Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Under the Juniper Tree

As a homeschool mom there are times that I get burnt out.  I'm sure if you have been homeschooling for any length of time you have felt the same way at some point in your life.   Does that make us bad moms?  I hope not.  I like to think it makes us normal.  But let's face it, a burnt out mom makes for a grumpy mom. 

There are many things that can cause a homeschool mom to become "burnt out". 

Stress in the family outside of the homeschool.
Death of a loved one.
Focusing all your attention on your family and none on yourself.
Financial problems.
Marital problems.

The list could go on and on.   Usually when I become burnt out I find myself wiped out emotionally, physically and sometimes even spiritually. 

It's at those times that I have to remind myself to go sit under the Juniper tree.

I Kings 19:4-8

4 But he himself went a day's journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I am not better than my fathers.

5 And as he lay and slept under a juniper tree, behold, then an angel touched him, and said unto him, Arise and eat.
6 And he looked, and, behold, there was a cake baked on the coals, and a cruse of water at his head. And he did eat and drink, and laid him down again.
7 And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee.
8 And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God.

These scriptures tell us of how Elijah became so distressed by the threats of Jezebel, the he fled, took shelter under the juniper tree and asked to die.   This is the same Elijah who was there at the defeat of the prophets of Baal, the same Elijah who saw the drought end, and the same Elijah who ate from the widow's barrel of meal and cruse of oil, now so depressed unto the point of asking the Lord to take his life. 
No where does it tell us that the Lord chastised Elijah.  Instead the Bible tells us of how God dealt with his discouragement in an understanding way.  He allowed Elijah to sleep, he nourished him with food, and he gave him direction.  
So, in other words,  when we, as God's children, get discouraged or "burnt out" in the place that God has put us,  all we need to do is go sit under the Juniper tree.  Now I don't mean to go sit under the Juniper tree and mope around and ask God to take you home to be with him. : )  Instead ask God to give you the strength and encouragement to continue on doing that which He has called you to do.  Rest in Him and He will renew you. 
Isaiah 40:31  But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
God Bless


  1. Haha, I have had to sit under the Juniper tree on more than a few occasions! Thank our wonderful God that He does restore us.

    I love Isaiah 40:31! I sure do wait upon the Lord and He always comes and renews me.

    Thanks for this encouraging post.

    In Him,

  2. I admire you moms who homeschool. My neighbor and friend has homeschooled her 5. Two have graduated college and gone on to become a teacher and a nurse. She has 2 more in college and is homeschooling her last child. All while holding down a part-time nursing career, being a child of God and trying to be as self sufficient around her home as possible in this day and age. Kudo's to you all!!!

  3. Sheila, This is exactly what I needed to hear at this very moment! I love how God leads us to just the right things at exactly the right time. Such encoraging words. Bless you!