I sort of am coming around to the idea that becoming a saint doesn’t happen to include running away from our crosses — in whatever shape or form they are. 😉
But if running away from them is not an option, what’s really left? And how can we really achieve that?
I think it involves asking God for the strength and the grace to accept our crosses, to learn to live with them, to offer them up, and to keep praying. God does not allow something … for nothing.
I really like Sarah Damm’s reflection on her personal cross, and it hits close to home with mine…
Here’s what she had to say:
“As I sat before the Lord in my parish’s Adoration Chapel, I settled into the reality that I was looking at the cross of Hashimoto’s (a disease) in the wrong light. I thought that if I made progress, the cross would go away. But because I wasn’t making progress, I was falling further and further behind.
“I slowly started to realize that I needed to look at my cross differently. Perhaps, God was allowing my suffering for reasons I did not fully understand. And maybe the type of healing I envisioned wasn’t the type of healing God had in mind for me. Rather than looking for the quickest way out, did I need to endure, settle in and pace myself?
Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect; but I press on to make it my own, because Jesus Christ has made me His own …” (Philippians 3:12)
“For so long, I have responded to Hashimoto’s as a victim. Hashimoto’s “did” this to me. I didn’t want to pick up my cross, let alone embrace it. I was not pressing on to make it my own; I was running from it and perhaps flat out rejecting it.
“But Jesus made me His own, when He picked up His cross and carried it all the way to Calvary for me. Now was the time to pick up my own (much smaller) cross, and unite it to His.”
Therefore, I tell you, (Sarah), do not be anxious about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor about your body … (Matthew 6:25)