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May 10, 2016

Put on Mary


Sleep in Christ

Adoration. Just the thought of sitting with Our Lord in the quiet makes me long for Eucharistic Adoration. We are fortunate at our parish to have 40 hour weekly Adoration, yet I rarely get there. When someone calls me in need of a substitute, I accept. I see it as God’s way of inviting me personally. “I have missed you,” He calls. “Let’s sit and talk.” It is wonderful.

Adoration makes me think of Anna from the story of the Presentation of Jesus. The bible story talks of her life that she was a widow for many years and spent her days in the Temple. What a life, living in the Temple!

Yea, that is not my life. I am a Martha. Actually, I am a MARTHA. The words of Jesus sting after Martha asks Him to rebuke Mary. She wants Jesus to make Mary help. “Martha” He says. “You are troubled by many things. Mary has chosen the better part and it shall not be taken from her.” Maybe you read this passage differently than I. You see, I notice that Jesus speaks to Martha’s priorities and the fact that she is in TROUBLE. “Martha, you are troubled by many things.” Note that he does not tell her to stop serving. He speaks the truth in love and Martha must choose her priority. I hate that. Yep, I really do.

“Mary has chosen the better part and it shall not be taken from her.”

Mary was smart. She saw the opportunity to sit at the feet of Jesus and listen. Oh, may I be so wise to sit and listen to Jesus. Well, today I went to Adoration. I chose to be a Mary. I worked hard in the morning and at 2 pm I went with my husband for his scheduled hour of Adoration, I took off the apron of Martha and put on Mary.

One of the things I love best about Adoration in how the Peace saturates me. I get sleepy, like a babe resting on her mother’s chest. I often fall asleep in Adoration; partially because I am sleep deprived and also because of the Peace I experience in His Presence. Arriving at church, I stepped out of the van and turned to help our four year old. I could see her bright smile and a fleece blanket. Felicity has been going to Adoration for months with Daddy. I always thought it had more to do with going out to eat afterwards but the smile said it all, “I have my blanket. Let’s go see Jesus”

She chose her favorite pew and spread out the blanket carefully. She folded the fleece into a pillow at the top, crawled in, and covered up. It took a few minutes of adjusting before I heard the soft sounds of slumber. I sat, also adjusting. I struggle with my Martha-ishness even at Adoration. I had not prayed my Rosary yet today. I had saved it. Heck! I love the Rosary but I want to just BE at Adoration. All I do in life is DO! If I am trying to accomplish something in Adoration, it feels just like traveling to see a friends and once there pulling out her letters and reading them instead than visiting with her. Now I admit, if I spent more time in Adoration I might feel differently. I am not saying that there is a wrong way to spend time with Our Lord.

Finally settled down, I felt Peace. I looked up at the Eucharist in the Monstrance behind the Altar and thought. "I wish I was up there. I wish I could lay at the feet of Jesus." The altar was draped and it reminded me of the days when my brother, David, and I would make a tent out of a folding table. Oh, to make such a tent. To sleep in the Presence, to choose the better part. . . . Yes!

I left Adoration at Peace kissed by His Presence remembering tomorrow is another day and Jesus will beckon,

“Come all you who labor, and I will give you rest.”

Happy Mother’s Day!

Blog May 8th, 2016

My Mother's Day gift to myself is sitting down and writing and I thank you for joining me. Today, Mother’s Day remind me of two occasions, one when I was seven and the other was my first Mother’s Day as a Moma.

Anticipating Mother’s Day when I was young was fun. My brother and I would pool our money and come up with grandiose plan, which were not to be – at least not with money that clinks in a jar. We were always optimistic and in 1974 we got lucky. 

Down our street was a garage sale and it fit right into our budget. We snuck down the road and found treasures that I remember to this day. The item that was the absolute best was a plaque for Mother’s Day – Wow! It had a picture of flowers and a nice poem about the beauty of mothers. We purchased it for 10 cents and kept shopping. What we found and lugged back home was a coffee table or perhaps a side table, I really don’t know. The look on my Mom’s face when she saw is was . . . well . . . surprise. Of course, she never imagined such a “thoughtful” gift. The well-worn piece of furniture found a home on the back patio and we used it all summer long for afternoon teas, lemonade stands, and many other useful purposes. The plaque, which was easier to wrap, brought tears to her eyes. She turned it over to see three signatures including my 2 year-old sister’s name (with our help). The plaque still holds a spot of honor on the shelf. When I turn it over and see our names, it is my turn to become misty and sentimental.

Fast forward many years to another memory I would like to share, Mother’s Day 1990. On a Friday morning, my first baby was born. She was pink and healthy and a miracle. The blessing of holding a newborn baby and the inexplicable joy is something that I have experienced ten times, for each I am grateful. Each baby’s birth brings thanksgiving and a sense of wonder. On that May day, I experienced that blessing for the very first time. The next morning we went home from the hospital and the joy continued. The following day, I beamed as we went to church with my first baby. It was Mother’s Day. The crab apple trees were in bloom and the lilacs scented the air. All the world was celebrating with me!

So today, I will get hugs and kisses. I will open packages wrapped with love and I will hold back tears as I see signatures that will improve in time but are perfect right now. So join me in celebration! Have a piece of cake. Call your mom. Pick some lilacs. Remember times gone by and treasure the moments that pass to quickly.

Oh, and if you see a garage sale stop by and think of me, after all Mother's Day treasures and blessings are everywhere.

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