I often fail to recognize just how well I am taken care of. I get so very wrapped up in how much I take care of others. (Read: whine, complain, and exaggerate.) Even when I do stop and think of how well I am taken care of I do not often give due appreciation. I take so much for granted in my cushie life. I know all care comes from God, who works through the events, circumstances, and people in my life.
Oftentimes God’s care is obvious even in the little things. Just this afternoon I needed to make a run to the market for juice. I have several children with colds and croup that call for plenty of fluids. I was torn between needing to be home with kids that need me, or running out for juice for kids who need fluids! I wanted nothing more than to hunker down with my kids and read some books and rock the virus away. With all the holiday hub-bub and recent snowfall, traffic was awful. The parking lot of the store was crammed and inside was no different. I offered up a quick prayer for patience, bundled myself up and walked in with my cart. To my suprise (why am I still surprised when my prayers are answered???) in the front of the store sat a cart of juice, all marked $.50-$.75 off. I loaded up and was out of the store and back home in no time. A few of the kids didn’t even realize I had left yet! On the surface these kinds of instances and events may seem like coincidences, sheer ‘luck’ or no big deal. As a child of God I need to stop and recognize them as my Fathers tender care.
There are the people in my life that love and care for me, motivated by their love for Christ. My husband is the most evident. His love for Our Lord flows from him so generously in his constant, steadfast, even gentle, care of me and the children. He knows and fulfills our physical needs by braving the world each day to meet the strapping financial demands of our large and growing family. I’ve never heard him say, ”I don’t want to go to work.” I have seen him climb out of bed each morning and repeat the same ‘ole each day. Usually with that dashing smile on his face that attracted me to him when we were young. I’ve watched him hold a hefty toddler in each arm for the duration of a high mass without batting an eye, so I can simply hold the baby and pray along the mass. I’ve watched him cheerfully do things that I know are way out of his comfort zone just to be a good example to our children.
Without going into the full saga, we’ve been having issues with the gas company lately. It is December in Ohio and our gas was turned off for twenty four hours to repair a service line. My husband spent the entire day dealing with service crews, public utilities commissions, and operators, making sure everything was being done to get our heat back on in a timely manner. He went out and bought an electric heater for us to get cozied up in at least one room of our house. He spent the whole day working to make us warm again. I could not help but being reminded of St. Joseph tirelessly going from door to door looking for a warm place for his family. Just as God provided Our Mother with a husband to care for her and His Son, He has provided me with a husband that tenderly cares for me and our children.
Then there are the many friends that God has blessed me with. There are the ones dear to me that I share tea with regularly, the ones that rejoice with me when I share the news of another precious baby on the way and bring our family dinner when the baby is born. There are the blessed friends, far away. Ones that I have never met face to face, yet these dear women offer prayers for me whenever requested and graciously share unexpected gifts that make the yoke lighter and the burden easier.
I am worthy of this care insofar as I am made in His image. I am His and He cares for me. Through no merits of my own do I deserve anything. I resolve to recognize and appreciate each act of kindness, generosity, and charity for what it is, an overflow of God’s love for all of His creation.