In an effort to increase attendance at the important orientation day for our homeschool cooperative, each attending family was offered a raffle ticket. The prize: You will not be assigned to a cleaning team for the year. This was a coveted prize. Finishing a day of teaching, supervising and babysitting by cleaning the place without losing track of your children is tiring and tedious. We are all going home to more chores and no one enjoys this one. Personally, I, especially dread when it’s my team’s cleaning day for a different reason – Guilt.
My job at coop is the PreK group. I supervise, plan, and teach many of the classes. Since the children are little and many are stressed by separating from their parents, I try to be in the classroom the whole day to add stability. Then, I need to close up shop. This means that I don’t finish my primary job until most of the cleaning team work is done. Though I’m working for the coop, my cleaning team is basically down a member every time.
At orientation, I stood at the lunchroom door with my 2 month old, the youngest coop member out of the womb. I saw that the raffle was underway. A child stepped up to choose the name. “And the winner is….Daneluk!” Once I realized that I really won, I threw my one free hand in the air in celebration.
Several moms said to me, “God knew who needed to win.” This is a humbling thought because many other moms there have infants and toddlers, many are pregnant, many have a lot on their plate. I did pray that I would win, but I didn’t expect it. I don’t necessarily believe that God influences our games of chance, but He can.
I’ve bought raffle tickets before for various fundraisers, and a few lottery tickets in my day, and I didn’t win. Sometimes someone who really needs the money wins, sometimes not. Some winners are great stewards of their treasure, others aren’t. It does seem like some people win more than others. Some have theories on how to win, including silly superstitions and karmic philosophies. God’s role in the actual game is unclear, especially since when large sums of money are in question, the game can turn toward dangerous gambling. But one thing I do know, is that God has a plan for each of us, and a plan for how He wants us to live no matter what trials or treats life brings us.
In Scripture, we see that when choosing between two qualified candidates to find Judas’ successor, lots were cast to decide. Matthias became the next Apostle. This was done with prayer and faith. (Acts 1:21-26)
Then we can consider the story of St. (Padre) Pio’s mission to open a hospital for the poor. He instructed his friend, Dr Guglielmo Sanguinetti, to come to run the hospital. The doctor was willing but had to attend to his first vocation as provider for his family. St. Pio assured him God would provide and the doctor won the lottery, allowing him to move and begin providing free services to the poor.
So it seems games of chance may sometimes be more than they seem. If we continually ask God to guide our lives and provide for our needs, He will provide for us as He sees fit and protect us from dangers that could come our way, such as sudden, un-earned wealth.
It is very possible in our group of faithful homeschool families, that my prayer, and the prayers of others asking God to choose the right person, may have helped me win this one. I am certainly grateful for the relief I feel when the cleaning team list was emailed later in the week and my name was absent. In that vein, I think it is time to say a prayer and randomly select a winner of our little raffle. To whom will I pass down this Lullabelly to now that my bun is out of the oven? And the winner is….Roseann!
Copyright 2011 Kate Daneluk