Tag Archives: relying on God

No room in this inn

Good Saint Joseph has been on my mind this morning. As I reflected on the Joyful Mysteries, I paused at the Nativity. I thought about what it must have felt like to be St. Joseph. Here he was given the tremendous responsibility of caring and providing for the Holy Family, yet one of his first tasks is a complete and total failure by human standards. His very pregnant wife, the Blessed Virgin Mary, must have felt horribly for him as he knocked at each inn door in Bethlehem. I’m sure he worked hard to find them a safe place to spend the night. But in the end, there was no room in the inn.

Many Christians and non-Christians seem to be following the idea: if you believe, you will succeed. If this was truth, then surely St. Joseph would have easily found a room for him and his expectant wife. However, neither Mary’s prayers or St. Joseph’s prayers were answered. Perhaps, God had a greater plan than either of them could humanly see or conceive.

How often have I fallen into the trap of the wrong belief I mention above. I would add my own twist which is: if you believe and work hard, you will succeed. God has allowed me to experience plenty failures when I pursue things that really don’t matter. He can see inside my heart and knows when I need a good dose of humility. My self-reliance and pride can kick into high gear very easily, and only He knows how to temper that for me. When I am full of myself, there is no room in the inn for God or the Holy Spirit. It’s when I let go of my grand plans and acknowledge that my entire existence rests in His hands that wonderful things begin to happen. Sometimes, I have had to knock on many doors before I realize I am knocking on the wrong doors. He just patiently waits for me or sometimes knocks me over to get my attention!

Let’s pray for the intercession of St. Joseph the Worker when we find ourselves struggling with pride or self-reliance.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
Blessed Virgin Mary, pray for us.
Jesus, I trust in you!

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For the birds

Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they? (Matthew 6:26)

I think the birds have it right. They wake up around 5:25 a.m. and start singing with a zest for life. I mean, they really and truly let it out with chirrups and tweets, trills and whistles. This morning, I was tired, but I couldn’t stay asleep. The birds just sounded so happy. Right outside my bedroom window is giant pear tree. I have no idea how many birds’ nests are tucked away in that tree, but it sounds like a symphony of song each morning.

This afternoon, I decided it was time to tackle the front garden with weeding, trimming and de-bugging. Luckily, my children and I had already weeded a few times, so that part didn’t take so long. And the trimming went quickly, too. However, the de-bugging was another story. I had to wash each leaf of my holly bushes because they were loaded with eggs. I agree with my daughter. If I had to guess, I would say Japanese beetle eggs. I am spraying each leaf and thinking to myself, “Why don’t all those birds eat these eggs? I bet they are full on protein and easier to catch than a worm.” Of course, the eggs smell horrible and look like dirt. Okay, maybe the birds aren’t so dumb after all.

Tonight, as the sun begins to set, and I am typing this blog, the birds are back in their nests. I have no idea what they are chirping about. Maybe it’s the feral black cat that just had kittens in the woods. Or I imagine the conversation goes like this:

Mom-Bird chirps, “Hey, honey, where are you? I am sitting with the babies and I am hungry. I need a break or some food.” but it sounds like, “Chirp, chirp-chirp? Twit-twitty twit. Chirpy, chirp, twit, chirp chirp.” (You get the idea….)

Dad-Bird replies, “Coming, Dear!” and thinks to himself, “That gal is always hungry. Doesn’t she realize what hard work I have done building her nest? I’m hungry, too. I know she doesn’t want me to drop over dead from hunger with our babies in the nest. I think I will eat one more worm before I head back.”

Mom-Bird chirrups, “Honey, I’m not kidding. I need a break. When you gotta go, you gotta go, you know? Get here now!”

All the Baby-Birds join in, “We’re hungry! We’re bored! We’re thirsty! We’re tired! We want food now!”

Dad-Bird swoops in to relieve Mom-Bird.

Suddenly all is eerily quiet….

“Hooo, hoo.  Twit-twoo.” The old owl lets them know he is around and the birds all lay low.

As the sun descends, the last sound I hear is the gentle coo of turtle doves.

Good night, birds. Sleep tight, birds. Don’t let the bed bugs bite, birds.