At first, it was sort of fun, in the way all new adventures are.
And then reality set in.
I have to pray this EVERY DAY?!?!?
Let me shatter any illusions you may have of me as a poster child for piety. I battle myself as much as the next gal, and though I try to blame any number of things for my difficulties, I think it comes down to a general resistance to what’s good for me.
Because, at the heart of it, the rosary is good for me.
It’s hard. Not only is it a mammoth of a prayer (there is no such thing as "only 20 minutes" in my life), but it’s asking me to be coordinated.
If I’m anything, it’s a klutz. My friends and family members know better than to put me at the cutting board in the kitchen -- I don’t care how good your knives are, I’ll find a way to sever a finger.
How, exactly, am I supposed to keep track of which Hail Mary I’m on while holding a string of beads while saying a prayer while meditating on the mystery? I mean, I can barely tie my kids’ shoes!
But, in early February, after the novelty of this new personal prayer mandate wore off, when I realized in my slow way that my excuses were just that, I also saw, with something like clarity, that here was a challenge I could embrace.
For someone who loves puzzles and difficult reading, isn’t the rosary just the prayer equivalent of the ultimate in devotions?
Well, yes, it is.
But it’s also more than that. In the rosary, I’m reaching out and reaching up, and Mary is leaning down to grab my hand. I think I must feel her grip in the ability I have, some days, to deal with whiny people and the impossible juggling act I set myself up for.
Though I am imperfect in my praying, there’s a lesson in accepting the strides I can make, in trusting God to lead me where He wills, in loving Mary enough to listen to her request to pray the rosary.
Life isn’t about being perfect in my eyes, and I need a reminder as often as I can get one.
In my daily rosary, I get that reminder, and so much more.
Maybe you struggle with the rosary too. Maybe you feel a pull to it, but find that pull an impossible contradiction. Maybe you just can’t find the time.
Let me offer you my encouragement and my Mother’s hand. Take hold of that hand and close your eyes. Do as much as you can, and open your eyes to see her Son smiling at you.
Copyright 2009 Sarah Reinhard
About the Author
When she’s not chasing kids, chugging coffee, or juggling work, Sarah Reinhard’s usually trying to stay up read just one…more…chapter. She writes and works in the midst of rural farm life with little ones underfoot. She is part of the team for the award-winning Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion, as well as the author of a number of books. You can join her for a weekday take on Catholic life by subscribing to Three Shots and follow her writing at Snoring Scholar.