Friday, January 8, 2010

oh mary

tonight as i was winding down the day with the boys, feeling particularly exhausted, i thought to myself, "after the boys are tucked in, i'm going to treat myself to a cookie and a glass of wine. i've earned it." and then, to be totally honest with you, i also thought to myself, "i think that will be my facebook status update." my way of declaring to the world, "i work really hard and now i'm going to pat myself on the back. and if you want to pat me on the back too, or want to chime in about how hard you work, join in and comment, my friends."

these thoughts were the jumping off point for many more thoughts as ben and i cleaned up blocks and i put the boys to bed.

my first thought was of a quote i read in the adoration chapel today. i don't remember the saint's name, but it was from ann ball's "the modern saints"-i don't remember which volume. (such a great book-so many inspiring, relatable saints.) the saint, a man writing to the novices of his order, said, "you should go to bed so exhausted from your day's work that your body will think that it has been beaten." well, i certainly go to bed feeling beaten. because, well, honestly, most days i have been beaten. max has started biting, hitting, and throwing things when he's frustrated. and sometimes when he's happy. both of my boys are blessed with lots of energy and strong bodies. if i lay down to rest, they see that as an invitation to wrestle. so beaten body-check.

(this picture is proof of both max's hitting-because he wanted to lay on my head and not ben, and the wrestling. i promise i'm under there.)

but then i thought of the many other saints that i had read about and the traits that had struck at my heart-humility, generosity, poverty, courage, faith. i thought about how terribly lacking i am in those areas. i also thought about the works of these great souls and thought about how much time i waste on things that are of absolutely no worth in the Eternal, like facebook. (oy vey-so many thoughts!)

yes, there is certainly a time and place for leisure-something even the great saints realized. but there is a huge difference between leisure that refreshes the body and spirit, and simply wasting time. to be understood, i don't think facebook is bad, but for me it is often the starting point for way too much time wasted on the computer. "oh i'll just check to see if my brother posted any pics of the new baby before i go to bed."(she is absolutely gorgeous, by the way!!) two hours later, i'm frustrated with myself and know that i will have desperately needed those two extra hours of sleep in the morning when my well rested boys call upon me, assuming they slept through the night. ha.

it is my goal for the year (and the rest of my life) to spend my leisure time in more meaningful, restoring ways and to spend my working time in ways that will one day merit the Kingdom as my reward. of course i already spend my days clothing the naked (against their wills) and feeding the hungry (even if they don't like what i put in front of them), but if i whine about it, or seek earthy praise, then i've lost my Reward. the day i attain a humble spirit (and quiet pesky, prideful internal dialogue mary) will be a glorious day. honestly, it will be a miraculous day!

now off to have that cookie and glass of wine. my brain needs to rest and i need some restoring leisure.


  1. You're so good at putting thoughts into words. Mine just stay up there, swimming around. They'll never be as pretty as yours! ;) And yet, I still like to think that we think similarly. ;)

  2. thank you again Mary, your words are alwasys the ones I need to hear. I'm glad I decided to spend some leisure time reading this I should probably go to bed :)