A reflection by Mother Maria-Michael Newe, OSB.
I think if in our own lives we can see purpose in suffering and unite ourselves with Christ, it will never be in vain. Nor should it make us become too discouraged. I think in that way we become closer to Christ. When we die we’re going to forget all that and it will be only what we have done for Christ with love that will make any difference. Keep the Passion before you, read it, meditate on it.
It is also important to have a sense of humor in life. Learn to laugh. It is such a great help if we can look at situations and not see them quite so heavy. St. Benedict does talk about the danger of laughter but his anger with laughter is when it tears somebody down, when it becomes ridicule, when we do it in order to make fun of another. The Holy Spirit is enraged by anything like that. Rather, the laughter that lifts, the laughter that causes somebody else to find the likeness in God is what we need. If something funny happens, do laugh. Don’t let it just go by.
Enjoy the gifts God gives during the day. If you see something that lifts your heart, it’s a gift from God. If you see something beautiful, it was made for you for that moment. Take it, give thanks to God, don’t let it pass you by and say, “Oh, He forgot me all day.” Enjoy it – God loves to be found. He loves it if you know His signature.