Volo quidquid vis, volo quia vis
volo quomodo vis, volo quamdio vis.
I want to do what You ask of me, in the way You ask,
for as long as You ask, because You ask it.
This prayer can be found in one of my favorite, go-to prayer books, Handbook of Prayers by Fr. Jim Socias (with whom I once had the most wonderful confession of my life). It is an excerpt from the "Universal Prayer" composed by Pope Clement XI, and we have adopted it it as our "family prayer" that we pray always after holy Mass together.
When Charlie first introduced me to this prayer, I resisted. Trusting in God's will has never been my strong suit (but, something I'm slowly growing in, thanks to years of prayer, good formation, and excellent spiritual reading). I was afraid of what would happen if I joined him in asking God to show us His will in all things, and if I asked Him for the grace to not only accept, but embrace it. With joy.
Though I at first resisted, these several years later, I am finding respite in this prayer, and comfort.
Life hasn't been all sunshine and rainbows over the last several months.
In fact, I am currently blogging from bed, where I have been for the last several days after some horrible back injury I don't recall occurring that has got me shuffling around like a little old lady. This little thing is like adding insult to injury while all sorts of life is falling apart. On the upside, I have had plenty of time to watch reruns of Downton Abbey and snuggle with my little ones. Not to mention breakfast in bed!
I'm not really ready to air all the dirty laundry and talk about the craziness that has been our life over the last several months, but if I've learned anything in the last 10 or so years I've been reading and writing blogs, blogging isn't just to put on a show of perfection, nor is it to constantly lament the hard times. But in my "about me" over on the side bar, I state that part of the reason I am here is to share thoughts on Catholic family life. The reality is that part of Catholic family life is suffering.
We have suffered well together so far, I think. When challenging times have occurred, we have drawn closer to one another, and closer to those around us who we love. More than anything, God has enveloped us in the Sacraments and blessed us with consolation in prayer. He is good indeed.
I'm trying to keep peace and hope. And pray, as the Universal Prayer goes on to say,
"Teach me to realize that this world is passing, that my true future is the happiness of heaven, that life on earth is short, and the life to come eternal."
*On a side note, the absolute best book I've ever read on this is Searching for and Maintaining Peace, in fact, I'm about to read it again! It totally changed the way I handle hard times.