Thursday, March 22, 2012

Thoughtful Thursday: Control is a Mask of Pride

On Thoughtful Thursday I share thoughts on ways I'm working to improve myself as a woman, wife and mother. 

I've never really thought of myself as prideful. I wouldn't have gone so far as to say I was humble, but I felt I was more in the middle. This week though, God has shown me that my effort to control the events in my life is pride.

It's been a hard week so far, friends. It's been busy and I haven't even had my usual respite during nap-time due to babysitting, having my sister over, or skipped naps. I don't do well under these circumstances. I like predictability, routine, and, mainly, having things go my way.

When things don't go my way, I get frustrated. When I'm frustrated, I am impatient with my daughter or husband, and then I feel like a failure as a mother and a wife. I get bent out of shape when things are out of sync or they simply don't go how I had imagined or prefer.

This week I have been gripping my ideals and hopes with clenched fists and it has squeezed all of God's grace from my life. He cannot help me if I am not open. I cannot be gracious when things are hard if He is not in me.

At the start of the week, I went to confession about this control/frustration cycle. My father confessor enlightened me that this is ultimately my pride. It is saying I know better than God how things should be. That the way I think or want things is the most important thing - more important than others, more important than God's plan. Pride is more than being puffed up with one's self. It is simply self-love.

I went into this week newly aware of this illness of my heart. I vowed to be better. But my frustration has only doubled at my inability to let go of control. God is showing me this week how prideful I really am. I am so very aware of this weakness - it is exposed. This is what Lent is for, peeling away our layers - rip by painful rip. I see my weakness. My selfishness. My pride. It is good to realize this, so I can ask God for His mercy and help... His healing. My priest also told me that this is not something we can fix ourselves; we must ask Christ to help up. (That is so true with everything!) Each and every morning, I have to give up my control over myself. I must open up these fists strangling my life. Open them up so He can fill them with strength, joy, and love. And in turn, pour those on others selflessly.

May each day I rise willing to live a life open to God and His plan, and accept with grace, given by Him, whatever happens.

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