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Friday, May 25, 2007

Nil Desperandum

Nil desperandum! There is nothing to be despaired at! Unbelievable words during a time of extreme suffering or crisis. I am speaking first hand here. It is not likely that I will ever have to endure even a fraction of the agony that our Lord suffered on the cross. It is also highly unlikely that I will ever be burned at the stake, drawn and quartered or fed to the lions, tigers or bears. My sufferings have been so minuscule compared to the suffering of many of my friends. Nonetheless, there are days that I have begged the Lord for martyrdom!

Oh to be done with the strife and seize the crown of Heaven! Such presumption on my part, yet there are times that the tedium and day to day trials seem a far more harsh martyrdom than a few minutes in a fire. My day is a "fire" of another type, for the daily job of motherhood is a non-stop "dying to self". It is not the public, gloriously brave and edifying sight of courage in the face of death. It is the quiet, unobserved refining action of grace through small sacrifices. Climbing the mountain of laundry, reading the same book five times in a row, explaining quadratic equations and cleaning up yet another glass of spilled milk. Again...and again...and again. This is my glorious martyrdom and it is the one chosen by God to accomplish my sanctification.

There are times when my shoulders ache with the sheer amount of responsibility resting so precariously upon them. I worry that I will "drop the ball" or that I'm just not doing the job as well as I should. I have been in that place where the only prayer is the "...Spirit itself intercede(ing) with inexpressible groanings". That is when I pray through the pain and through the doubt. The answer is never in the pain, but on the other side of it.

So, nil desperandum! Everyday is better for the trials within it. Everyday, with God's grace, we shall be better for perservering.

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