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A Prayer for Spouses and Parents

Posted by on August 18, 2014

Mother Teresa was a big fan of this prayer [Photo © 1986 Túrelio (via Wikimedia-Commons), 1986 / Lizenz: Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.0]

I was recently absorbed in some selfish introspection (“Why do my kids seem to go out of their way to drive me nuts?!”) when my conscience reminded me of a better direction to channel my thoughts. I suddenly recalled a famous prayer that had more personal relevance than I’d considered. Called “Make Me an Instrument of your Peace“, it is often incorrectly attributed to Saint Francis of Assisi. I know not all of my readers are of a religious persuasion, but I think the second half of this prayer has broad application to spouses and parents.

O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

I think the lines I’ve highlighted in bold are pretty universal. Faithful and self-giving marriage and parenthood are summed up nicely in those words. Now, if only they were easy to put into practice…

What do you do to console, understand, love, give to, and pardon your spouse and children? What do you do when you catch yourself selfishly demanding to be consoled, understood, loved, given to, and pardoned in the ways you want, and possibly to the detriment of your family?