This morning I was reflecting on one of the Blessed Is She daily devotions that spoke about the Cross and seeing it as more than a decorative fixture in our house, but rather, as something that we live. I started thinking about some of the daily crosses I experience in my own life and wondered if a few of them were not meant for me to carry.
For example, the other day I woke up extremely tired because one of my sons was sick with a fever in the night and I was up taking care of him. I finally got back to bed and it seemed like only moments later that the alarm clock was ringing. This was a normal cross of motherhood. You take care of your babies and sometimes it leaves you sleep deprived but God gives you the grace to endure.
Another morning, I also woke up extremely tired but not because of a sick child. Rather, it was because I was binge watching a favorite show on Netflix. I went to bed way too late on a school night and the next morning I was tired and cranky. That tiredness was a cross I then had to carry but I was never meant to carry it. I was supposed to go to bed at the appointed hour and get a decent night’s sleep so I wouldn’t be acting like a zombie the next day.
Is That Cross of My Own Making?
As I considered this, other moments came to my mind with similar outcomes. One afternoon I was busy helping my in-laws and by the time I got home I was rushing around to get dinner on the table. I knew God wanted me to be a loving and helpful daughter-in-law and I’d just have to deal with the stress of getting dinner on the table in time. It was the sacrifice God was asking of me at that moment. Another afternoon, I was also rushing around frantic to get dinner on the table but that was because I spent way too much time on the computer when I was supposed to be cooking. That cross should never have happened. My sacrifice should have been turning off the computer and getting my butt in the kitchen.
Or what about the day I was feeling ill because I came down with a flu bug? Sometimes illness is unavoidable. But what about the time I was feeling sick and run down because I was overindulging in junk food and desserts? That was not supposed to happen. The distinction is a helpful one when we’re undergoing suffering.
Take a Second Look.
While there are unavoidable things in our lives that will go wrong or will be hard to deal with, sometimes it’s helpful to take a second look and ask ourselves if there’s something we can do to ease the chaos or lighten the cross. Are we overly stressed because we are mismanaging our time or over extending ourselves with outside activities? Are we upset and resentful that our husband isn’t pitching in yet we don’t actually tell him specifically how he can help us out and instead expect him to read our mind? Are we going crazy at work or school because we are getting sucked into someone else’s drama? Are we angry because there is so much stuff to organize and put away and we’re not dealing with the fact that we might just have too much stuff?
Only you truly know your situation. You may be doing everything as well as you know how and life is still chaos simply because you have babies and toddlers running around the house. That’s pretty much comes with the territory. You are carrying the expected cross of motherhood.
Or maybe you have a busy job with deadlines to meet. Or maybe you have tests to study for and a load of schoolwork to complete on time. True, those are things you can’t avoid.
However, whatever your situation, it doesn’t hurt to ask God to show you if there are any areas in your life where things could be eased up if you changed a few things around or did something differently. Ask yourself if this is a cross God is asking of you or is it a result of your own bad habits? By changing what we can, we can then put our energy into the following the path God gave us and be at peace that we’re not straying onto difficult roads that weren’t meant for us.
Written by Bobbi Rol. Find out more about her here.