acceptance · Catholic · family · kindness

Misunderstandings

Has it ever happened to you ?  Has anyone ever been misunderstood – misunderstood by the ones closest to you ?  I have. A lot.  It’s funny, really – how life works; how relationships work.  I have come to accept the fact that being misunderstood by those closest to me is just going to have to be one of the crosses I must bear in life.  It hurts.  But trying to explain often makes matters worse, so sometimes it’s just better to allow the other person to continue in their belief that my intentions were not good.

So, what is all of this babbling about ?

Why is this post not making much sense ?

Am I just someone who wants to complain ?

No.  I don’t want to complain, and I’ll tell you what this is all about.

I smiled.

It wasn’t a big smile – just a quick, little, flash of a smile.  I smiled because I had just told my husband that the smell he was commenting about was not his dinner burning, just a spill on the hot stove.  After I informed him of that, I flashed a quick smile to show him all was well.  Ooops.

Suddenly all was not well.  “I saw that. I saw that smug little smile.” he said to me.  I was surprised.  He had totally misunderstood my intentions.

“No.” I said.  “I wasn’t – I didn’t…”

“I know what I saw.  Don’t be like that.”

Well, I could have done one of two things.  I could have stood there and defended myself, and continue to insist upon my good intentions, which would only bring about an argument.  OR  I could just allow him to continue believing that I was being smug – after all, he knew what he saw.  Well, I chose the latter.

I chose to continue to be misunderstood, rather than to get into an argument with my husband – especially since all of this was taking place in front of my son.

I later practiced that little smile in front of the mirror. Oh boy.  It did appear smug.  Wow.  I will never use that expression again.  I really didn’t intend for it to come off like that.

So, I ended up apologizing to my husband – as always.

I guess being misunderstood is part of life.  After all, Christ was misunderstood more than anyone else ever was.  He didn’t defend Himself.  I should try to be more Christ-like, even if it hurts sometimes.

Catholic · gratitude

Happy Easter ?

YES!  Happy Easter to everyone out there, for Easter has only just begun!!  For those of you who think that Easter is ONLY on Easter Sunday, think again!  Easter Sunday is only the beginning of the Easter season.  While lent may last 40 days, Easter last 50 days!  That’s right, fifty.  The first Sunday after Easter Sunday, which is also known as Divine Mercy Sunday, marks the octave of Easter that is, the eight days from Easter Sunday to Divine Mercy Sunday.  But even that is just the beginning of a seven week long celebration, the seven weeks of Easter!  Officially, Easter begins on Easter Sunday, and continues until Pentecost Sunday, seven full weeks later.  Consider it a week of weeks!

However, in order to give us one more week in order to fulfill our Easter Duty, the Catholic Church has extended  the Easter Season one more week, up until Trinity Sunday, which is the Sunday following Pentecost Sunday.  That final week, however, is not counted in the regular season.

So remember to continue wishing everyone you meet a very, Happy Easter, all fifty days throughout the Easter Season.  Also, if you haven’t already done so, please take a look at the Easter Homily of St. John Chrysostom here https://findingjoy568.wordpress.com/2017/04/17/the-easter-homily-of-st-john-chrysostom

Happy Easter – All 50 Days!

Catholic · family · gratitude · Prayer

Endure

I was “up to here” (hand level with forehead) with all of the rantings of my teen-aged son as he continued to argue and fuss about everything, anything, and nothing. I was tired and just needed a little peace. “Son, just stop.” I said in an exasperated tone as I walked out of the room and sat down in the black swivel chair by my desk. Stomping his feet loudly as he pursued, my son continued in a loud voice, “What mom ? What do you want me to stop ? Huh? Huh? What am I doing now, Mom ?” He stopped and stood in the doorway, arms crossed and a scowl on his face. He stood there motionless so as to show me that he wasn’t “doing” anything.

I didn’t want to put up with his antics anymore. I didn’t want things to be this way. I wished our relationship didn’t have to always be so strained. I knew I shouldn’t feel this way, but at that moment, I just wanted to disappear. After several moments, when he realized that his “motionless” stance was getting him nowhere, he called me a few choice names, then stormed off.

I began to text my husband at work to inform him of what was going on. I complained about our son’s attitude towards me. I felt that I shouldn’t have to deal with this on my own – I needed some support. My husband’s reply was only one word, “Endure.” Frustrated at not receiving some words of comfort, I asked myself, “Endure ? That’s easy for him to say. Ha! Endure, indeed.” I felt a scowl forming on my own face. Soon I received another text message from my husband. “Pray the Rosary for him.” I immediately knew that he was right. I picked up my Rosary and began to pray. I was on the second decade when my son walked into the room, his face filled with remorse. “I’m sorry, Mama.” Those words were like music to my ears. I hugged him as I accepted his apology, and the rest of the day was fine.

I think back to my husband’s original response. “Endure.” The definition of endure is “to bear without resistance; to suffer patiently ”. Isn’t that one of the Spiritual Works of Mercy, to bear wrongs patiently ? And aren’t we all called upon to practice both the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy ? How wise of my husband to respond the way he did, and how foolish I was to respond the way I did.

So, while maybe I was “up to here” (hand level with forehead) with my son, how much more “up to here” has our Heavenly Father had it with me ? If I want my son to respect and honor me, shouldn’t I behave the same way towards my Father in heaven ? I can do that by showing my love to those He has placed in my life, and by practicing the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy.

The Corporal Works of Mercy:

To feed the hungry;
To give drink to the thirsty;
To clothe the naked;
to shelter the homeless;
To visit the sick;
To visit the imprisoned;
To bury the dead

The Spiritual Works of Mercy

To instruct the ignorant;
To counsel the doubtful;
To admonish sinners;
To bear wrongs patiently;
To forgive offenses willingly;
To comfort the afflicted;
To pray for the living and the dead
Catholic · Homemaking · Prayer

Prayer; We all Struggle

Prayer is something that comes easily for most Christians.  Or is it ?  Don’t many of us struggle with prayer ?  Don’t we sometimes have trouble keeping a good balance of prayer and work throughout our daily lives ?  I’m sure I’m not alone in this.  If even some of the greatest saints admit to having had trouble with prayer, then we shouldn’t be ashamed to admit it when it happens to us.  This doesn’t mean that we should be proud of it or anything, but not ashamed of it either.  So what do we do ?  What do we do when our lives seem so hectic that it seems difficult to “fit in” prayer time ?  Well, I’m no theologian, but I am a wife and mother who lives with her own set of struggles, and sometimes finds it hard to pray.  How I’ve learned to handle it is simple. (not easy, simple)  I try to pray in the morning when I first wake up, however since that is not always possible, I have incorporated prayer into my daily work.  I find that washing the dishes is an excellent time to pray.  For a utensil that needs scrubbing, a short prayer of praise or thanksgiving is suitable.  Something like “Dearest Jesus, I love You.  Please help me to love You more.”  or “Thank You, Lord.  Please give me strength.”  Even a simple, “Help me, Jesus.” works just fine.  When tackling a very greasy pan, an Our Father or longer prayer is great.  The larger and dirtier the dish, the longer the prayer.  I admit, I don’t always remember to do this, yet the times that I do are much more peaceful.  Of course, this method can be incorporated into any chore.  While doing the laundry, sweeping the floor, vacuuming… You get the point.  Oh, here is another way I try to incorporate prayer into my day.  Whatever I am doing for my family, I tell myself that I am doing it for Christ.  For example, this is what I like to do when fixing the bed.  I try to imagine that I am fixing the bed for the Christ Child.  As I’m tucking and smoothing the sheets/blankets, I say to myself, “This is for Baby Jesus.”  Once again, I don’t always remember to do this, but when I do, I feel happy inside.  And when Mama’s happy, everybody’s happy!  Okay, so I threw in that last part to add a little humor to this post! But really, go ahead and give it a try sometime.  It really does create an overall sense of peace.

baby-jesus-0107
I’m sure HE prayed while he worked!
Catholic

The Easter Homily of St. John Chrysostom

St. John Chrysostom, a doctor of the Church, was known for his eloquent homilies.  The name, “Chrysostom literally means, “golden mouthed”.  We can get just a taste of his beautiful way with words from reading his Easter homily below as he so eloquently describes to us why everyone, even those who may not have taken part in the fast, should share in celebrating the wonderful holiday of Easter.  Please enjoy the beautiful words of St. John Chrysostom below:

If any man be devout and loveth God,
Let him enjoy this fair and radiant triumphal feast!
If any man be a wise servant,
Let him rejoicing enter into the joy of his Lord.

If any have laboured long in fasting,
Let him now receive his recompense.
If any have wrought from the first hour,
Let him today receive his just reward.
If any have come at the third hour,
Let him with thankfulness keep the feast.
If any have arrived at the sixth hour,
Let him have no misgivings;
Because he shall in nowise be deprived therefore.
If any have delayed until the ninth hour,
Let him draw near, fearing nothing.
And if any have tarried even until the eleventh hour,
Let him, also, be not alarmed at his tardiness.

For the Lord, who is jealous of his honour,
Will accept the last even as the first.
He giveth rest unto him who cometh at the eleventh hour,
Even as unto him who hath wrought from the first hour.
And He showeth mercy upon the last,
And careth for the first;
And to the one He giveth,
And upon the other He bestoweth gifts.
And He both accepteth the deeds,
And welcometh the intention,
And honoureth the acts and praises the offering.

Wherefore, enter ye all into the joy of your Lord;
Receive your reward,
Both the first, and likewise the second.
You rich and poor together, hold high festival!
You sober and you heedless, honour the day!
Rejoice today, both you who have fasted
And you who have disregarded the fast.
The table is full-laden; feast ye all sumptuously.
The calf is fatted; let no one go hungry away.
Enjoy ye all the feast of faith:
Receive ye all the riches of loving-kindness.

Let no one bewail his poverty,
For the universal Kingdom has been revealed.
Let no one weep for his iniquities,
For pardon has shown forth from the grave.
Let no one fear death,
For the Saviour’s death has set us free.
He that was held prisoner of it has annihilated it.

By descending into Hell, He made Hell captive.
He embittered it when it tasted of His flesh.
And Isaiah, foretelling this, did cry:
Hell, said he, was embittered
When it encountered Thee in the lower regions.

It was embittered, for it was abolished.
It was embittered, for it was mocked.
It was embittered, for it was slain.
It was embittered, for it was overthrown.
It was embittered, for it was fettered in chains.
It took a body, and met God face to face.
It took earth, and encountered Heaven.
It took that which was seen, and fell upon the unseen.

O Death, where is thy sting?
O Hell, where is thy victory?

Christ is risen, and thou art overthrown!
Christ is risen, and the demons are fallen!
Christ is risen, and the angels rejoice!
Christ is risen, and life reigns!
Christ is risen, and not one dead remains in the grave.
For Christ, being risen from the dead,
Is become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep.

To Him be glory and dominion
Unto ages of ages.

Amen.