Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Our Lady and St. Juan Diego

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Entrustment To Mary = Seeing God's Gifts All Year Long

Christmas Day has passed and the opened presents are there for the viewing. Earlier this week when looking at the wrapped packages under the tree I reflected on some of the “gifts” I had received from God this past year.
On March 30th our daughter delivered a very healthy pre-mature baby girl weighing in at 6.5 pounds. She had a high-risk pregnancy, which had her taking special medicines and shots to keep the baby inside. The neonatal specialists were amazed she hadn’t delivered early - as it was, she gave birth just one month before her due date. The little baby has grown and thrived and her life has brought healing graces to our family as we journeyed with our daughter through the divorce process this past year.
In October another daughter delivered a baby boy, Blaise Emmanuel. She had two “normal” deliveries prior, so our only worry was she would go past due which would limit our cuddling time before our visit would come to an end. She did go past the due date by a week, and she delivered a baby with his bladder on the outside. The New Jersey hospital prepped right away to send Blaise to John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, MD – renowned for such a condition. My husband and I watched the siblings while my daughter and her husband hurried off to Baltimore. They were met by the specialist letting them know Blaise has a “great” bladder and they would be able to take care of putting it back inside the next week. The doctor sent them home to await the surgery.  My kind coworker told me to stay another week, which I did. So we enjoyed having the newborn home, and all was normal except for wrapping the bladder in saranwrap after each diaper change. Meanwhile we were looking up the patron saint for bladder conditions and discovered it is St. Blaise! We felt like this was a hug from God letting us know He was taking care of everything. Plus, we were then able to condescend to the fact the family’s move to New Jersey last January was another one of God’s gifts, since they are close to Baltimore where their baby will be spending a lot of his time with future reconstructive surgeries. Other gifts included the family getting a room at the hospital housing unit, and the other grandma being free to stay the 5 week term of recuperation to help out, and that little Blaise was able to get out of traction after the minimum period of 4 weeks.
God’s gifts are sometimes wrapped in ways that I do not always see them as treasures but rather as tragedies, burdens, and frustrations.  I need to allow Blessed Mom to help me see God’s goodness in all events. For she  accepted God's gifts of a donkey ride while 9 months pregnant, and fleeing her home while being chased by soldiers who wanted to kill her baby. She trusted, awaited, and loved. I cannot do that on my own, but perched in her merciful arms, she can trust, await, and love for me and through me.
So how about you? What gifts did God give you this past year?

"The conviction that everything is 'given' to us, that everything is a gift, can be born on the foundation of the truth about God's unceasingly bestowing love and the truth about ourselves as people who need everything from this bestowing love."
S.C. Biela, TheTwo Pillars, (Ft.Collins, CO: IAMF, 2006), 7.
A note from our bloggers:
We offer our prayers that you feel the Christmas joy, love, and peace
that Jesus brings every day when we open our hearts to Him.
We hope for a most blessed New Year for each and every one of you
 - full of God’s merciful gifts in 2016  ~ the Jubilee of Mercy!


Saturday, December 12, 2015

Our Lady of Guadalupe, My Queen

When I get overwhelmed, or start to experience feelings of stress, even when there is nothing to worry about, I remember the words of Our Lady to St. Juan Diego back in the year 1531...words that I am sure she wants each of us to hear and know she is saying them all of us:

"Listen. Put it into your heart, my smallest child, that the thing that frightened you, the thing that afflicted you is nothing:
Do not let it disturb you...
Am I not here, I who am your mother?
Are you not under my shadow and protection?
Am I not the source of your joy?
Are you not in the hollow of my mantle, in the crossing of my arms?
Do you need something more?"

Today is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, December 12, 2015.  I desire for all my dear ones to come to know this Amazing Queen who holds them in her Immaculate Heart. I want to shout to all the world: "Let her love you!"

Knowing her love is the perfect way to begin the Jubilee of Mercy ~ for it was Jesus' dying wish for me to "Behold, your mother" (Jn 19:27) as He beheld her when He was placed in her womb, and born into her arms that first Christmas.

Happy Advent, everyone!