Time Out!

As a mom, I have often sent my children to the “time out” chair or corner. Sometimes it would be 15 minutes, or 30 minutes. It was an opportunity for my children to sit quietly and reflect on their behaviors, attitudes and motives. I cannot say that it always worked, but when it did, I was thankful because their hearts were changed.

Lately, I have been wanting to give myself a time out. Not so much for discipline, but just to simply be alone. I feel an increased need for moments in my day where I can breathe in Jesus and exhale the cares of the world. My heart longs to get away alone, by myself, for just a few moments of quiet reflection. I don’t want to have to do anything. I simply just want to be. And I don’t always want to run into the bathroom, lock the door and stay for awhile. Isn’t that where we moms find our quiet place? Until the children come knocking on the door that is!

It’s not often that I get those moments. As a full-time working mother of four children of varying ages, a loving husband and ministry commitments, there are hardly quiet moments left at the end of my day. And when there are, I often feel as if I need to fill them with some greater good, like caring for my children, grocery shopping, menu planning or house cleaning.

Why is it that I often feel as if every waking moment of my life must be spent on others? I cannot ignore my God-given role as a wife and mother. However, I do believe God wants to give me “glimpses of His goodness” each day by gifting to me spare moments in His presence. I am not talking about extended times of prayer here. I am talking about receiving those spare moments as gifts from the Lord that allow me to stop and be refreshed in His presence.

My girlfriend tells me this story. She was a young, homeschooling mom of several very active children. She was hardly ever away from her household without her children. But she understood the importance of quiet times of reflection. Her children at the time were too young for her to remove herself to another part of the house. So, she would sit in the middle of the floor and put a blanket over her head. When her children asked her what she was doing, she would say, “Mommy is in time out. You may not speak to me until I remove the blanket.”

As a mom, I need to give myself permission to pursue those spare moments that God gives to me in my day as gifts. I need to throw a blanket over my head, put myself in “time out” and be okay with the fact that I am not doing anything for anyone. It doesn’t have to be long. 5 minutes. 10 minutes. 15 minutes. Moments just long enough to allow myself to stop, breathe, reflect and be refreshed in His presence.

Seek the Lord while you can find him.
Call on him now while he is near. (Isaiah 55:6)

Give yourself permission to take a time out with God today! You will be glad you did and your family will love you for it!

10 Responses to Time Out!
  1. Kendra
    January 25, 2011 | 5:29 am

    Oh so many times I wish I could go and sit in Time Out and be alone with God. My day started at 5 and ends at 11-it is a long day filled with the wants and needs of my child and the teenagers I teach. God has spoken to my heart lately that he doesn’t want us to just simply fill up our day with activity, but to fill up with Him first. When I start my day with His word-even if it is just 15 minutes-I and those around me have a better day. Thank you for writing this. I know many moms need to hear it.


    • Barbie
      January 26, 2011 | 12:45 am

      Wow, you really have long days! Praying that you find moments where you can get alone with Him and be refreshed. I totally agree that when we put God first in our day, everything just falls into place.

  2. Larri
    January 25, 2011 | 6:37 am

    I’ve found the days I don’t start with quiet time are often the most hectic. Well, maybe not as hectic as any other in my life…I’m simply not prepared to handle what comes my way.

    If my kids happen to awaken before my Quiet Time is finished, I tell them they must sit still and wait. No talking. No TV. Just wait. I think they need to see me spending quiet time with God. That will be a picture they remember in their adult life…Mom having a Time Out with God.

    Great post! Thanks for sharing. Happy Tuesday! 🙂

  3. Kim Stuff could be worse
    January 25, 2011 | 10:13 am

    I needed to read this! We do need these time outs!

  4. Carla MacLachlan
    January 25, 2011 | 5:05 pm

    I’m often reminded that even when I am running to and fro I can still choose to quiet my spirit. Even when there are small hands waving in our faces or fingers tugging on our sides we can remind our hearts: Be still and know that I am God.
    Oh, how that must please Him and refreshes us for the daunting journey.

  5. Beth
    January 25, 2011 | 7:01 pm

    That is totally true!! Gotta take care of yourself.

  6. Beth
    January 26, 2011 | 5:58 am

    God draws us and woos us doesn’t He Barbie? We are absolutely drawn to have that time alone with Him. I totally understand. The only way I really have “down” time is to get up a few hours before my family.

    I do like the blanket over the head idea, but since my daughter doesn’t get “time-outs” she would think I had lost it. :o)


  7. bp
    January 26, 2011 | 12:11 pm

    I enjoyed your post. Thanks for sharing. It is so important as Moms for us not to forget to take care of ourselves too and having that time to refresh, like you said if it’s just 5 minutes, is so important. Also, it is comforting to me when I read in the Bible that Jesus went somewhere to be alone or by himself. He needed that too.

  8. Kimberly
    January 28, 2011 | 4:52 pm

    I am getting ready to go back to work (just part-time) after 9 and a half years at home. So my scheduling and my days are going to be changing up…and I know this is a reminder I am going to need to, well, remember! 🙂

    Our time spent with Him is never wasted. I love Him so. 🙂

  9. Leah
    February 7, 2011 | 11:26 am

    This is a wonderful reminder for all of us Barbie. I’m thinking I may just take God up on this offer right now!