My 14 year-old son had a doctor’s appointment today. He is tough. He is rough. He didn’t cry when he broke his arm. He didn’t cry when he stapled his finger with the heavy duty stapler. He doesn’t cry and he doesn’t complain, either.
But today, he cried. He was frustrated and I saw tears streaming down his face during his procedure. I could see in his face a look of pain and panic….. Fear of the pain that was still yet to come.
I tried to comfort him and console him with a soft touch on his back, a goofy joke to distract him, and then finally after nothing worked to lighten his pain, I went in with the big guns.
I said to him, “Offer it up. Pain is temporary and it can be a blessing.”
I won’t tell you his immediate reaction, but it did include an eye roll and a big sigh.
I suggested he embrace the pain, as Jesus embraced the Cross. Absorb the pain and send it back up to Heaven as a prayer for those who can’t pray, won’t pray, don’t pray. Look deep into the Lord’s sacrifice and own a piece of it, humbly and with joy. You are being allowed to experience a small portion of our Lord’s pain. Offer it up for Grandma who is battling breast cancer, for a sweet dear big sister who is studying for mid-terms, for Grandpa’s soul and eternal rest, for friends, for family, for babies, for the Nation.
After I rattled all of the people and circumstances that need prayer, I was humbled and convicted. When in my busy day, have I followed my own advice? Embraced an annoyance for the good of another? Asked for an inconvenience to allow for another person’s peace? Welcomed a negative comment, a slight of embarrassment or an insult to aid another’s salvation?
Then, I thought of our Lord’s Divine Mercy and was thankful that my judge of success in humility is a forgiving and loving God. He wants us to embrace his Passion, but forgives us when we fall short.
So, dear friends, join me as I rededicate myself - welcome the pain, embrace the heartache and offer it up for our brothers and sisters who are in need, our Nation who is in need, our families who are in need.
Look at the Cross, own a piece of it and love it, with joy. And repeat after me, “Jesus, I trust in You!”