I’d asked her for help with my difficult horse (pictured below left) at a show where I was competing on the Feast of the Assumption. That morning I had gone to Mass to celebrate the Holy Day of Obligation. That should cinch it, I thought.
But my horse behaved worse than he’s done in a long time and I came home crushed.
And Another Thing….
Three years ago I drove to fetch my son from his school, to attend evening Mass together on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Instead of making it to his school, my alternator failed and I got stuck at a red light. Our Lady really had it in for me: I was trying to do the right thing and see where it got me!
Then this week, here I was yet again - trying to do the right thing. Instead of a peaceful resolution, one more piece of bad news arrived.
What Does Our Lady Want From Me?
O.K. I thought: I can either wallow in the belief that Our Lady ‘has it in for me’ or take another approach. So I asked her for a sign that she doesn’t disapprove of me or what I’m doing.
I arrived early at Mass on Friday, and opened the ‘Pieta Prayer Book’ a good friend had given me, and which I carry in my purse. It contains many wonderful prayers. (Including The St Bridget Prayer I mentioned in my last post.)
The blue booklet fell open at a 54 day Rosary novena to Our Lady: 27 days of reciting the Rosary in petition, followed by 27 days in thanksgiving.
Since I can’t go to Communion, I began to recite the Rosary while the others went up to receive; then I stayed behind after Mass to finish it. After that I sat in my pew, and wrote down 54 novena days on the blank pages for notes at the back of ‘The Mass Journal’ by Matthew Kelly. Father had given it to me for writing down what I learn at each Mass I attend and I highly recommend it.
Our Lady Responds
I must admit to feeling that no one cared, but kept my unhappiness to myself and completed the Rosary. I duly ticked off 'Day 1' in my book.
‘I’m going to stick to this!’ I promised. ‘Our Lady, I trust you to give me a sign that you are interceding for me, and that my petition will be granted.’
As I was leaving the church, Father called out to me. He’d just finished hearing confession (another Sacrament closed to me) and held out something in his hand. It was a CD by Matthew Kelly on ‘The Best Way to Live.’
It was a sign! Our Lady was already starting to let me know of her presence. I beamed at Father as I took the CD, asked for a prayer on my behalf, and thanked him.
Listening to Matthew Kelly’s inspiring words in my vehicle, I remembered the what a fellow Catholic told me - she’d already been through the scary annulment process. (Link to previous post.) A priest once told her that sometimes we are given ‘spiritual lollipops’ along our difficult journey, to lighten the load and help us keep faith.
The CD from Father was a spiritual lollipop from Our Lady.
Later that day, I went to a large store to buy some packing materials. A lady in a wheelchair looked at me. Before I could smile and brighten her day (so I’d planned) she smiled first and said, “You look pretty!”
Another lollipop :)
Look for these spiritual bon-bons in your own life, and you'll discover them all the time. God is always supporting us with His grace and talking to us - we just need to be on the watch for the different ways He chooses to speak.
He is not Catholic, and was the only one in his Baptist family who understood the importance of our being properly married in the Catholic Church after I returned to the faith.
Those were bleak times!
Do you have a story to share about the misery of not being able to receive the Sacraments and not knowing whether you ever will?
- Graces & Blessings and How to Recognize Them
- From Seeming Futility to Utility
- Blossoming Prayers