From one day to the next we each have a cross to carry. The one concern of mine that continued to come to my mind was my son. For those that know me, my son is all good things, almost. But moms still desire things for their children that are deeper. And we try to do much to get them to seek the deeper life with Christ. We want them to live for God and follow Him, no matter what. But how far do we carry our motherly role? When do they walk the road themselves? Do any of us?
I wish I had the answer. But answers usually do not come until after you lived through the situation, and since I am in it now, I can only share what I have only reflected. And once again it happens on the Way of the Cross: At the eighth station.
Approaching the eighth station, look at where you have been. With Christ you have tried to pick up your cross and dropped it; you have been misunderstood and wrongly understood; you've fallen yet rose again; you choose to stick by your children and have been encouraged by trusted friends; you have helped carry burdens, added budrens, and your burdens have been lightened by others; you tried to forgive and clean off the weary; you have gotten tripped up again, only to stand up stronger. Then one day you realize that all the while you have been carrying your cross, needing healing, and seeking to do right, your children have been at your side. They have learned from it all, whether they realize it or not. Now together you are face to face with Christ. Placing them before Christ, you beg for His blessing on them...that they will choose to follow Him, not as you do or did, but better, more lovingly, more prayerfully, more trustingly. And then, silent waiting. You watch and wait to see what they do, and what you will do.
Then you realize, this is the station you leave them. If they are to go further, they need to choose Christ's Way on their own. And you? Questions arise: Is this what is meant by "do not be afraid. Just have faith"? But did I do enough? Did I do too much wrong? Did I miss anything? You need to go on and follow your set path marked by Him, if you still choose to. As you prepare your decision, you glance back again, "Did they learn what they needed to?" You now glance forward and see that what you must finish is for them, too. You will always pray for them, always stick by them, always try to comfort and guide them, but life has brought in a crossroad and your longing for Christ leads you on. You never can stop loving them, nor should you. Your role is just changing, as it should. And you repeat to them the blessed priests words of today, "To seek God is life's greatest adventure; To find Him, life's greatest achievement." May each of us live such lives.
Dear God, may I always be a witness to my children to seek and love You above all things. May you guide us so we are open to follow you and find you along the Way together. Spending eternity in union with You. Amen.