Are you still praying the Novena with us?
Today's the last day!
I have to tell you how grateful I am again for so many people joining in to pray together and what an absolute privilege it is to pray for your husbands and hear your stories. I have no doubt that the Lord can do amazing things through this and I hope it will bear fruit in your families, if it hasn't already. May our husbands become more and more the men that the Lord calls them to be and may we continually lift them up in prayer and help do our part to bring them to heaven!
Last year I decided that St. Joseph's Day would be a day in our home to honor our own Joseph. So we'll go to Mass and instead of an Italian feast tonight, we'll have steak and potatoes and broccoli and brownies (maybe I'll even go all out and take them out of the baking dish ;) because those are Brian's favorites. I can't help but think that St. Joseph would rather our little family do that than anything else. What a tangible way that I can imitate Mary and teach my children to imitate Jesus both of whom chose to honor the man that God had chosen for them.
I wonder what kind of dad St. Joseph was. How he interacted with Jesus. Traditions tell us that he was silent and honorable and humble. Scripture simply says he was "just" and shows him to be trusting and obedient. But that doesn't tell us much about what day to day life looked like during those hidden years that we know so little about. Did he play with Jesus? Every great dad I know takes time not only to teach but to simply engage with their kids. To play with them! Did St. Joseph do that? I don't know much about ancient Jewish family culture and male cultural norms but right now I'm going to imagine that he did. Because that's what dads do and Joseph was His dad, His first abba.
What would it be like to be playing ball or roughhousing with Jesus? Would Mary have experienced that feeling I know all too well? I have no idea why this is fun and who will end up hurt but I just have to let them do this. It's important even if I don't understand why. This kind of play is so important for children. Time with their dads. It's a wise mother who learns to let it happen and not interfere too much. Jesus shared completely in our humanity, including being placed into a normal family. He was a boy who needed a father to help form Him into the Man He was to become. He knew what it was like to need a father and since St. Joseph was not sinless even if he was a wonderful and holy man, He probably knew what it was like to see that man's faults, too.
And something else to ponder: Just like our own relationships with our fathers, Joseph was the avenue through which Jesus would shape His psychological understanding of father and ultimately of THE Father. Wow. How about that? Is St. Joseph the one who taught Jesus to trust in the Father as "Abba"? Was St. Joseph the one to whom our Lord first used that title?
Huh. I think I'm loving this St. Joseph more and more. And the more I see how Brian loves and interacts with his kids and how every first born son I know is SO much like their father, the more I can appreciate just how important St. Joseph really is. And why it's cool to have a day to honor that.
(I think we need to see a painting of Joseph and Jesus doing this :)
Getting ready for the dive.
Happy St. Joseph's Day!
May he continue to intercede for all of our families and especially for those men for whom we have been praying.
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