#6 – A Lesson in “Deus Providebit”

By Sarah McDonald

Each day, I end my morning prayers asking for the intercession of Our Lady of Prompt Succor and saying, “Deus Providebit,” which translated into English is “God will provide.” It is a prayerful habit I have kept since my days at Archbishop Chapelle High School in Metairie. 

I have blogged about “Deus Providebit” before here on NOLACatholic Parenting, and the beautiful Kitty Cleveland even sang her song of the same title at my husband and I’s wedding umpteen years ago.

The saying has always been important to me, and I have always been faithful to trusting in God’s providence.

If, however, you are ever curious about whether you really trust that God will provide for you and your family – try adding Baby #6 to your household. Let me tell you, it’s a wing dinger of a challenge!

Our children now range in age from 12 to 8 months. I am still working a full-time job as is my husband. We are still living in 1,500 square feet of space sharing two bathrooms between us. The top four kids are EXTREMELY active in school and beyond. It is nonstop chaos from 5:30 a.m. to whenever my husband and are able to sit down and eventually crash on the sofa at night. 

It is easy to get overwhelmed, overstimulated and exhausted. In the hard and chaotic moments of the day when the baby is crying and all the kids are trying to talk to you at once or you are having to referee a heated dispute between children, it is easy to feel lost and even abandoned and alone in the midst of so many people. 

It is in these moments, when it is easy to get angry and impatient with those around you and even with God, that I am so grateful the Holy Spirit whispers to me – “God will provide.”

In all honesty, it does not mean the situation de-escalates or I calm down immediately, but it sets the course. It is the phrase I reflect on when the tub over flows, the car makes a funny noise or that unexpected bill comes. It is also the phrase that reminds me that help comes in all forms, particularly in the form of extraordinary grandparents, even when you don’t know how to ask for it and have a hard time accepting it. 

The truth – we find God in the chaos because it is easy to trust him when life is good and easy. If we trust him when life is hard and complicated and, yes, painful, then we are really putting it all out there and trusting in God. 

So, just when I thought I trusted enough, God blessed us with #6, the happiest, friendliest, most affectionate baby with the chunkiest turkey legs ever! 

Your #6 most likely will not be a sixth addition to your brood of children. Your #6, dear reader, will be anything in your life that challenges you to put yourself out there and trust even more than you’ve ever trusted before. 

Just know, the reward – while it might not always be on your time table – will be great, and it will deepen your faith and your relationship with God. 

As parents, what more important lesson can we model for our children? 

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