Yesterday, I felt as though I was carrying the weight of the world on my shoulders. Maybe it was just general exhaustion catching up with me and making me weary.  Maybe the dog’s car chasing antics were the last straw.  Maybe I was just having a bad day.

What was that weight?  Could I put it down?  Why was I carrying it?

We all have weight on our shoulders.  Maybe it’s grief or pain; maybe it’s stress or worry; maybe it’s a project or a deadline.

What I forget, so often, is that I don’t carry my weight alone.  Right beside me, if only I’ll look, is Mary.  She’s trying to reach my hand, but I keep moving it out of her reach.  Jesus is there too, and He’s trying to get that heavy load off of me, but I keep shrugging off His touch.

If only I’ll let them help me.

Do things have to get bad, explode in my face, leave me in tears, before I’ll accept their help?

Reaching out, at last, I feel the relief, the comfort, the embrace.

Here’s hoping today is a lesson in remembering their support and knowing that the weight of the world is theirs to carry.

My column at Today’s Catholic Woman this week
is about Mary’s title Mother of Divine Providence.  Here’s a snippet, and then you can run along and read the rest:

In June, my husband said something that shattered me.

“I think you’re depressed.”  He thought, in fact, that I had been depressed for months.

How could this be?  Surely I wasn’t suffering from something so cliché as depression.  I wasn’t ready to kill myself, after all.  Come ON, I thought, there’s NO WAY.

When I started paying attention, I couldn’t ignore the little signs and symptoms.  I had to listen to the voices… the voice of my husband, the voice of my spiritual director, and the still, small voice.  They were all telling me that something had to change.

The change was eight weeks long, an unpaid sabbatical from my parish work.  The battle I began with became less center-stage, and I wondered, over and over, if my struggle, at the heart of it, was one of trust.

When I ignore that small voice, that call from above, that inner wisdom that isn’t mine, then I make a mistake that ripples to the rest of my life.  Left untended, the ripples turn into waves, and then they affect everyone around me, especially those closest to me.mbo_obraz

On the other side of my sabbatical, I could see the peace I felt as cloaked in something else: trust.  I had to trust in God that in this unplanned leave from work, taking away a needed portion of our income, that the bills would still be paid, the kids would still be fed, the financial side of things would turn out OK.

Trusting God doesn’t always make sense.  In fact, we are often asked to trust Him when it makes the least sense.

Mary is a model for me of trust in God.  At the wedding at Cana, when they ran out of wine, she could have just shrugged.  What did it matter to her, after all?  There was no need to get involved.

To read the rest, visit Today’s Catholic Woman.

Both images in this post are of Mary as Mother (or Our Lady) of Divine Providence.  Aren’t they just great?  I feel comforted just looking at them.