Flail, Frail, Frail! None of those heading words are fun, not one, and they are all so closely untied. Yet, we all experience their presence in our lives. Sometimes we are in the flail camp where we can't pull it together or at least keep it together on a regular basis. Other times, we are dwelling in the frail camp wishing and praying we could be robust and ready for any challenge and then there was the fail camp where we convince ourselves that our worth is subterranean and we are done for. The quantifying of our own lives can be super harsh. We forget how loved we are in our humanity. Jesus has raised our dignity up and taught us how to celebrate even our weaknesses as we seek His strength. We call it redemptive suffering, or suffering well and with purpose. Accepting the growth that comes through suffering-flail, frail or fail-with a correct perspective in mind. Show me someone who is immune to these human calamities. If someone actually comes to mind, chances are you don't really know them and their acute inner struggles.
Our participation in Christ's sacrifice according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
Paragraph 618: The cross is the unique sacrifice of Christ, the "one mediator between God and men." But because in his incarnate divine person he has in some way united himself to every man, "the possibility of being made partners, in a way known to God, in the paschal mystery" is offered to all men. He calls his disciples to "take up [their] cross and follow [him]", for "Christ also suffered for [us], leaving [us] an example so that [we] should follow in his steps." In fact Jesus desired to associate with his redeeming sacrifice those who were to be its first beneficiaries. This is achieved supremely in the case of his mother, who was associated more intimately than any other person in the mystery of his redemptive suffering.
I have admittedly felt like I've spent time in each of those camps lately. I have needed to be pulled up by my bootstraps to get back in the saddle of believing and knowing things are working out for my good according to a plan laid long ago. I have needed to stay ENGAGED fully in life, not letting my guard down, but keeping it all in perspective. Looking at the bigger picture is a singular best way to regain the understanding of what is truly happening within us. I just choose to medicate with the Messiah!
With this current pregnancy drawing to a close in a few short weeks, I have entered a more fragile state where I cannot hold every bull by the horns as I'm used to doing. I have to resign myself to more rest and stagnation than I'd like. In fact, my whole self is abhorrently opposed to being lazy or what feels like lazy and apathetic. It's totally contraindicated for my inner wife, mother and athlete to push pause for any reason! I know the end result of my greater patience and rest will be a healthy and longer gestated baby...which is a win for me!
If you are struggling in any of the frail, flail or fail camps then take a close look at that. Why are you entertaining those feelings? What is contributing to your tailspin? How can you be an overcomer?
7 Steps to try:
1. Look at the big eternal picture. Become secure again in Him.
2. Pray intently for gratitude and a new docility to God's will.
3. Communicate to others that you need them to come alongside you in this moment of trial.
4. Don't suppress these feelings, but express them. Write about them. Draw them out. Talk about them. Pray over them.
5. Seek others who can help encourage your release from what feels all too much like chains.
6. Make sure to medicate with the Messiah and reach deeply into the Word of God for hope.
7. Never, ever give up. Most things are just a phase or a funk. Shake it off and let your animated productive self out again.
Praying for each of you and wishing the best for your growth and consolation. Put your flesh at the service of your spirit to go forth and proclaim the Good News!
Gotta run, I mean rest,