Right now I am in the middle of a great time of consolation. Don't misunderstand me, I still have my trials and tribulations, and the devil is still trying to get at me, but for the most part, God and I are still on our honeymoon. And it is wonderful!
I know this means that rough times will be ahead, new suffering and sacrifice, and God will help me face them all. But tonight I was thinking about people who just want to wallow in suffering and sacrifice with dour faces and downtrodden hearts. Even when God gives them consolation, they think they should feel guilty for feeling good, and downplay it!
I love St. Faustina. But sometimes I think she was a little too, too serious, dour, and rigid. She was intense! Did you ever read her diary? I have. Several times, and as a missionary of Divine Mercy, I am required to read a little of it each day. But that is all I can handle. Because she is too intense for me.
Now, don't get me wrong, I am not about to throw the baby out with the bath water. All I am saying is, (in the words of my husband) sometimes we need to "Lighten up Francis!" Not everyone is called to be that rigid, intense and dour. I know that I am not. I think we can learn different things from different saints and then incorporate it with our own, individual gifts, and become our own saint. You know, become who God wants us to be.
I am seeing in some people around me, something I am now going to call, "Eeyore Spirituality".
You know the glum donkey from Winnie the Pooh. It is driving me crazy. I don't want to feel guilty about being smack dab in the middle of a consolation time with the Lord. I think He wants us to enjoy Him. I think He made the changing of the leaves so that we could see beauty. He made things beautiful. What would be the point in making all of this if He didn't want us to feel joyful! It brings me closer to Him, I love Him more when I look at the beautiful fall trees and know that He knows how much I love looking at them. He did it for our delight!
So then I start thinking, how am I going to get people to change their glum minds? Talking about it doesn't help, they look at you like you are insane, which after nine kids, I probably am, but that is beside the point! God is good!
Then it came to me. Live it! Just live joyfully. When I look at the people in my life who are full of joy, why are they different? Do they not have sufferings in their life? Of course they do. They just enjoy the good and the bad. They are loving and happy and peaceful wherever God places them. Feasting or Fasting, it's all good!
I love that saying, "it's all good". God gave each one of us our own talents and gifts, to use for His glory. And I like to think that He gives us a break too. If life was nothing but suffering and sacrifice, if He didn't give us those little moments of happiness, well, I don't think we would have the strength to get through the bad moments. Our human condition couldn't handle it.
I could be wrong. But these are just my thoughts. I am not a theologian, or a scholar. Just a missionary mama with nine kids and a husband, trying not to live my life like an unhappy mule.
It's all good.
That's how I want to be!