By Lindsay Schlegel
Preserve me, O God, for in thee I take refuge.~Psalm 16:1
Sometimes life can feel very heavy. Voices that seem to dominate the culture, misunderstandings near and far, and sometimes division within our own homes can feel like physical weights resting on our shoulders. Relevant metaphors and clichés abound: it’s an uphill battle; when it rains, it pours; ah, but we’re fighting the good fight.
When we find ourselves wearying under an unwieldy weight, when we begin to lean away from hope and toward despair, we risk forgetting the simple reality that Christ has already won the victory. We may not know how certain chapters of our lives resolve, but we do know how the story ends, and spoiler alert: it’s a very happy ending.
Still, as women with the unique gift of nurturing others in our families, parishes, and workplaces, the obstacles others face can begin to feel like our own, and at times, they can seem too enormous to scale. This is when we do well to return to Scripture, to remember whose we are and whose team we’re on.
We Never Fly Solo
The readings today remind us that we’re not battling on our own. In the psalm, we read that the Lord is our inheritance, in Him we take refuge, He counsels us, and He will not allow us to be disturbed or undergo corruption (see Psalm 16). When we stay close to the Lord, we share in sufferings and sacrifice. But we can also rejoice right now because the victory is already won.
St. Paul exhorts the Galatians—and us!—to “stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery” (Gal 5:1). And “if you are guided by the Spirit, you are not under the law” (Gal 5:18). The voices that discourage us, the situations that break our hearts, and the circumstances that seem like they’ll never change don’t have to be the ruling forces in our lives. They may tug at us, conflict, and challenge us, but ultimately, we belong to Christ, the Victor. He and He alone has the last word on the salvation of the world. And that word is love.
Mama’s Got This
Recently I was frustrated with a situation involving my children. I texted a friend that life felt a little crazy, and the world felt out of control. She replied with confidence and truth that reassured me: “The world is safe in the arms of the Blessed Mother.”
Some of that weight lifted when I read those words. Of course, our Blessed Mother knows the trials of our lives. SHe is right alongside us, praying for our children and us. And her Son will listen closely to His Mother’s concerns, uniting them to His own.
There are a lot of things out of whack in our society today. Priorities are disordered, and truth has been pushed way behind the back burner in some sectors. But this age, this time, and this place are not the end of the story. We can—and should—look forward in hope to the very happiest of endings.
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