“‘The Amen, the faithful and true witness,
the source of God’s creation, says this:
“I know your works;
I know that you are neither cold nor hot.
I wish you were either cold or hot.
So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold,
I will spit you out of my mouth.
For you say, ‘I am rich and affluent and have no need of anything,’
and yet do not realize that you are wretched,
pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.
I advise you to buy from me gold refined by fire so that you may be rich,
and white garments to put on
so that your shameful nakedness may not be exposed,
and buy ointment to smear on your eyes so that you may see.
Those whom I love, I reprove and chastise.
Be earnest, therefore, and repent." - Revelation 14-22
This was part of the first reading for today. Had I read it, perhaps my day would have gone differently. I'm noticing lately that I have to do this sort of "prep" to glean some guidance for my day and even then I miss out on too many opportunities to do the right and proper thing. My DH, because of goodness or sheer will, seems to be more stalwart in his faith when the difficulties come. Let me explain.
#1 was scheduled to serve daily Mass at 8 AM today. Having noticed that it would be in the teens (and less, windchill) at that time, we decided to let the little ones (and me) sleep and he would take her. This turned out to be an excellent plan since Mr. G had a recurring nightmare about losing his bearfriend from 2:17 AM onward.
Having slept in a bit, I wandered downstairs around 8 to start my coffeepot (which I forgot to fill...oops) and I noticed the garage door was open and that both cars were there. I remember thinking, "this is not good" and proceeded to check the backyard and surroundings to make sure the two didn't fall on ice and knock themselves unconscious (I'm worrisome on a good day - with no sleep, I can invent some pretty crazy scenarios).
Making my way to the front of the house I realized the culprit was a car parked across our driveway, making it impossible to get out. This makes me livid. Seriously. If you want to drive me insane just have your friends park us in every night. It would probably only take a week. Added to the normal rage I feel, I then realize that my husband and children (yes, #2 also went) were forced to walk through the cold for half a mile because of this person's decision.
Of course I called the police - mainly because, at that point, the culprit had pushed the remote starter to warm the car properly but still wasn't kind enough to move the car or even identify themselves. Twenty minutes later, the police arrive and the woman as well, now that the car was nice and toasty. "No, I can't give her a ticket, he says...she's leaving". The worst thing I called him was "dude" (which he immediately questioned) and still he was completely unmoved by my plight.
So, lack of sleep notwithstanding, I totally blew it. I was very angry and I didn't handle the situation with any of the compassion and understanding to which we are called. Perhaps she was coming home late from work and didn't notice the driveway. Perhaps she had to visit a sick friend and fell asleep. Perhaps...Thanks to God, my helper arrived right at 8:30 so I was able to rescue the travelers at church before they walked home.
It was then the Holy Spirit saw fit to chastise me as necessary and to reinforce the point...
"Wow, I hand it to you, husband...I'm not sure I would have pressed on"
"Well," said DH, " She didn't want to miss her Mass and he (#2) kept saying 'I want to visit Jesus' this morning, so we went. Turns out the first reading was about not being lukewarm in your faith so it was a good teaching moment."
He amazes me more than just some of the time. What a blessing it is to walk with him through this life - he is so good at forcing me to look at the other person's point-of-view. If he and the kids weren't angry, what right did I have?
Thankfully I have another chance tonight to join with him as we talk about parenting to the families seeking baptism for their children. Pray that I may lose all lukewarmness in my faith (although I'm fairly certain I will be physically freezing at that point). How good it is that we have so many new and different opportunities to provide witness to our faith!
We are blessed.