St Gabriel Windows

St Gabriel Windows
Photocopy c. 2013 Jamie Laubacher

Thursday, November 04, 2010

A New Commandment I give to you

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34

Nov. 4, 2010

Dear Sisters,

We have made it through September and October in our home teaching lifestyles! We deserve a pat on the back by now  At this time we might be taking inventory of where the children are in their lessons, what they have accomplished (what we have accomplished!), what is working and what is not working… and when we will break for the holidays ahead. Perhaps the last couple months have gone by uneventful, consistent and fairly smooth in our home schooling…or perhaps not. But do not fear, even the most seemingly haphazard schooling years, interrupted by a lot of “life events”, still seem to turn out good students. Many life events are opportunities to learning as well.

Home school lives are busy lives indeed – moms wear many hats – as teacher, supervisor, coordinator…domestic engineer, and those duties alone take up a good chunk of the day; add in working outside of the home whether through employment or volunteerism along with domestic responsibilities and home education and well…you may have one determined, but sometimes exhausted mom at the helm. I have been there!

October has always been my favorite month; with the beauty of nature and the change in routine. Yet, many Octobers I have felt crushed by a heavy relentless schedule. Growing tired and weary is not my idea of enjoying autumn. And the more worn-out I become the less I seem able to be patient and gentle with those around me. I am ashamed to admit it, but sometimes I have patience for everyone but my own family members. Maybe it’s the fatigue or stress that’s striking, lessening my ability to be charitable; maybe I’m feeling overwhelmed with the tasks at hand, the unbearable schedule, the long list of things that need to be done other than our usual home schooling; it seems like everything becomes an obstacle to Christ’s commandment of love.

Realizing home schooling families are together – A LOT – adds challenges of its own. For all the right reasons, the children benefit in a home environment which allows them to be raised daily by people who know them the best, imparting Godly authority and character building of Christian principles and virtue. On the other hand, the children raised by peer-mates all day year after year, may display different characteristics that are not in accord to Christian values and Our Lord’s laws of love and respect. So, we must practice what we preach within the home-front...we must attempt to rise to the challenge of taking our weary selves to a high level of patience and management in the home where we are among our children, teaching them, leading them, loving them unconditionally, day in and day out.

Mother Teresa of Calcutta once said: “It is easy to love the people far away. It is not always easy to love those close to us. It is easier to give a cup of rice to relieve hunger than to relieve the loneliness and pain of someone unloved in our own home. Bring love into your home, for this is where our love for each other must start.”
I fall short so many times, letting the weight of the world and daily affairs overcome me…and yet, each year I find I catch myself and am reminded that I have accepted this role of wife and mother, teacher and homemaker, volunteer. I said “yes” to being engaged thoroughly in the upbringing and education of the children God has blessed us with. God has led me to this place and I know deep in my heart, that He will not and has not abandoned me – and because I am His, I know His love is unconditional and I can say I have done wrong, I am sorry and I will improve with your help Lord.

For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Matt 11:30)

Yes, Lord YOU have the answers and the fuel we need to refresh and recharge – don’t we make things so burdensome without you first in our lives? Help us to love one another above all things – help us to show love and be love in our own homes.

It is a good time to think about what causes the lack of charity we might display. Why are we falling short in love, kindness and gentleness toward our family? What is irritating us? Where can we make changes? Where can we adjust our schedule, including sleep, errands/shopping; how can we fit everything in, and still place school as a priority in our homes? How can we recruit the help of the children in our daily grind in loving and acceptable ways? I know we will find answers and make for smoother days and be much more charitable living up to Our Lord’s laws of love. Just take time to think this through and ask for help from both God and man (and woman!) We know with God all things are let’s remember to include Him in our plans every day...We know He has included us in His!

May God bless you with all you need!

Your Sister in Christ,
Denise Laubacher


Megan said...

Ah Denise, you just described my life! Though, the ones I am short and impatient with tend to be the ones who are NEVER around. When the girls come home from school they throw me off my groove. Drives me nuts! I know I need to get over that! I just can't handle the disruption, people who are not part of my "system" coming in and sitting down in the middle of it. You'd think I would be more understanding of their exhaustion (they are wimps, really!)but it's my biggest downfall.
Thanks for the great reminder to be more loving - I needed it!

Denise said...

Hi Megan, I can certainly understand the 'groove' and it getting thrown off. I think we get acclimated to the ones that are home and can at least deal with that mode then add in anyone else and we have to get use to that! Like juggling...add in one more ball to juggle and well...sometimes we miss and drop the ball ya know! haha...hang in there, you have been called to a mighty mission in raising a large family and even with some downfalls, you are still doing a really great job! God bless, D.