Happy Monday all! I hope you had a nice, relaxing and/or productive weekend. If you follow me on social media (Instagram is my FAVORITE!) you know that we spent our time working on our deck and it’s been a little more of a project than we thought it would be. Isn’t that always the case? I’ll be posting all about that a little later this week. I can’t wait to share it with you!
What I really want to talk about today is the second reading from Sunday because guys, it REALLY spoke to me. I was lectoring at Sunday mass so I pulled my book out Saturday night to practice and as I was reading it I got the chills. If you missed it or don’t remember, Paul is telling the Corinthians that he has a “thorn in his flesh” to keep him from being “too elated” and that he begged God to take it away. God replied “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”
This is probably my new favorite bible verse. I don’t want a tattoo, but if I were to get a tattoo, it would have to be about this verse. Because I need this reminder in my life.
I am not a put together person. I don’t have everything all lined up, my house is NOT clean (I simply cannot stress how NOT clean it is), and I often feel like as soon as I get a handle on one part of my life something else starts spinning out of control. I don’t like to share that information though. When I’m scrolling through my various social media feeds I feel like I get a glimpse into people’s lives and they seem like they have it so together. They have fresh flowers on their counters, their coffee mugs match their hand painted trays, their children are reverently bowing their heads as they recite a rosary together, and their “messy buns” are perched perfectly on top of their heads. Any snapshots of my life would look chaotic by comparison and so I don’t share as much as I may want to.
I feel like I’ve been going at this from the wrong angle though. The reason I blog is to share my perspective with the world and holding back the messy, dirty bits isn’t a true witness. I want to be an inspiration (that’s not conceited at all) but maybe the best way to do that is to share the broken parts of me. Confessing that I’ve only ever completed one novena in my whole life, my kids have to remind me to pray before we eat, and today I found my daughter’s shirt in the toilet and I have NO idea how it got there. That’s a pretty good snapshot of my life right now.
And yet I try. I wear my veil and I try to focus at mass. I sit in my chair in front of my altar and ponder the mass readings. When I’m frustrated I look at the crucifixes in my home and I try to find my peace. If I don’t know the words to pray I just offer up all of my pain and frustration and ask for relief.
I don’t always get it. I go on feeling pained and frustrated and I wonder what I’m doing wrong and I think this verse is the answer. What I’m doing wrong is asking for relief instead of grace. Looking at these thorns in my side as things that are inhibiting my relationship with God instead as tools I can use to humble myself and bring myself closer to Him. If I embrace my weaknesses, all of my faults and shortcomings, then I can really embrace my power. I can see where I am strong. I am only strong when I unite my will with the Lord’s, when I give myself over fully and completely, without reservations or holding back.
When I present myself to you, when I write on this blog I need to approach it from the same basis of total honesty. I don’t want to use this space to instruct you, I’m not nearly holy enough for that. I want to use it to learn and grow, and to invite you along for the ride. We are all on a path to be holiness; I just choose to share mine and I want to share all of it. The good, the bad, and the ugly.
So this week I am going to to embrace my weaknesses, those thorns in my side and allow God’s grace to transform them into the tools I need to get closer to heaven. What are the thorns in your side? What does embracing your weakness look like for you? Let me know in the comments below or talk to me on any of my social media platforms. I’d love to hear from you!