I am so thankful for my family! Because of them I get to enjoy moments like these:
Thursday, November 5, 2009
I'm back, trying to delve back into my prayer life. Don't get me wrong, I still managed to pray but it was always for someone else. It's not that I didn't think I needed the prayers for myself but more the fact that I didn't think I deserved the prayers. My goodness! Haven't I ridden this horse long enough? I mean, how long am I going to lament my unworthiness? It's like constantly asking someone if this dress makes me look fat. Not that God would ever hurt me or reject me or claim me unworthy. So, the example makes sense in MY head but it may not in yours - deal with it!
I've decided to re-read some of my spiritual books. It gets me into a prayerful posture without the pressure of knowing what to say. I've dusted off "I Believe in Love" and I opened up to where I left off...and stumbled upon the chapter on Mary, the Blessed Mother. Well, that got me psyched because who better to emulate the art of being humble without being a jackass (like myself) You see, in my quest to be humble I have mistaken it for my own feeling of unworthiness. Big difference and I think my faithful friends are, quite frankly, sick of having to convince me of my worthiness and my lovable nature. Again, I harken back to the dress analogy - eventually they might just tell me that yes, indeed, you look fat in that dress. Not because that is the truth but because they refuse to "play the game" anymore. Thank God my friends, Shelly, Kerry, Jill, and others, would never give up on validating me but they may resort to kicking my fanny (Jill's young and she could do it!)
Five jewels in the heart of Mary: her simplicity, her abandonment, her love for the Cross, her thirst for souls, and her love. What is amazing about these jewels is how attainable they are. Mary, in her perfection, could be known for her piousness (which she mastered), her suffering (and she certainly suffered), her obedience (could any of us give such a magnificant Fiat?), and so on. She was all of these thing and she was more. But, what I love about these 5 jewels named in the "I Believe in Love" book is that you could be talking about you or me - and that's the beauty of Our Lady!
Simplicity-the absence of excess
"In our time Jesus also wants hidden saints like the woman of Nazareth (Mary)who distinguish themselves in nothing exteriorly, but who burn interiorly."
Abandonment-the act of leaving or giving something up completely
"The loving abandonment of Mary is at the origin of our Redemption"
The Cross-Jesus and His amazing sacrifice
Can you imagine knowing at the time of conception, at the time of the fiat, that Mary knew that her own soul would be pierced by a sword because of her Son. "Mary was preparing for the great reunion of the Assumption, when she was to see the wounds streaming with Blood changed into wounds streaming with light and glory."
Souls-you, me, and the rest that are hardly worth the thirst
"In her fiat at Nazareth there is something of the impulse of a mother who wants to prevent her child from falling into the flames, for she realized more than anyone else what sin is, what Hell is. So she cried, 'Yes, let me receive the sword, the piercing lance at Golgotha. I consent to see Jesus suffer and die to save my other children.'"
Love-a very strong warm feeling or deep concern for someone, commitment
"This is the diamond which flashes its splendor on all the others. It is more than a jewel of her heart - it is her heart itself."
I can attain these jewels! I can! But...I have got to do more than what I've been doing. I need to get back to "working" towards these jewels and "working" towards perfection. Sometimes, I get caught up in the unworthiness that we all possess and forget that God isn't asking for us to be perfect! He is so beyond what we humans call perfection and he doesn't label us in the manner or by the measures that we have created on earth - THANK GOD!
I will leave you with this final quote from the book;
"Each morning at Mass, the focal point of your days and of your life, put Jesus on the altar of the wounded heart of Mary, the Mother of the Church. Assist at Mass near her, with her, at the foot of the Cross, like St. John and St. Mary Magdalene."
Thank You, Jesus!
Thank you, Mary!
ps. sorry so long!!!
Monday, November 2, 2009
Today is the day 19 years ago that I placed my son, Joseph, for adoption. I'm never quite sure when to remember him. Do I take a moment on his birthday, October 17th? Do I commemorate him today on the day he went home with his forever family? I know, I can remember him on any ordinary day that I want but after 19 years I still don't know what to do. It's kind of a mixed bag because I want people to remember what happened and to acknowledge his life but I don't want to remind them either.
It's hard because I don't feel old enough to have done anything of significance! Let alone do something almost 20 years ago that affected so many people in such a huge way! How can this be since I'm only 30 years old? Gosh, I wouldn't want to redo 30 so I'll just stick to being 39 - I like it!
I wonder what Joseph looks like at 19. Is he away at college or did he stay home and learn a trade? Does he have a girlfriend or has he discerned a vocation in the priesthood already? Does he have red hair like his brothers and sister? Is he tall like the McNamara family or is he average in height? Is he obsessed with sports like the rest of us or is he more into the arts (or both)?
I guess what I wonder most is if he ever wonders about me? Does he know he's adopted? I can only assume that they've told him but I don't know that for a fact. If he does know, has he read all of the letters that I've written through the years? Has he seen pictures of Murphy, Briege, and Keagan? Does he ever want to meet me and his siblings that all know about him and pray for him? My canned response has always been that I won't seek him out because I want it to be his decision but I would like to know where he is so that I can take a peek at him. Is that wrong? I'm trying to convince myself that it doesn't hurt me that he hasn't requested information about me from the agency. I'm trying to convince myself that what I did was for him and for his parents and that I'm secondary to the picture. I'm trying to convince myself that I'm stronger than I really am. I'm failing, friends! I'm hurting, I'm depressed, I'm surprised, I'm weak!
I love you, Joseph. I truly love you and I pray and hope and know that you are happy. I want you to know that I have never stopped thinking about you and that I want nothing more than your happiness. Convincing? Well, I believe what I say but I'm hurting as I say it. Is that wrong, too?