It is spring and our kids schedules seem to be in overdrive. I can’t even think more than 7 days into our calendar without feeling anxiety, so for better or worse, I am just going day to day to day and moment to moment.
Even within all this busy Jesus has been calling me. Passing our church after dropping a couple of sons off at track practice, I feel it, a little nudge that could so easily be brushed aside. Without thinking too hard I put on the directional and park. I try the little side door of our church and expect it to be locked, but instead it eases breezily open and I go in and sit with him.
Our tabernacle is in a little room/chapel off the side of the main church. The front of the tabernacle has a design of loaves of bread in a basket with two fishes set in relief and it has a keyed lock where the door opens to place the Eucharist in. There is a wooden kneeler placed in front of the tabernacle for people to kneel at and pray, that’s my spot.
I’m not sure how it got past me, but as a child and young adult I really never understood that Catholics actually and truly believed that Jesus was made present in that little wafer of flat bread (passover bread) when it is consecrated during the Mass. It wasn’t till son number one was making his First Communion and I attended an information night that it smacked me in the face. The Director of Religious Education said unwaveringly that the Eucharist was Jesus, no longer just a piece of bread and certainly not just a symbol. I remember feeling taken aback and yes even thought she was a bit foolish and naive saying/believing something like that.
That was 7 years ago now… and here I am stopping by for a chat with Jesus in that little wafer…
…AND writing about it.
A couple of times a week 3 year old ~G. gets services (speech, OT, PT) at our elementary school. He’s only there for about 45 minutes, so I usually just take a walk with ~P in his stroller during that time. This week though, I’ve been hearing the call and head down the street to our church instead. I leave the stroller by the door, put 18 month old ~P in a back pack carrier and head in. I kneel and pray/chat/thank and ~P babbles on my back. It’s nice.
Light streams in across the floor in front of the tabernacle through a green window. Today I am watching the light as it brightens and darkens with the ebb and flow of the clouds. It is like a heart beat. I pour out my prayers to my God. I talk to him about the things weighing on my heart and pray for the wellness of people I know who are sick or struggling, for peace in their storms, thanksgiving for blessings, help with my mothering, and on. It’s all very informal, just talking, what comes to mind.
As I stare at the rug and the beautiful light, I see a very clear dark spot. I think at first that maybe there is something on my glasses. Then I realize what it is. It is on the edge of the hand rest of the wooden kneeler. It is a very small spider.
Ha, I think, how funny.
Then Jesus in his very Jesus-ee way makes the connection for me. It’s not just a very small spider, it’s an “Itsy- Bitsy- Spider”.
And cue the song in my head…
The spider goes up the water spout, the rain washes him out, the sun dries up all the rain, and there goes the spider climbing up again. And as I sing the song in my head, I watch this tiny spider in real life HD climb this invisible string right before my eyes, before Jesus. It climbs and climbs, it’s teeny tiny legs, sure and certain. And my God speaks to me in the language of my current life with little ones.
Yes the rain is going to come, and yes it will feel like it has washed you away, but I will always be here to dry you off and give you strength to climb again.
Love to you all from the often sopping wet trenches,