There is an old saying, well it might be a practice, if you are feeling down, depressed, just look for someone who is worse off than you, then you will see that it could be worse and you will feel better about yourself. There is truth to that. Not a lot of truth, but nonetheless truth. It tends to help our emotional state just to acknowledge that. However, I believe this to only be apart of what helps us to feel better. The rest is this, after finding that person who is worse off than ourselves, find out exactly what is wrong and help them to overcome it. It is through doing good for others and focussing on their needs that we can be filled with joy and find comfort in our own struggles.
I have noticed that with my own family. When my kids are struggling and I am just too tired to deal with it, when I take the time to help them through it my own weariness doesn't seem to be that big a deal. Likewise, when I look at my church family and the number of people who are struggling to find work, I ask myself what can I do? The answer is simple, but it requires the efforts of everyone. The solution centers on another principle I am learning, the closer it is to me, the better it is for me. That may sound selfish because it puts the focus on me, but in truth it is the only way to make any kind of lasting change. Since my church is an extension of my family, whatever I can do to better them helps everyone. In our congregation we have nearly every line of work. Many own their own companies. So the question is, if I need a product or service why look out side of my family? Looking outside takes those much needed blessings away from those who are most important in my life.
Forgive me if I am coming to this conclusion late. Better late than never.
I was helping my oldest daughter with her history homework. She doesn't see why it's important to learn about dead people. I explained about learning from the mistakes and successes of others so that we won't have to have the same struggles that they had. I tried to liken the history lessons in her book about the rise and fall of the Roman Empire to our own country, but I was way above her head and may have confused her more.
As the night went on my son wanted to make brownies. We followed the directions to the letter. The batter seemed really thick to me and so I said to the kids who were around, "should we add more water?" They told me that's what mom did. Remembering the cake like texture those brownies had I said, "then nope we leave it the way it is." While we were enjoying the fruit of our labour, I used that to further illustrate my point of learning from the experience of others. I told my oldest, "history is important because without it I would have made the same mistake that mom did and our brownies would have tasted like cake." I got an eye roll at that one.
Dumbing it Down
I am sick of the school making the work easier for my kids, while at the same time making it more difficult in other areas. We chose the school because it would be challenging. The school decided it was too hard and really slowed it down. They pulled my oldest out during a different subject to "help" her with one she is struggling with. I wrote a nasty note telling them to challenge my kids and not pull them out during subjects they aren't getting help in.
It wasn't that long ago when 15 year olds were moving out on their own and supporting themselves. When did it become the norm to treat kids like invalids?