Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Self-Mastery: Humility

My niece just recently celebrated her sixth birthday…

I remember coming home on the very same year she was born…

All these years 'outside the walls' ...
Ah, life!
~fraught with challenges one after another...

but in all these, 
the Lord has been faithful....
constantly guiding and taking care of me.

September passed by so quickly. I took a leave of absence at the peak of our preparation for an international event. 
I was left with no choice but to endorse my work to my brother and other colleagues.

 "You are important but not indispensable," my head nurse from my mission area once told me several years ago when I had a fracture.
How true for most of us, who couldn't wouldn't want to leave work behind because of insecurity...

I realized that sickness, like death, could come to anyone like a “thief in the night.”
 And while we were taught that "prevention is better than cure," most of us would still wait for the last minute hoping that things would get better. 

In my case, it was a bit late ~ my ultrasound showed overgrown ovarian cysts that necessitated immediate operation.
"There is a hiddenness to the wisdom of God that catches fire in hearts and events and places 
and over time ever so gradually consumes the earth in love."

~ Rev. John F. Russell, OCarm, St Therese on Suffering

While others took their illness as a curse, I was counselled by wise friends to embrace mine as a gift. The idea of being 'chosen' was far from my mind. Humility is a virtue I needed to learn everyday. 

It opened my eyes to the minutest things that I should be grateful for. First of all, for that sense of awareness my sickness brought me. I began to see [and listen to] the areas in myself that cried for attention. I started to value myself ~ my body [my reproductive organs], my femininity ~ and others [esp. my family] more.

photo source: Daniel B+
I thanked God for:
... the pain that prompted me to seek medical help;
... the frozen section that confirmed that the cysts were benign;
... successful operation [without complications];
... support of family, colleagues and friends at work;
... my ob-gyne and all those who took care of me while in the hospital;
... friendly visit from a priest 
... Holy Host I received from a nun and a lay minister on those days I wasn't able to go to Mass;
... the power of intercessory prayers [esp. from Twitter and FB friends];
... my Satur-dates who updated themselves of my condition;
and most of all,  the presence of a special friend who saw me through it all especially on the first month when I felt so vulnerable.

I dwelt on TRUST and humility which made itself known through the cross

What a long way to go ~ to completely and sweetly abandon myself to the love of God [through others] ~ who patiently awaits me... 
photo source: Deacon Guy Fortin
... to reach out and touch their hand rather than keep silent, which many times coats "pride."

"The more you open yourself up to being healed, the more you will discover how deep your wounds are." ~ Henri Nouwen, The Inner Voice of Love

And so to be wounded, in embracing sickness as a gift, as a way to humility ~ I open myself up to facing my different fears, to be more compassionate of others, to lose myself in God's love...

Prayer: Psalm 131

Further readings: