I am not of the Catholic faith, and I do not fully understand the significance of beaded rosaries; however, I noticed a man carrying this simple chain, decorated with black beads, during the March for Life that took place a about two months ago now. This manifestation of faith as the foundation for our fight against injustice truly resonated with me.
In a society where living a life defined by a relationship with God largely contradicts common and seemingly ubiquitous standards, taking up our own cross daily often becomes a daunting task. Yet, as Christ sacrificed His life with the purpose of making way for our salvation, we were commanded to sacrifice ourselves continually for things greater than earthly passions and temporary desires. In marching around Ottawa, whilst pedestrians screamed insults and accusations, I felt an overwhelming conviction that protecting life is something I need to do wholeheartedly, and yet, simultaneously, I experienced an uncharacteristic peace, because I knew without doubt that He was with me.
Later in this celebration of life, and juvenile life in particular, I overheard a man speaking on his phone. To whom he was speaking I am unaware, but I clearly remember his words; in describing the event that was taking place he said “there are crowds marching down the street protesting against abortion. It’s disgusting.” I wanted to approach him and share my love for life with him, but as tears came to my eyes as a result of this harsh remark I decided to simply walk onward. I regret this missed opportunity, and it is my prayer that he will come to realize just how sacred human life is- whether inside of the womb or fully immersed in this world.
If Christ endured the cross to receive the promise of joy, and that cross made way for our salvation, are we the joy He was striving for? Absolutely.
[Hebrews 12:2 - For the joy set before him he endured the cross…]
The world may often be an unfriendly place, but we can deliberately choose to be kind, and those small actions, defined by compassion rather than acrimony, have the potential to engender a lifelong change.
Instead of laughing at the idiosyncrasies and imperfections of others, connect the dots between their freckles, creating doodles on the skin and paint pictures of violet gardens inspired by the somnolent valleys beneath their eyes. Realize that outward scars are more accurately a depiction of a broken heart as well as inner wounds that have gone unhealed. Those who speak little often have thoughts brooding in their minds, but feel too insignificant to say them aloud- listen and love. It may frequently seem like you have no reign over adversity, whether this affliction belongs to you or someone else, but always remember that there is a God in heaven who died at Calvary to offer you freedom and peace. He can calm the storm.