Wednesday, August 22, 2012

I can't. You can. And you promised.

Recently, I read about a talk that Monsignor Richard Lopez gave to an incoming freshman class at St. Pius X high school. One of the students was my dear friend Melanie's daughter and Msgr. Lopez encouraged the new high schoolers to learn this very important prayer.
"I cant. You can. And you promised."

First, a little background on Msgr. Lopez. He is to the Catholic community in Atlanta who Chipper Jones is to the Braves. Well, minus the 50 trips to the dl. You just can't imagine one the without the other. Anyway, he is a genius with a homily;  funny, fast and fiercely convicting. The perfect combo. Plus he has more than 30 years as a high school teacher and knows you've got about 2 minutes to get any point across. So a 7 word prayer is so him. And it's so me, especially in this current season of life.

I've thought about it a lot lately, as I try to navigate a very busy, very uncertain time. Oh, and while I also try to teach my child to "listen and obey." Holy toddlerdom.

So I read Msgr. Lopez's prayer the other night and came up with my list of can'ts. Not surprisingly, it's lengthy. For your viewing pleasure.
  • I can't plan the day or hour of this baby's birth.
  • I can't translate every roundhouse kick to the rib or lower abdominal pain to decipher "contraction or not."
  • I can't worry any more about a baby delivered by Ross (will spare the menfolk details about dilation, etc but my body is about d.o.n.e. housing this kid)
  • I can't, on my own, keep this babe from a NICU stay.
  • I can't make the painters in our house work any faster (though I've considered feigning contractions just to see)
  • I can't make my toddler 'listen and obey' every time.
  • I can't "look" like a good mother in public. Ever, apparently.
  • I can't prevent a middle of the night labor, even if that means inconveniencing the heck out of a crazy super sweet friend, taking her up on her offer to come over in the middle of the night.
You (He) can. As I take the deepest breath writing this, I realize the truth in that statement. HE can. Peace out worry and trouble (for the next 2 minutes, anyway). I may not have this, but HE most certainly does. HE knows the second of this baby's birth. He knows the amount of seconds babe may spend in the NICU and knows the plan for this kid's life. He even cares about the paint job in our home that may (PLLLLLEASE) help us sell it. HE hears my prayers to know for certain if I'm in labor and has a plan for its birth that I'm pretty sure doesn't end up with Ross being an OB for halloween. He can mold my daughter's heart into a kind, obedient one with occasional use of an unprompted please and thank you. He just might even be able to remind her to say 'yes ma'am and no 'ma'am.' He can continue to humble me as I parent MK, to convict me of my own minutely disobedience and to show mercy to me, as a child and a parent. And He can even take care of all the details should we end up in the hospital at 2am. HE CAN.

And yes, He promised.

"For men this is impossible, but for God all things are possible." Mt 19:26
"You stretch out your Hand and save me." Ps 138.7
"He has come to the help of his servant Israel for he has remember his promise of mercy." Lk 1:54
"Nothing will be impossible for you." Mt 17:20
"the Lamb Himself will be their shepherd and will lead them to the springs of living waters." Rev 7:17
"Be of good courage. He shall strengthen your hear, All you who hope in the Lord." Ps 31:24.

So today, we're uttering simple prayers. Most of thanksgiving, some with a pleading heart, all with the assurance that someone hears each of them.

And as today marks the most momentous 36 week milestone, a thank you for all of you who have prayed us to this point. 10 weeks ago we were begging for this day. We're here and if I didn't think the baby would fall right out of me, I'd jump for joy!!

totally unrelated. just her newest must have in the car. Someone's heard "rumors" about mom's driving!


  1. PS - I'm not crazy. At least not that you can actually prove.
    Prayers for baby and mommy and non-OB daddy, and obedient sister!

    1. You need to be praying that this kid comes during daylight hours!

  2. Love this. Great reminder. You and that baby are going to be great...even if Ross does have to deliver. :)

    1. Thanks so much Rachel! Hope y'all are great!

  3. you are such a doll!! you inspire me and make me want to be such a better person!! thankful to God for bringing you into my life! xoxooxxo melanie

  4. ps. i had to put anonymous bc i had absolutely no idea what any of that other stuff meant. do i have a URL???? seriously, how sad is that?? :)))