We're on the cusp of a liturgically packed time of year, especially when it comes to our domestic churches. All Saints' and All Souls' are this week, and Christ the King and Advent are just around the corner. Given that, I thought Mary Reed Newland's reminder to take any hitches to our best-laid plans in stride was particularly timely:
"We planned things that never quite came off. We planned things that fell through. Sometimes the family didn't respond, or the order of the day was disturbed by some unexpected event and we celebrated not a thing, except perhaps by way of a passing thought that today was to have been different—if only it had turned out right. But looking back, some of the most valuable lessons are learned with the failures, because this is a way of life we hope will perfect us in doing God's will, not in having our own. Once St. Gertrude complained to Our Lord that He didn't send her the grace to enjoy one of the greatest feasts as she had hoped to do. He replied that it would have pleased her to enjoy it, but it pleased Him more to have her offer the lack of Joy to Him. So sometimes He teaches us best by letting us get nowhere."
from "The Year and Our Children"