Friday, June 30, 2017

Our Homeschool Journey

I am always up for a writing challenge, especially when I am given a subject to write about.....hence this is why I am writing about our family's journey of homeschooling.  I should really write a disclaimer here because I really want people to know that this is OUR journey and ours only. You will never find two families that home school the same way and nor should they as this is the beauty of get to do what you think is best for your kids, help them learn in the way that is best for them and create a lifestyle for your family.

Our family looks very different to the next, we have different needs and have different interests. I am also not saying that this is for everyone because its not. Nor am I saying that I am anti-education or anti-anyone that sends their kids to school. I am simply say we have chosen the path that is right for us.

I had never heard of home schooling until I met my mother-in-law. I came from your normal everyday family, went to school when I was five and finished at the age of 18 with a 'B' Bursary and went of to complete a Bachelor of Nursing in the three years following high school.  (Looking back now and knowing what I know now I would have LOVED to have been homeschooled.) When I met my husband I obviously met my in-laws who were home schooling their kids at the time.  Honestly I thought they were nuts. Actually I distinctly remember thinking "Who would ruin their kids education by keeping them at home!"   Fast forward to having children of our own and building our own philosophy around children, birth and family life I began to be drawn to the concept.  We did however send our first child, then second and third to school.  It wasn't until our third child was five and a half that we felt that homeschooling was where we were being led to.  After talking with a squillion home school families I gingerly applied for exemptions from the Ministry of Education and began the long wait. They were granted for all three just in time for the beginning of the school year. And so our home school journey officially begun with my children being 9, 7, 5 along with a 3 and 18mth old. I will be honest....all of a sudden it felt incredibly over whelming.

I should note in here that our decision to head this way (for us) seemed like a natural extension of our parenting style. It was NOTHING to do with the school in fact the boys were attending a  great local integrated Christian school. This was entirely about our family. When I try to explain this to people I usually end up with "Our family felt so different, functioned better during the school holidays and weekend than we did in the school term".

One of the biggest mistakes I made was trying to bring 'school' into the home. I became the teacher not the mother and I failed miserably. The boys responding unfavorably and I remember feeling really discouraged and like I had failed in the first few weeks. I soon recognised about what I was doing and stopped all traditional school work for a time (this is a term that homeschoolers refer to as de-schooling). My two oldest had been in school long enough to groan at the mention of any bookwork so instead we played games, did activities, baked, cooked, gardened and went on outings. Generally hung out on "purpose" and enjoyed being a family.

So what do we actually do?  Thinking about what we do now, a whole  6 years later we have definitely formed our own way of doing things after having change tack a number of times along the way to suit the season we are in and what is going on in our family life.  We have had to make allowances for sickness, a surgery, 2 more babies, a job loss, pro-longed unemployment, study and moving in that time. I think those times were both made harder and easier by the fact that we were home schooling but one thing definitely made a difference for our kids was the stability that being at home.

We use a mixture of concepts for our way of home schooling.  We use the NZ curriculum for Maths and English, gleaned ideas from the science curriculum. Use unit studies i.e like the moon, caves, earthquakes etc and feather out each topic until the kids lose interest or it starts to go in another direction.  For example when we did the moon we did moon poems, what the moon is made up of, moon art, learnt about the man on the moon, dabbled into space and space travel, what part does the moon play in our lives and so on.

Kids bake goodies and sold them at the gate. I really had to get over the embarrassment factor when they did this. They made over $30 that day!

We have also often used books as a base to learn from.  One that comes to mind was a book called "The Rag Coat" by Lauren Mills. From this we learnt about quilting and had a go at it, looked at coal, coal mining and its history in NZ.  We looked at the Appalachian Mountains and its people. We looked at the effects of poverty and how people can help others in the smallest way.

When we started I was petrified about having to teach the kids how to read. Seeing I am not a teacher in the traditional sense but I think we are doing ok with it.  I am aware my ten year old is probably on the same level as her 8 year old sister but she is slowing improving. In fact she isn't all the keen on traditional book work and would much rather do art, create, bake and cook and do gymnastics. The library has a great selections of readers for kids so we are never short of books for them to learn from.

Opportunities for experiences and education present themselves everywhere...even on holiday!

My 16 year old is just recently stopped home schooling under my supervision and has enrolled with Te Kura which is the national correspondence school.  His goal is that next year he will enrol with BCITO (Building and Carpentry Industry Training Organisation) to start his apprenticeship, so for now he is just making sure there are no gaps in his English and Maths. Being schooled at home certainly gives him the time to be available for different work experiences inside traditional school hours. I am not sure yet where my 14 year old will head yet.....for now I think he would be quite happy being a food critic. Where he can make money from eating food and telling people about it.  He is such a foodie!

Winter Art - gotta love Pinterest!

One of the things that has helped me the most is to know the love languages of each of the kids and also how they learn best. I would be lost at how to reach them if I didn't know these things about each of them, plus it also helps me be a better parent.

My little ones (4 and 2) hang around and do their own thing while we are doing 'school'. I use the word school loosely as learning is happening all the time, all day every day. Yes we have formal book work time but its for such a short period of time. The littlies paint, do play doh, help who ever is baking or just play with their toys. Often one of the big kids will take them for a walk to town if I send them on an errand that's needed to be done. If they are actually bored and getting into things I'll run them a bath!

Hatching ducklings was one of the coolest thing we have done!

The biggest concerns that people have it whether or not their kids will be social enough....I just need to say that my kids are VERY social. They are not stuck at home with no friends by any means. they play soccer (my 16 year old plays for the local college team even), they go to youth group, rally, gymnastics, choir etc. They go to movies, the gym with their friends, have sleep overs and go to birthday parties.  I don't think they have missed out on much by being schooled at home. They can interact with other cultures, ages and people groups well just by going to church, at the supermarket or just generally coming along with us if we are out and about. I run a not-for-profit community organisation that helps out new mums in need. They have been with me and watch it grow from the small beginnings to where it is now, a very busy and much needed organisation. They have helped cooked meals for mums, delivered meals, and bundles of clothes, helped sort and fold clothes that have been donated and been a part of the organisation of two fundraising fun walks.

Don't underestimate Google or YouTube either....while we need to tread with caution, they are both a world of information and learning. One of my kids taught himself how to skin a rabbit just by watching YouTube clips. He set the tablet up outside and played and paused the video clip as he was skinning the rabbit that he shot. To me thats priceless!

Sleeping outside under a tarp one summers night - even Dad was there!

Do I get it right all the time?  Definitely not! I have tried to introduce unit studies or concepts of interest and its failed miserably. I could battle with my 12 year old about English nearly every day if I wasn't carefully. My kids still fight with each other and still moan about jobs and things that are less than desirable. We disagree with how much technology they should be allowed and getting my bigger kids out of bed in the mornings is always a challenge. We still have the struggles that most families have to some degree...we are not the Brady Bunch or the family from the Sound of Music. My kids are just normal kids, they act like normal kids and they certainly look like normal kids. They aren't immune to fads either....half of them have a fidget spinner! I do not know everything. I have weaknesses including grammar (if you haven't noticed) but I have made Google, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram and Blogs my friend for inspiration, encouragement and ideas.

Finding different natural dyes and trying them out...tumeric works best.

Some of the challenges would be having to be really proactive at making space for me. Being around ones kids 24/7 can be tough some weeks.  People asking me what year they are in because I really don't know. It takes me a good few minutes to think about it. Strangers giving me their opinion about the choice I have made.  And for us...the prolonged period of unemployment after a sudden job loss. We lived on the benefit and then student loan for nearly four years. But because we held onto our choice to home educate our kids we sacrifice and worked hard to keep our lifestyle in which we successfully made it through. Also moving from the country where we had space (and no neighbors) to living in town and with five neighbors!  Its been an adjustment for us all including the lowering of the kids noise and the learning of  'inside voices and outside in town voices'. The adjustment of having very little outside space has been a challenge too.

Kaitlyn then four wanting to make a 'Bumble bee pie' after reading about one in a book. Fortunately there is such thing as a Bumble Pie

There is much much more I could write here....but I hope this is enough for you to gain some insight into a home schooling family and 'how it is done' and maybe even some idea about why families choose to do it.  Like I said its not for everyone but its for us. I hope this doesn't read like its too glamorous because at times its jolly hard work. Some days I think I need my head read.  There is a lot of planning and you have to be open to saying 'yes' more and going where your kids are leading you. I have to make friends with mess and chaos at times because reality is that there is 9 of us living in this house. But I look at my kids and the relationship they have with us and with each other  and I know that it is certainly the best decision we have ever made.

This photo is nearly two years old now...we don't even live in this house anymore! Really should get another family portrait done soon.

Friday, June 16, 2017


Well here we are....June. Very nearly half way through the year. I didn't know if I would be back at writing...actaully I still don't know if I am. But right now my heart is burning and my fingers are itching. I have something to say. To you, to God maybe even to myself.

Many of you know our journey over the past five and a half years, it hasn't been an easy one nor very glamorous. I don't know anyone that would think having 35c in your bank account is very glamourous.

 Five and a half years our lives change in an instant but our journey started long before that. It started when together we prayed an "Anything" prayer. Together Jamie and I prayed one of those totally "you must be crazy" kind of prayers and offered up our lives to God to do with what he pleased. He says and we do.  We did not want to keep living a normal faith kind of life but we wanted to lead a life by faith in a God so powerful, so tremendous, so all-encompassing, so mind-blowing, so loving, so magnificent. Thus our "beautiful crazy faith" life was born. For our children it meant they were in for the ride as well.

Fast forward to now and what a ride its been. I have just finished reading a book called "Anything" by Jennie Allen who too along with her family prayed an 'Anything' prayer.  Every single thought, feeling, fear, worry high and low that she shared I could resonate with so deeply. She and I could be friends, good friends.

These years have seen some all time lows, some deep dark valleys that I wondered how we would get back up from.  We have experienced some exhilarating highs that are beyond words and seen God move in such miraculous ways like we had never seen before. We have been stretched WAY out of our comfort zone and have been used by God in extraordinary ways.  I have never felt such love and intimacy with God nor have I ever felt such confusion and sorrow within that.

The question remains...Is it worth it? My answer...A definite YES! Has is been easy? No way, in fact its been the hardest years we have faced but they have been the best years also. We have grown so much but we also have been shown that we understand little about our Almighty God.  Writing such lines so truthful as these does cause me to wonder if I am selling a 'beautiful crazy faith' to anyone. Perhaps you who are reading leave thinking "um yay for you but no thanks...that sounds way too hard"   I am sorry as thats not my intention but I am not about to paint a all round rosy picture when it hasn't been.

Truthfully lately it has been hard, ridiculously hard....I can do nothing but to press into my Saviour and praise Him, for He is good. I certainly don't understand His ways but I love Him and trust in Him will all of my being. And I keep on going.

"For My thought are not your thoughts. Nor your way My ways" declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth so are MY ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts" -  Isaiah 55:9

Many a songs are on my play list at the moment and I have numerous of favourites (can they all be favourites? )  But I found a life motto inside one of them.....Six words that basically sum up my heart, spirit, soul and what our life by faith is all about.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Taking a Break

Every now and then something beautiful catches my eye which I just have to photograph. This is one such thing. I just love the colours of rosemary...the dark green, the silvery white and the earthy brown. This sitting on my window sill this morning just caught the most amazing light....and it was just so simple and beautiful. There is not enough of that in my world....I need to work to create it more or seek it out. 

You may or may not have noticed but I am taking a break from blogging at the moment. I recognise in myself that I need to create space for me. While that may come across as selfish I don't believe it is. EVERY SINGLE thing I have been doing in my life is for someone else.....and somehow I feel like I lost my way.....and inside I had been feeling chaos and definitely not God's peace. Blessings had become burdensome and I was beginning to resent what God had gifted to me. I haven't felt any joy in blogging for a while and felt that the purpose for me doing it wasn't been fulfilled. My writing has been going in a different direction now and whether that ends up in a blog format remains to be seen. 

Also to be honest I feel like I still need healing from our crazy journey of the past 5 years but especially last year. Our family needs time to re-adjust and find its feet in this new normal. I am just paring down what I do and commit to...for now. Blogging is just one thing as the pressure to write regularly is not something I can do. I want to have space to create, to be and to soak up all that is God and what He has for me. 

"He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul;" 
                                                                                                                                - Ps 23:2-3a

Friday, February 24, 2017

The Elijah Syndrome

I am suffering from this today. I know I am. So one would think if I knew that I was it would be easy to shake it off. I am trying to.

Elijah Syndrome = Where one experiences a great high in life/ministry, a great break through in ones life.... Where one spends ALL of ones energy that one comes to a screeching halt and spirals down quickly after said high. You spiral down and then you are attacked by the enemy. You down play what has been accomplished, doubt and fear creep in. You just want to curl up and sleep, cry, and eat...possibly all at once. (This is my own definition of course.)

This is me...right now. Just like Elijah ran away and hid when he found out that he was being chased down by Jezebel who was wanting to kill him. After he had killed 400 prophets of Baal and then prophesied and witnessed rain coming after a severe drought, all this among other things. He got depressed, feared, had a pity party and hid. He hid.

Please don't be mistaken for thinking that I am comparing myself to Elijah, to what he accomplished for the Lord. I am just a mere dot compared to him.

"Ahab told his wife Jezebel what Elijah had done and that he had killed the prophets. She
sent a message to Elijah: “You killed my prophets. Now I’m going to kill you! I pray that the gods will punish me even more severely if I don’t do it by this time tomorrow.”
Elijah was afraid when he got her message, and he ran to the town of Beersheba in Judah. He left his servant there, then walked another whole day into the desert. Finally, he came to a large bush and sat down in its shade. He begged the Lord, “I’ve had enough. Just let me die! I’m no better off than my ancestors.” Then he lay down in the shade and fell asleep." - 1 King 19:1 - 5
You see, Elijah was spent. Emotionally, Spiritually, Physically (look how far he ran and walked) and Mentally. When you are spent you are very much susceptible to what Leena Tankersley calls 'soul bullies'. And in times like these 'soul bullies' come out to play and have a field day.  They certainly had a field day with Elijah so much so he was hugely afraid of Jezebel, even though he had just accomplished all that he had done for God....he failed to see and to trust the Lord to help him overcome this particular problem. All he wanted to do was curl up and begging the Lord to let him die.
OK so I am not begging God for that....but I am spent. Today we had the Loving Arms 'Walk of Fun' and while it was a great day, and it was certainly fun and we absolutely raised a great amount of money for a worthy cause. I am glad it is over. I have spent hours upon hours, days and days planning and organising this event. Its nearly all I have thought about at night because I can't sleep. It has got me out of my comfort zone having to ask people and businesses to help, to support or to donate. I hated doing that but I did it. I forced me to talk 'bras' with complete strangers (some of them men which was very awkward) and why they were needed. Oh so awkward. I know I certainly haven't pulled this off on my own. I owe a lot to other people doing things for me but its been tough going. I enjoyed the day immensely, I enjoyed seeing people have a great time, people dressing up, people giving, people laughing, people eating. I LOVED seeing the kids come through the finish line like they had run a marathon. I loved watching people mingle with each other and talking. I LOVED giving out spot prizes to people and seeing their excitement over winning something. I am blessed. I AM so proud of our generous community of people that captured my vision and saw the importance of what we were raising money for. I cannot wait to present the amount to our recipients and just knowing that this will help many a new mother makes it all worth it. 
But in all that I am tired. I became very emotional this afternoon and cried. I cry all the time I know this but I cried out of frustration and tiredness. Do you know why? Because I looked in the mirror and saw a fat person, because I know that the scales are showing me unfavorable numbers which means we aren't on talking terms. I felt so defeated and worthless. Now I know I aren't obese or even hugely overweight, I know this. But I can do and be better. My doctor told me that I have had seven children and to give myself a break. But my screeching halt, my attack of the 'soul bullies' came in the form of a full force, all out war against the way I saw myself and how worthless I am because I can't lose the 5kg that I want to. The enemy hit me where he knew I would hurt the most. Talk about rude!  I went from the huge high to a huge low in a matter of hours. Not cool.
But God whispered to me "Elijah Syndrome". These words aren't in the bible anywhere but I knew exactly what He meant. Pray and pray hard. Rest and rest hard. Nurture yourself. Be kind to yourself. So for the next few days I will rest, and nurture myself. I will immerse myself in His Word and surround myself with good people. And I will heal.
I hope that you too will now recognise your 'soul bullies' and recognise when they come out to play. Your may be different to mine. Recognise when they come out to play, recognise their voices, their words and deal with them. You are worth it.
"He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;" - Ps 23:2-3a

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Run Well, Good is Coming

Well...yep this is a 4km run in the mid-afternoon heat. Red faced, majorly sweaty, frown lines made worse because I think I frown the whole time I am running.  I am NOT a runner by nature. I have mentioned that in the past. I would get a "stomach ache" 3 weeks out from the school cross country just so I wouldn't have to take part because I just knew that I would come last...and seriously who likes to come last. Some people glide down the road...I do not glide....think Clydesdale horse crossed with a elephant. I plod. Slowly. Not slowing down and definitely NOT speeding up. I plod the distance and I do not enjoy it. I constantly ask myself "why?" and I know very well why. I do this because its good for me and there are parts of myself I don't appreciate as much as other parts. And in order for me to appreciate them more...they need to shrink. I can't be friends with them so they need to go. So a long with running three times a week I continually put myself, my body through the order for me to feel healthy, confident, strong and less stressed.

Today as I was rounding the corner to a L-O-N-G stretch of road that came with a head on wind, cars were rushing by and the heat...Oh my goodness the heat....I seriously thought of giving up, just stopping and walking the rest of the way. No one would need to know ah?  Walking would be a nice treat. And so the internal battle raged within me..."just keep just walk your legs are so sore and you can't keep going, you can do this,  you have done it just walk already you have done enough exercise this keep going...SERIOUSLY KEEP GOING! "  And that is about when I get really stroppy with myself......Damn it girl if you can birth 6 out of 7 of your children naturally, including a not quite 10lb upside baby boy at home with no drugs you can run the last damn 1km!...Don't you dare stop!"  And then I stop arguing with myself and shut up and just keep going.   The last stretch is ALWAYS the hardest. ALWAYS.

My point here after I have pulled out the whole "if you can give birth" thing on myself....I start thinking about how running for me is like labour and birth. The reward at the end is AMAZING. The adrenaline rush is something else and the feeling like you have and can conquered the world. You feel strong, determine and powerful. But to get to that have to work hard, real hard...there is pain and discomfort and you are have to get your head right and just get on with it. Side note in no way am I suggesting that being in labour or giving birth is like a mere wee 4km run....labour and birth is WAAAAY harder. All I am saying is there are some parallels.

Just as there are some parallels in our journeys and walk with Christ.  I am sure there are many of you out there reading this that are struggling, some even with a capital 'S'. I get it....please know I get it. I have not only been there...I am there. We all have our own personal struggles that most people wouldn't even have the faintest of clue of. You my friend are not alone. We are all struggling alongside one another...struggling with something. No one is immune. In my journey what I have noticed is that the toughest part, the steepest part, the part where you are most out of breath, the most tired, the most sore is near the end. Its where you want to give up, its where you just want to sleep and for the pain to stop....ITS TOUGH GOING. You think you are never going to make it, the part where you think its just not working and that its beaten you. But my friend hear me now....lean in and get this...YOU ARE NEARLY THERE. You can do it, you will do it and you have to do it. You can do this. Draw into yourself, draw into God, draw into His Word and His Strength, draw into those you can trust to be supportive yet truthful, encouraging yet not worried yet will ply you with chocolate or coffee along the way (You need those types of people in your life...find some).   My friend keep running your race it strong, run it determined not to let it beat you, run it knowing that there is good, no... great things at the end. Don't give up...just don't.  This will not beat you, overcome you or crush you. This will be gloriously amazing but even more it will be ultimately for His glory.

You will be better for it. I promise.

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day " - 2 Timothy 4:7-8

"The pain that you have been feeling can't compare to the Joy that is coming" - Romans 8:18

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Strengthening Weakness

I know that this photo is pretty ho-hum. Yes it is my knee, my right knee to be exact well actually I should say its my right set of quadriceps. Thanks Miss Miller.... I remember! (Miss Miller was my 7th form PE teacher and probably isn't even Miss Miller anymore).

My right set of quadriceps are ridiculously weak. I have no idea as I am right-handed and lead with my right leg, but they are weak.  Most days I have been doing workouts and today's one was a tough leg workout. A line up of six exercises 15 times each (or each leg) 5 times, needless to say I was sweating and very red in the face.  This photo here is of me at the beginning of 15 steps up with my right leg leading. EVERY single time I get to this set I pause..I think I can't do it...I feel weak...I feel like my leg won't be able to hold me let alone lift me up on to the chair. I fear that I will fall or trip. I feel like giving up and just not doing it. 
The thing is its a mind game. I have to overcome my thoughts and feelings every single time. The first step is ALWAYS the toughest....I battle with myself to make it.
But you know what I always make it...I have never tripped or fallen. I have always completed the exercise and even though its that much harder on my right leg than my left. I can always do it. I may not look glamorous doing it but I can do it.
One would think I would have learnt not to question anymore and to just do it. One would think that I would know not to listen to my feelings and fears anymore seeing as past experiences tell me that its fine, that I CAN do it.
But no.

I am exactly like that in life too. I have had to do some hard stuff lately...ridiculously hard for me. I have had to put myself out there and ask people for help and sponsorship for Loving Arms upcoming Walk of Fun. For me that is a scary thing to do. A hard thing to do. I stress over making just one phone call all day, my chest is tight and I feel sick and like I can't breath. My head tells me things like "I am a nuisance," "Who do I think I am" "What gives me the right to ring and ask?" "They are just going to say no" "If they say yes its because they feel like they have to" "They are going to get angry at me" "You are just you" "Stop trying to be someone special cos you aren't" "Stop big-noting yourself" and so on and so on.

But you know I can recognize what is happening and just need to counteract all those thoughts with what God thinks of me. That 'Yes - I am someone special', I can do this. So with the strength and the backing of the Almighty I carry on...yes it may take me all day but I do it. And it is always matter what the outcome of the phone call or of the asking....its fine. I am fine.  
So here I am...God is having me strengthen my muscle that is very weak...the muscle of asking and putting yourself 'out there' and risking rejection. I don't like this strengthening but it feels good afterwards.

I recognize that strengthening of this muscle is only a good thing. It is the thing that will take this Walk of Fun and make it great. Its the only thing that will make me better....make my weak areas stronger. I don't I will ever LOVE doing things like this but I may not hate it. And that can only be a good thing.

"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest on me." - 2 Cor 12:9

Monday, January 23, 2017

There is Work to be Done.

I love this photo! Love it with every piece of my being. My beautiful niece sent it to me...its of her and my youngest daughter walking together on our bush holiday a few weeks back. Hand in hand..together.  I see so many stories and so many layers to this photo...I don't have the space or the words to do them justice...but I love it. Its simple and pure.

So I now I am thinking .....As the dust begins to settle from protests all around the world, women marching and standing together for women's rights. The right to be seen as valued members of society, for their voices to be heard and their wounds to be recognised in order for them to be healed. Now I feel like.... now what? What do we do with all that? Where do we go? How do we move forward? What does that even look like?

We women, we need to KNOW that we aren't created less than men.... but equal. Equal but different. We each have a part to play in this world and in advancing Gods Kingdom. No part is more important than the other just different. I love this excerpt from just one of the books I am reading at the moment, it was lent to me by our Youth Leader (who happens to be male)...the book is called Eve in Exile and the Restoration of Femininity by Rebekah Merkle.

"The Great Commission is the New Covenant expansion of the Creation Mandate given to the human race in Genesis. Initially our job was to fill the earth and subdue it (Gen. 1:28). Now there's an additional component: we need to convert and baptize the world (Matt. 28:19). Throw your mind back to Genesis. What critical ingredient was Adam missing when he was first created? He needed a helper. By himself, Adam was incapable of doing this job, incapable of either filling the earth or subduing it. So God created a helper suitable for the job. Woman was NOT an afterthought, or just someone for Adam to talk to, or someone who would make him sandwiches while he did all the filling and subduing of the earth. She was ESSENTIAL to the entire program. When God gave Eve to Adam, he was handing Adam an amplifier. Adam alone is just Adam. Adam WITH Eve...becomes the human race. Adam is the single acorn sitting on the driveway which, no matter how hard he tries, remains an acorn. Eve is the fertile soil which takes all the potential that resides in that acorn and turns it into a tree, which produces million more acorns and millions of trees. Eve IS fruitfulness.
    And if the Great Commission is the expansion of the Creation Mandate, if it is an unpacking of God's command in Genesis, then surely we see that women are integral to this project as well? The job of taking the world for Christ cannot be done by the men while we women sit off to the side and amuse ourselves with tea parties and having the occasional baby. If we take ourselves out of the game, the men cannot possibly accomplish what they are supposed to accomplish any more than Adam could of filled the earth on his own. WE ARE INTEGRAL to the project, and it's absolutely critical to the gospel mission that we recover a sense of our role. (Chapter 1 Pg 25-26) (Emphasis is mine)

Having known or now determined that we have an integral role to play.....what are we going to do with that information? How do we do that? How do we rally together as women so that there are no women left behind...that each know their value and worth? How do we stand with, encourage and enable our sisters, mothers, wives, daughters, neighbours, auntys, grandmothers, granddaughters, colleagues, our woman leaders, our pastors wives...any female we come across in lives no matter the race, social position or age? How do we instill in that she is absolutely integral to this world? Lord knows our world so desperately needs this. We can no longer sit by and let the lines between man and woman be blurred, so blurred in some cases that they are no longer visible. Man and Woman have been created different...physically, emotionally, mentally. Its time for our men to stand up... to be strong Godly lead, live and love well...then and only then can women truly be free to be who God created them to be.....uniquely and beautifully female. Not less, equal but different.

Its time now for us to grow up and show up...for there is work to be done.

"She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue"  - Proverbs 31:26