September 16, 2011
This year we are studying and discussing God's Plan for Marriage and Family by JP 2. Last night, the key phrase I walked out the door of our first gathering with was to serve, not to be served.
What a beautiful marriage would be in store if my husband and I could just live by those words daily! If we would decrease, HE could increase.
Living out the gospel every day is so hard, isn't it? Selfishness is such a nasty seed that can be planted in the heart. It leads to ugly things like anger and resentment.
The answer is humility.
If our God, our Prince of Peace, our King of Kings can humble Himself to become a man, to come down to this earth from the paradise He created and SERVE mankind out of LOVE, why can I not joyfully serve the ones I love the most! I am called to do that. I am called to do much more than that.
This is why marriage and motherhood are so hard and so necessary to the transformation of my soul. Nothing has challenged my motivation or put my soul under a microscope like marriage and family have.
The ugliness of self-centeredness was there all along, but I didn't see it as often or as strongly when I was single and allowed to live according to my own desires and will.
To serve, not to be served.
And it doesn't take marriage or children to live this way. We are all called to be His hands and feet on this earth. We each have our own vocation. And the seasons change, but the words never do.
To serve, not to be served.
Sometimes we are our biggest obstacle in doing His work, right? And it's hard to see because our society is so me! me! me! focused. And life is so clogged with sin and hurt. Our bodies are so weak and tired. Disappointment is ever-present.
But He is here. Still serving. Giving us the strength and grace to keep going. To keep doing His work. Being His hands and feet. Serving. But we have to humble our hearts to accept His Work.
So the last will be first, and the first will be last.
And, just on a lighter note, imagine what driving and traffic would be like if we lived by these words!? Ha! Who needs marriage or kids to see our ugly selfishness? Just get in the car and drive. Next time someone is trying to cut me off, which happens often now that I have a mini-van (but that's another post for another day), I think I'll roll down my window and scream at them, Be humble!
Or maybe not.
We have to be His hands and feet to show His heart.
Wisdom From the Pope
“The inalienable dignity of every human being and the rights which flow from that dignity - in the first place the right to life and the defense of life - are at the heart of the church's message." Pope John Paul ended his address, saying: "In spite of divisions among Christians, 'all those justified by faith through baptism are incorporated into Christ...brothers and sisters in the Lord.'" Pope John Paul 2