Thursday, February 16, 2012

Why Does The Cross Surprise Us?

   My hubs and I are reading Archbishop Timothy Dolan’s book “To Whom Shall We Go?
Wow, it’s a really good book. Archbishop, who is actually Cardinal –Elect now, really writes in a way you love reading and can easily understand.  I know I’m prejudiced because he’s from the St. Louis area and so am I, but he just writes in such a conversational way that you really understand what he’s getting at.

   Right now I’m reading the chapter on Embracing the Cross. It couldn’t come at a better time. You know how it seems like even though you are trying to do things right in your life, everything is going wrong?
   Just yesterday I was musing to God, kind of like Tevye in Fiddler On The Roof does. You know, complaining to God, asking why everything has to keep going wrong all the time, why can’t I get a break. Then I sit down to read some of Archbishop Dolan’s book and begin the Cross chapter.

   That darn golden two-by-four as my hubs calls it, hit me in the head when I read this: “Our Lord could not be more forthright in telling us that the Cross has to be part of discipleship. Why are we so surprised then, when it comes?”
   Ouch, he was right. Why am I so surprised when my cross really gets heavy or seems to increase into several crosses. I read further;

Jesus told us it would come. As a matter of fact, when the Cross comes into your life, I propose that it means you’re doing something right. You’re on the right track. You’re actually following our Lord, because He told us the Cross would come.”
   Now I am picking myself up off the floor because I had just been crabbing at God about how He treats His friends and I thought I was a friend. Here Archbishop is telling me, duh, why do you think you HAVE this cross?  Because you ARE friends. “ All of our complaints, our distresses are just different words for the Cross.” Then, lest we think, “Well, it would just be easier if I didn’t follow Christ, if I just kind of forgot I knew about the Church and the sacraments, “ he goes on to say,

                The Cross comes to everybody, whether they are disciples of Christ or not. Everyone experiences the Cross in the simple, ordinary adversities of life.
   So, I guess I had better stay friends with Jesus because at least I know he listens and give me comfort through the words of scripture and the sacraments. I always feel better when I’ve gone to confession and confessed being grumpy with the Lord about my cross!

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