Birth · Human Dignity · Motherhood · Prayer · pregnancy

Stretch Marks, Fishermen, and Housewives

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I’ve been thinking about the spiritual necessity of perspective lately, and asking God that I may have the right perspective, that is to see things the way God sees them because of course, God is Truth, so to see as God sees is to see things the way they really are. The disciples so often seemed to miss the point, like when they would argue amongst themselves over who was the greatest. I wonder how often we too, completely miss the point of things.

Take, for instance, our view of stretch marks. When we look at them we so often count them among our flaws. Maybe seeing them that way isn’t having the right perspective, however. As Catholics we believe in the resurrection of the body at the end of the world. When this happens we will no longer have a mortal body, or a decomposed body, but a body that has been raised up and glorified. At that time, our glorified bodies will no longer be perishable or experience sickness or aging. Though of course none of us know exactly what our resurrected bodies will look like, we can speculate, based on what we know from the accounts of Christ’s resurrection, what our bodies might be like too. They will, presumably, be perfect.

It’s interesting to think though that after Jesus’ resurrection, He still bore the marks of His Passion. The physical wounds that Jesus bore from giving Himself in love so that we may have life, aren’t flaws. They are part of His perfection. So maybe the marks that many of us bear from giving ourselves to give life to another will be part of our perfected selves too. Though so many of us want to buy creams and lotions to get rid of the signs of giving life, perhaps we could pray that God give us His vision of the marks on our bodies that we bear from giving of ourselves so that others may live. As our own blogger, Mary Hasteline writes so eloquently, “Perhaps at that point, viewed in the Presence and with the eye of God, they won’t be deemed ugly or offensive, disgusting or embarrassing.  Perhaps they will be our glory.  Perhaps they will be a bit like His wounds, an eternal testimony that we chose to love beyond ourselves, to sacrifice our bodies for another.  They will be the scars of a battle won.” I highly recommend heading over to her personal blog and reading her whole moving post on the topic, found here.

I wonder what are other areas where I fail to see things as they really are. Perhaps one area is how I view the work that I do as a stay-at-home mom. Though I believe very much in the value of the so-called menial tasks that parents do, sometimes I wonder if I really believe in its value as much as I say I do, especially as I find myself valuing what I write more than I value cleaning up the kitchen for the second or millionth time that day. In my mind, I find myself taking greater pride in my work as a Natural Family Planning Instructor more than my work of bed-making, little kid bathing, and food preparing. But we Catholics believe that Mary has been crowned Queen of Heaven and Earth, which means that we believe that the Queen of Heaven and Earth was a housewife. Yes, God chose fishermen to be his Apostles and He chose a housewife to be the highest creature in heaven. Perhaps we could pray to God to help us see the value of each task we are given in our day and to recognize their true importance.

In these ways, and in all the ways that we do not see as we ought, please give us right vision, Lord. Amen.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways—oracle of the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” Is 55: 8-9

 

photo credit: yourbestdigs wiping up a spill with paper towel via photopin (license)

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