Sometimes, it’s what we don’t say


I prayed a lot last night over how I would explain the inability of some people to see past the melanin content, or lack thererof, of a person’s skin.  As it happened, the Lord answered my prayer via a note from a good friend, so in the end, I decided to simply continue what we’re already doing.

After the breakfast disheshad been cleared, we began our school day with what Bugaboo has cheerfully termed “our Jesus lessons.”  Together we read the story of Jesus’s teachings about charity, and talked about the need to love and forgive our neighbors as we wish to be loved and forgiven.  It made a big impression on the girls that Christ said that if they are approaching the altar and remember that they have wronged someone, that they are to leave and make peace with that person before they come back.  That’s some heavy stuff for tiny people whose two favorite parts of Mass are the sign of peace and Communion, where the priest or deacon always makes it a point to bless each of them lovingly.

When we’ve finished our morning reading, I  always ask the girls to explain the story to me.  This not only lets me check their comprehension, but also gives me fodder for Bugaboo’s penmanship practice.  Faith formation, spelling and penmanship all wrapped up in one package is a lesson planning win.  This morning, Bugaboo summed up the story we’d read thusly:  “Jesus told the people that God loves them all.  He told them they should love others.  They should love everyone.”  Beanie added her concurring opinion,”We even love mean people.  We can tell them to be nice.  Jesus is nice.  We should be nice, too.”

Since today is also the Feast of the Annuciation, we also spent a good bit of time today talking about the Angel Gabriel’s question to the Virgin Mary, when she gave her great answer to the most important question since that whole mess with the apple.  Later in the day, when we were stuck in the traffic that is typical for our area, I asked the girls to explain it to me again, in an effort to ward off expanding their vocabularies with my opinions of my fellow motorists’ driving skills.  With her typical directness, Bugaboo piped up, “The angel asked Mary to be God’s Mommy.  She said yes, and so God gave her Jesus and because of Jesus, everybody got a chance to go to Heaven and live with Him.”

That sparked an after-dinner craft project for this evening.  I cut out every face I could find in a couple of days’ worth of newspapers and sale ads, paraphrased Bugaboo’s answer at the top and bottom of big sheets of poster paper, handed the girls a couple of glue sticks and let them roll.

Today’s prayer:  Lord, just when I’m about to lose the simple truth of Your Word in a morass of politics and “nuances,” Your blessings remind me that the faith with which You have grace their hearts requires no qualification or equivocation.  You have called each of us by name, and You invite all to Your table, to walk in Your fellowship.   You have made us all free to take Your hand or reject it.  Help us teach Your blessings to hold fast to Your guiding hand always, and to dance joyfully in the love of You and Your law of charity.

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