Molly Sabourin

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"A good snapshot stops a moment from running away."

- Eudora Welty

Life’s Too Short

Posted by on Jul 31, 2014 in Reflections |

girls gone great grudges-1

“Life appears to me too short to be spent in nursing animosity or registering wrongs.” 
― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

 

Love and keeping score go together like…like…nothing! They do not go together! 

It’s a slippery slope to nowhere good, comparing who gives what or invests more in a relationship. 

Sometimes love is carrying your friend, your spouse, your sibling, your neighbor, and other times it means being carried by them. Love is giving of yourself with no caveats or strings attached. Salvific love has nothing to do with “fairness.”

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The Work Before You

Posted by on Jul 30, 2014 in Reflections |

girls gone great - don't waste

“Don’t waste your life in doubts and fears: spend yourself on the work before you, well assured that the right performance of this hour’s duties will be the best preparation for the hours or ages that follow it.”
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nary a one of us can add an hour to our lives by worrying. Give your all, mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually, to your now. There is no need to squander today’s allotted strength on “what ifs”; trust the strength you need for tomorrow will be there for you tomorrow. Today be fully present in the present by working hard, loving generously, and acknowledging continuously the big and small blessings all around you.

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Faithful in the Little Things

Posted by on Jul 29, 2014 in Reflections |

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Saint John Maximovitch on the Little Things

It is hard to pray at night. But try in the morning. If you can’t manage to pray at home than at least as you ride to your place of employment attempt with a clear head the “Our Father” and let the words of this short prayer resound in your heart. And at night commend yourself with complete sincerity into the hands of the Heavenly Father. This indeed is very easy.

And give, give a glass of cold water to everyone who has need of it; give a glass filled to the brim with simple human companionship to everyone that lack it, the very simplest companionship…

O wondrous path of little things, I sing thee a hymn! Surround yourselves, O people, gird up yourselves with little works of good — with a chain of little, simple, easy and good feelings which cost us naught, a chain of bright thoughts, words and deeds. Let us abandon the big and the difficult. That is for them that love it and not for us for whom the Lord in His Mercy, for us who have not yet learned to love the greater, has poured forth the lesser love everywhere, free as water and air.

 

Doesn’t this just make you want to weep with relief?! Throughout my life, especially when I was home with my tiny children, I have agonized over my inability to do great things in the name of Christ. How was I to extract myself from the demands of my daily “mundane” responsibilities that I might get out there all in it and feed the hungry, comfort widows and orphans, travel to poverty stricken nations bearing much needed supplies and medicine? Heck, I could barely cross myself and pray a feeble, “Lord have mercy” before crashing into bed, or refrain from losing my temper about a thousand times a day.

 

…As a matter of fact, the lesser good is more necessary for mankind than the greater. People can get along with their lives without the greater good; without the lesser they can not exist. Mankind perishes not from a lack of the greater good, but from an insufficiency of just this lesser good. The greater good is no more than a roof, erected on the brick walls of the lesser good.

 

And yet here is this incredible reminder that even my little, simple life is rich with opportunities to deepen my faith. I can stuff warmth and kindness into my interactions. I can listen more than I speak. I can work on being productive and patient. I can pray as I go for wisdom and self-control. Spread out before me is my own perfect and God-ordained path toward salvation; every circumstance in which I find myself is an integral part of that path, with eternal ramifications, redeemable by Christ. Running errands, making dinner, folding laundry, data entry for my part-time job – yes, even these tasks are holy. Only I must remain attentive and thankful. Christ is in the present, looking ahead or behind does me no good at all. 

 

Through such lesser, easy work, done with the greatest simplicity, a man is accustomed to the good and begins to serve it with his whole heart, sincerely, and in this way enters into an atmosphere of good, lets down the roots of his life into new soil, the soil of the good. The roots of human life quickly accommodate themselves to this good earth, and soon cannot live without it… Thus is a man saved: from the small comes the great. “Faithful in little things” turns out to be “faithful in the greater.”

 

And thus I begin this brand new day with renewed hope and determination. God, keep me faithful in, and grateful for, the little things that I might experience true joy and contentment, and generously spread that heavenly joy and contentment to others. 

 

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Handle with Care

Posted by on Jul 27, 2014 in Reflections |

Blog gentle hearts

“God rests within gentle hearts. The gentle and merciful shall sit fearless in His regions, and will inherit Heavenly glory.”

—St. John Climacus

“Be gentle,” I instruct my children when they want to snuggle their newborn nephew. And by “gentle” I mean quiet, tender – handle with care.

“Be gentle,” I also advise them when dealing with their peers, teachers, neighbors and each other. 

What good is to come of harshness? Was there a heart ever softened or mind opened by way of accusations or argument? 

With all the violence and hatred being ravaged upon the world, how vitally important it is that we as followers of Christ wholly offer ourselves up in His name as soothing balms for hurting souls. By way of our meekness, and unconditional patience and mercy, we live and breath the Gospel message, which is not that “we are right” but that “God is Love.”

 

“Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.”

– St. Isaac of Syria

 

I am in this world, to get my hands dirty being a light in the darkness, but I am not of it. My hope and worth lie in Christ, and therefore I have access to complete freedom, from pride, insecurity, fear of death, from the compassion stifling hunger for revenge – all the earthly vices that rob us of peace and joy, and hinder our efforts to share Christ’s love with others. 

Where there is anger, help me bring kindness. Where is there is pain, let me be comfort. When I am struck with contempt for my beliefs, may I turn the other the cheek. 

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the choice is always yours

Posted by on Jul 24, 2014 in Reflections |

girls gone great choices

“You rarely have time for everything you want in this life, so you need to make choices. And hopefully your choices can come from a deep sense of who you are. ” 
― Fred Rogers 

 

 

When you choose to stay true to your convictions, more often than not you will also be choosing integrity over popularity. It takes guts to be ok with that, but the reward – peace of soul – is, believe me, so, so worth it!

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Fumbling Forward

Posted by on Jul 23, 2014 in Reflections |

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Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.

- Jean-Jacques Rousseau

 

On Monday I felt like I was sprinting on a treadmill – sweaty, exhausted, but getting nowhere. Every errand I ran became more complicated and time consuming than I’d anticipated, and I was an average of fifteen minutes late for every appointment I had scheduled.

 

At 5:20 pm I finally arrived at the grocery store to pick up something that could constitute a quick and easy dinner before having to get my youngest son fed and to soccer camp by 6:00. Becoming increasingly frazzled, I grabbed who knows what from random shelves and rushed to the check-out counter where I hurriedly emptied the contents of my cart onto the conveyer belt.

 

And that, my friends, is when the register malfunctioned.

 

As I stood there, gazing helplessly at the harried cashier and her manager frantically trying to figure out the problem, my blood began to boil.  I was fuming with frustration, which made my eyes tear up and my pulse quicken. It burned like heck in my gut.

 

LordhavemercyLordhavemercyLordhavemercy…I prayed, to keep from sighing exasperatedly, rolling my eyes, or muttering, “You have got to be kidding me!” under my breath.

 

LordhavemercyLordhavemercyLordhavemercy…I pleaded, when the cashier looked at me apologetically;  I needed divine intervention to smile back.  After all, it wasn’t her fault…these things happen…and in the grand scheme of things, this mattered very, very….very little. 

 

LordhavemercyLordhavemercyLordhavemercy, I continued until I had made it through to the other side of my internal temper tantrum, at which point I thanked God for helping me refrain from saying or doing something that would have discouraged someone else. I was, believe it or not, much later in the evening, actually grateful for that chance to increase my patience. 

 

You see, as challenging as it is to live out my convictions, I do believe with my whole being that these everyday, pesky “thorns in my flesh,” if humbly submitted to, can move mountains in my soul. Each time I hold my tongue when I want to say something negative, or act compassionately when I want to stew and pout, a part of me dies, making more room in my heart for Christ to enter in. And when there is more of Christ than “Me” in me, I am peaceful and courageous and merciful to my neighbor.

 

Salvation, I have to remind myself everyday, is a life-long race to be run (sometimes crawled) with perseverance. Lord willing, I will fall and get up again, fall and get up again, moving (often times fumbling) ever forward until my very last breath on this earth. 

 

 

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