This year we plan to feature one real woman of God each month. Every woman is designed by God to fulfill His purpose for their life. The most amazing thing is that each of us are unique in the ways we balance our days. This new series of interviews gives us a glance into how some women are living for the Lord through the ministry of their home.
Each of our guests are chosen for their strong faith and dedication to God. To the world, these women may lead ordinary lives, but to God they are his daughters fulfilling His divine purpose.
TODAY’S GUEST IS JENNI MULLINIX
Jenni is a Midwest-living wife, a homeschool mama of three children, a recovering overwhelmed homemaker and a heartfelt writer that desires to inspire women to live by God’s grace and for His glory. She enjoys deep conversations, nature hikes, hot tea and good books. She can be found blogging at JenniMullinix.com or posting photos of everyday life on Instagram at @jennimullinix.
QUESTIONS FOR JENNI
- How did you become a stay at home mom? Was that your plan before having kids?
My husband and I planned on me being a stay-at-home mom before we were married. Because of this, we chose to live on only my husband’s income before having children. We used my part-time income to pay off a small amount of school debt we had and put the rest into savings. I believe this really helped set us up for an easier transition when we became parents just over a year after getting married.
- What is your definition of biblical homemaking?
I believe that biblical homemaking, or biblical living for that matter, can be summed up by Colossians 3:17. “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”
- In your opinion what is the woman’s role?
The specifics of one’s role will be different for each woman and will change with each season of life. However, as mentioned above, we all are called to a common duty as Christians. In the words of Sally Clarkson, “…the common purpose for all women is to glorify God in whatever circumstance and boundaries of life we find ourselves, trusting him to show us how we can best use our gifts for him.”
- What kinds of jobs have you held in the past? How do they compare to what you’re doing now?
I have held a wide variety of jobs in the past, such as: a library clerk, barista, supervisor and missionary. One thing they all had in common is that they were all people-oriented positions. As a stay-at-home mama, I am with my children all the time; so I guess you could say that they helped prepare me for that!
- What is your favorite encouraging scripture? Why that one?
It’s so difficult to choose just one Scripture… I have been encouraged by Hebrews 12:1-3 since I was a young adult.
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.”
I chose this passage as one of my focus verses for this year! I like it for so many reasons, but mostly because it reminds me to fix my heart and mind on Christ and His work on the cross instead of on myself or my circumstances.
- How has motherhood changed you?
Motherhood (and marriage) has exposed a lot of ungodly areas in my heart and has helped me realize how sinful I am. This may seem like a negative thing, but I’m very thankful for it because it is only when we begin to understand and accept how much we need a Savior that we can appreciate Christ’s atoning work on the cross and the message of the Gospel. Becoming a wife and mother has been sanctifying and redeeming because it causes me to daily admit that I can’t do anything on my own and encourages me to allow God to work through me.
I think motherhood has also helped me to become less judgemental. I often joke that I was a better mother before I had kids! I had grand ideals and thought I was prepared. But nothing can prepare you for real life and nobody can humble you quicker than a young child. Now I am much more understanding toward other momS, because I’ve either been in their shoes or know I could be in their shoes in the future.
- Do you have a funny story to share about marriage, motherhood or homemaking?
I can’t think of a specific story, but one of the funniest things about being a mother is all the strange instructions you end up giving young children. I never would have thought that I would say things like, “Don’t lick the floor!” or “We don’t put Baby Jesus in our mouths.”
- What are your biggest struggles with staying home? How do you overcome them?
As an introvert, I think my biggest struggle is feelings of overwhelm because I am with my children 24/7. One of the ways I combat this is by having mandatory “quiet time” in the afternoon. It’s not always uninterrupted and often doesn’t last as long as I would like, but it gives me a little down time to recharge and prepare myself for the rest of the day. I have also found playdates with like-minded moms to be refreshing. I get a little one-on-one adult conversation while the children play together.
- Is homeschooling something you enjoy? What is your favorite part about it or story?
I am a second generation homeschooler. I loved it as a student and love it even more as a mom/teacher! I appreciate the flexibility it gives, how it encourages a love for learning and reinforces family bonding by learning together.
- In what ways do you plan and organize your calendar / schedule?
One of the most helpful things I have done to avoid becoming overwhelmed with a busy schedule is to arrange for a “No Plans” Day. This is basically a day that I block off and keep free of any appointment or meetings. I try to do this on a weekly basis and use it as a leisurely day at home getting caught up on housework and doing something fun with my children.
- What is your favorite book about motherhood or homemaking?
This might sound odd to some people, but I have found reading novels by Louisa May Alcott to be very influential and thought-provoking. The mother figures in her books are gentle, creative and inspiring. My favorites are Little Women and Jack and Jill.
- Do you have any rituals you do with your husband or children to make sure you connect with them every day?
We have family devotions before bedtime every night. My husband reads a short passage of Scripture, we discuss any questions the kids have about it and then take turns praying. It is a short and sweet way to end our day together.
- Name 1-2 women that inspire you in your homemaking, motherhood, marriage. It could be an author, friend or even your own mother.
I would definitely say that my mother is my greatest encouragement as a stay-at-home, homeschooling mother. Her example of sacrifice, compassion and godly wisdom is invaluable. Other women that have inspired me through their writings are Elisabeth Elliot, Sally Clarkson and Gloria Furman. I appreciate how they each, in their own way, point me back to Jesus.
If you enjoyed today’s guest please leave a comment below for her. Remember to also check out her blog at JenniMullinix.com you can also find her posting photos of everyday life on Instagram at @jennimullinix.