Friday, October 3, 2008

The Ordinary Yet Quite Extraordinary Vocation

Inspired by Chapter two The Heart Of Motherhood by Donna Marie Cooper O’Boyle

The Child is the beauty of God present in the world, the greatest gift to the family. –Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

How amazing that our lord entrusts us mothers with the greatest gift of this life… to his body and blood! Our vocation is a ministry. A faithful mother, by her loving, diligent example will turn heads and hearts. She will edify others through her strong faith in God and her unfailing dedication to her family. Her selflessness and self giving will be apparent to the individuals around her whom she is influencing and inspiring by her life of love. She may never be aware of this, but our Lord will know. How can we minister to others on the vocation of motherhood and how children are truly God’s greatest gift on earth?

Love and peace begins at home.

Households can seem vary chaotic and stressful at times. Hardly the appearance of holiness, it would seem. Throughout these hectic and sometimes crazy times, a mother often needs to re evaluate what is most important and what task/activity/situation needs to be eliminated to help keep peace in the home. When the home, the vital cell of the family, is in chaos and turmoil, the family will in turn be chaotic. When things seem constantly unpeaceful, chances are there is some part of your life that is not coinciding with the Lord’s Will. We are to do all we can as mother’s to keep life for our children peaceful and surrounded by Love. What situations currently are possibly causing your home life to be unpeaceful and hectic?

Being Servants of Christ

There are many saintly mothers in our midst today, sometimes humbly hidden within our families. Mothers do what comes naturally to them: they love their children; they make their home a strong, warm, secure haven for their families. They set a caring example. A mother’s day, whether a working mother or full time at home mother, we all have the same duties to fulfill as mothers and nurturing our home. Our day is filled to capacity with many ordinary tasks, not important, but rather works of love that may be overlooked or unnoticed. Changing diapers, doing laundry, schedule keeping, house cleaning, planning and cooking nutritious meals are just some of the ordinary tasks in a mom’s repertoire. Although these tasks may seem mundane or even monotonous, they are the nitty-gritty details that keep the family going and together. Mothers perform never-ending labors of love throughout the day, precisely because of the love they possess for their husband and children. A mother’s deep inner faith affirms that a day’s sacrifices and seemingly ordinary tasks please our Lord because they are done with extraordinary love. We are to have a servant’s heart in serving our family. How can we focus more on seeing the beauty of being servants of Christ by humbly serving our family in every day tasks that the world tends to perceive as a “going crazy, mind numbing” job?

Seeing The Face Of Christ In Our Children

“I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me to drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited to me. All these things you did, you did for me” Mathew 25:34-46. When we put a band aid on our child’s knee, look and you will see the face of Jesus. When you are holding your child at night, look deep within and feel the presence of Jesus. When you are giving your child a sippy cup of water, look and you will see you are giving our Lord something to drink. When you are fixing dinner and setting the table tired and worn out after a long day, look around and see you are feeding Jesus and his flock. All of things we do, we are doing for our Lord Jesus. We are His servants performing humble tasks all the while receiving eternal rewards.

Mothers encounter Jesus within our families every day in the sublime mission our Lord has entrusted to them in the heart of the home. He has put the mother in the midst of her family where she, by her word, love, life and example raises up soldiers for Jesus Christ. The next time you are washing your child’s dirty feet in the bathtub and they are splashing water all over the floor, take a deep breath and remember you are washing Christ’s feet just as He did to the apostles the night before he was crucified. And who knows…..the water that is being splashed just might be the Lord blessing you with holy water! So instead of screaming STOP SPLASHING WATER, just make the sign of the cross and say “thank you, Lord”.

Family Is Society’s Primary Vital Cell

“The mission of being the primary vital cell of society has been given to the family by God Himself” (Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, Vatican Council II, no.11).

What has happened to society is much to blame on the family. We are all to blame in complicating life. What happen to the simplicity and beauty of family life? We think we NEED all of these material goods to make us happy when reality is all that our children truly need is a loving environment at home. Families are not at HOME near as much as they use to be. The home is our children’s safe haven, shelter from the world. The home is where children receive their confidence, their spirit, their love for themselves and others. Whatever we can do as mothers, one of our main purpose is to provide that security in our homes by eating dinner together as a family, tucking our children in bed at night, chasing each other around the house, tickling our children on their bedroom floors, cuddling together and watching movies on a rainy Saturday afternoon, eating popsicles on the front porch, planting flowers in the garden. The home is where the family blossoms.

By remaining simple and focused, dedicated to following God’s will through the vocation of motherhood, mothers can be a radiant example to others and a model for the family in our world today. A genuine assessment is necessary to determine a household’s real needs, without heeding to what the materialistic world dictates. Simplicity is a very good thing. Additionally, less material clutter can help tremendously to focus the heart.

It doesn’t take much to truly create a loving and peaceful home for our husband and children. How can we simplify our lives and focus more on our family?

Love Can Be Tiring

Who said motherhood was easy? When we are pregnant with our first, we are all into the nursery and baby showers and think motherhood is going to be this glamorous lifestyle we see on the movies. Our generation today tends to want to take the easy rode. We want things handed to us and we want to by pass the hard times and immediately get to the good. Great sacrifices and hard times bring great reward. Hopefully eternal reward in our vocation! St. Vincent de Paul said. “let us love God, but with the strength of our arms, in the sweat of our brow.” A mother’s vocation is one of service. Women today think we need to be pampered. What happen to the strong, pioneer women of old? They were truly serving their families by working hard in the fields, keeping their home, bearing several children! And we think we have it hard today? Our lord Jesus, who truly was a King, lived a very humble, modest life. He worked hard as a carpenter and prophet everyday of his life and was tired. Do you think he or his mother Mary were off at the Spas getting pedicures while sipping on wine? Don’t get me wrong, pampering yourself every once in a while is a great thing, but I think women today have gone over board! As you fall into bed tonight rejoice in an honest day’s work that made our Lord so proud. Remember: the work we do is eternal; everything else will turn to dust.

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