Charisse Tierney ponders the small actions that, seen by our children, become a way of life fueled by grace.
My 13-year-old daughter keeps her Bible next to her pillow.
I happened to walk in on her as she was Bible journaling one night. She sat cross legged on the floor surrounded by art supplies, dirty socks, and the remnants of a late night snack. Her highlighter was poised to mark the next phrase that inspired her, and I smiled when I realized that I caught a glimpse into her heart.
That was the first of many nights that I found her pondering the words in her Bible when I came in to tell her goodnight, followed by the first of many mornings that I found her Bible next to her pillow when I came in to wake her up.
I so often feel as if I never do enough for my kids. I don’t pray with them enough, I don’t take them to Adoration enough, we don’t live liturgically enough, we don’t pray the Rosary enough … the list could go on and on.
But then I remember that I am not supposed to be enough.
When life gets chaotic and my to-do lists seem endless and getting the family to Mass starts to feel like another piece in the impossible puzzle of our week, I pause and take a breath.
And I ask God, “What is one small thing I can do this week that You will multiply with Your grace?”
Because if He could take a few fish and loaves of bread and feed thousands of people, surely He can multiply any effort I make to raise a faithful family.
If He could make the blind see and the lame walk, surely He can open my family’s eyes and move their feet towards Him if we only take one tiny step.
If He could rise from the dead and bring new life to a fallen world, surely He can penetrate my children’s hearts before my prayer for their salvation even reaches my lips.
I didn’t tell my daughter to start Bible journaling. But I know she sees me reaching for my Bible each day. She sees me bring everyone together for a Morning Offering before we start our school work. She sees me hang up the new liturgical calendar at the beginning of each new Church year. She sees me tell everyone to get out their prayer journals and spend a few minutes in silent reflection. She sees me remind our family that it’s time to find out who’s next on our Jesse Tree. She sees me light the next candle in the Advent wreath when we sit down to dinner.
These are all small actions in and of themselves, but over time they become a way of life that is fueled by grace. A grace that can take something small and expand it exponentially throughout my family.
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Ask God, “What is one small thing I can do this week that You will multiply with Your grace?” #catholicmom
What is one small thing you can do that God can multiply with His grace? Maybe it’s as simple as lighting the candles in your Advent wreath or pointing out the baby Jesus in your nativity. Maybe you can sit for a few moments while the chaos of your home swirls around you and allow your children to see you reading your Bible. Maybe you can finally pray a family Rosary … or one decade … or just one Hail Mary.
Maybe you’ve already done that one small thing today without even noticing it. But your child noticed. And He noticed. And that is all it takes for grace to work wonders.
Copyright 2022 Charisse Tierney
Images: copyright 2022 Charisse Tierney, all rights reserved.
About the Author
Charisse Tierney lives in Wichita, Kansas, with her husband Rob and seven children. Charisse is a stay-at-home mom, musician, NFP teacher, and a Catechesis of the Good Shepherd catechist. She is also a contributing author to The Catholic Mom's Prayer Companion and Family Foundations magazine. Charisse blogs at Paving the Path to Purity and can be found on Facebook.