I made a plenary indulgence, and now I am more pitiful. Boy, it sure didn’t take me long! The trouble is that, after having achieved a certain state of Grace, the usual dirt has become all the more visible. And apparently, I react badly to that. I detest my sins, but can’t seem to avoid them. I’m not talking anything major. No, much more insidious than that. I become impatient, allow myself to feel overburdened, snap at my children and even my husband. I make the kids cry.
I’ve been told more than once that I will go straight to heaven, simply because of the number of children I have. But each one is another opportunity to fail in a monumental way every day. They are watching me, and in that unique way children have of holding up the mirror, they are reflecting me in their own behavior.
So, I’ve been in a funk and confession hasn’t altogether soothed it, probably because I feel awkward approaching the Confessional too regularly with such mundane disorders. It seems the more I slip, the more I become frustrated, and the worse I behave in reaction to that frustration. There’s the problem, I think. There are too many I’s in that sentence.
I have a much better appreciation for why Pope John Paul II reportedly confessed every week. Obviously, he was no big sinner. But the higher plateaus one reaches, the more one realizes just how far there is to go. It is like hiking a particularly steep section of trail, thinking one must be getting much closer to the peak at this rate, and then breaking the tree line and getting a good glimpse of the whole mountain.
St. Paul said it best in Romans 7,
 For the good which I will, I do not; but the evil which I will not, that I do.  Now if I do that which I will not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
 I find then a law, that when I have a will to do good, evil is present with me.  For I am delighted with the law of God, according to the inward man:  But I see another law in my members, fighting against the law of my mind, and captivating me in the law of sin, that is in my members.  Unhappy man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death?  The grace of God, by Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore, I myself, with the mind serve the law of God; but with the flesh, the law of sin.
I certainly can relate. This flesh suit does wear us down, but thank God for the grace of sacraments, we’d be worse!
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