Probably many of you by now have experienced first hand that we are in the thick of cold and flu season. I got sick two weeks ago and am still struggling to get over it. It has caused me to think again about the subject of suffering. When I am sick, it is very difficult to spend much time in prayer but I find that if I at least make a small effort to join my sufferings to Christ, I am almost effortlessly drawn closer to him and come to a place where I am able to receive greater revelation than before. In that sense, it seems to be the fastest and easiest way to grow in my relationship with him. It seems to accomplish more than many hours spent in prayer when not sick. That does not mean I enjoy being sick but it does bring me joy when the sickness is redeemed through the Cross and Satan doesn't get the last word! St. John Paul II said that we shouldn't let any small suffering go to waste!
Speaking of redemption, I went back and read part of Genesis recently and the Gospel of Luke. I had a neat revelation through it!
In Genesis 3:17, God says to Adam, "Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree about which I commanded you, 'You shall not eat of it,' cursed is the ground because of you; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life..."
Luke 1:39 talks about Mary visiting Elizabeth and when Elizabeth heard the voice of Mary, John the Baptist leaped in Elizabeth's womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.
So, it would seem through this that another thing that was redeemed by Mary's Fiat, her yes and the incarnation of Jesus is the voice of women! How cool is that!
Oh, and has anyone else wondered why in Genesis, after "the fall" it says that the pains of childbirth will be greatly increased? I have a theory...could it be because after "the fall" we lost our ability to trust and surrender? In real, natural childbirth, the pain is greater when the woman tenses up instead of just going with and surrendering to it. In the same way, I think painful emotional, spiritual and physical events in life are more painful when we resist or try to deal with them on our own. From my own experience, painful events have become moments of great joy when I was finally able to join them to the cross of Christ. There is nothing that Jesus can not redeem!!!