Most of you will remember the credit card campaign that I am referring to when I title this “priceless”. There was always a list of things and the cost that would go into making the experience that they were having in the images. The implication was that it doesn’t really matter the cost that goes into these memories that you will have for a lifetime.

I am having one of those kinds of summers. Right now I am in the middle of the busiest week of my summer. Usually we have something every weekend and I hurriedly use the week between to try to bring the family back to a semblance of sanity and balance before the next weekend’s festivities ensue (and do all the laundry and camper dishes, too). Not the third week of July, though. This is FAIR week! And, coincidently, also the week they schedule basketball camp, for some reason. Of course this drives me crazy, but I’m kind of glad to have it all out in one week and not have two solid weeks of the summer full of stuff.

If you are interested to read it, I will detail my week at the end of this post, but I won’t bore the rest of the readers who are here to see where I am going with all this.

How could this amount of chaos be one of those “priceless” situations? I think you are all answering this question for me, because the answer is that obvious. Let me tell you though, it was not feeling priceless the moment my son was having a throw on the ground tantrum outside Aldi during the hour I had allotted for grocery shopping! Quite often the cost is not only financial. Not even mostly financial.


This weeks cost analysis would look something like this:

Basketball camp = $75, 4-H family dues = $20, Rabbit barn fees = $2, Fair ride tickets = $30, glue, construction paper, markers, etc (for 4-H projects) = $20

Best week of the summer = Priceless

There is so much more that goes into these things. The mom’s cost analysis of my week would be more like this:

Only 2 hours home a day = 10 gray hairs, 5 hours of sleep a night = 3 new wrinkles, Running steady for a week = new hip pain and fatigue, Generally raised stress level = stomach ulcer

Busiest week of the summer = was it worth it?

I am being brutally honest right now, as I’m in the thick of it. Is it worth it to survive a week like this in a short Minnesota summer? When I’m counting the cost of something, it very often has little to do with financial or time burden, but with my internal stress and spiritual burden.


This is one of those times when I run to the word for the answers. It’s so easy to accept the pat answer of “sacrificing for my kids”. After all, I am putting their interests before my own. But is it really what’s always best? This is one of those times where the world culture and the christian culture seem to have opposing views. The advice I seem to get from the perspective of “worldly wisdom” is to do all I can for my kids. Get them out there and run myself out. The Christian culture seems to point more to keeping them home and sheltered (here in rural Minnesota). The more they are out in the culture, the better chance of following that than God. What would the word say?

In Ecclesisasties, Solomon is pretty much talking exclusively about the question which I am here asking. What is the point of it all? What should we be doing? Chapter 3 verse 10 speaks about the busy work that man has. The striking thing, is that the beginning of this same chapter is the famous “Time to” passage. Everything has it’s season for happening. All of it is in God’s plan. The best a man has is to keep going, doing good, and enjoying the life God has blessed him with! So often the “time for all things” texts are used as a text for encouraging a heart that is at the end of one of those “times”. It is so interesting to me to see these texts through the eyes of one evaluating my time usage.

I’m a saver, my husband is a spender

He would probably not agree with that statement, but the reason I say it here is because it completely relates to how we spend our lives.

I would sit and use every moment to it’s greatest potential. The question of whether I am doing that or not actually creates anxiety. I will wonder and worry about if the last few minutes I spent on the couch will be held against me by God as “squandered”.

I have never heard my husband even think in those terms. He spends every moment to the fullest without a hesitation as to whether it’s invested or not. There are times when he is blessed by the knowledge that his efforts are making a difference in the life of another, but to spend his moments on tinkering on a motorcycle bring him just as much joy as the moments of ministry.

The balance the polarity of our lives bring to each other is refreshing. When I can sit and think of the ways this moment may bless another’s life, I can breath a sigh of contentment. But the joy he can have in an hour spent on a motorcycle ride teaches me a contentment I would not have known on my own. The kind of contentment for all situations that Solomon is talking about, and that Paul is talking about in Philippians 4:10-13. The kind of peace that only the strength of Jesus can impart. God’s purposes for my life are not something i can pretend to understand. If I can sit here, during basketball practice, and learn new and beautiful ways to trust in the sufficiency of Christ in all things than there is no way that this hectic week is not worth every wrinkle and stress ulcer. Ok, I’ll work on the stress ulcer thing…

The schedule

So what will I do with these moments. Will I stress over how they aren’t invested in something eternal? Or will I allow God to assess my situation and wait for the conviction of wasted moments? Will I let my kids be kids, or worry that they should be reading instead of watching the rain?

On Monday:

7-9 morning chores,

9-11 grocery shopping (not accomplished because of tantrum),

lunch and naps,

1-3 basketball,


6:30 Fashion Review rehersal at fair

On Tuesday:

7-9 morning chores,

9-11 2nd attempt at grocery shopping,

naps and lunch,

1-3 basketball,


5 fair project submission,

6 soccer (at this point the van gave up and wouldn’t start in the school parking lot, was stranded till 8)

On Wednesday:

7-9 morning chores,

little boys to grandparents,

11 rabbits to fair,

12 lunch,

1-3 basketball,


6 discipleship group (our turn to bring snack)

9 pick up boys

On Thursday:

7-9 morning chores,

take care of rabbits at the fair,

in-laws come in to town for the weekend,

1-3 basketball, awards ceremony,


6 soccer,

7 night of destruction at the fair

On Friday:

7-9 morning chores,

11-3 rabbit show,


7 Fashion Review show,

Rides at the fair

On Saturday:

8:30 Chicken butchering,

4 hubby’s uncle and aunts 25th anniversary party

On Sunday:

9 Hubby teaches sunday school,

10:30 I lead nursery during service, naps,


4 softball,

in-laws leave



Peace that passes understanding (because having peace in all this doesn’t make sense!) = priceless

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