… OR TRY TO!
To be honest with you, I can hardly stay focused in life. So much has gone on I haven’t posted in two months… I mean – my brain can hardly keep up. Enter Prayer, Essential oils, change of diet, cutting back on doing… but still – it’s hard to focus these days. Heck, I have been trying to finish this post for days, y’all, THE STRUGGLE IS REAL! ha
Welcome to the CWBN Blog Hop.
On any given Sunday, as you know, it is hard to get to Mass without one or more of the following happening:
- Someone not wanting to go.
- The toddler throwing a fit and getting something all over your only ironed skirt/blouse.
- Family arguments.
- Remembering you meant to go to confession and stressing about it.
- Arguing with one or more people because you are running late.
- Forgetting the envelope and feeling bad for it.
- Insert your own things here… I mean we know there are more.
Add societal issues, bills to pay, major life issues and whatever else you can think of… AND while you know you need Mass, you need the Eucharist, you need the Gospel… life can be a source of chaos, even in the most pious Catholic people and their families.
Then you get to Church, boy child is on time to Altar Serve, front pews have availability, you have the envelope, everything went well that morning, everyone gets settled and you kneel to pray. AHHHHH it’s so nice.
And then one of your people announces they are hungry because they forgot to eat, there are babies crying, someone comes late and needs to sit in your pew, someone forgot to put on their whole outfit and you catch yourself starting to be judgmental, the cantor has on leggings and when she bows, you think – Dear God, I hope she has on undergarments. Or the odd times that you are so exhausted you actually nod off in Mass and do the head-bob, etc. Sigh… Oh yes, all of this has happened (and more). Then you think – Oh no, a bad attitude in the Sanctuary, Jesus is right there and I’m acting like this. That pesky old Satan, he needs to leave me alone. Sound familiar? Sigh.
But we know this — we must stay close to Jesus and His Mother – our Mother. Do you remember when Mother Angelica said this?
Focus on the LIGHT! You are never closer to Jesus than when you receive the Eucharist. Focus and Faith are about discipline (clearly I lack it from time to time).
What Can You Do To Focus…
For me, I look at Our Blessed Mother, the Angels and Saints… and breathe. It’s so beautiful at Saint Patrick Cathedral. I pray for Mary and the Angels to help me focus. I look around at all the Saint Statuary and ask them to help too. I’m serious. They know I need to be there, to listen and to learn. Because no matter how many times I hear the same readings, there is always something to learn. The sense of calm that comes over me when I know the Saints and Angels are right there with me, praying for me…. it really helps me focus.
|Looking up at Mary above the Altar @ St. Patrick Cathedral, Fort Worth|
Put Electronics Down at least 1/2 hour before Mass. You don’t need news, weather, email, FaceBook, etc.. when you are walking into Mass. It’s truly not the right time to be on electronics. You know this.
Read the Readings before Mass. I try to read the Daily Readings before Mass, and I also follow along while especially the Gospel is being read. I have to be honest, there are times we are in Mass and we can’t hear or understand the Priest, so preparing ahead and reading along are great ways to stay focused. We go to Mass to learn and preparation always helps the message sink in better. You remember high school/college right? I mean you didn’t go to class unprepared did you? Don’t go to Mass unprepared either. I use my Magnificat, but there is also an App called the iMissal. My husband uses it.
Wear the Veil. One thing that helps me is wearing a veil. I wear the veil because Mary lead me to wear it, but one of the benefits of it is that you can hide behind it and you can wear it so that you can’t look around you. This truly helps me some days. It has helped me focus on Jesus and the Altar. Here are some in my collection.
|I love them all. Four Veil Companies represented here. ❤|
Get to Mass Early and get settled. This is essential, especially if you have littles. You want to get the bathroom breaks and the who’s sitting by whom’s out of the way.
Sit Towards the Front Near Jesus. First of all JESUSis physically present at Mass. The same Jesus who healed the sick, turned water into wine and died for our sins. You must concentrate because He calls us to be there. And, the Priests, Deacons, Cantors, and Altar Boys can see you, and in our case the Bishop… you pay attention in Mass. I mean – it’s just the truth. You want to be both a good example and a willing participant, which brings me to…
Require Participation. You must participate and you must require your children and spouse to participate too. For some reason it’s very distracting to me if they are not participating
too. Participation breeds focus. You have to look up the pages for the songs. You have to follow along in the Hymnal/Missal. You know what is coming next and you are ready for it.
I will leave you think about this…
Don’t you just love her?
I don’t focus every Mass, but I try…. and when I falter in Mass, I redirect myself quickly. God knows your heart. Do your best. Focus takes Perseverance. Remember the old saying, “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!” That, for infinity…
Thanks for joining us on the CWBN Blog Hop this month. Please check out the other bloggers and leave them some love. We are all so busy right now. And they need it!
Hugs & Blessings,