Every year, every month, sometimes every day, we encounter setbacks and frustrations. Some of these are temporary, such as waking up late and having to rush through traffic to get to work. Some of them last a little longer, like having to wait in a doctor’s office for two hours. And some of these can last even longer…
…like me breaking my foot and having to wear a walking boot. Again. For the second time in six months. For at least 6 weeks. Again.
When I first broke my foot over the summer, I was working towards running a half-marathon, for the first time ever. I was about half-way through my training and I was definitely bummed I couldn’t run for awhile. But I figured, no big deal. Just a minor setback. Being an athlete for years, I am no stranger to injuries. So a few months later I was back at running, taking it slowly, and then my foot started to hurt again a few weeks ago.
But this time when it happened a couple of weeks ago, I didn’t feel like it’s was just a minor setback. I was much more frustrated. I had been taking care of my body as God would want me to: eating well, working out, etc. I hadn’t pushed myself to get back into running shape.
Most people would say, it’s no big deal, right? It’s just running. And that’s true, it is just running. But think about things in your life that you have plans for and setbacks in, both major and minor: seeing a movie, graduating from college, waking up on time, getting a job, visiting your elderly grandparents, marriage, taking a vacation, getting a car, watching a San Antonio Spurs basketball game… the list could go on and on.
And so I’m facing yet another setback in my running plans and dealing with the frustrations of not being able to do what I want to do.
What I want. Ha!
My running example is just a metaphor for the things we strive for in our lives. It’s a reminder, that even though we have plans, God sometimes gives us setbacks because our plans are not really His plans. What are setbacks and frustrations to us are merely ways that God lets us know that right now is not the right time. It’s God’s way of saying, “Slow down, wait and have faith and trust in me.” It’s God’s reminder that times which initially seem to be setbacks or frustrations, can actually be moments of grace-filled faith and trust in God.
Yes, grace-filled faith and trust in God can happen even with setbacks and frustrations, but only if you’re open to it. I can readily admit that there are times in my life (like recently when I was diagnosed again with a broken foot) when I pause, glance up to Heaven and say, “Really God!?!?” and struggle to trust and have faith in God’s plans and love for me.
And if having faith and trust in God and his plans for you is something you’ve struggled with at times too, this coming Sunday is a wonderful day to begin working on your struggle (or even begin working on it before!). This coming Sunday is known as Divine Mercy Sunday and serves as a reminder for us of the faith and trust we can and should have in God, the love God has for us and is a reminder of the mercy (the compassion and kindness) we receive from God.
One way to enter into this trust and faith in God is through a popular devotion related to Divine Mercy Sunday known as the Divine Mercy Chaplet. The Divine Mercy Chaplet given to us Catholics because Jesus recognized that we have many problems and needs which he wants to help us with and remind of us his love for us. I’ll admit, I’ve been finding myself praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet at lot more lately, as my need to turn to God for help with dealing with setbacks and frustrations has increased (thanks broken foot!). But if my broken foot, which has led me to praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet at lot more, is allowing me more grace-filled moments of faith and trust in God, well, there can’t be too much wrong with that, right?
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About Divine Mercy and the Divine Mercy Chaplet
To learn more visit The Divine Mercy, visit The Divine Mercy website.
Divine Mercy Chaplet and Image- Jesus gave Saint Sr. Faustina the Chaplet of Divine Mercy prayer and the image of the Divine Mercy Jesus. The prayer is said on a normal rosary and only takes eight to ten minutes to recite. It is a beautiful and simple prayer to pray, and an excellent way to focus your faith and trust in Jesus in a simple but profound way. Here’s a simple, one page printout of how to say the Divine Mercy Chaplet