months of events, studying, and conversations, but the outcome was 365.  I decided to take 365 days to intentionally focus on my family and my God.  So, from August to August, the Farish’s will try each day to make much of Him.  Oh, we’ve tried to in the past.  But this feels different, more intentional.  Each of us plans to make God our focus personally as well as our family’s focus.  In fact, that’s our family motto:  Make much of Him in all we do.  What will that look like?  We have no idea!  For starters, I took a leave of absence from my job, and I am homeschooling Hannah and Owen.  Other than that, we plan to lean on God, remembering that the Lord’s unfailing love is as vast as the heavens and that his faithfulness reached beyond the clouds (Psalm 36:5).

This blog will be dedicated to how we do life differently over the next year, and how God’s at work in our family, our community, our church, and our world.  We hope you’ll read along as I share what we’re learning.  We also hope you’ll share your journey to making much of Him with us, including tips on de-busying our life – we need all the help we can get!

Comments

  1. Congratulations on launching the blog, Sarah! And may this August-to-August ….experiment (?), nah….INVESTMENT….be a journey you’ll be glad you chronicled.

  2. Thanks, Marilyn! I was looking at the next year as an experiment, but now I think I’ll look at it as an investment. I like it! As I’ve gathered curriculum this week, I am nervous about homeschooling…11th Grade English I can handle, but 3rd and 6th grade math have me shaking in my shoes;)

    • A little shaking can be very energizing!

      • Ginny Buzzard says:

        Hi Sarah,
        I rejoice in your decision, your family’s decision to do this. Life just seems to fly by and your children, your husband and your faith are the top priorities in your life. God gives us one chance in life to raise our children and to set the course for their lives…..it is the same with you and your husband. There are no “do-overs” with time. You will never regret a year spent with a focus on God and your family. I would love one more day to bake chocolate chip cookies and sit by the fire with our 2 children but I did do that with them. Hugh and I did try to give them a good foundation in their faith but as I look back I know I could have done so much better.
        We have so many wonderful opportunities as Americans. But it is also opportunities to be separated from our children and spouses in time and faith time. Who best to set the moral compass for your family than you and your husband with our church and God as top priority.
        Oh Lord, I feel as though I have rambled on and on. Bless you, Sarah…good for you!! Can I help you in any way?
        He loves you so, Ginny

  3. I am now subscribed!!:) Love the look…pink of course! 🙂 And the content is and will be inspiring!

  4. Sue Adams says:

    God works in mysterious ways, but for a reason. I pray with each step you take in this new journey and kinow that it will be adventurous but rewarding. My generation stopped the merry-go-round and got off, your treadmill will still be therel. But I think, it will never go the pace it did again. GOd bless you and the family.

    • Sue, I will one day write a post about breathing – really! To this day, sometimes I stop and simply tell myself: Sarah, breathe! It’s hard to believe it’s been six years since I learned that valuable lesson from you (and quite a few other lessons too!) I hope you’re enjoying retirement; I also hope you continue reading the blog because I’d appreciate the “English teacher” feedback. I’ll admit, though, my notebook is filled with ideas; oh, how I have missed writing:)

  5. Though we joke about this a lot, but this time…

    #truleybrilliant

  6. I can’t wait to see where the journey takes you. And seeing this blog in my Reader will be a joy!

    Especially since the pink will be stripped out by the rss feed:)

    Bloggers of FBCW unite

  7. Sue, I will one day write a post about breathing – really! To this day, sometimes I stop and simply tell myself: Sarah, breathe! It’s hard to believe it’s been six years since I learned that valuable lesson from you (and quite a few other lessons too!) I hope you’re enjoying retirement; I also hope you continue reading the blog because I’d appreciate the “English teacher” feedback. I’ll admit, though, my notebook is filled with ideas; oh, how I have missed writing:)

  8. Thanks for the encouragement, Brian:) Maybe I should’ve named the blog brilliant? Nah, no way. We’re B&B4B: Brian & Beth 4 Brilliant!

  9. Thanks for the backhanded compliment, Mike;) Really, I truly appreciate your support – even if you don’t like pink. The next post is on its way:)

  10. Congratulations on finding a creative outlet, something I think we all need. I have already added your blog to my favorites tab with the others that I read, and am looking forward to reading all the experiences and lessons that you learn.
    Honestly I’m surprised you didn’t make the blog blue- Smurf blue, of course 😉

  11. Thanks, Valerie:) I do love Smurfs, but they don’t compare to my love of PINK:) I hope someday you’ll read about yourself on this blog…you know, being my friend does have its drawbacks;) Really…Part of my journey/my family’s journey includes those we’ll lean on and those we love – and that’s you:) I also hope to share the stories of friends – of those who influence and inform my life – and that’s you too!

  12. Ginny – Thanks for the words of encouragement as well as the offer of support/help. I have no idea what I’ll need as of now. I am still gathering curriculum and books. but I’ll keep your expertise as an elementary teacher in mind:) As I read your post, I kept thinking…someday my kids will be adults, and I’ll look back on this year – and hopefully others – and thank God he called me to slow down and truly focus on Han and O. I so appreciate the wisdom you provide from your experiences and am thankful you’re willing to share it:)

  13. Jennifer Ireland says:

    Sarah, so excited for this! I think the after school program was God’s ploy to get you to slow down and cut out the business in each day so you can hear him 🙂 love ya! Jen

    • Thanks, Jen! If there’s one thing I know after Honduras and this week away it’s that I don’t dream big enough or trust God big enough. I am steadily giving up al that I can, so when He’s ready, I am free:) Love ya 🙂

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