Friday, October 9, 2009

What It Means to Me: An Introduction to the Rosary, Part V

To round off our series on the rosary, here is a sort of stream of consciousness piece on what the rosary means to me.

Small metal cross in my hand,
cool at the start, and getting warmer as I
dive deeper into You.

Blue beads slip between my fingers,
prayers falling from my lips as I
fall deeper into You.

Curling up to whisper
in my Mother's ear as I
draw closer in to You.

I see Your life like
a movie in my mind
teaching me of You,
teaching me of who I am
and who You know I can be.

And maybe my kids are chatting
in the back of the van,
or I'm bouncing a fussy baby on my hip,
and I think that I have no time
no stamina
no capacity
for prayer,
and then I take the
small metal cross in my hand,
slip the first blue bead between
my fidgety fingers,
holding on to You.

I whisper in my Mother's ear,
I think of You,
I see Your face,
I offer my prayers,
my thoughts,
my time,
and at this time,
that's everything I have to give.
I give it all to you,
one prayer,
one blue bead at a time.

Slowly, my prayers are answered.
Seasons turn and
I see You--Who never change-- anew,
but the prayers, like You, don't change
nor the blue beads in my hand,
and the small metal cross,
binds my mind and heart and will
evermore to You.
Never shifting,
You change me
with the words
and the beads
and the Cross.

Slowly, as the beads slip through my fingers,
as the days slip through to years
and the years slip out of time,
by the quiet whispers in my Mother's ear,
through the movie in my mind,
through the same, familiar prayers
I find
into You.


  1. Beautiful piece, Bethany. I've enjoyed this series. I have to admit, I've considered trying the rosary--I think I want an old tradition to connect me to the saints (the fellowship of believers, not necessarily just those celebrated by Catholics) who have gone before--but I just can't do it. I understand what you say about Mary being a mirror, but I just can't pray to her or offer her praises that I truly believe are for God alone. I just can't give her adoration so she can reflect it to Jesus; I need to give it to Him directly. I don't need or want her to intercede for me; I approach the throne through Jesus and the Holy Spirit. So I can't say the Hail Mary, which means I can't say the rosary. We did recite the Apostles Creed together at church last night, which was very meaningful, especially as I looked around our international church and saw people from a variety of countries and faith traditions, all saying and meaning the same thing ... maybe I'll make it a point to say that, as well as the other prayers of the rosary that I can say with a clear conscience, more frequently.

  2. Deborah- Thank you for your honesty. I just wanted to make a quick point that I can't give mary adoration, either. Adoration and worship are acts that SHOULD be directed only to God, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Praise and honor are something else--something we OFTEN give to human being, like Mary. These, I feel free to offer to her in abundance, not only because God Himself showered them upon her, but because in her complete and total humility and submission to God, I trust that she will always direct them back to the source of goodness: Our Lord.

  3. Beautiful thoughts, Bethany.

    I understand the reservations the first poster shared. I have been praying the rosary for a while and I feel it has added tremendously to my prayer life, but I usually do not pray the last two decades of the Glorious mysteries. I am uncertain about Mary ascending or being crowned queen of heaven. This is not a big deal to me because if Mary has been crowned, she has only went to where we hope we are going to find our crown, but still I am conflicted. I guess being raised protestant makes me overly fearful of placing Mary on too high a pedestal. I just keep praying that God convicts and leads me to worship Him and pray as He wants me to.


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