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Petulant Children Seeking Patience

September 10, AD2017

petulant

“The virtue of patience is the one which most assures us of perfection.” -St. Francis de Sales

Patience, where have you gone? I’m trying so hard to find you as this dear little one settles down for a nap, but his incessant whimpering for ‘mama’ is difficult to ignore. All of my tried and true tactics go unanswered. Enduring silence, insistent shushing, and ceaseless waiting have failed. Even the Gregorian chant that puts the nine-year-old to sleep – albeit happily – is not having the desired effect.

In desperation, I await the even breathing that announces slumber, but it does not come. So I sit here, silently, and write out my frustration. Head pounding I begin typing, knowing my favorite method of venting will eventually win out. The serene beauty of chant keeps me company and beckons me to find my sought after serenity – and patience. And so I wait.

“If there be a true way that leads to the Everlasting Kingdom, it is most certainly that of suffering, patiently endured.” -St. Colette

The Patience of God

God, how often would we, your creatures have the same effect on your Eternal patience? We continually whimper, whine, and moan about our slightest earthly afflictions even as we fail to give notice or gratitude for all that is right in our world. Our blessings are as numerous as the stars in the sky, yet one disappointment brings out the petulant child in us. Our demands are endless.

How wonderful are your works, your daily gifts to our lives! We live in the splendor of your Love, enveloped in the peace and the hope of our Eternal Goal! Yet, too often, we present eyes that do not see – ears that do not hear. Your Word is always available to us. The miraculous Presence of You in the Holy Eucharist is patiently waiting for us – there at all hours of the day and night. Saints’ lives blaze the Way as models of the holiness to which we should aspire. Your Ear is at the ready, awaiting our every petition with Divine Patience.

That you become not slothful, but followers of them, who through faith and patience shall inherit the promises. Hebrews 6:12

Our Own Good

The little souls put into our care by the Creator have no concept of what is necessary for their well being. A refreshing nap is for their own good. As the wiser, more experienced caretakers of these little ones, we are responsible for their oversight. In the same way, our souls thirst for the refreshment of spiritual respite. God our Father knows what we need, although at times our resistance is equally strong as that of children. Patience teaches us to listen to His Word and to learn that, in charity, the Father has only our good in mind.

In this is charity: not as though we had loved God, but because he hath first loved us, and sent his Son to be a propitiation for our sins. 1 John 4:10

Patience Rewarded

Finally, then, solace comes. A slightly hiccuping, steady breath of this dear child of Yours rewards my involuntary patience. He is quiet – fuzzy blanket firmly grasped by tiny, dimpled hands – in peaceful slumber. As he has found his rest, so have I found my peace. Ever the wisest of Fathers, you have seen fit to teach me, your wayward child.

Thank you, Heavenly Father. You are there, always, offering security and consolation. Your whisper beckons us to let go and allow you to guide us on our life’s journey. Even as we persist in our childish demands, yours is the epitome of patience. We pray you teach us by your example. May our ears hear your call and our eyes see your Truth.

For this day, the momentary tedium has been overcome. The storm has passed and sanctuary found. All is well with my soul, once again. Amen and alleluia!

“Patience is the companion of wisdom.” -St. Augustine

Photography: See our Photographers page.

About the Author:

Birgit is a 50-something cradle Catholic who is passionate about the pro-life movement. She has been married to her Catholic convert husband, Rick, for 40 years. They have four children and nine living grandchildren (all age twelve and under). Their frequent visits eliminate any fear of an empty nest! Birgit can also be found on her personal blog Designs By Birgit and Facebook fan page Designs By Birgit, where she shares the pro-life memes she creates.

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  • Marion (Máel Mhuire)

    Maybe the little one is having a difficult moment, and just needs to be held and reassured by his Mama for five or ten minutes. It happens.

    I have difficult moments, too, from time to time, and ask Our Lord and Our Lady to keep me near and attentive.