So this morning was one of those Sundays when I just wanted to stay in bed and let the cats keep me warm. Do you have Sundays like that? When you think man I should have gone to Saturday night vigil.
BUT and there is a big but here. When I do go to mass God ALWAYS rewards me with plentiful graces.
I mean really why would I ever skip mass when Christ is waiting for me every single day in the Holy Eucharist?
Today I walked in alone (our friends brought my kids after a sleep over, my husband stayed home sick) but it struck me that all of these other people (young families, elderly parishioners and other stragglers) are my family!
Some of them I know through our school and others are “strangers” but they are all part of my “Family” (think mob/extended relatives style).They are my brothers and sisters in Christ, not cousins but brothers and sisters!
I come from a very small family and we are a bickering lot. I say small because it’s just my mothers side of our family:
- 1 Grandma
- 2 Aunts
- 4 cousins
- 1 brother
- Dad (deceased not sure when) we have no contact with my dads side of the family (sadly)
Of this little tribe half us do not speak to the other half . Stupid right, but it’s the truth. Everyones family has its own funky weirdness, you’re not alone.
My favorite line form “Designing Women” Julia Sugarbaker says:
“In the South people don’t ask if you have crazy in the family. They just ask which side it’s on”. (Dripping sarcasm with a drawl).
So when you think your family is crazy, remember we all have craziness, NO ONE is immune.
Back to the story at hand, because of my fractured family situation, I rely on these friends and fellow Catholics to be my family.
I ask them to pray for me on a regular basis, it’s hard the first few times, then it gets easier. Trust me on this, we all want to pray for someone else’s intentions or needs.
We bounce ideas on child rearing off each other, we call for advice on tough topics that come up with parenting in a secular world. We observe the things we admire in these families and mimic them. We love each others children fiercely like our own.
This particular Sunday God put me slap dab in the front pew. Why I asked my friend the front (where she had was seated with our kids) she said I’m gluten intolerant and want to get to the wine before everyone else!
(Insert diabolical laughter here)
Well, the choir started, a song in four parts and before I knew it, I was crying form the beauty! What in the WORLD?
Right in front of the entire church in the front row (RATS!)my kids are looking at me like I’m crazy but I can’t stop.
Later the homily made me laugh and cry again (a HomeRun in my book).
Afterward I visited with friends I hadn’t seen in weeks, complimented our new music director and left filled up to the brim with God’s love.
All of this from a day when I wanted to sleep in and skip mass.
God is laughing, he does that a lot about me.