Day 16: Already Behind

I am writing the blog post for Day 16 on Day 17. I didn’t even have time to feel guilty about this. After working eight hours yesterday (and going to Mass at lunchtime), I came home, made dinner, reviewed upcoming activities with my husband, took the dogs out, helped one child with an essay, talked to another child on the phone for an hour, cleaned the kitchen and had a solid five minutes to talk to the third child before he went to bed. Blogging? Who has time for that?

The point of this blog is supposed to be about going to Mass every day, and as the old saying for the Cleveland Plain Dealer puts it, “miss a day, miss a lot.” Maybe not for you, but definitely for me.

Each day that I go to church, I learn something new. It could be that I’ve discovered a more accurate way of interpreting a scripture reading, or that I’ve met an interesting person who may be indirectly related to this journey.

Before I completely forget, here’s what happened yesterday:

In the gospel, Jesus has just removed the evil spirit from a man in the synagogue, and now he heads to Peter’s house in Capernaum. Peter’s mother-in-law is sick with a high fever. Jesus heals her.

He stood over her, rebuked the fever, and it left her. She got up immediately and waited on them.

Luke 4:39

Now, the exhausted wife, mother and pet owner in me immediately thinks, “Oh sure, He heals a woman so she can make them a snack.” But today the priest at the cathedral has a different interpretation, and it makes sense.

When someone does something good for us, we want to do something good in return. If a friend loans you money for lunch, you not only pay her back, but you try to offer a little extra kindness. Maybe you simply send her a text with a lot of hearts and exclamation points; maybe you buy her lunch the next day. Whatever the gesture, it’s called gratitude.

Peter’s mother-in-law showed her gratitude by waiting on Jesus and His disciples. This likely was the ultimate way for her to return the favor, and it’s so beautifully typical of a nurturing female. “Thank you for helping me to feel better. You must be starving. I’ll whip up something for you.”

This gets me to thinking about St. Anthony. How many times has this saint helped me find something? And what do I do once I’ve found an object? I shout a quick thank you into the air and get on with my day. Could I show more gratitude? Of course. But how to do that? That’s something I’ll be contemplating as I promise to stay on track with my posts.

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