Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Crown of Thorns

Today was Margaret's turn to join her daddy at weekly Eucharistic Adoration. She was excited at this Big Girl Privilege.

Praying the rosary with Daddy

Praying the rosary with Daddy

I was able to stake out an hour of time today, so I made some muffins and brewed a pot of tea. I've allowed myself to start buying boxes of baked good mixes so I just have them on hand and can grab the moment without letting perfection be the enemy of good.

Lenten tea time

I realize that some Catholics will be bothered that we haven't given up all things sweet, including muffins, for Lent, while other Catholics reading this won't even understand why there might be a scandal.

I hosted a tea time so we could talk about some more corporal and spiritual works of mercy and how we could apply them at home. We agreed at the end to work particularly on admonishing the sinner, as 'to admonish' actually means 'to reprove gently but earnestly' . . . as opposed to screaming one's head off about one's horrible brother who is the worst brother in the world because he looked at you cross-eyed and therefore he deserved to get punched. We role-played how we could reprove gently and talked about what a better response we would each get (Mama included).

It is so lovely to carve out time and space for tea. The photos don't show that my kitchen was topsy turvy, the floor is sorely in need of mopping, and the children's feet were dark with dirt because what else to do but play outside barefoot in the mud in February? But you know what? My state in life in these years will always be like that, so I can choose to carve out some time and space for truth, goodness, and beauty, or I will never manage to do it because I'm waiting for all the chores to be done and home to be spotless.

As I read over at Mothering Sunshine within the last week, if I have a perfect kitchen but have not love because I did it with resentment, I am just a scullery maid. If I have a perfect house, but have not love because I worked like a slave, I am just a maid. You get the idea.

The crown of thorns appears!

Joseph (3) continues to ask at least daily, "Is Lent day over now?" I realized today that he really doesn't have even a nascent understanding of Lent, while my first couple of three-year-olds did because I worked harder to teach them. And that's okay, it's not so terrible that a three-year-old doesn't 'get it' yet.

However, I realized that the salt dough crown of thorns really does teach sacrifice writ large for the preschooler crowd, even for my "olders" (who are really "youngers" compared to so many of my friends' families). I hadn't managed to make the time to create the crown for the first week of Lent (which made me want to throw in the towel, who cares, it's 'too late' anyway), but I decided today I just had to do it.

Joseph removing his first thorn because he waited patiently to use the bathroom

Immediately, the crown's effects began to be felt as children were vying right and left to sacrifice for each other and show patience.

"I gave my stuffed animal to my brother to share!"

"I waited patiently at the bathroom door!"

"I didn't hit my sister when I wanted to!"

Good job, honey! I am so proud that you set yourself aside! You were patient, you loved, you did what Jesus wants! Take a thorn out of Jesus' crown so he will feel better.

1 comment:

  1. LOLing at "I didn't hit my sister when I wanted to!" That was probably the most difficult sacrifice in the bunch. :)