February 24th, 2006
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“The Lord is kind and merciful.”
This line from today’s Psalm is one of my favorites in Scripture,
especially when juxtaposed with the first sentence of today’s
first reading. “Do not complain, brothers and sisters, about
one another, that you may not be judged. Behold the Judge is standing
before the gates.”
Mentally I go back about 10 years to when my children were teen-agers
and I survived by complaining about them to two dear friends who
shared the same frustrations and pressures.
One friend and I met every Tuesday for “sanity breakfast”
while the other and I met for a weekend workout at the gym. The
breakfasts followed a format. Whichever of us had had the worse
week got to recite her litany of complaints first while the other
gave sisterly affirmation. Then we swapped roles before walking
out to “pick up our crosses.” The walks in the gym followed
much the same pattern. My gym friend and I still meet at least weekly
and we vent frustrations about our respective students in addition
to airing occasional complaints about our now-grown children and
spouses. We scheduled these activities into our jam-packed schedules
as religiously as any business meeting. They were our lifelines.
Was the Lord listening in as we complained about our kids over coffee
or griped about our spouses as we walked laps around the gym? No
doubt. But I believe that “the Lord is kind and merciful”
and will forgive – if forgiveness is even necessary.
I can still recall the relief with which I would drive away from
“sanity breakfast” and the gym. They allowed me to go
on loving – the real message of today’s first reading.
Besides, if the” kind and merciful Lord” has any questions,
I’ll urge him to talk with His mother. I’m sure SHE
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