Friday, February 21, 2014

Experiencing God's Compassion Even When I Didn't Go to Mass Today

I did not go to Mass today with my family because I was very angry minutes before we were supposed to go to church.
I was angry at my eldest son and I spoke harsh words to him in my anger. I felt so bad. I felt unworthy and ashamed to come before God in the Holy Eucharist.
I chose to stay home and let my husband (who arrived minutes after all my drama with the kids) take the kids to church.
I stayed home... in the kitchen. I have just finished cooking tuna pasta with sun-dried tomatoes. Actually, I was almost ready to leave and was a bit excited to eat dinner with my family after the Mass. But my eldest did something that made me mad all of a sudden.
I mixed the sauce with the pasta with a heavy heart. As the noodles slowly turned red because of the sauce, I felt my anger slowly slip away. I felt that I have overly reacted once more. I felt ashamed of my behavior and the words that came out of my mouth. I feared how those negative and hurtful words could have pierced my son's tender heart.
I went upstairs to my home office... looking for ways to diffuse the negative feelings within me.
I opened my Facebook Account and saw a post where my name was tagged. I was intrigued with the title. Tears started to form in my eyes right after I read the title of the blog post. Those tears flowed as I read on.
Deep inside I felt that I deserved a strong rebuke from God for failing again on being a loving mother to my child. But instead of a rebuke from God, I felt God's compassion and mercy as I read the blog post titled When Mothering is Hard and No One Sees.
I was sobbing by the time I finished reading the entire post.
Let me share some lines that struck me the most.
"This laying down of your life for the children I’ve gifted you? This is worship in action."
"Your greatest contribution in the kingdom of God may not be something you do but someone you raise."
I missed today's worship service by skipping daily Mass. But through this blog post, God opened my eyes to the truth that even when I'm not able to go to church to participate in the Eucharistic Celebration, I'm still able to worship Him every day as I "lay down my life" for my kids. What powerful insight from this lovely post!
The second line I highlighted here also struck me. It's as if God is telling me that even with all the books/articles/reflections I have written and the number of people I have touched through them, my highest calling and service to Him is raising the kids that God blessed me with.
I felt much better after reading this blog post of another mom who isn't spared from the challenges of being a parent.
Then, my kids and husband got home from church. My sons asked for my blessing by putting my hand on their forehead. (This is a Filipino tradition.) I quietly served dinner... with tear-filled eyes.
"Wow, pasta! I like this!" exclaimed my eldest son.
More tears filled my eyes as I heard him say those words.
My eldest son kept saying that he liked the pasta that I cooked and that it's yummy. He even asked for a second serving. It was so hard to keep my tears from rolling down my cheeks while we were eating.
After dinner, he asked permission from me to watch their current favorite movie (need I say that it's Frozen?). I asked him to pack away his school supplies and toys first before I said yes. Then, I asked for his forgiveness. I also asked him if he was angry with me earlier and he gave an honest reply. I reminded him that Mommy still loves him even when I'm mad. I apologized again, kissed him and gave him a hug. He kissed and hugged me, too. The, he happily went downstairs to watch a movie with his younger brother.
Like the author of that blog post, I sometimes feel that I'm doing my role as a mother poorly. Tonight, I felt that I have done something really bad.
I felt conscious of God's eyes that I could not bear to come before Him inside the church. Yet, as I read the post, instead of feeling the weight of the wrong I have done and God's judging eyes, I felt his loving, merciful and compassionate gaze. He saw not my mistakes. He saw the good that I have done instead. That's what really made me cry.
Thank you, God! I pray that You'd grant me grace to do better in living out this sacred calling of mine in my every day life.

I'm linking this post to the Catholic Bloggers Network


  1. Wow, beautiful post Teresa! I've had many moments like that...but haven't always handled them as well as you did. Thanks for sharing!