I wanted to thank you for the inspiration you gave me over last week and Shabbos. I had already come to the conclusion over the past year or two (the kedusha of your group is affecting people without them even knowing it!) that if Friday is stressful, it is terrible chinuch for the kids to associate that with Shabbos, and that if I want to have any food at all for Shabbos, I have to cook when the kids are in school ie Thursday and Friday morning. B”H I had even already gotten to the point where laundry is usually all finished and baths mostly done by Thursday night, (though I must admit, I was never washed and dressed by chatzos..) so I was wondering what exactly I want to get from this group.
But over the past week, after being exposed to many inspiring posts, I felt a tremendous shift in paradigm! Because what I was doing was merely an organizational technique, albeit for good purposes, but this is totally different. This isn’t only about organization and deadlines, its about holiness, about bringing Shabbos into the entire week!
Instead of feeling that I am checking off a checklist of chores, I felt I was elevating the whole week! So I didn’t really do anything different, but the thoughts are different, and that is worth more than anything. Another major difference is that beforehand, my ‘technique’ ended when Shabbos came, because I had successfully ‘made it in time’ like I had planned, but with this group Shabbos is just the beginning.
The idea isnt ‘making it’ but honoring Shabbos, and candlelighting isnt the finish-line, but rather the peak, just the beginning of now enjoying the kedusha we had been waiting for the whole week! It was very powerful for me. And it obviously followed, that if I had worked hard all week to bring the holiness of Shabbos into my home, then obviously on Shabbos even more so should I do whatever necessary to keep the atmosphere elevated, happy and holy, and so for example if during the meal the kids started fighting and getting WILD, nothing was worth me letting that disturb our Shabbos atmosphere that we worked so hard for, and so I was ‘forced’ to deal with everything calmly, patiently and with a smile.