- Over 20 million students are enrolled in college this year in the USA.
- Over 58 million children are enrolled in public, private, Christian, or home schools across America in 2022.
Life moves fast and there are some seasons of life that seem to move faster than others. The busyness of the start of the school year, the move to a new home, or starting a new job are all moments of potential challenges to finding a healthy pace of life.
Let’s talk about school. Some are starting school for the first time, others are anticipating a new year of discovery, and growth, and still others are saying, “One more year until I graduate!” It can be a very busy time. How can a student, parent, or family juggle all the new routines and responsibilities that come with the start of a new school year? Have a flexible plan. Having a flexible plan helps with the pace of life.
Paul encouraged the Colossi believers to make good use of their time. The Christian who manages time well is a good example and offers testimony to those outside the church, who are not yet Christians.
Walk in wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time.Colossians 4:5
“Redeeming” essential means “To buy back.” You may have a gift card for a car wash and when you use that card, you are redeeming the card in exchange for the car wash. This is where the “wisdom” Paul is talking about comes into play. When we use wisdom to determine what, how, and when we do things, we can make better use of our time. We are “buying back” our time when we plan, makes lists, and have a set of priorities for our decisions.
Here are several tips for wise planning for your time, going into a new school year, and shopping for school items.
- Read through all the school material, handbook, and classroom item lists today.
- Make a list of all the things you need to find, buy, and order.
- Order the things you or your student may need today, online.
- Go to the store tomorrow with a detailed list of what is needed. You may need to take your child with you to try on some clothes or to have their feet measured for shoes.
- Go over your list one more time while you have a few days left before school.
Now that you have all the stuff you and your student need for the school year, what about a healthy routine? Routine is a good word and a healthy routine has many considerations. Once school begins, there will be drive time, bus stop times, lunch times, after-school time, extracurricular activity time, and so much more to consider!
Factor in sports teams, music practice, and drama productions, and the calendar can fill in so fast!
Here are some ideas to maintain a healthy pace despite all of the potential demands on your time.
- Remember Why. Why are you driving your child around everywhere? Love. Devotion. Developing their potential.
- Remember Who. The first “Who” is God. Your kids are not the responsibility of the state or of the school. Your kids are given to you by God. They are an enduring gift of God’s grace. Your kids need to know about “Who” as well. All the education, athletic endeavors, and musical or artistic art forms lose their meaning and value if we forget the most important “Who.” The next “who” are the kids! They are students with God-given abilities and potential. They need you to help them learn good time management too. Just ask their science teacher when they are preparing a long-term science fair exhibit about time management!
- Remember What. What is most important? Loving God. Loving others. Glorifying the Lord. Creating a safe place to learn and grow to become more like Jesus. With your best effort, avoid letting work, the job, school, or the classroom, squeeze church participation and Christian activities out of your routines. Gather with your church on Sunday. Worship God. Fellowship with your church during the week in your Scatter Groups. Sit down as a family and pray before a meal around the table. Remember the small and consistent things that are most important to building your faith.
Develop a flexible plan and start to use it this week, because having a flexible plan helps with the pace of life.