Today’s guest post is by Theresa at Carmelite Mom.
I am always amazed at the endless baskets of wash despite the fact that two of my older children do their own wash. After my oldest called me from college several times his first year wondering how to do whites or darks and should he hang them up?…I decided it was time my other children learn this most basic life skill.
I was listening to a talk on John of the Cross by Susan Muto and she mentions an “epiphany” moment that her friend experienced while doing wash. She was sorting through endless piles of dirty socks from her hard-working husband and several teenage sons when she sighed and said “Is this all there is?” (pertaining to her life) She then heard an internal voice, a voice that leaves no doubt Who is speaking, that said “Yes, this is all there is…and it is enough.” This moment was a turning point in her life and from then on she had great peace and did everything with great love.
This excerpt from the talk comes back to me now and then. It’s always in the back of my mind. There are many days that my daily duties bring great peace and contentment and joy…then there are other days when the monotony threatens to suffocate me and I find myself asking “Is this all there is?” Do you ever find yourself asking the same thing? After two or three days of homeschooling, washing, running errands, running the children to activities, cooking dinner, bathing, teethbrushing, reading and all the other things that fill our days…does this thought ever cross your mind?
It is then that we need the powerful reminder to do everything with love. This is God’s will for us…this very moment. Ascetism is closely associated with our daily duties. It is in monotony and dryness that God calls us to be even more faithful. It is easy to fulfill our duties when we are feeling at peace and content but is in the desert experience that we prove our love for God…and for our family. We experience the same exact thing in our prayer life. God draws us to prayer with consolations and feelings of peace and contentment, but then eventually leads us into the aridness of the desert, so as to prove our commitment, our faith, and most importantly, our love. We have to take our love and put it to the test of dailyness, of boredom, of frustration, of distasteful tasks that are almost beyond our strength.
So, when we ask ourselves “Is this all there is?” we can close our eyes and remember the words God spoke to that humble homemaker…and to all of us…”Yes, and it is enough.”
In between reading, praying, organizing, working part-time, homeschooling her five year old and raising three teenagers…Theresa squeezes in some blogging at http://carmelitemom.blogspot.com
photo by Charlyn W