by Eartha Stone on Friday, June 25, 2010
"I have not the courage to force myself to seek beautiful prayers in books; not knowing which to choose I act as children do who cannot read; I say quite simply to the good God what I want to tell Him, and He always understands me" - Saint Thérèse of Lisieux - "Little Flower"
I'm not Catholic, but have requested the intercession of the saints. I read about Thérèse of Lisieux a few years ago and felt an immediate connection with her "Little Way."
When she was four, her Mother passed away. It is said that the rest of the family doted on her because she was the baby. She had a conversion in her teens, and joined the Carmelite convent in Lisieux at 15.
What makes her interesting to me, is that when I first started praying the rosary, I would become real drowsy. I tried to keep a practice of praying the rosary first thing in the morning. I would get so frustrated at myself for always falling asleep.
Soon afterward, I was introduced Saint Thérèse of Lisieux and her little way. She disliked praying the rosary, and often fell asleep. I feel you sister. I did learn to adjust my timing. A couple of years, and many stops and starts, I pray the rosary more often than I don't. I also decided not to be so hard on myself when I didn't.
But it was her idea, her little way, that really resonated with me. To do small things with big love. So I told myself that I was going to learn to do my housework with love, it will be a gift I give to my family and act of gratitude for all I have. I would be the saint of house work!
That was seven years ago. It is only now that I am beginning to understand that to take care of the home IS ministry. Keeping order, yet encouraging independence and creativity is a fine line, and there is no way to do it other than with love, in small ways..day by day. The kids call it nagging, I call it love. Pick up after yourself. Pull up your pants. You're not going out of the house looking like that. Yes, it's 2:00 in the morning, and yes you are going to get up and finish these chores. If you don't learn these things here, you may have to learn them in a less forgiving environment.
This journey has also showed me when I needed to bend a little, (ok, a lot). So I got a text phone and learned the teen text lingo. My son sends me texts, with all the abbreviations. I sometimes have to look up on the Urban Dictionary what he's talking about, but he's talking to me. My daughter will be getting a texting phone for her next birthday. It's another line of communication, and if that's how they feel most comfortable relating to their peers, I want to be in the loop. Because if they have a question about something serious, I want them to always know that they can come to me. Even if it means sending a semi-literate text message.
I think I'll continue this little way.
Love to you!
(Read more about Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, please see the Society of The Little Flower )