It’s been an off kind of day.
One of those days where nothing is really going bad, but nothing is going the way I want it to either. This day has left me feeling down. Not angry or frustrated, but unfocused, unmotivated, dissatisfied.
When I finally got a moment alone (on my way out to pick up dinner because I never got around to cooking) I began to wonder why such a mildly bad day weighed so heavily no me. As I recalled my small struggles, I noticed a pattern in my thoughts.
My mom-brain train of thought:
“Sure it’s lunch time and the sink is still full of breakfast dishes, but at least we have food! People around the world are starving, and in comparison my sink full of dishes should be a blessing.”
“I am so frustrated that I can’t get our school day started – but I saw this video where the kid has to walk two hours to even get to school, so I shouldn’t feel like this is such a big deal.”
“Ugggh it’s taking for.ev.er. to get the kids buckled in the car, but at least we have a car. It’s nothing compared to those who carry all their possessions in their backpack, I shouldn’t be upset about this.”
“I can’t get a moment to relax and unwind – not even in the bath. The kids won’t give me a minute without bursting in with more needs! But I shouldn’t be so bugged. While I’m lying in the bath, there are people lying in the street dying. And there are people struggling with infertility while I’m feeling overstimulated by my kids. I should be less selfish.”
Jesus, be with me as I reflect today.
I see a pattern. You allowed me to call connect my suffering to the ever-more burdensome crosses of others. You gave me an opportunity to suffer for them. To suffer with them.
But instead I said my sufferings don’t count because there’s always someone who has it worse.
I turned away from my own crosses.
I thought I was putting my struggles into perspective. I thought that if I reminded myself how much other people suffer, I would be content with seeing juts how blessed I am.
But because I didn’t allow myself to accept my small crosses, I never offered You my sufferings, or begged for Your graces. When I told myself: this shouldn’t be bothering me so much, it made me ignore my suffering. I pretended it wasn’t there.
It was my pride.
I was lazy in virtue because I thought my small sacrifices weren’t good enough.
Jesus, You’re not calling me to be a martyr right now. You’re not calling me to carry someone else’s crosses. You’re not calling me to suffer difficult things.
But it doesn’t matter what crosses I am called to take up. You gave me these crosses, in their unique shape and size.
Jesus, You gave me these crosses in their unique shape and size. Tweet this.
Instead of trying to let my small crosses roll off my back, I need to shoulder them. I need to accept them. Embrace them. Acknowledge that no matter how small and insignificant they may seem, they are my crosses.
I need to turn to You.
I need to offer these moments of my life to You.
I can offer them for the relief of those who suffer worse than me. I can offer them in solidarity with Your suffering on the cross and the suffering souls around the world.
Even though I don’t have much to offer, I must offer it! If I see my sacrifices as too insignificant, too menial, too routine, and keep them for myself, I have given You nothing. I don’t have much by way of sacrifices to give You, but I must give You all I have!
I need to find a way to grow.
I always have the opportunity to practice perseverance, hope, and patience. To creatively find ways to make my life a little bit more grace-filled, more joyful.
There is always a way to grow, no matter how trivial my trial may seem. When I start comparing my life to others only to disregard my crosses, I am tempted to reject them because they’re not big enough, I miss out on so much grace and joy.
Today, I let myself stagnate – and I felt it, emotionally and physically.
Tomorrow, my Jesus, help me do better.
Help me pick up my cross, whatever it may be.
Help me turn to You and seek Your presence beside me in the small Way of the Cross I am called to walk every day. Help me remember those who suffer more, not for the sake of comparison, but for the sake of uniting my small trials to those of the Body of Christ throughout the world. Help me to strive to grow in holiness, and to increase the peace and joy and harmony in the daily ins-and-outs of family life.
May I remember, Lord, that though my sufferings are not big, they are my own.
Although my sufferings are not big, they are my own. I give them to You, Jesus. Tweet this.
I give them now to You. Please unite them to Your suffering on the Cross, and use them to bring about the transformation in my heart that will draw me closer to You.
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