The Cardinal Virtues // Prudence

Dear God into your hands I place my life, that every decision I make there will be wisdom, intelligence and prudence, that I may always do your will instead of mine Amen 

Prudence will watch over you; and understanding will guard you Proverbs 2:11

I’ve mentioned in previous studies that I’m the proud momma of three little girls. Before they were born I read all I could about pregnancy, motherhood and parenting. I knew that it would be the most important job I would ever have and I didn’t want to do anything that might mess it up. I researched baby gear, I learned about parenting styles, what products to use and in the end, I thought I was pretty well prepared. Turns out- I had no clue.

You see all of the things I mentioned are important. Finding the diapers that work for you, the sleep schedules, the best bottles, the childcare that works for you- all of those things matter, they do, but most will not affect their lives 20-30 years down the road. I mean I cannot tell you what kind of diapers my mother used for me, but I can tell you that she instilled in me a very important ability to know right from wrong. I remember being a small child and bringing my neighbors newspaper up to their door when I saw it on the sidewalk.

Now granted, I was often rewarded with a mini candy bar from the elderly woman, but I remember the feeling of doing the “right” thing and knowing that I was helping someone who needed it as minor of an action as it was.It sounds simple. It sounds like something that we are all born with, and to some degree we are, but not entirely.

Catholics like to refer to the ability to know right from wrong and what should and shouldn’t be
done as prudence, and that my friends, isn’t something that’s always covered in Parenting 101.
Proverbs 2:11 says “Prudence will watch over you, understanding will guard you;” and goes on in verse 12 to say “saving you from the way of the wicked, from those whose speech is perverse.”

Prudence is a pretty big deal. It’s crucial to how we live, but it isn’t necessarily always taught, but learned. We learn prudence from our own lives, our parents, our situations growing up. We learn prudence through our experiences with others, interactions in our faith, with Christ and through the intercession of the Holy

I told my coworkers just last week that it didn’t hit me until my oldest turned 4 years-old the amount of time, money and effort we spend on making our children smart. We buy them workbooks and flashcards and focus so much of our attention on their brain. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m a sucker for school supplies and even though my little bitty is only entering preschool, you best believe she is getting some school supplies because I just cannot resist a new pack of crayons, but my point is that I cannot understand why we stress so much about what they remember and less about what they know.

I want my children to know God, really know Him. Know right from wrong, good from evil, know when to say yes and when to say heck no and walk away.
This goes back to my dependence on our Mother Mary. She was first and foremost a mother. She was the ultimate “super mom” and I find myself looking to her more and more as my children grow for the guidance and comfort I need while I’m raising my littles. With the intercession of our Blessed Mother, I pray that my children will know that having prudence will be much more beneficial in life than knowing a quadratic equation. (That exists right, that’s a thing?)

I will pray for all the fellow mommas out there fighting the good fight. Fighting to teach their children the way of Christ, the light of His love and the importance of His role in their life.

How did you learn prudence? Parents? Grandparents? Is there any moment that sticks out to you that really made you think “aha I do understand the ability to choose right from wrong?”

To Jesus Through Mary- Dana Suther

Dana Avatar.jpg