Musical Memory | Renee Cook

Picking Up Peas

published12 days ago
3 min read

As Unto the Lord

In late 2013, we lived a thousand miles away from family & friends. We had no car in the city and were living on student loans. I had a teaching certificate that wasn’t valid in the state and a one year old whose daycare costs would have barely broken even with my teacher’s salary, so we decided I would stay home with the baby.

Plus, after she had been born, I finished out the school year in my music teacher job and cried every day on the way to work. I hated leaving her. Everyone said it would get easier… it never did.

So here I was, in our tiny kitchen, on my hands and knees picking up peas my one year old had dropped.

And my thoughts started wandering.

For a couple months, now, I’d been processing the transition to being a stay-at-home-mom.

While I loved being around my child and being able to nap when she napped (I was first-trimester-pregnant with surprise baby #2) and not being pulled in a million directions trying to balance her needs with the demands of a job… there was something frustrating I couldn’t quite put my finger on.

It hit me on the floor while picking up the peas.

No one sees.

The principal never comes in and says, “Wow! Great work! You’re amazing at this.”

There are no accolades or certificates or pay raises. (Or pay at all, for that matter.)

I used to know every teacher & student in the building because all the kids came to music class. The teacher’s would constantly tell me, "My students love your class!"

I missed the feeling that what I was doing mattered. That someone noticed.

And I’ll never forget the little whisper in my heart from the Lord after a few seconds of realizing I really missed being seen.

I see you. I see you picking up the peas. Whatever you do, do heartily as unto me.

My heart lifted.

I stood up with my handful of cold, mushy peas and thought, I can pick up peas to the glory of God.

That conversation with the Lord was really life changing for me in that season of life.

We went on to have 3 more kids in the next 4 years and I spent many-a-mealtime picking up peas, macaroni, oatmeal. Or teaching the toddlers how to do it.

Many days changing diapers & nursing an infant.

Many nights holding a baby with an ear-infection.

Many evenings making dinner with a baby on my hip and a toddler hanging on my leg.

Many afternoons walking at a snail’s pace around the block, passing those last few hours until Dad came home.

Sometimes, that season of life felt endless.

I did enjoy it though. And occasionally, I'd think to myself, "Soon enough they’ll all go off to school & I’d be able to have an hour or two to myself...."

Then we started homeschooling. Ha!! Which was a good reminder not to look to the potential future relief as meaningful encouragement for the present difficulty.

We don’t live for the weekend, or the next season of life when things will be easier (a myth, anyway). We live for the glory of God.

That word from the Lord on the floor of my apartment has been cemented in my heart and it still comes to mind in the day to day of teaching math, sounding out words, and trying new chore systems... I see you. And I’m pleased.

There’s something about knowing that you are exactly where God wants you to be.

Most people reading this have felt some level of calling or prompting to homeschool, for whatever reason. (I know some of you are probably in a different school situation or season of life.)

Whatever the mundane moments are of your day-to-day… the Lord sees.

The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him.
- Psalm 33:18

This is the work. Whatever you’re doing right now, whatever you’ve been called to do. That is the job.

Paul’s conclusion was - Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. As unto the Lord. (1 Cor 10:31).

Cheering you on from this side of the computer,


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