The Mama Bear of the Johnson Fairy Tale, I am doing my best to follow Jesus and remain madly in love with my Prince, a carpenter of sorts. A Minnesota girl and an Alabama boy, we met as undergraduates at Princeton. Together we are raising our four precious children, G-Bear, E-Bear, Buddy Bear and J-Bear. In my spare time I am a physician in training trying to cultivate a culture of life, a fan of cooking anything fresh and homemade, and a not-so-secret admirer of southern hospitality.
One child is fussing. A diaper needs to be changed. Two children are tussling. The phone is ringing. We're late for school. Backpacks are missing. Shoes need to be tied. A child needs help on the potty. The new lawn needs to be watered. Toys must be picked up. Breakfast is burning. The bills must be mailed. We're out of milk. This is just one moment of many in the day, and it is only 7:45am.
Thank you, Lord, that I am reminded:
"We are surrounded by many events that move us from one place to another. But we asked for the grace to have a fixed heart, like Paul: so as not to complain about the persecution he went in search to another city; he began to preach there; to heal the sick; realizing that that man had enough faith to be healed; then, calm this excited people who wanted to make a sacrifice to him; then, to proclaim that there is only one God, with their own cultural language. One thing after another ... And this can only come from a steady heart".
Is my heart steady today in the Lord? Or do all of these tasks, interruptions, demands discourage my heart and make me want to hide?
"With this example, we can ask ourselves today: What kind of heart do we have? Is it a fickle heart which like a dancer, like a butterfly flits from one to another…always in motion; Is it a heart that is scared by the vicissitudes of life, and is hiding and afraid to give witness to Jesus Christ; is it a brave heart or a heart that has so much fear and is always trying to hide? What does our heart care for? What treasure does our heart custody? Is my heart fixed upon creatures, the problems that we all have ? Is my heart fixed upon everyday gods or is it a heart fixed on the Holy Spirit? "
"Do I let myself get carried away by these things or face these events with a fixed heart, that knows where it is? The only one that gives firmness to our hearts is the Holy Spirit. It would do us good to think that we have this great gift that Jesus left us, the Spirit of fortitude, of counsel, who helps us to move forward in the midst, surrounded by every day trials. We should do this exercise today, ask how our heart is: Firm or not? And if it is firm, where does it dwell? In things or in the Holy Spirit ? It would do us good! " ~Pope Francis, Monday morning homily