Please, especially over the next 24 hours, keep my special intention in your prayers. It would be most appreciated.
I was raised by a sometimes austere father who did not accept failure of any kind from me. A valuable lesson he taught me early on was never to take the easy road when I could take the more difficult path. I can, to this day, hear him tell me: " A quitter never wins and a winner never quits." Later, when I went to high school and thought that algebra and chemistry were going to be the death of me, he not only encouraged me to hang in there, he expected me to excel. And when I got to college and could choose my professors, my father, a high-school drop-out, advised me to take the more difficult courses with the more difficult professors.
"What good is an A if it's practically given away? Better to get a B and have really worked for it and learned something."
My dad, who is still with us and is a lot less austere than he was in those days, has obviously had an impact on my life. The last year has been a difficult one for me and after some introspection and time before the Blessed Sacrament, I see now that a lot of the demands that have left me exhausted were not of God's doing but my own in a misguided attempt to serve Him.
For reasons that I will one day talk about when the time is right, I have never had the luxury of being a stay-at-home mom except for brief periods of time here and there. If I could live my life over, I would do it so differently, but we only get one shot, so the best I can do is thank God for leading me where He has and do my best to continue to serve Him without killing myself in the process. I sometimes heard the words of my dear Father Jim telling me: "Christ does NOT want you running yourself ragged for Him."
What one mother does for 6 children, 6 children will never do for her. So it is with God. We can never repay Him and He doesn't expect that of us. He only asks for our love and our gratitude. And I can certainly give those to Him without making my life unnecessarily unpleasant and difficult.
I have some work to finish before I move on to my next conquest. God, in His wisdom, endowed me with a sensitive nature that simultaneously recoils from harsh, cruel people while seeking to protect weaker people from their bullying. I have achieved such a sense of peace since accepting that God wasn't demanding any of the things from me that I thought He was.
He appreciates everything I do for Him. As St. Therese reminds us, " God does not look at the greatness of our acts but the love with which we do them."