Friday, February 8, 2013

Contradictions, struggles, and God's grace

Today is the feast of Saint Josephine Bakhita. Happy feast day! I wrote something about her in my book, Embracing Motherhood regarding struggles we mothers often face. I said: 
Facing Contradictions

Faithful Catholic mother’s lives are full of contradictions. Frequently we deal with those who don’t understand our commitment to parent our children in line with the magisterum of the Church. We are at times mocked, ridiculed, criticized, and labeled “over-protective” or “fanatical”—all because we deeply care for our children’s eternal souls.

We are given unsolicited “birth control” advice by those who don’t understand our openness to life. These arrows aimed at us won’t harm us when we keep our eyes upwards and we keep our hearts open to God’s amazing love for us. His grace will see us through.

St. Josephine Bakhita, who was born in Sudan, kidnapped by slave traders, terribly abused, and treated as an outcast because she was black, was finally freed from a life of slavery and became a Catholic nun. Before she died, she said that if she were to see her tormentors again she would kneel before them, kiss them, and thank them because all of the suffering ultimately brought her to God.

There are far too many tough issues mothers face to include here. We may never understand the suffering and pain we are asked to endure, at least until we pass from this life on to the next. Despite the abundant unclear reasons, we should entrust it all to God now and ask him to sanctify it all. All the “splinters from the Cross” we bear help to pave the way to heaven for our family when we loosen our control and pray for God’s grace. Let’s not waste our suffering.
Do you allow the weariness of life and its challenges to weigh you down? What opportunities for grace might be hiding within them? Can you offer them to God? How can his grace enable you to approach your challenging situations differently?

 Think of the women you know who have more than their fair share of troubles. What can you do to lend a hand and ease their burdens?

What are your struggles? How do you face them with grace? Please share in the comment section. I'd love to hear from you!

God bless you and yours!


PS See a trailer clip from "Slave to Saint" movie on EWTN here:

1 comment:

  1. I don't face them with grace. In fact, God forgive me, I waste them. I know that each cross is a precious gift, yet I do nothing but resent and struggle against every one.

    The one I absolutely hate the most is the poverty. I see nothing wonderful about it. It causes me untold hours of anxiety - how are we going to pay this, that and the other thing? What if we can't? Will we lose our home? Will this happen? Will that happen?

    I know that you pray for me already, Donna-Marie, but I would ask anyone reading this to whisper a prayer or two for me as well.

    God bless you my friend!