Jones Family Update

Howdy, Siestas! I feel like I should introduce myself again because it’s been so long since I’ve written. Our summer was b-u-s-y but wonderful. Curtis preached at a Bible study gathering called Metro and at a few churches in our area, I led the Ruth study with some blogging girlfriends, we hosted out of town family members, went to Galveston a couple of times, and did lots of swimming and playing with the kids. Tomorrow Jackson and Annabeth will start pre-k and mother’s day out, so I suppose summer is coming to an end for us. Our normal Wednesday church schedule picks back up tonight and I can’t wait to see all the fellowship supper crowd. We have been missing everyone! Jackson gets to join the kids choir as of tonight. I think he is going to love it.

I have a little story to tell you that will explain my recent absence here on the blog. One day in June I was trying to get some work done and I went into the dining room (away from the kids) so I could concentrate. A few minutes later Jackson came running over to me and said, “Annabeth is on the TV!” What in the world? I ran in the living room to find my 16-month-old walking on the console behind the flatscreen and about to dive off into a pile of toys. Needless to say, I was horrified. I brought my laptop back in the living room and tried to finish whatever I was doing. A few minutes later I looked down and saw Annabeth sitting on our golden retriever’s back. All she needed was a saddle and she had her own little pony. I was horrified again! Beckham is a very patient dog and he loves the kids, but that was not okay. I was bit in the face by our family dog as a child and I know better than to trust any animal completely. This happened three feet away from me and I didn’t see it because of my computer screen.

I knew my days of working at home were coming to an end. I either needed to return to the office or stop working. Not only was it becoming unsafe for my children, but I constantly felt frustrated and discouraged as an employee and as a mother. I’m sure many of you can relate to how I was feeling. It was maddening because the world tells women we can have it all – career, romance, family, friends, leisure, and a peaceful home  – but the truth is we are all making sacrifices in one or more of these areas in order to carry the others. I felt like my entire family was revolving around me and my needs, when what my soul really longed for was to have the time and energy to serve them.

After many conversations with Curtis, a long heart-to-heart with my mom, and lots of prayers shot up to God in desperate moments, we decided that I would take a step back from my job at LPM for the next year. I have 12 months left with my son before he begins kindergarten and I want to make the most of that time. Next fall we will reevaluate our situation.

I confess I was really nervous to talk to my mom about this. It can be complicated when family members work together. But in my heart I kept hearing my mom say, “No amount of success in ministry can make up for failure at home.” My mom has kept to that after all these years and I’ve benefitted from it in countless ways. Now it was time for me to decide on my own. Would I choose what was best for my family? I could not have imagined how graciously my mom  would respond to my cries for help. She was 100% mom and 0% boss in that moment. She told me that when she’d kept the kids the weekend before, she’d sensed that this was coming.

Once Curtis, Mom and I were on the same page, I felt a flood of relief and joy. For about three hours. Then the seriousness of walking away from my job of 8 years came crashing over me. Satan told me the disgusting lie that I wouldn’t be important anymore. As if I should need to be important anyway! I was pretty emotional – swinging from extreme happiness and relief to sadness – for a few weeks. In fact, during that time I wrote two other versions of this post that I deemed too melodramatic to publish.

It’s been two months since the decision was made and a little less time since I handed over my administrative responsibilities to my co-worker, Kimberly McMahon/KMac. She is an awesome lady and I’m very thankful for the gifts God has given her.

Our family is definitely enjoying the harvest from this change. I feel a lot more peace. And that’s a pretty big deal! My relationship with Jackson has improved dramatically. He needed me to say yes more. I’ve been cooking, which my husband appreciates. I will say, though, that motherhood is hard any way you slice it! Can I get an amen? Did this make my life perfect? Uh, no. Did I magically become Supermom? I wish. But do I like motherhood more? Yes. Definitely.

Mom has invited me to keep writing here whenever I have something to share and I look forward to doing that. I will finally have some alone time now that Annabeth is starting mother’s day out and Jackson will be inPre-K. Praise the Lord!

I know that many of you reading this are desperate for your situation – whatever that may be – to change. Please know that when you cry out to the Lord, He hears you! He knows what you are going through. He is your Shepherd and He cares for you. Pray, pray, pray. First Peter 5:7-8 says, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (NIV) I am asking God to show you His love, power and care right now.

Siestas, thank you for loving my family and for supporting us. We love you very much.




441 Responses to “Jones Family Update”

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  1. 251
    Shannon Costanzo says:


    Thank you so much for that post. Society makes it very difficult on a women. Stay at home moms are put down at times & since money is tight you can feel overwhelmed because you don’t have the extra cash. Working moms suffer from guilt for not staying home with their children and deal with the issues of not having enough time with them.
    Each day is a gift from God! I pray that God gives all my fellow siestas peace with this issue!

  2. 252
    Barb says:

    Dear Amanda, being a Mom is the most important job/position in the whole world!!! If you can afford to be at home for them, you are blessed!! That certainly is a lie from the enemy that you won’t be important any more – because these are the most precious, life molding years you will have with your babies!!!! You are a huge part of shaping their future. It doesn’t get much more important than that!! 🙂 Whether you need to be important or not, you already are! (All of you dear young mothers out there are!!!!!!!)

    I hope you keep us updated on your family, we all enjoy watching them grow!

    with love, Barb

    • 252.1
      Barb says:

      And in the vein of motherhood (we never stop praying for our babies!) If anyone feels led, please pray for my children: Abe & Rebecca, Miriam & Ed, friends: Tamar & Sean, Jenny. God knows what they all need but a couple of directions are for wisdom, guidance, protection, buttons to be deactivated in the upcoming ceremony/celebration gathering and that sweet memories will be made there as well as painful memories/thoughts healed and all will know the Truth in life & that Jesus IS the Truth & life – also that God’s love will be evident thru-out. Thank you!

  3. 253
    Brandy says:

    What amazing news, Congrats! “…will say, though, that motherhood is hard any way you slice it! Can I get an amen?” and AMEN!!!
    It will be nice to hear from you whenever you have a minute. I am praising God for the blessing and peace He has brought you and your family!
    Enjoy, Enjoy, Enjoy.

  4. 254
    Joyce Bailey says:

    my post is directed to any over-50 women’s ministry workers who read Amanda’s blog entry: listen to the heart-cries of the young moms in your church. When they choose not to participate in our activities because it would be just one more thing on their plate, affirm them. Spend some serious time in prayer for them, and in searching for concrete ways to be the Titus 2 woman to them, and in offering encouragement to them.

    • 254.1
      Sarah says:

      Thank You Joyce! I sure appreciate your thoughts today.

      I am a single mom and have to work to provide for myself and my 6 yr old daughter. I am torn in many different directions.

      It’s not easy, but God gives us the strength to keep on keeping on.


    • 254.2
      Georgia Jan says:

      Hey Joyce – Bless you woman, you are so right. As a 52 year old mom to 2 grown sons and “Gran Jan” to my 3 grandbabies, I am being REMINDED of how much work it is as I watch and help my sweet daughters-in-law. I am also a WM Director and I so desire to be the kind of woman to encourage our young women by loving, supporting, and encouraging them with WISDOM.

      Let’s lead the way!

      Georgia Jan…Gran Jan

    • 254.3
  5. 255
    Angela says:

    I so understand your situation….I just gave up a position @ the community college so I could be more available to my kids (ages 15,13,11,9) They are older, but still need me and I didn’t need to be frustrated and torn every time I needed to make a deadline or mtg and they needed help with hmwk or a ride to practice.
    Motherhood is hard!
    Thanks for sharing!

  6. 256
    Amanda says:

    “He needed me to say yes more”…..that is such a revelation in motherhood isn’t it? I’ve felt that prompting with my own children. I feel like that parallels our relationship with the Lord. I grew up under strict legalism that taught me He wanted to say no to everything. I have since learned the truth that He is the ultimate yes-man. I realized that as I was bringing the truth of the Lord to my kids I was doing Him a diservice in all of my no’s… doesn’t represent. Yay for Jackson that his mommy is saying yes!! I had a wise friend tell me one time that even if the answer needs to be no, try to offer a yes alternative. That has worked great for us! God bless your sweet family!!!!

  7. 257
    Debbie in Florida says:

    I have enjoyed reading the blog for the last several months as I participated in the Ruth study with a friend and your Mom’s studies for the last 8 years. Couldn’t stop myself from responding to your honesty in the choices you have faced. I am a proud mom of 3. A daughter, 21 and two sons 20 and 16. I still feel called to be a mom first to all three:) and love it!! I have primarily been a stay at home mom with some jobs as a substitute teacher, working for youth pastors, etc. but in all things I have placed my family first. Like you, when the lines got blurred or the work too demanding, the call on my life to be a mom first has led me to quit, switch jobs, adjust my schedule, etc. I do not ever regret those choices and my relationships with my kids and I believe their relationship with God and others have greatly benefited from those decisions. We don’t have large amounts in savings or college funds but God has honored my husband and my decision to focus my attention on him, our kids and our homelife. The world does tell you you can do it all or you should put yourself and your career, etc. first but I don’t believe that is in the best interest of the family. Cherish all the moments you have with your children! I have found that great times of conversation do not usually happen on our timetables but rather just in the daily moments when you are there to pick up that teenager from school, playing cars on the floor, at the pool, helping your daughter unpack and repack for college, or at a leisurely bed time, etc. Relationships take time invested in the everyday, routine activities of life. And the trust and respect in those relationships begins at such a young age and grows as you show your kids you value them by being involved in their lives. So, be encouraged that God will honor the sacrifices you make to be available mind, body and spirit for your family! Praying for you and your family!

  8. 258
    Connie says:

    Amanda –

    I find it so amazing that three women I have never met hold such dear places in my heart and that our God uses them so to move me forward in His will so often.

    I have been recently struggling in a mighty way over the hours I work and the toll it is taking on my family. And dear one, my children are 12, 16, and 20.

    My dear husband has had more take out and more Chef Boyardee than any man should ever put up with.

    I am so encouraged by your honesty and transparency as you take this very large step of faith. It gives me courage as I ask the God of the Universe to intervene in my situation to allow me more time to serve my loved ones as well.

    I don’t often contribute here but do gain encouragement from your sweet mama and sister and from you.

    Please know you are so important to me.

    In His love and so grateful for this ministry!

  9. 259
    Donna says:

    Amanda, You have made the right decision to be home with your little ones. They grow up so fast and before you know it, they will be in high school & college…leaving home to be on their own. ‘Covet’ every moment you have with them. It is a blessing that you can stay home with them for now. I didn’t have that option when my son was still a child. I was divorced & HAD to work. I missed out on so much, then I lost him to suicide at the age of 22. That was 24 years ago and I still wonder if things would have been different if I had been able to stay home with him. I don’t write this to scare the working Moms or for pity…just to show how things can go. You will have plenty of time for work when your children are older. Love them, enjoy them, record a lot of memories…you will be so thankful that you did. Love you, Amanda, and look forward to hearing from you on the blog when possible.

    • 259.1
      Amanda says:

      Donna, I’m so sorry to hear about the loss of your son. That breaks my heart. I pray God will give you peace and remind you of truth when the enemy throws that at you.

    • 259.2
      Kathy B says:

      Oh, Donna, I’m terribly sorry. My nephew that just went to be with the Lord two weeks ago was 22yrs old. We continue to pray and try to be a comfort to his mother, my sister-in-law. I’m wanting to share scripture with her, but worry it will seem insensitive this soon. Thank you for sharing something so incredibly beyond difficult.

  10. 260
    Ann says:

    Amanda – Good for you! As a mom closer in age to your mom- I knew what your mom’s (Miss Beth) response would be even before I read the full post. You will NEVER regret your decision – though it was hard and yes, some loss is involved. But I can assure you as one who had her youngest of 5 start high school yesterday – you will be grateful you made first things first during this season. You are correct in realizing that the lies of the world – that you can “have it all” and “be it all” are just that a lie. Choices must be made – choices made in light of eternity and making sure the good never supercedes the best! I commend you and pray you will treasure this precious time fulfilling your high calling as a wife and mom.

  11. 261
    Aubry Talkington says:

    Wow, I am in tears as I relate to this! I have five children between 1 and 9, yet I always seem to struggle with balance. I know God has called me to motherhood, but also to other things which he has gifted me and prepared me for. It always seems that I am feeling the pull of either focusing so much on my family that I’m not demonstrating service to and with them, or I’m overwhelmed balancing motherhood and everything else and not doing any of it in a way that glorifies Him. I am constantly reevaluating and taking baby steps, or sometimes big ones, in one direction or another. May God grant all of us wisdom and grace as we navigate these waters.

  12. 262
    Dana says:

    Amanda, you are a wise young woman. I’m proud of you. Doesn’t feel like it at the stage of life you’re in, but it’s true, the years fly by. Before you turn around those sweet children – blessings from the LORD – will be grown and you’ll look back and praise God you made this decision.

  13. 263
    Cindy says:

    God bless you, Amanda. I don’t think you will EVER regret this decision. And thank you for reminding me that ‘my importance’ is well, unimportant. I love your sweet family and pray that you find great joy during this time! It is certainly fleeting.

    Mom of Chelsea, 21, and McKenna, 13!

  14. 264
    Redeemed says:

    As a minister’s wife, I understand what you’re feeling. As a homeschooling mom, I also understand having to say “no” to things so I can continue to be here with my daughter. You’ll never ever regret it!

    I remind myself of this alot: The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

    Enjoy those babies and the time God has given you with them!!

  15. 265
    Janie H says:

    I completely understand your struggle. I am a stay-at-home, work-from-home mom and wife and it’s hard. My little boy is almost one year and it’s been the hardest year of my life. My husband is also in full-time ministry and is taking seminary classes part-time. While this all sounded great during pregnancy, the reality of what life would be like was overwhelming. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve prayed for forgiveness over my past judgement of stay-at-home moms. I truly believe devoting yourself to your family is the best decision, but it comes with great personal sacrifice. I know that God will bless you for realizing your family’s need and doing what is best for them. You are following the path that God has called all of women to….love our husbands and our children. Thank you for sharing your struggle with us and I look forward to your future posts!

  16. 266
    MaKay says:


    I know exactly where you are.

    I am a Grandmother (affectionately known as Yaya). I have guardianship of my grandson and have since he was only 3 months old.

    I work from home and have seen the scenario you described first hand.

    I have managed to keep things going and continue to work, but only by God’s grace and a wonderful preschool program in our community! and lots of help from other family members.

    Hang in there! There is time for work, this time with your children goes by sooo quickly.

  17. 267
    lichelle says:

    Amen!… God will bless you decisions in 100 thousand different ways! And your children will be blessed, as well as your Husband. May the Lord bless you and keep you stong as you turn your attention to your children.

    We love you and we will be here for you. Thank you for all that you have done for us.


  18. 268

    Dear Amanda,

    You do not know how I needed that last paragraph today. For months, I’ve been struggling with some of the exact things you just described. I, too, work from home. We have 4 sons, ages 20, 17, 11, and 4.

    In the last three years, the Lord added another job to the pile (writing a weekly column). My deadlines at work have changed, requiring me to be upstairs working almost every night. Sometimes I just cry, it’s so hard. My husband hates it, I hate it, and there’s just no way out yet. Even as I write this, my eyes are filling with tears.

    Some days, I feel that God is just sitting up there, watching me struggle. I feel His presence – I do! – but since He COULD change it, but He WON’T change it, I can’t help feeling angry. If I make the mistake of looking at other women I know – friends and sister-in-laws – who don’t have to work like this, I get very resentful. Then self-pity slithers in, an evil companion, and I really have a mess on my hands.

    Oh, forgive me for spilling my guts and putting my very spleen on display. You just touched a very raw nerve with this post.

    Bottom line, dear sister, I needed that encouragement to just keep crying out to God. Not that I’m not (I’m hoarse, in fact), but sometimes I just need a word that says, “Keep walking.”

    Soggy Thursday blessings,


    • 268.1
      Anne says:

      Rhonda–I know how you feel. I always thought that I would be a stay-at-home mom, and still believe that that is the best situation for kids. That being said, it was not God’s plan for me. Fortunately, the Lord provided an opportunity for me to work part-time when my children were very young. However, God has shown me over the last several years that His plan is for me to work full-time. It has not been easy, and I still get resentful sometimes and “covet” the opportunities of other moms who are able to stay home with their families. I have learned, though, that everyone’s walk with God takes a slightly different path. Your walk is YOURS, and it will not look the same as someone else’s…and God will bless you for following His direction and allowing Him to be the Lord of your life even when you would prefer different circumstances. Trust Him to show you which path is best for you. Love to you, my sister!

  19. 269
    Lisa Burt says:

    That is an awesome decision you made, I know it was not an easy one to make. We as women think we can do all be all to everyone sometimes and we have to step back and look at what is best for our families. You will not regret your decision. I scarficed alot to stay home with my boys when they were little. We did not do with out God always provided for us! I am very thankful that I did have the opporunity. They are all about grown the oldest is 21 and the middle one is 18 and the youngest is 13. The oldest is away at college and the middle one graduates high school this year. The years spent with them will be cherished forever in your heart and there’s to. Those were the best years to me when I was able to help mold them and shape there lives. Praying for you now for God to shine in your life so that your childern will see Jesus in you each day! Wishing you the best!

  20. 270
    leighgray says:

    Amanda – please check in when you can and let us hear from you! We have grown to love you and adore your kiddos!! I enjoy so much that you share so much of your life with us through pictures!!! Thank you for your ministry to LPM and to your family as well. You are a shining example to so many!!

    Much love, Leigh

  21. 271
    Kathy Gerlach says:

    Amanda, you will not regret your decision. I was able to stay home with my girls until one was 7 and the other a little over 2. Then finances forced me to go to work. But I had a husband who helped, and lost a lot of sleep by staying up after working all night, or sleeping a few hours and then going to get our two year old. I was certainly lucky.
    Now, let me tell you motherhood never stops. That two year old is now 36 and pregnant. This is her third pregnancy and she is having a lot of concerns. I will be taking her to the heart doctor today, after she scared me silly yesterday with a call that she was headed to the hospital with a heart beat running 158 to 198. I may have to drop everything I have on the calendar and go stay with them until the baby is born. Then I have to stay longer to love on that baby! Ha!
    I ask that you all pray for Tanya. I know she is scared, and so am I. They have 3 teens and a 6 year old that needs her guidance. (Blended family). She has wanted this baby so much…but she is my baby and I pray that she will be able to make it through the rest of this pregnancy without any more problems. Your prayers are so needed right now. Thanks

  22. 272
    Natalie says:

    Great post Amanda! I have been wired for a long time to believe that my identity is found in making good money and being a successful career women. After becoming a Christian 5 years ago a war has begun inside of me that “what if” God calls me to have kids one day and quit my job (My husband and I are 28 and 32 so we still have some time). I am terrified that having kids will me I lose myself and become “a mom in a minivan”. However, in the stillness of my quiet time with the Lord he has assured me that whatever His will is for my life he will give me desire and strength to carry it out. I believe that in every instance there is no better spot than the being in the center of His will…. whatever that may be for each season of life.

  23. 273
    Erin VT says:

    I have two young boys (4.5 and 2) and on those days when I am thinking “this is my life?! Really?!” I remind myself of the lyrics to the Desert Song from Hillsong:

    All of my life
    in every season
    you are still God
    I have a reason to sing
    I have a reason to worship.

    It is a season. God and his purpose covers it all – whether working in or outside the home. And your intrinsic value in him never changes.

  24. 274
    Shawna says:

    God bless you Amanda. I know that was a difficult decision. Before I say anything more, I want to say that I believe everyone has to make choices that is best for their family (I would never want to discourage any mamas!). I left my professional life over 10 years ago because I was losing my teen and pre-teen in the public school they went to. I pulled them out to homeschool them. It was hard. I can never go back to my old profession. They are now wonderful grown young men, one of which is a Marine. I now have a year old daughter that I am also home with. I also have friends that made decisions to stop homeschooling. My point is that you listened to the Lord regarding your family and he will bless that decision. Enjoy and take lots of pictures!

  25. 275

    Siestas, please be in prayer for a dear dear friend of mine who is supposed to accompany me to Richmond this weekend. She is in the midst of some serious persecution and she is literally just started unraveling at the seams over the past few days. She is wanting to back out of the weekend, and I just can’t help but think Satan is in this. Please pray over my precious friend. Her path is one of the kind of persecution most of us would never dream of, much less experience. I am trusting God with this, and her. I will not manipulate to get her there, ooooooh how I want to, but will leave this ALL to my Lord. Hold her up in your prayers, Siestas…

  26. 276
    Jana says:

    Thank you for sharing. I work as a teacher outside the home and struggle with balance between the two plus having time for myself and my husband also. Blessings on this new stage in your life.

  27. 277
    Stephanie says:

    Thank you for your courage, Amanda. I am another stay-at-home mom who sometimes feels so isolated, I just look out the window and cry. I could never, though, pursue my own wants and interests and leave behind my children to fend for themselves in this world. We all need Jesus so desperately and I am the one called here to teach them about how loving He is in all our circumstances. I miss ministry and fellowship and Oh how the enemy loves to point that out. But it starts right here, for this generation and the generations to come in my family. This is Christ’s territory now and no one elses. God is so good.


  28. 278
    Cheryl says:

    So proud of you for making the tough decision!
    Love you dearly!!!

  29. 279
    Linda says:

    Amanda, Your post made my heart melt. As a mother who was blessed to be able to stay home with my kids..and now have two precious young adults…I want to tell you that you may not see the entire fruit of this decision now…but God will continue to reveal blessings over the years. The world constantly lied to me about my own decision…but when my daughter was a senior in high school we had a little ‘situation.’ I made it a practice to be home before the kids arrived home from school; but one day I was just a little behind. My daughter called me on my cell distress and said: “Mom, where are you? Don’t you know that I get in my car after school, drive home and can’t wait for the garage door to go up to see your car…b/c talking to you after school is the best part of my day?” I was shocked…and felt such pleasure in my heart at the same time. I pray that same pleasure for you and all the other wonderful mothers on this site!

  30. 280
    Jessica says:

    It was totally the right thing. Kids don’t stay young forever. Plus, satan will always find a way to try and sucker us into feeling like we need people to make us feel significant.(ain’t in just sickening?) We are significant because God chose to love on us and spends all of his time thinking of us. As Curtis says, He actually likes us. So let’s say it outloud so the enemy can here it! He needs to know, he’s wasted his time even mentioning it.

    no judgment, here. Constant struggle for all of us. love love love you in Christ. Be encouraged. 🙂

  31. 281
    Diana says:

    May God richly bless you always Amanda! Thank you for sharing your heart with us here on the blog!
    I think we, as women in American society, are tortured by the same lies of Satan. I believe your post will richly bless many!
    May you always remember that you are redeemed by the blood of the lamb, you are precious in His sight, and He loves you so much!

  32. 282
    Marlinda says:

    Amanda, it really takes a lot of courage to put down something that God has used to provide purpose, fulfillment and intimacy as you glorify Him. Sometimes it’s hard to see the blessings in being just MOM! Although that MOM job is the most important job of them all. We have to look so closely to find the blessings when the words chaos, crazy and exhausted comes to mind. Being a mother of 5 gives me lots of chances to try and look behind the commotion and find opportunities to reveal God’s presence. But you know when we give being mom our full attention, something wonderful happens, they in turn give us theirs and the miracles, moments of love, tears of joy, and most of all the ability to see God work in their little lives. Now talk about something giving you purpose! My kids are not toddlers any more (Praise God!) but Amanda, it only gets better. A few days ago it was just Jessie (my oldest girl 13) and me driving home in the car and we were listening to Lord Your Holy, I stopped the song and pulled over (ok I’m tearing up now) I explained that the words of this song express How I love Him and who He is to me (she loves the song and I hear it in her room a lot) I started the song over and sang along as tears filled both our eyes. Now that what I call the best of the best! God is Good!

  33. 283
    Jamie says:

    Amanda, I am so thrilled with your decision & understand how hard this is at the same time. I, too, had to make that decision as I was able to work from home as a speech pathologist, but found that I could not be the wife & mother that I knew God wanted me to be while doing that. Seasons of a woman’s life come & go, and (I know you’ve heard it a million times) this season of “little ones” is over very soon. I have never regretted delaying my career until all of my children were older (I started back when the youngest started 4th grade), but only worked part-time for those first years even then. I look now at my four grown children who love the Lord and know that it was the right choice for our family. We had six of us in a small 3-bedroom house, but it was the best thing for us all. I also am still loving being married to my precious supportive husband for 33 years & have enjoyed working during the right “season”. I’m praying for you, dear.

  34. 284
    Kathy Wilshire says:

    Do I ever know where you are coming from, Amanda! Even though it’s been almost 15 years, I still remember. Our first was born 2 years after I graduated from college and started working as a labor & delivery nurse, which I loved. We were ready to start a family after almost 5 years of marriage. I fully intended, however, to return to work a couple of months after Andy was born, especially since my husband was still in law school full-time and I was the primary breadwinner. My husband, however, had other ideas; we got a student loan for living expenses that last 9 months until he graduated so I could stay home. Matt followed 2 years later. I toyed with going back to work part-time, just for my own sanity several times when the boys were little, but day care costs just didn’t make it practical. Then less than 2 1/2 years after Matt, twin girls followed, Hailey & Hannah. No way was I going to be able to put 4 pre-schoolers in day care and even break even! So I was home full time. It was the hardest job of my life, second only to parenting 4 teenagers!! Many times I thought my brain was turning to mush reading pre-school books, playing games, doing laundry, doing laundry, doing laundry, etc…I can even remember wondering why I even bothered to go to college at times. Don’t get me wrong, we had lots of great days, but I definitely had my share of dark ones too. After the girls went to school full time I got a job as a school nurse, which balanced well with school age kids, mainly for my own sense of self-worth. My husband was well established in his law practice as a partner now, so it was not necessary financially for me to work. After only a few months of seeing the young moms who taught at my school struggle with getting kids to daycare each morning, deciding whose turn it was to stay home with sick kids, etc, I finally came to realize how blessed I really was to have the opportunity to stay home with those kids those early years. I thank God for my husband’s wisdom in basically insisting I stay home until they went to school. After 3 years, I gradually got more and more stressed out dealing with 4 kids after-school activities, doing laundry at midnight or all weekend, fighting the crowds at the grocery store on Sunday afternoon, feeling guilty about taking days off for field trips, etc. With my husband’s blessing, I quit again. This time I truly enjoyed my time at home, did every Beth Moore study written during the early 2000’s with women at church, had normal, non-urgent, non-stressed-out conversations with my kids, and knew how blessed I really was. When Andy started driving and we realized we could easily have 4 kids in college at the same time, we both thought it might be a good idea for me to consider going to work again. Through God’s providence, the same school, in the same district where I had worked before with basically the same staff whom I loved, became available, so I jumped right back in and have been here ever since. We have 3 kids in college this year, then the twins for a couple more after that. I love my job now, and I’m soooo glad God worked out things for His glory and our family’s best interest, in spite of me!

  35. 285
    Mary says:

    I think you made the right choice. Thanks for the post!

  36. 286
    Caroline says:

    Amanda–I’m probably a day late and a dollar short with this response, but that could be because I have two little ones at home with me too! I’m not reading the other comments because I only have a few minutes, so pardon if this is redundant. Like so many other young moms and you, I’ve been struggling with the same issues. My mom reminded me of the story of Nehemiah building the wall in 6:3
    “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?”

    Other translations have it saying “I am doing a great work, and cannot come down.” That has become my mantra, when all I want to do is go for a run, read a book, do some graphic design work, or for heaven’s sake–just NOT play blocks/trucks/sandbox for like, 15 minutes! Of course we need time to ourselves and creative/intellectual outlets. But you are so smart to have recognized that things were getting out of balance for you and your family.

    You are doing a great work. Do not come down.

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    Jan Roa says:


    So good to hear from you on the blog. I had been wondering where you have been and even posted a comment asking after you. Good for you, focusing on the children more. Yes, it’s not an easy job but very rewarding. My husband would remind me often as our children were growing up that they are my ministry. Looking forward to hearing your Mom bring the Word of God to us this weekend in Richmond. As usual both my daughters (32 & 26 yrs old) will be attending with me. This will be our 9th or 10th Beth Moore conference together. I love this girl time in the Word with B Moore and my girls!!

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    Lindsey says:

    Amanda–Blessings to you in this new journey. I am so happy for you that you get to be home with your children. I have a 16-month old daughter, and I get to be with her part time, which never feels like enough time, but I am thankful for it anyway. I pray that you will experience peace and happiness and just enjoy the time you have with your children as they are only little for so long–something I am reminded of all the time. Thank you also for your encouragement. I am going through a difficult time right now, and I feel like those were just the words I needed to hear. Thank you and God bless!

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    Tanya says:

    I could not imaging try to work at home with small children. I have been blessed to work from home for the last 8 years. My youngest is 17 and when he is home in the summer my productivity goes way down unless I get up really early to get as much done before he wakes up. At first when he would hollar “Mother, come here”, so I could see or hear about what he was watching, reading, doing or imaging I would get aggravated and say “remember, I am working”. But now, my little boy is a senior, and I am glad he wants to share with me what he feels is interesting or funny. I think we have both been blessed by it and I am sure your family will be too.

  40. 290
    Christine Roskamp says:


    What can I say but I AM SOOOOOO PROUD OF YOU!!!!!!!!!
    You will never not be an important part of our lives in Siestaville! I was so moved by this post and it played out exactly the way God intended. Satan has NO power over you. He will not prevail. Can’t wait to read future postings of the goings on in the Jones household.
    I so hope I will see you at your Mom’s next study lecture.

    Love you and your sweet family so much, Amanda. Enjoy these times with them which I know, of course, you will treasure. The job will always be there because I think you may have a connection or two. LOL

    Christine Roskamp
    Houston Siesta

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    I am a life that has been changed through your ministry…especially here on the blog. “Thank you” doesn’t seem quite enough!
    Continued prayers for you.

  42. 292
    Darla Baerg says:

    3 things …

    1. You will never regret your decision. As I told my husband…”I would rather regret not working than regret no being full on with my family”. My four peeps are in school now and the Lord has graciously given me a speaking ministry and I teach one class at HBU. …. which leads to my second thing … today’s assignment was for each student to bring in a clip of the speaker who has inspired them the most and who shows passion in their speaking. One student’s example was your mom. 🙂 Her comment was … “even if it’s something boring, Beth Moore can make it interesting.” And then she gushed on about your moms passion, etc.

    And third … we have prayed for 8 years for a bigger house. Prayed and prayed and wondered why we were squished. Yesterday the Lord said …”here child … this is the one I had for you.” And when I read your “in due time” verse I couldn’t help but sob.

    Isn’t God SO good?!?

    That’s a rhetorical question. 🙂

    Enjoy your time with your family.

  43. 293
    Siesta OC says:

    Oh Amanda! There is nothing like a good hearted GOD-fearing woman! You exemplify that so well – I know its not easy to, or maybe not immeadiate, but you never cease to show me a glorious woman of GOD. Thank GOD and Thank You!
    And it NO surprise your mama had that reaction, that is one of the traits we as her ‘siesta’s’ dig about her.
    She LOVES her family!

    I loved how you brought up about Jackson and you and him needing you to say ‘yes’ more. What a glorious observation. He will be so abundantly blessed for your focus!!!!!

    U go girl!

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    Elaine says:

    Good for your Amanda. God will honor your decision & bless your family in ways you can’t imagine. Will still look forward to hearing from you on this blog. God bless!

  45. 295
    Kim B. says:

    Your note has inspired me to keep praying fervently for the Lord’s direction and for courage for “new things” for
    me too! Praying for you!
    Kim B.

  46. 296
    Shelly says:

    We are wise women to realize that we can have it all…just not all at the same time! Enjoy your kiddos, Amanda! I have three. The older two are in school, and I have a couple more years with my youngest. I’m trying to enjoy them too. Thanks for your contributions here! I know you were a big part of making this a community and it is very special!

  47. 297
    Nichole says:

    GOOD FOR YOU!!!!! Thanks for being a great example and doing the hard things.

    Be blessed!!

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    Kim Ulkekul says:

    First of all, Amand – we have all been so grateful for all you have contributed to LPM, especially through the blogs. We all also so applaud your decision to back that role up and focus on your marriage and family. None of us who have made that decision have ever regreted it. The Lord’s design certainly works in that direction. However, one huge message I want to share with all the moms here who do indeed need to work, for whatever reasons, if you are an engaged, loving, caring parent, you will be that whether or not you have to work. You will make good decisions for your children, should they require childcare so you can work or you have the option to be home full-time. My very dear sister worked on and off in different capacities all while raising her three beautiful children and they are all beaming examples of godly, righteous living, all now married and having children of their own. They are all full committed and surrendered Christian parents and continue to enjoy a wonderful relationship with their mom. So, awesome for you Amanda. You will indeed never doubt you have made the right decision, but for those of you for whom that is not an option, you too, will be given what you need to be the mom the Lord has called you to be. LOVE all of you. You are such an encouragement to me. Always.

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    Sue Schwendemann says:

    Thanks for all the kind words this past year. You go girl, you are doing the right thing for this season of your life. You will be missed, but please keep us updated with PICTURES. Take care and have a wonderful year with your family. Blessings to all of you.

    One thing to add to make you LOL, AB on the T.V.; reminds me of my niece who would crawl out of her crib at six months and climb up on to the TOP of the refrigerator; we still can not figure out how she did it. Oh and she would be sleeping up there. Thanks again for EVERYTHING. I love you and you will be missed.

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    Tracey says:

    I am soo happy for you! That is awesome, being a stay at home mom has been my prayer as well and still trying to make that happen.. I just have one word…Insurance… I am soo torn as to how I should handle that. Again, i am so happy for you and your family!!! This blesses me bc I know that God is no respector of persons and what He has done for one He can do for another. I pray for wisdom to know when the right time is to step and what direction!

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