I was so impressed with Leona Choy’s Christmas 2012 letter that I copied the whole thing onto  my blog! The woman, for heaven’s sake, is 87 years old and she bubbles forth words like a fountain and turns out books, one after another, like it’s no big deal. I am in awe of her literary talent and her productivity.   Her Golden Morning Publishing site is newly updated and actually quite cute!  Leona and I were both friends of blogger Barbara Curtis who died recently at the tender age of 64.   How could one not admire Barbara? The mother of 12, including four children with Downs syndrome, hippie turned Catholic, Montessori teacher, blogger par excellence with thousands of daily hits, a force for Christ, teacher, mother, encourager, — one has only to read the reams of comments after her sudden death to realize she was greatly appreciated in this life. And then there’s me. I just plug along, thankful that I can still blog in my 90th year, well aware that I do a mediocre job but hopeful that in the end I will leave something of me behind to help my progeny understand what made grandma tick.

We seem  to be always comparing ourselves with others.  We want to feel valued and feel we would be valued more if we were smarter, prettier, richer, or did things better than others.   A few days ago I posted “NO ARMS, NO LEGS. NOW WHAT?”  about Joni Eareckson Tada and Nick Vujicic  who live extraordinary lives without the use of arms or legs.  Who would read about them and turn to God and ask “Why not me?” Rather my response to their life stories was more along the lines of “Oh, thank you, God, for my arms and my legs and my seven children and my life thus far.” Thank you, thank you for my many blessings, for the many possible bad things that have not happened to me.

St. Therese of Lisieux was called the Little Flower because she was content to be God’s little flower if that was what God wanted her to be.  Some saints are splashy saints – they levitate, work miracles, have visions, etc., etc.  If you compared them with flowers, they would be giant canna lilies or colorful fragrant roses.  Did Therese fret, “Why not me?”  She was her own kind of saint. Whatever God’s plan was for her, so be it.     She imagined herself a ball that God sometimes played with, and sometimes tossed into a corner and seemed to forget about.  Therese would have said, “Whatever.”  God’s plan was OK with her.   A contemplative nun, St. Therese rarely left her convent and died at the age of 24.  Her fellow nuns considered her unremarkable.  Why then is she one of only three women to be named a Doctor of the Church?  She knew who she was,  the beloved daughter of a great God!

Mother Angelica (who, like me, has had her 89th birthday) is also a contemplative nun who during her active life began the Eternal Word Television Network and became famous as a Catholic teacher and leader.   Today she prays and  has not been capable of much more since her stroke in 2001.  It’s a cinch  she is not wasting time murmuring “Why me?   Why is Dorothy Vining still up and about!”  She knows she out-performed me long ago!

I was in my twenties when I first wrestled with the problem of how God  could be omniscient, knowing the end from the beginning, and yet give us free will. I still find that a puzzle but like philosopher Mortimer Adler, who finally became a Catholic in his 90’s, I am content to call it a mystery and let it go.

“In God I Trust,” is a motto that I have lately come to appreciate.

Let God be God.