This past Saturday Mike and I finished the last class of what may soon be a new way to teach NFP…via the internet!
We were approached a while back by Rebecca and her husband who were interested in learning NFP but had no teachers in their state. Rebecca was so sweet and so motivated that we decided to try this internet teaching via Skype, and it worked out great! Skype has a screen sharing option where we can do the powerpoint presentation so that the other person can follow along and we’re able to use the file transfer to share practice charts as well. The free phone bill is nice too! It was really a great experience and I was actually a little sad after the class since we’d no longer have these once a month meetings with Rebecca and Cliff. They are such a sweet couple and I’m sure we’d hang out if they lived in Texas (and probably go to some basketball games together!). Hopefully we will get to meet them in real life soon!
Its hard to understand where and why God is leading you when you’re in the moment. Its only in hindsight that you can usually look back and see how all the pieces fit together so nicely. Last year + a few months, Mike and I embarked on teaching our first NFP class, still newly weds ourselves. We wondered, who would listen to us, believe what we had to say? We had no children and little experience using NFP ourselves. Our families smiled nicely when we told them we were getting certified to teach, but nothing more. Nonetheless, we both had such strong feelings while learning NFP and knew that the method was sound (in part by reading countless journal articles), that we felt we had a duty to share with others what had so richly blessed our relationship and marriage. We were nervous and didn’t know what to expect, but we made announcements at Mass (to many blank stares) advertising our first class. Little did we know who would be listening! In fact, from those announcements and that first class, we met one of the most sincere women I’ve had the privilege of knowing. [I think my favorite part of that first class was at the end, after we’ve talked about temps and mucus, how NFP can help your relationship, etc., Elizabeth raises her hand and asked “Ok, seriously, that’s great and all, but how long do you have to abstain for??” I couldn’t have appreciated her in our class more!! Direct and to the point!!!]
Since then, through teaching more classes and starting this blog, my favorite part of being an NFP teacher has been watching how this knowledge transforms lives. The fruits of teaching! People come to the class from many different backgrounds; some people in our classes want to be there and learn the method, while others are required by their priest to take them before they get married. I never tire of seeing people eager to learn or watching as couples warm up over the two month course to eventually wanting to chart their own cycles.
I admire women like Elizabeth and Rebecca who both came to the class either on BCP or freshly off, looking for something deeper. To me that shows a huge leap of faith and a profound willingness to change. I’ve been humbled to have their trust as we navigated their charts and cycles and show them that yes, NFP really does work. These are great women and they have my deepest respect! They remind me to never take what I’ve learned for granted, to keep teaching with vigor, and most importantly, to not get discouraged when some couples in the class don’t seem as enthusiastic as others. I guess we don’t know what seeds we’re planting and where God’s path is leading them!
Only in hindsight will we understand.