Friday, May 6

for my next trick, i will open my heart even more.

i have written in the past about my parents' wonderful prayer group that they have weekly in their home (see here and here). they have been hosting these meetings for the past 24 years, nearly the totality of my existence. it is such a sacrifice of love on their part. i know they benefit tremendously from it, but i know too that it is countless hours of work and preparation. i can only pray that i too will be so hospitable, so open to the lord's call to service and ministry.

last night, i was at prayer group. of late, it's been challenging for me to be there, i don't exactly know why. i have my suspicions, but i haven't been able to pinpoint the exact reason i've not felt 100% engaged.

last night, the message resounded deep in my heart, and surprisingly stirred up feelings of frustration and anger towards the lord. it was unexpected and unpleasant, and afterwards, i went home and cried on my husband's shoulder for half an hour.

the message itself was not cause for agony. in fact the message was poignant and beautiful. the lord whispered to my heart, and i proclaimed the message to all, saying,

do not be afraid to come empty. 
do not be afraid to come weak, ashamed, or guilty. 
do not be afraid to come with nothing to offer me. 
your "yes" is all I ever wanted. 

i felt called to expand a bit on the message from the lord with some of my own meditations. it is incredible to think that the lord in his infinite majesty chose to create the loveliness of the universe, the expanse of the skies and the oceans, and then in his wisdom, he created man and gave him free will. he created us with the capacity to say yes or no to him. when we say no, it causes the lord intense suffering, because all that he has done has been out of greatest love for us. but when we say yes freely, it gives the greatest glory and joy to the lord. it is a moment of incredible victory over satan, every time we say yes to God. because sometimes, it's just hard. but we make that choice anyways.

this is where the message got really difficult for me to hear and process.

in my weakness, i sometimes get really angry with God.

i find myself surrounded with beautiful women who are enjoying their pregnancies, and in my weak moments, i find myself frustrated with the lord, that he chose me to lose mine. that he allowed me to suffer this loss.

i get angry with him. after all, i've been a good and faithful servant. i have loved him well. why then did i have to suffer, lord?

and then i remember Jesus carrying his cross to calvary. i remember how he embraced his cross of ultimate suffering. i echo the sentiment of st. teresa of avila: "lord, if this is how you treat your friends, it's no wonder you have so few."

and i realize why the lord chose me. it's because he trusted that i would continue to give him glory in the midst of this pain. he trusted me, that i would not allow satan to have victory and bring me to despair. he believed in me, that i would continue to testify to his great goodness and mercy.

sometimes, i wish he didn't trust me so much. but he was right.

every day, it is a choice i must make - to embrace this cross the lord has allowed me to carry. it is the choice to rejoice with my friends in their pregnancies. it is the choice to proclaim blessed be the name of the lord when everything in me feels the opposite. it is the choice to speak of the lord's tremendous love and mercy, when i feel so empty inside.

but i know it is his love and mercy that carries me. i trust that his strength sustains me, even though i feel nothing. he is the ground beneath my feet. he is the peace that steadies my heart. he is the rock i cling to in the storm. he is the quiet that comes after the tears.

he is the new dawn after the dark night. he is love.

and so, my lord, i come empty. i come weak. i come with nothing.

i say yes, because i know there's nothing else i can say that will bring peace.
i come, because there's nowhere else i can turn for grace and strength.

i don't understand. but i trust, i embrace, i believe.

fill my emptiness.


  1. Dearest cousin, I am looking at your blog and your vulnerability touches me. I just had surgery on my ovary so that Zach and I can get pregnant (Lord willing!), but this healing process is painful. As I read what you wrote, a favorite book of mine came to mind-Life of the Beloved by Henri Nouwen. It's about being the Beloved of God and how God chooses us, blesses us, breaks us, and gives us, just like Jesus was on the cross and just like the Eucharist every week. It really got me to see that there is such beauty in the brokenness--we can only be given once we've been broken. I love you and Zachary and I will be praying for you.

  2. Dear Gabi, although I didn't have the same experience, I did ask many of the same questions, had the same anger. I was very angry with God and very angry with other moms who had "big healthy babies" I was also angry because people told me it was a punishment. Children are never a punishment no matter how conceived. As Catholics this is what we preach, but sometimes I think we forget that it applies to everyone, not just "those who don't know better". what i'm trying to say is, what the Lord told you was a Gift. Read and recite it everyday, post it on your cabinets and your mirror. Live in the truth. It is precious and fragile in our world of lies and deception. thank you for sharing.


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