St. Mother Teresa was canonized on Sunday. I was thinking of the spiritual dryness she had for so many decades. Really amazing the faith she continued to have and the good she achieved while feeling nothing from her Heavenly Father. How often do I feel like he isn’t hearing my prayers or answering them?
She gave a “business card” to Raymond Arroyo some time ago which said, “The Fruit of Silence is Prayer, The Fruit of Prayer is Love, The Fruit of Love is Service”
These words strike me as quite a remarkable thing. I love silence… or maybe I wish I did. Sometimes just sitting there bores me. Naturally I’m a pondering individual. I like to look at the world around me and wonder why? Quiet moments in an adoration chapel work for me, I frequently feel that my prayers need to be organized or that they aren’t “good enough”. Many times it takes real effort finding time for prayer. It generally involves me forcibly sitting myself down and waiting….seeing where the spirit leads me. My mode of prayer changes too depending on my mood; holy cards, rosary, Magnificat, journaling? I like all of them and yet none of them when I first sit. It’s a lack of practice. In my defense, being home with a large family doesn’t exactly get one used to silence. My mother would say that even as a child I didn’t like being quiet.
So at this exact moment as I am writing this ……In the midst of prayer time, come knocking and knocking at the bedroom door. One “emergency” after another.
1. I need a hug,
2. ( Exasperated voice) I have needed to be logged onto the computer for the last three weeks and now I need to wait another three weeks because mom isn’t available. ( cause the ipad was so important earlier… and you couldn’t have gotten on the computer then, right?) Why do children need to wait until you are otherwise incapacitated to ask for something. Because out of 15 hours that I see them during the day; there might be one hour that I am “unavailable”
3. Mom, the phone is for you
4. Mom, the phone is for you; its dad.
5. Mom, Brendan wants you
6. Mom, so and so called; can I babysit their kids tonight. ( Totally, cause there aren’t enough kids here to watch. What do you mean I don’t pay you to watch your little brothers?) Actually, they are really good about watching little brothers when we need them to!
OK, so focus now on prayer. My go to prayer… is to Our Lady of Knots. I feel somehow “connected” to her. I didn’t actually search for her, she just made herself known to me when our oldest lived out of state. She brought clarity and peace when I needed it. I can talk to her about anything; exactly like a mother-daughter relationship should be. She understands my issues. She loved, worried and was frustrated. She has Christ’s ear. She petitions for me.
( I’m going to ignore all the chair banging that I am hearing in the kitchen… and howling. And the fact that Elizabeth needed to put little brothers in time out for some reason)
Our Lady, while I am up here praying, could you just please babysit my children? Please make sure they don’t hurt each other or make “too” big of a mess. She knows how much I miss Jeff when he doesn’t get home till midnight or 1am. She knows how much I pray for her help to get Jeff out of the Paradise and grow Agnus Dei to support the family. She also reminds me that it is not in my time, but Our Lords. My job is to have faith in Him. She reminds me to be thankful for every blessing and sorrow of each day. To love the children unconditionally; to be gentle and kind to them in word and action. And to extend all that and more to Jeff; even when the days feel unbearable. Yeah!
Lord, I love you. My prayers always seem insufficient. But this is the life that you have blessed me with.