I'm attempting more regular reading of early primary sources. Keyword: "attempting." This week I read Augustine's moving account of his mother's ceaseless prayers on his behalf. In Confessions, he looked back on the pain his wayward years caused his mother. "For almost nine years passed," he wrote, "in which I wallowed in the mire of that deep pit, and the darkness of falsehood, often assaying to rise, but dashed down the more grievously." What eventually pulled him from that deep pit of falsehood were the effective prayers of his mother. I must say that I read these paragraphs differently now as a father. Augustine wrote:
And Thou sentest Thine hand from above, and drewest my soul out of that profound darkness, my mother, Thy faithful one, weeping to Thee for me, more than mothers weep the bodily deaths of their children. For she, by that faith and spirit which she had from Thee, discerned the death wherein I lay , and Thou heardest her, O Lord; Thou heardest her, and despisedst not her tears, when streaming down, they watered the ground under her eyes in every place where she prayed; yea Thou heardest her.
Upon hearing the constant and tearful prayers of Augustine's mother, her pastor said: "Go thy ways and God bless thee, for it is not possible that the son of these tears should perish."
From Saint Augustine (2012-12-18). The Confessions of St. Augustine (Kindle Locations 582-584). Kindle Edition.