Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Friday, March 15, 2013

Entrustment to Mary = Following Pope Francis' Lead

Lately I have been more than a bit overwhelmed.  It is a busy time of year for me, with taxes due and continuing education to complete.  I have visitors to arrive in a few weeks, and the kids’ activities have me driving here, there and every which way.  Homework, projects, religion classes, baseball season, constant laundry, ailing relatives who need attention and care, not to mention a toddler who loves to climb but has no balance!  I have found myself frustrated at my children, who seem to be bickering constantly.  However, when I stop and reflect, I have only myself to blame.  I have heard so many times that the mother in the household has a lot to do with the overall mood of the home.  The more tense and loud the house becomes, the more I want to flee!  But I often yell instead, perpetuating the problems. Yikes! 

For Lent I had desired a renewed prayer life, one of daily meditation specifically. I was hoping for 30 minutes daily, but would be pleasantly surprised with 15-20.  Right now, I am lucky if I make 5-10 minutes.  I know that prayer is my only rescue, and yet I find myself resisting to just stopping. Just stop and pray. I am frantically trying to catch up, and feel if I stop, I just might not get back up. Or I always push it for later when things are settled down in my household (but by then I am just praying myself to sleep!). 

Yesterday, I watched the election and announcement of our new Holy Father.  It seemed I was waiting forever for him to come out and make his appearance.  But I was deeply moved by the reason for the delay.  I read that our new Pope Francis had stopped in the Pauline chapel to pray alone before greeting the people.  That single fact was most significant to me.  This man was humble enough to realize the weight of the vocation that lay before him.  At that moment, I had such HOPE for our Church and Catholic faith.  I was so excited to see our leader, our Father, turn to the Head of our Church for guidance.  He was allowing himself to be an instrument of God’s wisdom and grace right from the start!   Today it hit me that there must be a mile-long list of tasks, activities, responsibilities he will now face.  How will he ever be able to do anything? My own list seems pale in comparison.  And so I was reminded today to follow Pope Francis’ lead:  prayer!  I recall one of my favorite sections in “The Gift of Faith” by Fr. Tadeusz Dajczer:

If you look at yourself in the light of faith, you will understand that the more suppressed you are with activities, the more time you should dedicate to prayer.  Otherwise you will be empty; you will have the impression that you are giving something, but this will only be an illusion.  You cannot give what you do not have.  In the light of faith, the most important activity in our day is prayer…Contact with God determines the value and importance of our work….One thing is certain:  if we do not pray, no one will need us.  The world does not need empty souls and hearts.
Tadeusz Dajczer, The Gift of Faith, 3rd. ed. (Ft. Collins, CO: IAMF, 2012), 225-226, 227
Blessed Mama, I beg you to share with me your desire for prayer.  I pray for our new Pope Francis – may he continue to turn to prayer and humbly lead the Church in the ways of your Son, Who was the ultimate example in retreating in prayer and solitude while here on earth.  Thank you, God, for loving me so, so much and for Your continuous invitation to unite myself to You in prayer.   

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