Calling to Sainthood
Someone once told me that once I become a mother, my child will become my greatest teacher. I never quite understood what that meant, but with each passing day, I can see it more and more clearly.
My precious daughter Olivia is now 9 months. (What???? Where in the world has time gone? If anyone could tell me, that'd be great!). She is pure love, pure joy. I LOVE watching her as she navigates her surroundings. Everything is SO interesting to her and every morning she wakes up with so much excitement for the day ahead. Each time she sets eyes on something she has already seen before, it's as though she is seeing it for the first time all over again. I love watching her play, crawl around, try to 'talk', and her personality is really starting to shine through.
One of the most awe-inspiring things I have witnessed is her determination. From watching her learn to roll over (then in her excitement practise her skill hundreds of times over and over again), to sitting, then standing while holding on to something. She is now at a point where she is able to stand without holding on to anything and it is awesome to see.
It wasn't easy, though. There were days she would try and fall right onto her bum. That did not, however, discourage her by any means. She was right back up in an instant to try yet another time. After lots of bum falls and countless attempts, my little girl is now standing tall and proud of her new accomplishment. Yesterday, she even attempted to make a few steps and succeeded to make two before plomping right back down. But she tried and will keep trying until she walks.
As I was unwinding yesterday evening, sitting in silence as my little one snoozed in the room next door, I started reflecting on my spiritual life. Life has been a whirlwind lately. My prayer life? *sigh*... It hasn't been great.
But as I sat there sipping my tea, I felt so strongly the Lord bringing my attention to Olivia. 'Okay, Lord, what does this little bean have to teach me now?', I thought.
"Before you can walk, you need to learn to roll over."
This settled deep into my heart and I began to ponder this thought. And boy, was it ever a deep pondering session!
So often I look to the great Saints (as we all should), but am very quick to get discouraged seeing how holy, perseverant, and deep their prayer lives were. These prayer lives were what inevitably set the foundation for their holiness.
Then, there is me, a tired mama who can barely think about what I am saying half the time, let alone pray. It's very easy to get discouraged.
All to often we forget that to get to 'walking' (deep, meaningful prayer lives), we must first start with the basics, the little things. What CAN I do today to get closer to God?
And so, my focus now is getting back on track towards 'walking'. I have begun starting the day inviting my Guardian Angel to be by my side - a short yet powerful prayer for a mama who has barely gotten any sleep the night before.
Then, throughout the day, I have began praying a decade of the rosary as I am doing something else - whether it be laundry, cooking, cleaning, etc. Before I know it, I have said five decades which equals a whole rosary!
My husband and I have been concluding our days by praying a novena together, too. It's short, yet powerful, and brings Christ into our marriage in a meaningful way. We also pray a decade with one another, each day.
Would I like to do more? OF COURSE! But my calling to Sainthood may look a little different from that of St. Padre Pio (whom I love), or St. Therese of the Little Flower, or St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, etc.
Perhaps my call to Sainthood looks a lot like rolling over, then crawling, then standing, then walking with the Lord towards heaven. And just like Olivia, it is during this 'learning' process that I will persevere, stand right up when I fall down, and keep going until I reach my goal.
Until then, I will love Him in the little ways, which I pray become Big Ways.