“Offering it up”

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This morning for breakfast, the kids wanted Orange Juice. Ok, no problem. Alright, a teensy problem, the OJ pulp gets clogged in the sippy cup lids, so it’s rather hard to actually drink the OJ with the lid on. Solution = no lids. Well, in my experience you have about a 50/50 shot of having said juice spill if there isn’t a lid (and your child is 3+; that rises to 75/25 if your child is in the 2-3 range). Anyways, Katherine spilled her juice. From the way her cup looked, it appeared “on purpose”, but I’m not 100% because I didn’t see it happen {that’s actually not really important}. Not a thrilled mama at the time. I grumblingly cleaned it up.

I was sitting on the floor with Karl a few minutes later waiting for the older kids to finish their breakfast, when I remembered something that was brought up at our RCIA class earlier in the year. “Offer up your sufferings for an intention of someone else.” At the time, it struck me a hugely significant (I tried to write about it, but I’m not sure it made the most sense… you can see that post here on the OLD blog).

Someone close to me is having a difficult time in their walk with God, and the Church. I remembered this “teaching” (if you want to call it that, although realize that it’s not an “official” teaching), that I could offer it up, and I could offer it for this person in their struggle. And I think I “got it” even more.

It was like I was offering my suffering as a prayer. It was prayer without words. It was a prayer of action. There was a huge sense of purpose for cleaning up the OJ once I realized what I could do with it. It wasn’t just some meaningless waste of time, or nuisance that had to be dealt with.

It makes it so that motherhood has a purpose (outside of raising children of course). It makes it so that the small, unseen, unnoticed acts of motherhood can really mean something. As a mother there are so many, many little moments like this where I could be offering it up for someone else, instead of getting frustrated by it or even just letting them happen without any significance. Because honestly, cleaning the floor for the sake of cleaning the floor doesn’t mean anything really, yes, there are practical reasons for cleaning, but they don’t really mean anything, unless we can give them to God for a purpose.

I’ve read a couple of posts on the subject recently, if you have a minute go check them out!

this is what real motherhood looks like: on prayer (by Stephanie @ Refined By Simple Love)

~and~

Praying with Your Feet (by Haley @ Carrots for Michaelmas)

{A side note: I honestly do not believe that cleaning up spilled OJ is “suffering”, but it is a bit of a nuisance, and it gets tiring to do it over, and over, and over, and I was trying to adjust my attitude towards having to clean it up}

I leave you with a quote that was given during our RCIA class. {The “Cross” is “sufferings”}

If anyone would follow me…
See how lovingly He embraces the Cross. – Learn from Him. – Jesus carries the Cross for you: you… carry it for Jesus. But don’t drag the Cross… Carry it squarely on your shoulder, because your Cross, if you carry it so, will not be just any Cross: it will be… the Holy Cross. Don’t bear your Cross with resignation: resignation is not a generous word. Love the Cross. When you really love it, your Cross will be… a Cross without a Cross. And surely you, like Him, will find Mary on the way

St. Josemaria Escriva

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