Ephesians 6:4 “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”
Deuteronomy 6:7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in
your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
A few months ago after having a vision, I contacted Rachals Vineyard Ministry’s to see about upcoming retreats. I went out of my way to get to this one, my first, that I am to attend this weekend. I thought at the time our Lord was asking me to set aside time for healing for myself. After seeing clearly the events of today, this is anything but for just myself.
This week has been a preparation week for me of tying up loose ends for the things I do at my church to attend this three day retreat. The retreat was to be set aside to study scripture in relation to forgivness and healing after having had an abortion. Our Lord has provided me with many souls who came forward to attend to our Adoration Chapel and a new Altar Society to take care of this BIG weekend and kick off to Holy Week in the Church. Sunday is Palm Sunday, and many things go on before Mass that so many take for granted. Anyway, our Lord has provided the souls necessary to take care of this for me to go, along with the funds to pay for it.
My five year old has been coming down with a nasty cold for the past week and it came to a head yesterday when the Doctor told me she has a bacterial infection INSIDE her nose. Poor little was is so sick. Her fever peaked last night and she said to me “Am I going to go to heaven tomorrow?”, in front of her six year old sister. My six year old started to pray for her and I joined in after holding back my tears. I realized just how much I love my children. All of them.
Before this week, I was pondering who was going to take my children to Mass while I was gone. My husband is a non practicing Greek Orthodox and my only relative here where I live has left the Catholic faith. I had asked a friend and she had said yes, but my girls have never spent much time with her. This morning, I brought up the issue with my husband and realized he is still in the world and doesn’t see the girls missing Mass as a big deal and does not want to take them, as he himself never attends. I do.
Children are a gift from God. When we become parents, the things we wish to do, even in the case of this Retreat, take a back seat. How could I justify going to a weekend retreat, immersing myself into God’s word, attending Mass, when the very young children He has given to us, are in need of nurturing too and will be left to “starve” while I am eating?
I see this in two ways. One being a test for my husband in regards to what would happen spiritually to our children if I was no longer in the picture to bring them to Mass and help secure them in the faith. Would he pick up and carry on as is his job, to be the spiritual leader of our house?
Two being, this entire situation with this, me and my past, through repenting and turning back to our Lord, is Him screaming to me, I forgave you already. I have been blessed with two very beautiful little girls after this dreaded sin, who need our Lord just as much as I do. It was good for me to want to attend the retreat, but better to ensure our children are not left out in the cold, even for just ONE HOUR. I don’t know how missing Mass one day would effect them in the long run especially since they are so young, I can only speculate they would use it as an excuse down the road to continue to miss Mass. Rather then allow that seed to be planted and pray for the best, I can only set aside the entire lot of seed and ensure they will NOT miss Mass, and grow stronger because of it. If I did attend this retreat, I would be retreating form the gift of nurturing the lives of two souls who need that one Mass, more then my desires to seek Him more in an entire weekend or my life.
In not going to look for Him in my life this weekend, I have found Him in the hearts of the children He has given to me. The evil one is relentless and will do anything to gain access into their hearts. We as parents need to be the fence that keeps him out, with the grace of God, and keep our children in the presence of our Lord 24/7, and crush the evil one, like Mama Mary, every second we are their parents.
Psalm 127:3-5 Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, so are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them; they shall not be ashamed, but shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
“Parents must regard their children as children of God and respect them as human persons”(CCC 2222).
EDIT TO ADD:
I love our Lord….
I want to say our Lord has given me the key to His heart just now….
After posting this, I ran to the church to meet a woman about the Altar Society. The school children were lined up waiting to get in to practice the Stations of the Cross. I let them in with my key and waited for them to all enter. I Stopped in Adoration to say hello to our Lord and entered the church. She wasn’t there but our Maintenance men were along with the key to our Tabernacle! I grabbed it and asked who left it there? A funeral just concluded and they left everything out. The scent of incense was still in the air. I didn’t know who had passed away, but I prayed for them. Only now can I associate the significance of that funeral with that of my child that I had never met face to face. I picked up the key and put it where it belonged. It was so overwhelming and was as if He left it there for me to find.
All the glory is our Lords.