Saturday, January 8, 2011

God's Ways Are Not Our Own

I'm constantly amazed at the depth and beauty of God's plan for my life.

Two weeks ago, my husband signed us up for a family gym membership I initially feared we'd never use. Today, I sent my husband out to swim laps solo for the first time in ten years. My older kids went to "kids club" at the gym. Hannah had a "Sport & Kids" Class with a young woman who recognized our family from Daily Mass.

Baby Tess has her first cold, so I elected to stay home with her. I thought I was dodging my exercise for the day. Yet when all the Benjamins joyfully reentered the house, I felt something drawing me to the gym. "I think I'll go today too!", I said. I changed into my exercise clothes and gently yanked a needy 3 year old from my leg.

I got to the gym just in time to watch early CNN reports on the "death" of Congresswoman Gifford. (We don't have a TV at home, so this is my only brush with the regular news). I unplugged my headphones from the TV console on my treadmill and instantly started praying rosaries for her soul.

Maybe she's not really dead, I thought. I switched to a Divine Mercy Chaplet.

That was my Saturday, a few minutes before the Mercy Hour of 3:00 PM. Closed eyes. The steady thud of my new sneakers on a treadmill. An urgent prayer after prayer going through my head to God's heart.

"Please don't let her die without the Sacraments, Lord. Please don't let her die . . ."

I worry about the gym. It seems pretty "Greek" to me. There's little signs warning against "gazing" at other members. There's a lot of vanity and pride floating around the atmosphere.

Yet for now, I'm hanging out where God placed me. One poor Carmelite, with a large spare tire "baby belly", running on her treadmill and helping out Jesus by praying the news.


  1. That is SO WHY I struggle with making a decision to belong to a gym - "the gazing." I can't stand it! Everbody watches everybody else and it just feels so superficial. I LOVE that you have found spiritual purpose in being there...maybe I can too!

  2. Hi
    i just wanted to say that I love reading your blog but that the posts about the gym are particularly inspiring- not only because if you can do it then I really have no excuses (as a mum of just one!) but also because I'm so excited to hear about how God might use you to be and show his love in that place

  3. I often pray while I exercise! From yoga, to spinning, to running, to lifting, I pray away. I'm getting more comfortable doing it wherever I please as well. So what if I feel the need to Thank God for the healthy body he gave me and that I was able to honor him by using it? There are LOTS of baby bellies at our gym and lots of loving people around. I hope you find that yours is the same way.