September 11, 2011 by Nicole
It’s interesting how the past few weeks have been so uneventful that there is not much to write about lately. However, I am a little ashamed at my inability to give myself a much needed kick in the pants lately–I feel like I am slacking. If God wants the best of me and the “first fruits” of my labors, well, I think I accidentally ate the fruit I was supposed to give to Him. Dang. Seriously I was doing pretty good until recently. However, I am not proud of last week; I almost forgot to say my rosary yesterday, and missed my one extra weekday mass. On top of that, I think that the last time I actually read my Bible was in my in-law’s camper on Labor Day weekend. The reason I can tell that these are slowly becoming a habitual part of my spiritual life is because when I missed mass, the good ole Catholic guilt kicked in and stayed with me for the rest of the day. It really is scary when I look at all of this and realize how easy it is to allow oneself to slip into autopilot and inch back into the old way of life.
With school starting, I knew that it was going to really challenge my renewed commitment to my faith. When you haven’t got much to do other than hang out at farmers markets and sell soap for three months, it’s really easy to remember to pray your rosary, immerse yourself in prayer, read the Bible, and go to Mass one extra day of the week, largely because that is really all you have to do. Having an open schedule with so few commitments makes it easy to stay focused on God, as there isn’t anything else that competes for my time.
I knew that come late August and early September, though, that things were going to get tougher. I knew I was going to have to find a way to avoid throwing myself entirely into my job. In short, all of the energy and focus that goes into being an effective teacher distracts me from the other aspects of my life, especially when it comes to family and God. I know enough about myself to admit that I am a recovering workaholic, so if I am not careful, my schoolwork begins to crowd out some of the other areas of my life little by little until one day, I look up and realize that my best efforts aren’t going towards the things in life that truly matter. Not that my job isn’t important, but I imagine when I look back on my life one day, I am not going to regret not having given more of my time and energy to my work.
So as school gets underway this year, I must continually remind myself of what I was resolved to do when I came home from Lourdes–to draw closer to God, to work harder at being a better wife, and most importantly not to give God and the important people in my life leftovers rather than my best energy.