Sunday, March 13, 2011

Saying Yes, Saying No, and Jennifer's Our Father Series

Why do mothers feel so guilty about being "only" mothers?  Why do we sometimes think that if our vocation and our work is "just at home" that we should be willing to also take on all kinds of other projects?

Isn't "Home and Family" a worthwhile project?

I think so. But I'd be willing to bet that most stay-at-home moms have felt guilty about saying no to volunteering, committees, and so on, even though we know that Overcommitted = Cranky.

I'm sure we've all heard the spot-on wisdom that we must sometimes say "no" to good things in order to properly serve the people and things we've said "yes" to.

And isn't the best example of that the Blessed Mother?

When Mary said "yes" to God, she was saying "no" to a lot of other objective goods, such as an ordinary marriage and family. But the Lord didn't call her to the ordinary -- He called her to the extraordinary. She said yes.

On the other hand, He has called many of us to the ordinary, and we must say no to the extraordinary (such as being, or trying to be, Superwoman.)  It's okay to say "No, I cannot be Superwoman", no to the many demands on our time that can distract us from handling that one big "Yes" that we signed on for.

Jennifer at Conversion Diary had a great post on this very subject recently.  Visit her post for the tips, definitely, but almost as good is the graphic she threw in.


And, speaking of Jennifer, she's doing a terrific series right now on The Our Father, Word by Word.  She's reflecting on the each word of the prayer, and has invited some guest bloggers to weigh in, too.

My turn will be coming up soon -- I'm delighted to be part of it, and I'll keep you posted.

In the meantime, check out Jennifer's first installment : "Our."  And her first guest blogger, Marcel LeJeune is here, on "Father."

And, just to be clear on the whole Yes/No issue:

If, instead of throwing in a guest post Jennifer had asked me to join a year-long committee to investigate the feasibility of doing a series of posts on the Our Father, and needed me to make 110 phone calls to see which bloggers might be free, and if she wondered aloud if I might also have time to bake ten dozen chocolate chip cookies for the first meeting and also line up the babysitting, rest assured I would have said no to all of those goods in order to say yes to the best: writing a blog post.

1 comment:

Liz said...

In Creed or Chaos, Dorothy L Sayers says:I believe, however that there is a Christian doctrine of work, very closely related to the doctrines of the creative energy of God and the divine image in man. The modern tendency seems to be to identify work with gainful employment; and this is, I maintain, the essential heresy at the back of the great economic fallacy which allows wheat and coffee to be burnt and fish to be used for manure while whole populations stand in need of food. The fallacy being that work is not the expression of man's creative energy in the service of society, but only something he does in order to obtain money and leisure."

Mothers and other homemaker are truly creative workers since we don't work for a paycheck at all.