Unconventional Ways to Honor Our Mother
In this month of Mary, there will be a lot of daily rosaries and flower crowning ceremonies—both of which are absolutely wonderful and beautiful. Let’s take it a step further and bring that devotion to our heavenly mother out into our very mundane, daily routines.
Do extra house work
I’ve always loved doing housework. It makes my home smell fresh and my spirit feel accomplished. But I’ve been told I’m in the great minority . . . for most people, housework is a necessary, non-voluntary task.
St. Teresa of Calcutta said, “Wash the plate not because it is dirty nor because you are told to wash it, but because you love the person who will use it next.” Keep that in mind this month. Go out of your way to change the sheets an extra time, take out the trash instead of walking by it, or cleaning out closets and making a donation pile.
Whatever you do, pray in gratitude for what you have. If you’re feeling like it’s not worth it, remember that it was part of what God asked of Mary. Offer up your housework to she who was divinely charged to create a safe, warm home for our Savior, keep his belly full and his clothes laundered.
Pray at the Pump
One of my favorite ways to offer up some extra prayers and ask Mary’s intercession is while I’m pumping gas. It’s lost time otherwise! You’re not watching anything, listening to anything, or engaging with anyone.
Honestly, in the busy back-and-forth of life, this might be one of the only times left that we’re without distraction. Turn that time back into prayer. Say Hail Marys until your tank is full. Bonus: you’re filling up a spiritual cup as well!
Ask “How are you?” and wait for the honest answer
God bless the patient mothers who wait for the honest answers. When a mother asks, “How are you?” it’s not polite office chit-chat. It’s a genuine inventory of your feelings. And it’s powerful in its compassion.
Consider how trying Jesus’s life must have been. Choosing to be fully human meant he probably grew emotionally exhausted, as well. And as he grew his ministry and met people and dedicated his life to ministering, there was always a person he could count on to minister to him: his mother. Imagine Mary at the end of a day asking Jesus, “How are you?” and waiting for Jesus to answer.
Be inspired by that love to actually check in with a coworker or neighbor who may need a listening ear or a shoulder to lean on.
Go to bed earlier
I am with my boyfriend’s daughter for a small amount of time each week, and in those few hours, she has so much energy that I can barely keep my eyes open after she goes home. I literally cannot picture life as a full-time mom in this season, but moms (and dads) everywhere get up each day and bring their A-game.
They parent, they work, they shuttle, they clean, they feed, they shop, they play, they put their kids to bed—and then they do it again! And again and again.
As a sacrifice on their behalf, give up an hour of scrolling through Instagram or another episode of whatever you’re binging, and get to bed an hour earlier for the rest of May. Then approach each day with a grace and energy inspired by our holy Mother (and her earthly counterparts)!
Turn off the radio
Even though we only have Biblical record of an angel giving directions to Mary before Jesus was born, I like to think that throughout her life as His Mother, she was in constant communication with the Lord. Because of her “fiat” (her unflinching, unwavering “yes” to the call) we can safely assume it wasn’t like a normal parental discussion of opposing sides and weighing the options, but more like God telling Mary what needed to be done and Mary making it happen with fierce loyalty and love.
In order for Mary to listen, she had to maintain a quiet space. So, too, should we. Silence is hard to come by. Whether your day is filled with kids or coworkers or customers or patients or upstairs neighbors—there is a lot of noise in this world.
One way to tune it out even for a moment is the time you’re in your car alone. At some point in our day, I think all of us are bound to be by ourselves in our cars. Instead of a podcast or the radio or streaming music, just let the silence settle in this month. And ask Mary to intercede that God may speak to you in that silence.
Play with a child
Nothing will remind you faster what it truly means to be a mother (or father) than playing with a child. It’s a unique, beautiful combination of joining them in a carefree headspace while also being totally panicked that you’re the only thing standing between this innocence and potential harm.
Enjoy the wonder and awe that children bring to every situation. Approach playtime with a joyful heart, not one of anxiety for housework yet to be done or tomorrow’s sunrise fast approaching. Offer up your joyful, playful heart in gratitude and ask Mary to give those hearts to the Father, that He will preserve our joy!
Do you have small ways you weave prayer into the day-to-day of life? Share them in the comments!
Erin is a Catholic writer living on the windy plains of Kansas. She loves reading, dark chocolate, sunflowers, and learning to cook.