My purpose with this blog is to honestly chronicle my experiences as I attempt go grow in my newfound faith (new readers are thinking, “I thought this was a blog about scorpions!”); and on that note, I have a little story to share:
This weekend I felt particularly inspired about the upcoming week: I would make sure to say the daily offering every morning, to grow in my patience, to seek the peace of Christ in all frustrating situations. I planned to be all Benedictine and calmly, prayerfully work through my daily tasks, accomplishing much both physically and spiritually.
Each day I have started the day with the morning offering. Throughout the day I have kept my thoughts close to God and prayed for the grace I need to handle any challenges that may arise…And I have had a terrible week.
Not terrible in the “my children are starving” or “my house has been leveled by a natural disaster” sense, but it’s been one of those weeks where one little thing after another has just worn me down. Now that I’m in the third trimester I often find myself exhausted and short of breath. This is like throwing gasoline on a fire since I have a natural tendency toward laziness and procrastination, and the result is that I’ve hardly gotten anything done at all. I’m overwhelmed by clutter and disorganization (as some other moms are discussing as well). The best I can say is that the house is “a mess” instead of “a disaster area”.
Combine all that with my toddler and the baby having a couple days of extreme fussiness, that nagging question of “how on earth am I going to do this when I have a newborn?!?!”, and the typical financial stresses of trying to live on one income, and I’ve been left feeling pretty overwhelmed.
Though it’s definitely been a worse week than usual, I’ve reacted to it all worse than usual as well. It really didn’t feel like I received any grace or help from God this week — it was just Jen and her bad attitude left to deal with the milk spilled on the couch, the clothes tumbling to the floor in the closet because it’s so disorganized, and the baby who prefers screaming as her main method of communication. In fact, I actually joked to myself that maybe I should stop offering up my days to Christ since everything has been going to badly since I started doing so. 🙂
The culmination was last night when my toddler threw a fit about going to bed and woke up the baby and I had two over-tired little ones screaming until 10:45. It had been a loooong day, and this was a frustrating if not apropos way to end it. I sat on the edge of my bed, asking God for the grace to see how minor this all was in the grand scheme of things, to better appreciate my blessings, and to even see some humor in it.
None of that happened. I grudgingly consoled the inconsolable baby and told my toddler that he needed to settle down and go night-night through clenched teeth, all the while with a laser focus on how inconvenient it all was for me. I felt overwhelmed, upset, unhopeful about what tomorrow would bring, and not at all peaceful.
I’m not sure what to make of a week like this one. Perhaps God is testing me to see how serious I am about the whole offering all my sufferings of this day to him? Perhaps it’s shallow of me to expect instantaneous results, to be filled with grace simply because I actually took thirty seconds to say the morning offering?
Whatever the reason, I do feel better today and am more hopeful about the rest of the week. I offer this story not to whine (OK, a little bit to whine), but because I think stories like this are often left out of tales of conversion. Coming to the belief that God exists didn’t make all my worldly problems go away. Attempting to live by his rules didn’t make me a living saint. I still have bad days — sometimes really bad days. But I’ll take the worst day with God over a good day without God any time.
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