so i got a letter from mom today- a loose leaf wide ruled piece of paper with a quote from st. rose phillipine duchesne written in my mom's beautiful nun-taught cursive.
"the world was saved by the Cross. those who spread teh gospel preached only the cross. and solid virtues flourish only in its shadow. the necessity of carrying the cross and of living as a follower of Jesus Christ in toil and tears prevents the return of so many brothers who have wandered from the truth. we do not want a religion that is sad, they say, or one that requires suffering; we want pleasures. they want paradise without paying the price of suffering, but can they give lie to the gospel?"
or deny humanity? the mere fact is- life is hard. i will never understand the christian's who believe in "prosperity gospel"- the message that if you are a true follower, then God will bless you abundantly with good things and riches and nothing but ease. and should you, for example, fall ill with cancer that would show the world that you were not a true follower- that God had turned his back on you.
the whole things seems SO UTTERLY illogical. suffering is humanity. God's only son wasn't spared suffering. as a matter of fact He was given a huge piece of suffering pie- a bigger piece than most everyone i know- AND, He didn't even deserve it!
so skating through life- expecting no suffering- expecting God to come swooping down to smooth the way isn't a very christian belief. it's definitely not the message Christ preached.
i still sit in awe at the paradoxical lessons God is always teaching. it's odd that i find comfort when the cross is preached. such a prickly, uncomfortable, burdensome, unattractive message. but it's so comforting- we are ALL in this together. together with Christ.