Letters to Young Girls

20 - My Knapsack!


écrit

PUBLICATION DATE

18 . 04 . 2024

Rubric

Letters to Young Girls

20 - My Knapsack!

Author

The Daughters of Mary

My Knapsac

Dear Friend,

For three weeks now, Mathilda has been putting off doing a school project which she will have to hand in on Monday. And here we are on Friday and she has barely started working on it. So, at the end of classes, she picks up all the books and binders needed for this project, as well as her other homework, and stuffs them all into her knapsack, full to overflowing. Before leaving school, a classmate intercepts her. – “Hey, I have been looking for you! Julie, Amandine and I are going skiing tomorrow. Do you want to join us?

Pile de livres“What? You’re going skiing? Oh no! And I have a ton of homework.”
– “I can see that! But maybe you could come anyway?”
– “No, I’m sorry, it’s really impossible.”
– “I’ll call you tomorrow morning anyway, in case you change your mind.”

Mathilda heads home. After a while, her shoulder, her neck and her back start to hurt and she realizes that her knapsack is really very heavy with all the work she has to do. So that it won’t be as hard to carry, she slips her arms through both straps, but the more she walks, the more her footsteps become slow, whereas usually they are light and rapid, and she drags her feet as she bends under the weight of her bag. Fortunately, she now doesn’t have very far to go to get home!


In life, all of us walk with a bag on our shoulders. Depending on the choices we make, it can remain light even if we have a long life or one marked by all kinds of trials and tribulations, or it can also become heavier and slow us down. That bag is our conscience.

A disobedience, an ill-advised outing, the transgression of a rule or of a civil law or even an unhealthy curiosity will all have consequences, and these latter could even be very serious and greatly complicate our life and that of other persons. Sometimes, all that is necessary to change the course of our existence is one single consent to something bad.

Sac à dos rougeWithout judging them, look around you and see the consequences of the actions of the young people who let themselves be drawn by drugs, for example. Their grades at school drop, they sink into an increasingly more complicated life, without any ideal. Then, there are those who do not respect their bodies and who impair their capacity to truly love. Think, too, of those who go out with a bad group of friends and who can no longer have fun in a wholesome way without alcohol. Their knapsack is always getting heavier and heavier, making it more difficult to walk along the paths of life, and even impossible along a steeper path.

No one wants to be gnawed by remorse at the age of 25 or 30 years, or have to live – for a long time and perhaps forever – with a heavy burden on their conscience. The deep regrets, being disappointed with oneself, shame and guilt because of bad choices made in adolescence can weigh very heavily later on in life.

Marie-Paule wrote, with regard to such young people: “If we could only start life over endowed with a lifetime’s experience, we would surely avoid a large part of the miseries brought on by the faults of which we are guilty in our youth.” (Review, L’Armée de Marie, vol. III, p. 53). As far as you’re concerned, you have the knowledge and the spiritual means required to avoid such a suffering.
Be courageous in your will to be upright, in spite of all kinds of influences!

As Mathilda was opening the door to the house, the strap on her knapsack broke. Her mother wasn’t surprised at this, given all that was in it. Mathilda, stressed because of the amount of work awaiting her, disappointed over not being able to go and ski, explained with annoyance all the homework she had to do while her girlfriends would be having fun.

– “I understand that you are disappointed, my dear, but you chose to wait until the last minute to work on your project. Now, you have to assume your responsibilities and bear the consequences. There’s no point in whining over this.”

Vexed, displeased with herself, Mathilda went to her room where she spent the entire weekend buried in her school books instead of light-heartedly sliding down the ski slopes. But, after all, whose fault is it really?

Ornement floral rougeFrom now on, perhaps Mathilda will be more attentive to the fact that her bad choices always have consequences. What do you think? Let’s hope she will understand that it’s better to organize oneself rather than always put off what has to be done. As for her knapsack, you will certainly agree that it is easier to replace it than to replace one’s conscience. She will get a new one. Isn’t this a good opportunity to change her habits and start again with a renewed zeal and greater wisdom?

The Daughters of Mary


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Presentation

Letters to Young Girls

Letters to Young Girls

18 . 04 . 2024

20 – My Knapsack!