Laudetur Iesus Christus!
Nunc et in aeternum! Amen.
Memorial of Saint Camillus de Lellis, priest
I would have posted sooner but the past few days have been absolutely horridly hawt and I have been suffering from the subsequent heat exhaustion. Yesterday was a record-breaker in metro-Detroit with temps hitting about 103°F. It was going to be so hot even in the morning that I didn’t go to Mass. That totally messed my day up. Totally. I would have stroked out on the way home. The humidity alone was blech.
Later in the evening, my parents and I went to the aunt and uncle’s house for an impromptu swim. That felt reeeeeeaaaallllly good. Oh, did I mention that our AC is not working right because out interruptible service is on the fritz (therefore the system is not getting enough juice to run fully) and they won’t be out until Friday to fix it. Yeah, I stayed on the first floor yesterday and I wore shorts and a bathing suit top that I kept putting under an running tap of ice cold water. And I was regularly soaking my head in icy water. My mother thought I was crazy and that I was going to give myself a cardiac event but … I’m still alive. I looked wilted. You know it’s hot when I don’t even bother doing my hair and putting on a bit of makeup (the little I wear would have melted into a Dali painting). I did fix my hair so I didn’t look like a wilted drowned rat. I do have standards, ya kno’.
We’ve been waiting for rain for quite a long time around here. We’re actually in the middle of something of a drought and there are many who are worried about the crops in Michigan (and in other parts of the country) because of the lack of rain. What does survive is going to pale in comparison to the demand so prices will be high this season. That’s not good for anyone: the producer nor the consumer.
Well, it finally came today, though it’s not really that much compared to how much we need to be back up to normal for the month/season, and we’re supposed to get more over the next couple days.
Woke up this morning, looked out the window and saw that the sky was quite overcast and grey. It might just rain today. Hopefully after I get home from Mass.
Well it kinda worked out that way, walked home and when I am about three blocks from home, I finished my Rosary so I listened to some music. As my playlist progresses, it gets darker. Then I hear this in my ears: Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons: Summer” which includes a rather beautifully portrayed thunderstorm. I guess I really love music that has complex parts involving strings.
Oh heck, here’s the video embedded just because it’s so interesting to watch the musicians play the piece in itself. Watching them play the thunderstorm is especially enthralling.
Well, that must have been my cue to get my Catholic derrière moving because when it started I felt the first trickle of rain on my shoulder. I turned around and saw that the sky was getting quite dark behind me and it was moving.
As soon as I got home and punched in the code to the garage door, it started to pour … heavily. Of course my first thought was, “I’ll bet it sounds really pretty in church right now.”
Lord knows we need the rain and I keep reading that more is coming later so I hope it’s also a nice thorough rain. A thunderstorm would probably alleviate some of the humidity. It’s been cooler out today but the humidity is still coiffure-deflating.
Now, onto God’s Post-It notes.
I remember when I was working at the parish, there was an evening one day after Christmas where they needed me to cover the desk. When I arrived, my supervisor told me that I was by myself until the pastor got back from his errands.
So I am sitting at the desk, probably praying my Office and then watching MST3K on YouTube (it was part of the routine) when the phone rings (evenings were usually quiet after Christmas). The caller ID comes up with the pastor’s cell phone.
I ever so diligently answer it, “Yes, Monsignore (sometimes we speak in sentences that blend English and Italian) …”
“Ms. Allie, I will be back soon. I have gone shopping. Wait ’til you see what I got!”
“What? A palette of nifty wireless mice, some 3TB external hard drives, and a bag of M&Ms?”
“Close. Wait ’til I get back.”
“Okay, Monsignore. Ciao.”
Twenty minutes later, I see in the darkness a tall priest traipsing his way up the steps, his arms laden with bags from various stores and a couple boxes.
I ever so considerately open the doors for him and he lays his stuff out.
“Oh, Ms. Allie! Look what I got!”
He then pulls out a pile of different things from packs of pens to legal pads to ink cartridges. He even got a printer which he handed to me and said, “I want you to organize this in such a way that I can easily set it up and install it.” ’twas his non-theological version of busy work for me. His theological busy work usually included canon law or doing research for him and summarizing things for him.
Did I mention I loved my job? I miss the Church work I used to do. I learned sooo much from it.
You would have thought he would have been excited about the new printer since it was the geekiest thing he got.
Nope. He saved the best for last.
“And Ms. Allie, look at these…”
He reaches into the depths of a bag and pulls out a handful of Post-It Notes in different shapes, sizes, and colors.
I chortle at his enthusiasm to which he just looks at me and chuckles.
“Wait, that’s not all of them.”
He then pulls out the rest of them in handfuls. Really nice and usually pretty expensive (for Post-Its) when bought full price.
I was onto him.
I looked at him craftily, “I think I know why you’re so excited about your Post-Its.”
“And why is that, Ms. Allie?”
“Because you got them obscenely on sale!”
“Darn it. You’re right. I got these babies for about ten cents a pop on clearance! These things are usually much more than that!”
“Yes, I know. Leave it to the Jedi Master of Bargain Geek Shopping to find fancy Post-Its at fabulous prices.”
“That’s right, Ms. Allie, remember, every cent counts!”
“Yes, Monsignore, of course.”
I always love recalling that story because I have never seen (nor have I seen since) any person (alter Christus or not) so elated about a bag full of Post-It Notes.
Now onto the actual purpose of mentioning Post-It Notes.
God is one Who loves Post-It Notes. But being the infinite being Who is not limited by time and space, He does not need the actual 3M Post-Its. However, being the Source of all things, He is also the Inspiration of the man who invented Post-Its but of course, He gets no credit. Therefore, Post-Its were His idea first.
He uses them all the time but not in the literal sense.
Case in point, this Sunday, I was talking to some kids after Mass when a parishioner walked up to me and out of nowhere told me how proud she was of me for all that I am doing, how I am remaining faithful to God and the Church, and how openly and lovingly I share my faith. She also told me that she knows that whatever I do for the Church, they will be great things.
I needed to hear that. And it came out of nowhere. It felt kinda nice to be affirmed like that. And I don’t mean it in a “I feel so down on myself that I need others to lift me up” way but most of you probably can identify with being randomly complimented or affirmed, it feels good and it is uplifting.
It was also a reminder (a Post-It Note) to me to stay faithful. It also reminded me of how God uses everyone to do His work. This woman walked up to me and said that something just urged her to tell me those things and that she meant every word of what she said though she did not know exactly from whence they came.
It was the Lord using her as His instrument in reminding me of what I am to do.
I hope that every day I can be one of His instruments in doing His will and helping others.
All right. I have to get ready for dinner. Hopefully the AC will be in order back soon to get this demmed humidity out of the house.
Have a nice evening!