I was starting to think I might never have a prayerful moment or coherent thought again with the challenge of a new baby and a whole slew of kids to get settled in their various schools and activities. I’ve missed my little blogging world and all of you tremendously so here I am for a quickie post.
These days, this season that I’m in, is quite frankly an exhausting one! No sooner do I crawl into bed at night than it’s time to crawl out again. The pace is frenetic, this baby is hungry and all the kids need my attention. The cross of acutely missing Anna, day in and day out feels monotonous and heavy. Every day that she doesn’t walk back into our lives is a new day to work on growing spiritually; the only comfort. And my marriage needs time and attention too. It feels like I’ve hardly seen my hubby in weeks and weeks! There are two relationships in my life that sustain all else; one with Jesus Christ and the other with William Pullano. I can not afford to be too busy for either of them. The cost is simply too great. In short it seems everyone wants a piece of me! A couple of things struck me in the past week that have given me renewed courage and I thought I should share them with you all. After all, I think courage is a cornerstone for these times!
My friend Leila at Little Catholic Bubble published a post a couple of weeks ago titled Women: Save your marriage. In Five minutes. It is definitely worth reading and seems to have struck a chord in many circles. There has been a lot of buzz about it in the blogosphere and the post has been linked on several diocesan websites. I had to see what all the excitement was about and promptly ordered the book that Leila recommends in her post, “The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands.” by Dr. Laura Schlessinger. I dug right in and wasn’t even through the first chapter before the “Alleluia bells” started chiming! I love this book because Dr. Laura has a solid grasp of marriage as vocation and that takes center stage as she deals with just about every situation you can think of. The read is worth every minute of the investment and has something to offer for every marriage but I think these 6 tips alone, excerpted from one of her listener’s emails, will absolutely change your marriage. Right now. Today!
Kaye writes “…Thank God daily for such a terrific guy, mentioning specific qualities for which I’m grateful.
Look for daily ways to be a blessing to my husband (trying to understand what pleases him, anticipating his needs, etc.)
Chart my menstrual cycle and remind myself on the PMS days that what I’m feeling isn’t true and to keep my mouth shut and let it pass.
Avoid books, magazines, and TV shows that describe what marriage, family, and husbands ought to be like, and make a conscious effort to be grateful for things as they are instead of trying to change the people around me.
Take responsibility for my own emotional well-being: Stay rested, don’t overcommit and then complain, stay in touch with friends with a positive influence.
Stay focused on making a home for my family and remember that this is my highest calling and responsibility, and that it has eternal value. The more I do this, the happier and more content I am.”
I had to re-read these several times and really pray about how well I am or am not embracing these things! Grab a copy of this book and see for yourself. Leila would love feedback for a follow-up post in the future so send her an email with your thoughts firstname.lastname@example.org (or contact me and I will pass it along)
The Alleluia bells rang for me again shortly after reading this when I decided to see for myself what the media buzz surrounding our Holy Father is all about. I’m sure you’ve seen the media headlines proclaiming ways in which the new Pope is single-handedly changing 2000 years of Church doctrine. It was a little shocking to hear our sweet little local newscaster proclaim such a thing when of course nothing could be further from the truth. I decided to see for myself what prompted such sensationalism and erroneous reporting and what I found was a lengthy interview FULL of beautiful truths and insights. Pope Francis’s humility is, well, humbling and if anyone wants to get to know Pope Francis the man, I highly recommend reading this interview in its entirety. But here is the one paragraph that called to me like a beacon.
“I see the holiness,” the pope continues, “in the patience of the people of God: a woman who is raising children, a man who works to bring home the bread, the sick, the elderly priests who have so many wounds but have a smile on their faces because they served the Lord, the sisters who work hard and live a hidden sanctity. This is for me the common sanctity. I often associate sanctity with patience: not only patience as hypomoné [the New Testament Greek word], taking charge of the events and circumstances of life, but also as a constancy in going forward, day by day. This is the sanctity of the militant church also mentioned by St. Ignatius. This was the sanctity of my parents: my dad, my mom, my grandmother Rosa who loved me so much. In my breviary I have the last will of my grandmother Rosa, and I read it often. For me it is like a prayer. She is a saint who has suffered so much, also spiritually, and yet always went forward with courage.”
To go forward with courage, with patience in our day-to-day lives is our greatest sanctity and the means by which we can become saints!!!
I needed this reminder. It is basic stuff but somehow I allowed the noisy world around me to cloud the simple truth. In the face of day-to-day monotony, struggles, crosses we carry and even the greatest blessings that require something of us, God is present and doing a work in us.
I don’t have to do anything great today, I just have to do the very best I can right where I am. What Hope! What Joy! What rest!
Seriously, by loving my family and doing the laundry and the dishes and driving to activities, God is making me a saint? Not only can I do that, I want to do that!!
Courage my friends!