Skip to main content

Parenting in the Shadow of the Cross

As parents, we hope that our children "turn out" well.  Most of us try our very best to get them there.  However, we all can point to examples where parents do everything right, and the kid is a mess.  We also know circumstances where parents are total and complete disasters, and the kid turns out to be a marvel.  I'm not saying it's a total crap-shoot, but sometimes, it can feel this way.

Right now, Dark-haired Daughter is struggling.  You know how when a person is drowning, and someone tries to rescue them, out of panic, the "drownee" often struggles AGAINST the rescuer?  That's where our daughter is.  Desperate for rescue, and fighting mightily against the help being offered.  We have friends whose young adult son is awaiting the birth of his first child.  Sadly, he has turned his back on the baby's mother, taken up with a new girlfriend, and seems to have no concerns about the situation. 

Parenting in the light of Christ is a joyful place: the birth of a new baby, the swelling of pride as a daughter accepts a school award, the wonder of seeing a "little boy" become a man in stature and choices.  Parenting in the shadow of the Cross SEEMS like a whole other place:  it is dark and often sad, a place where hard choices are required, and no reward seems immanent.  It is, though, exactly the same place:  a place where Christ lifts us up, a place where we don't know the outcome but trust that God does and that God is always good, and a place where the darkness of evil and sin can NEVER overcome the grace that Christ offers.   It is not an easy place, but at least (or maybe, at most) Christ is there.   

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Trying to "end run" God

If you're a football fan, you know what an end run is. From Merriam-Webster:
a football play in which the ballcarrier attempts to run wide around the end of the line We try to "end run" God a lot. I do. I figure I know better. I've got this - no need to worry the Big Guy about such a trivial thing.

Of course, it never works.

Like the puppy above, when we try and evade the tough obstacle (even though we KNOW we will eventually have to do it), we end up - well, off in the bushes.

But oh! How I wished my way worked. I'd love to take a flying leap and land smoothly and gracefully. People would be in awe, as if watching Simone Biles nail a balance beam routine that no one else would even attempt. I would shyly look down and blush - just lightly - and acknowledge (But humbly! Oh so humbly!) my achievement.

But no: I am the one pulling myself out of the bushes, scratches all over my legs and twigs in my hair. I'd hear that gentle but loving voice of God saying, &quo…

Crossing Guard

I saw you
today
as you guided
your little man across that busy street.

You were wearing some
big man boots
and
watching cars and lights.

Your little man had on
black sneakers and
a Mickey Mouse hat
that bounced
as he walked.

He wasn't watching nothing but
your big man boots
and
the white stripes of the crosswalk.

Just before
he got to the sidewalk again,
his step bounced a bit
- he hopped over
a spot where the asphalt broke.

You turned to look,
holding out a hand to
your little man.
Not rushed or angry,
just making sure
he got up
on that sidewalk.

Then you walked on,
in your big man boots,
face into a cold Michigan wind,
with the little man behind,
his hat bouncing.

Be Transfigured

From today's readings: 

Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother, John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the and his clothes became white as light.

...we possess the prophetic message that is altogether reliable. You will do well to be attentive to it as to a lamp shining in a dark place until day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

Today we celebrate the Transfiguration. For whatever reason, Jesus brought three of His disciples to Mount Tabor to witness this miracle. They weren't sure what they were seeing, but they knew enough to throw themselves to the ground in the presence of Almighty God. St. Peter (who never did anything halfway) excitedly declares that he will erect tents on the mountain as a way of memorializing the event. But Jesus tells him and the others that they are not to tell people what they witnessed - at least not yet.

In the second reading, the requirement to be quiet has bee…