Seeking God’s Help In Little Things

The Little PrinceThis past Sunday was one of those beautifully peaceful days at church. This came as an unexpected surprise for me because starting Saturday night I really didn’t want to go. A feeling I have most Sundays during pregnancy. This is because I am always tired and not feeling that great, especially in the mornings. So, the last thing I want to do is get ready, get the little ones ready, and then wait and see what kind of behavior the little ones will have during Divine Liturgy. When not pregnant, I handle those things well enough, but when I am pregnant and feel so lousy, I just don’t have the strength for it all. Sundays are a real struggle for me, but  I get up and go anyway.

The lack of desire to go to Divine Liturgy this past Sunday began with the day before. Saturday was a really rough day for me on many levels. At this point of pregnancy (I am 27 weeks along) I am feeling constantly worn out, my mind is not clear and I have to battle getting depressed some days, I am always making some kind of mistake, and the energy it takes at times to hold normal conversations is rough. I keep saying the wrong things and forgetting everything. My children have been looking at me like I have lost my mind, and in part they are right! All my resources must be going to making the baby grow.

By Saturday night I was really frustrated by what is just normal life for me right now (and will be for several more months). Right before going to bed, I prayed deeply and sincerely, asking God to help me deal with all of this. I told Him I know this is just what pregnancy is like, but I have many things to do and get through in a day, I need some relief every now and then to at least feel good emotionally, physically, and mentally, even if just for a little while. I said I know this is the cross I have to bare right now, please help me to carry it.

Morning came, and I was late to getting out of bed but I did, and we got ready and made it to Liturgy. Being the mom I know so much depends on me. If I didn’t go it would be unfair to send the whole crew. Manny was going to be singing in the choir and Scarlett and Lena would’ve had their hands full with the little boys. If I kept the little boys home, I knew I would be keeping them from Liturgy and communion and I didn’t want to do that without being absolutely unable to go to church.

Once at church I was surprised at how well I was feeling. The prayers were exceptionally beautiful to me and sank into my heart and brought me peace and joy. The little boys even behaved fairly well—all in all it was simply a good morning. Lunch followed and I was able to help with the monk’s pizza sale. I wasn’t low on energy and had several good conversations with people throughout the day. The day was a good one.

I often (and foolishly) forget to tell God I need help with simple everyday things. I pray for help with the bigger things in life, but normal little things not so much. Plenty of days I think I must bear the smaller burdens alone. I have a great family and they always help out (especially when I am pregnant) but with some things they can only help so much. Things like my absent mindedness, the exhaustion, and the swarms of negative thoughts that bombard me some days. All of these together, along with normal life really wear me down. But God absolutely can help me with those things. He can be my strength; He can help lighten my cross for awhile. But I have to ask Him for help.

I’m reminded of this description of our relationship with God from Metropolitan Anthony Bloom:

“Have another look at the passage in The Little Prince by Antoine de-Saint-Exupery where the fox describes how the little prince should learn to tame him—he must be very patient, sit a little way off and look at him out of the corner of his eye and say nothing, for words cause misunderstandings. And every day he will sit a little closer and they will become friends. Put “God” in the place of the fox and you will see loving, chaste shyness, a diffidence which offers but does not prostitute itself: God does not accept a glib, smooth relationship, nor does he impose his presence—he offers it, but it can only be received on the same terms, those of a humble, loving heart, when two timidly, shyly seeking people reach to each other because of a deep mutual respect and because both recognize the holiness and the extraordinary beauty of reciprocal love.”

This description has stayed with me ever since I first read it several years ago. The thought of God being shy and patiently waiting, and not just patiently waiting, but waiting for the right invitation from me, is what strikes me so much. He doesn’t want a “glib, smooth relationship” but a sincere, humble, and mutually respectful one. God doesn’t pursue us relentlessly (He has too much respect for us to do that), but sits like the little fox waiting for us to truly want to love Him and receive His love in return.

Every pregnancy I learn something new. This one I am learning to seek God out to ask humbly for His help and love even in all the small everyday normal circumstances of life that are made hard and magnified in pregnancy for me. Things I think are too insignificant to bother God with. So silly of me, I realize now. And I think this is what He wants me to learn. He will not overstep His boundaries, He will not go where He isn’t asked, and He respects my free-will. But if I choose to, I can depend, trust and lean on Him, even in the small things, just like a child does with their mother. I am helpless some days in things I would normally be able to handle. At those times I need to remember to ask for strength, to ask God to help me carry my cross; and have the faith of a child that He will.

 

 

 

4 Comments

  1. Thank you for this post. I am 38 weeks into my fourth pregnancy, and reading your words helped me to recognize that I need to give God the little things. Thank you for sharing! God bless!!

  2. God showed his grace to me through your post. Thank you!

  3. This post touched me deeply. It uplifts me to know your incredible family is ‘out there’ livin each day by the lights that God gives you and truly living the notion of conversion. The monastic life, all true spritual life is beginning anew each day; your conversion. Loved the Prince analogy!

  4. Thanks to each of you for reading and encouraging us with your kind comments! God bless 🙂

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