Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Tara K. E. Brelinsky

3/12/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

In The Evening Come Tears, But With The Dawn Cries Of Joy

Well, as my turn grew closer, I scrambled in my brain to think of what grace I wanted or more properly needed. Patience? Humility? Purity? Charity? Courage! That's what I needed, courage. I needed the courage to stand up before those holy women and deliver my talk without my knees knocking together, without tears blinding my eyes, without choking on the words I'd written. So, when my turn came, I told them who I was, where I came from and announced that courage was my goal.

Highlights

By Tara K. E. Brelinsky

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

3/12/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: joy, courage, retreat, pregnancy, fear, spiritual life, Tara K. E. Brelinsky


ZEBULLON, NC (Catholic Online) - This past weekend I had the privilege of speaking to a group of wonderful women at a retreat. My topic was "Finding Streams of Living Water in the Desert" and I was incredibly humbled by the myriad of ways we saw and felt God's presence throughout our time together.

Shortly after we'd arrived on Friday night, gathered around in a circle, we had the task of asking for a particular grace we hoped to gain from our time away. Each in turn, we introduced ourselves and we shared our heart's desire. Patience was top on the list of many women, but I know better than to pray for that grace, because God has given me AMPLE opportunities to exercise that virtue (starting about five minutes after my eyes open most mornings).

Well, as my turn grew closer, I scrambled in my brain to think of what grace I wanted or more properly needed. Patience? Humility? Purity? Charity? Courage! That's what I needed, courage. I needed the courage to stand up before those holy women and deliver my talk without my knees knocking together, without tears blinding my eyes, without choking on the words I'd written. So, when my turn came, I told them who I was, where I came from and announced that courage was my goal.

At 10:00am the next morning, I stood up before that room of women, ignoring the lump of fear that had whelmed up in my chest, and I spoke. I shared my testimony, my desert story and I did so without a tear (okay one tried to escape early on). Success, you might conclude. Less than twenty-four hours after my arrival, my prayer had been successfully answered.

But than that good God of ours, that all knowing, all loving, all wise Father knows me far better than I even know myself. While I just scrape the surface of my heart, He reads the very depths.

My speaking hour over, I was able to really relax, to fully enter into retreat. I enjoyed listening to the other women, gained lots of inspiration and laughed along the way. I rested my body and soaked in the excitement of so much time among grown-ups. 

My pregnant belly fully exposing my "condition," I got to share news of our expected little one: the due date, the names we're contemplating, the fact that we're not finding out the sex, etc. With a handful of nursing couples (mama and baby) in attendance, I got to cuddle a few tiny bodies and nuzzle a few soft cheeks when a spare pair of arms was needed now and again. Those privileged moments led me to dream about the day when my own sweet-smelling newborn will be suckling at my breast. 

A friend passed on a borrow infant car seat that her daughter has out-grown and we chatted about what other baby supplies might be missing from my mama arsenal. Would I sling or wrap? Would a single or double stroller fit the bill?

The weekend passed too quickly, as does most time spent in the company of friends. 

As the retreat wound down, we circled around again and took an inventory of sorts. This time we were to reflect on whether or not the grace we'd prayed for had been made manifest during our withdrawal from our busy lives. 

Now I stated early on that I'd been graced with the courage to deliver my talk without much faltering or weeping, but as my turn approached that answer seemed too shallow. Rarely at a loss for words, I took a pass and said I still needed time to process.

Listening to each woman share her grace, something began to stir up inside of me like a neat pile of settled leaves gets churned up by a strong wind. 

For the last 18 weeks of this pregnancy, I'd been cautious, calculated in my thoughts, my dreams, my emotions (oh well, except for that overwhelming anxiety). Scarred by previous losses, I was afraid to feel joy, to completely embrace the excitement of planning, to dare to dream about our future. It felt safer to hold back, like it might hurt less if I steeled my heart for the worst.

To give credit to my husband, he'd gently admonished me to savor this pregnancy, to soak in the memories being made each day. Of course, that was easier said than done.

But as each beautiful woman took her turn, the Spirit peeled away my scales. Like a zap from an electrical shock, my grace jolted my mind. Indeed, I had been blessed with courage, but the courage extended far beyond my Saturday morning discourse. God had given me the courage to feel joy, unrestrained, unmeasured joy! He broke through the protective barrier I'd set up around my heart and, with that wall breeched, a flood of pure joy poured in.

Monday's readings spoke directly to me, reaffirmed His Presence, His work in my heart. Psalm 30 instructs: Yahweh, my God, I cried to you for help and you healed me. Make music for Yahweh, all you who are faithful to him, praise his unforgettable holiness. His anger lasts but a moment, his favour through life; In the evening come tears, but with dawn cries of joy. Carefree, I used to think, 'Nothing can ever shake me!' You have turned my mourning into dancing, you have stripped off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy. So my heart will sing to you unceasingly, Yahweh, my God, I shall praise you for ever.

We all spend time camped in the desert, but let's not allow those times of trial to harden our hearts. For the Lord hears our cries, He knows our need and He provides. Keep your hearts soft and take courage, joy is on the way!

-----
Tara K. E. Brelinsky is a home schooling mother of seven living children, with six more heavenly ones who intercede (and a little soul expected to arrive in August). Married to her childhood sweetheart, they make their home in North Carolina where they teach Natural Family Planning, grow a garden, raise two dogs, a cat, a fish, ducks, roosters and a flock of hens (in addition to all those wonderful kids). Tara studied journalism a lifetime ago in college, but now she writes simply for the the glory of God. You can read more of her musings and inspirations on her blog "Blessing In Brelinskyville" (www.http://brelinskyville.blogspot.com/).

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Living Faith

No school days for working children

Image of

By Tony Magliano

It's that time again when adults take off to celebrate Labor Day, and kids head back to the adventures a new school year. But for millions of children worldwide the adventures of a new school year remain but a dream. Sadly, these children will never learn to read or ... continue reading


Catholic lawmakers asked by Pope to rally for pro-life, immigrants and persecuted Christians Watch

Image of The Holy Father was presented with a document by lawmakers outlining their commitment to promoting life in their respective nations, especially in areas of abortion, Christian persecution, and migration.

By Ann Schneible, CNA/EWTN News

On Sunday, Pope Francis urged Catholic legislators to be protectors of human life, calling them to "be strong" against a throwaway culture marked by Christian persecution, and the rejection of the unborn and migrants. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - The pontiff ... continue reading


Will Pope Francis' visit end in disaster? Residents say organizers don't have their act together Watch

Image of Mayor Nutter unveils the 'I'll Be There' campaign to encourage shop owners to stay open during the papal visit.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Philadelphia residents are stressing over the upcoming Papal visit, and for good reason. Preparations for the visit appear ad hoc and are being poorly communicated to the community, according to locals. LOA ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Will Pope Francis' visit to ... continue reading


Bishop Melki, executed after he refused to convert to Islam in 1915 has been beatified Watch

Image of Pope Francis earlier this month confirmed Bishop Melki's beatification saying he was killed in hatred.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Martyred during the Assyrian Genocide in 1915, Bishop Melki is on the road towards sainthood with his beatification this past weekend. Killed in Gazarta during the sayfo, or "putting to the sword" of Syrians in 1915, he was killed after he refused to convert to ... continue reading


For the first time we can see how BEAUTIFUL the 'real' Saint Rose was. Scientists have reconstruct her likeness Watch

Image of According to the news site Peru Catolico, the researchers said the reconstruction shows she was

By CNA/EWTN News

The face of the first saint of the New World may be better known than ever; thanks to a team of scientists, that has analyzed the skull of Saint Rose of Lima. Lima, Peru (CNA/EWTN News) - Scientists from the University of Saint Martin de Porres in Peru and the ... continue reading


Quest for God is modern world's biggest challenge, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI says Watch

Image of The Ratzinger Schuelerkreis will gather Sept. 28-30 to discuss the theme set them by their former professor.

By Andrea Gagliarducci, CNA/EWTN News

Benedict XVI considers the quest for God to be contemporary society's foremost challenge, according to one of the emeritus Pope's former students, who has organized the annual meeting of Ratzinger's students to discuss that very topic. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN ... continue reading


Changing your HEART, not just behavior is a vital part of conversion process, Pope Francis says Watch

Image of

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

In his Sunday Angelus address Pope Francis said that merely obeying the rules isn't enough to make us holy, but that if we truly want to serve God our conversion has to be deeper, changing the heart. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - "It's not exterior things which ... continue reading


Pilgrimage with Pope Francis - THIRD STATION - St. Joachim, patron of fathers

Image of St. Joachim, pray for us!

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Welcome to the third station on our virtual pilgrimage to Philadelphia with Pope Francis ahead of the World Meeting of Families. Let us pray! About St. JoachimBy tradition Joachim and Anne are considered to be the names of the parents of Mary, the Mother of God. After ... continue reading


Priest to lead pilgrims on 104 mile walk to see Pope Francis in Philly - Here's how you too can make a pilgrimage Watch

Image of Pilgrims in Scotland make a Good Friday trek burdened with crosses. Many Catholics around the world still make pilgrimages, even if they are the work of just a day.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An intrepid group of about 20 pilgrims will be making the 104 mile walk from Baltimore to Philadelphia to attend Mass with Pope Francis. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Remember, our Lord walked to all of his appointments," Fr. John J. Lombardi told Catholic ... continue reading


Atheists force portrait of Jesus out of Kansas public school Watch

Image of The portrait of Jesus that has been on display at the school since the 1950s.

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Local residents in Chanute, Kansas expressed anger after the atheist group Freedom From Religion Foundation successfully filed a petition for the removal of a portrait of Jesus Christ, which had been hanging for over 60 years in a Kansas public school.   ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Thessalonians 5:1-6, 9-11
1 About times and dates, brothers, there is no need ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 1st, 2015 Image

St. Giles, Abbot
September 1: St. Giles, Abbot (Patron of Physically Disabled) Feast day - ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter