"When a soul recognises the will of God and shows a readiness to submit to it entirely, then God gives Himself to such a soul and renders it most powerful succour under all circumstances." - Rev. Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Monday, January 26, 2015

Sacrifice. Maybe it's not as complicated as we think...

I've been thinking a lot about my new word of the year. At first I thought God was calling me to do some big, big sacrifices. And maybe he is…honestly, my first thought when "sacrifice" popped into my head was NO GOD I CANNOT GET PREGNANT THIS YEAR. Because right now, to me, that would be one monster of a sacrifice.

But maybe I was just overreacting. Maybe He just wants me to work on sacrificing the little things.

Like reading a book to Landon while I'm nursing Chase instead of mindlessly scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed.

Like praying the rosary before bed even though I'm so.dang.tired. Or better yet, praying the rosary when the kids are occupied/sleeping/being quiet. (Not gonna lie, I WILL fall asleep if I pray the rosary after 10pm)

Like taking 10 minutes to do some sort of exercise when I'm so not in the mood. Bonus points for including Landon (like dancing with Nintendo Wii or pushing the massive double stroller around the block).

Like calling that lonely relative even though you know they'll keep you on the phone for 30 minutes and you have a million other things you could be doing.

I don't know why I don't do all of these things more often. Because as hard as it is to take the first step and JUST DO IT, there's always a reward at the end. That's a funny thought, eh? Sacrifice reaps rewards.

Landon enjoys reading books SO much and I'm sure I haven't missed anything important on Facebook.

The graces of praying the rosary far outweighs the benefits of 20 extra minutes of sleep....or whatever else I was temped to do. A priest once told me that the most productive thing we can do is pray!

I always feel better about my day when I exercise…not to mention needing to lose these 20 postpartum pounds.

That relative is probably so glad they got the chance to talk to you…and perhaps you just made their week.

I'm not even a month into this gig on focusing on sacrifice, and wow, I'm realizing how many times a day I have to overcome that little voice that says "but I don't want to" or "but I don't feel like it". So, so many times. But what I'm also realizing is, like any bad habit, it's going to take a couple dozen times (or more) to overcome it. 

Instead of looking at the sink full of dirty dishes 10 times, wishing they'd magically clean themselves, JUST WASH THEM ALREADY. 

Instead of throwing more unopened mail on top of an already-overwhelming pile, JUST GO THROUGH IT ALREADY. 

Now, I have a baby and a toddler so I can't always do these things at the precise time I would like...but I find the days that I just do things at the first possible moment - like as soon as I hand Chase a toy and he's happy and Landon is engrossed in his Legos - afternoon will roll around and I'm like what? Dishes are done and I'm actually halfway through the mound of clean laundry to fold? Let's go for a walk outside!

And then I feel even more productive and the kids are happy and I wonder why I ever avoided all those things in the first place.

Sounds so simple! But why is it so hard?! Such a mystery to me. 

I can only hope - and pray - that by making little sacrifices, it will prepare me to do any major sacrifices...if/when God calls me to it.
"There is no place for selfishness – and no place for fear! Do not be afraid, then, when love makes demands. Do not be afraid when love requires sacrifice." – St. Pope John Paul II

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