During Times of Struggle

Believe it or not, every once and a while I have a tough day, a difficult weekend, or week that leaves me wanting to curl up in a cave and never come out. (Not a “man cave,” more like a nicely decorated cave with all my books and a lifelong supply of chocolate.)

Looking back, these times of struggle seem to occur as I’m on the verge of doing something big (or even little) for the kingdom of God. I imagine you have also felt this sense of attack and loneliness, this sense of desolation. Perhaps you too experienced some bumps along the road this week…. I know I did.

Yesterday after Communion, as I was praying, I seemed to “drift into a zone” where I was oblivious to everything happening around me, and I felt Mary was giving me a message of consolation.

I was deep in thought about Mary and the sorrow she felt at the foot of the cross and comparing it to the angst, confusion, and sorrow we get hit with at times and I thought of that moment of joy she received in the midst of that pain. At the foot of the cross, Mary witnessed the conversion of the good thief and her soul rejoiced that he had accepted the will of God.

At times, I feel as though we are standing at the foot of the cross and we are getting little glimpses of joy of lives being changed that we may overlook in their entirety. We may think, “Oh, that’s nice” when someone tells us what our encouragement, talk, writings, homily, words, support, witness, etc., mean to them, and then go on with our day and put our noses back in our work.

But, I think Mary was telling me that we need to take these moments for what they truly are – hearts undergoing change because each of us has tirelessly used our gifts to serve the Lord.

These are our moments at the foot of the cross where, through the pain, we share in the joy of a soul turning closer to God. It’s not a light thing we are doing… it’s a “Light of the World” thing… and just think, following the foot of the cross is the Resurrection!

These are the “joys” among the tears and they may come to us in what appears to be small ways, but take comfort in knowing that in the Kingdom of God, they are big…. If you don’t believe me, just ask the good thief when you get to heaven.

Praying for each of you today and always,


Visit Kelly at the Hearts Afire website: http://www.allheartsafire.org/

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