outer or inner self.

Suffering.

This one word manages to invoke so many different thoughts, emotions and fears in my heart (perhaps yours, too?) No one really wants to suffer. We all want lives that are happy, healthy, carefree and joyful!

Yet try as we may, we all come face to face with suffering at one point or another. Some will hide it, some will highlight it, some will run away from it… but suffering is apart of our broken humanity. ***But please don’t run away now- this post has a happy ending! As do all the best of stories. I want to share some encouragement I received from the Lord. Something that has lifted my spirits in a season of suffering.

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After getting pregnant (praise the Lord) I had to go off most of my eczema medications. As a result, my skin has officially gone bonkers ( but seriously, it’s been horrible). It’s either red, open and inflamed, or dry as the desert. One thing a lot of people don’t realize, is how debilitating eczema can be. It’s not just a little itchy skin (at least for me and many others), it’s an insatiable itch that can be all consuming at times. It means waking up in the night from scratching, constant moisturizing, physical pain, and a lot of emotional burdens from feeling and being inflamed/swollen/red/itchy/worn down……

I’ve been really trying to grow in trust and faith throughout this trying time! During adoration this past week, I remembered a verse that in the past has brought me a lot of peace when it comes to physical suffering. I had my bible and thought, ” it would be so great to find that verse tonight”. I flipped to a page in Corinthians, and it wasn’t on that page, so I turned one page back and sure enough, there was the verse, waiting for me! The Holy Spirit had definitely guided me to this place, because like many good Catholics, I know the verse but have NO IDEA where it is located. This is what it said,

” So we do not lose heart. Though the outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day” – 2 Corinthians 4:16

Isn’t this beautiful! When we feel our outer selves wasting away ( physical sufferings and burdens we carry on/in our bodies), we can be reassured of the fact that Christ wants to strengthen us and our spirit. He does not want our inner self to waste away, fall into despair, feel rejected or forgotten.

No!! Christ wants us to hope, and “not loose heart”! Christ is near to us in our suffering, even when we feel alone or frustrated. We have the opportunity to invite Christ in to our sufferings. To be vulnerable, open and honest about the crosses we carry. To ask him for his help and presence in our pain. To unite with Christ on the Cross each and every day.

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Although this doesn’t “solve” the problem of suffering, or even take away my pain (or yours), it does remind me that our suffering can become life-giving. We can ask Jesus to use these hard times for someone else’s good (spouse,child,friend,world) and trust in this mystery of redemptive suffering. This is not an easy path, but I know the Lord sees our efforts, sufferings and offerings, and will reward us- either here on earth, or hopefully in heaven one day!

gift from above

Hidden away from view,

Quietly you grow.

So intricately made,

Before you even show.

What wonderful designs,

Your Father has in mind.

The size of just a lime,

You are one of a kind.

Sweet baby know your loved,

In heaven and on earth,

We’re counting down the days,

To meet you at your birth.

powerful intercessor

Hi!

Welcome to my blog and thanks for stopping in!

Today is just a short story about the power of prayer. I think sometimes we forget how powerful prayer is, and all the gifts our Heavenly Father wants to bestow on us through prayer.

A few weeks ago, I was driving home with a friend after a nice night out. We were chatting a little bit about Mary and our relationship with our Heavenly Mama. We both shared some of our joys and struggles with this relationship, and even questioned if we could pray with Mary too much? Was this taking away from our time with Jesus?

As we hit the freeway, our conversation was abruptly stopped because my friend’s little three month old baby started to cry. Now the thing is… this baby doesn’t soothe herself in the carseat. No. The carseat is the one place that makes her grumpy, upset and unconsolable (understandable… those seats have almost zero padding). Even worse, we were a long way from home.

My first thought was “this is going to be a horrible ride home”, because the baby was getting progressively louder and louder. Not to mention that my friend has, in the past, had to stop on the side of the road multiple times to soothe her little peanut. Perhaps worst of all, it was so sad to hear her crying with almost no way of helping her.

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But then, something happened. I had to think of our conversation about Mary. Out of the blue I just said, “why don’t we pray a Hail Mary?”. Literally as soon as we started praying the words together, the sweet little baby in the back started to calm down. It was incredible. No soother. No mama. No milk. Just the words, ” Hail Mary full of grace, the Lord is with Thee…”

I looked at my friend, she looked at me and said, “ I think were going to have to pray the whole rosary!”. And that’s what we did. We said the whole rosary together, and the baby didn’t make a sound. In fact, she was soothed to sleep by the sweet words and intercession of her Heavenly Mother.

Words don’t do justice to the beauty of that moment. Just physically seeing the power of prayer answered in our midst. Seeing how Mary wants to, and delights in, answering our prayers. Not for her own benefit. But for the love of her Son.

Saint Maximilian Kolbe once said, ” Never be afraid of loving the Blessed Virgin too much. You can never love her more than Jesus did” . This couldn’t be more true. Loving Mary, asking for her intercession, seeking her aid in times of trouble is exactly what Jesus wants! He knows that everything we entrust to her, is taken to Him.

Mary Mother of God- Pray for us!

washed clean

Hi Again!

During these crazy times, access to the sacraments have been scarce. We’ve had to adapt to streamed masses, reserving spots for mass online ( if your quick enough!) and a whole lot of hand sanitizer….. Let’s just say, it hasn’t been easy.

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But there is something that has brought me (and perhaps you, too?!) A LOT of peace and comfort during the past months and that is:

Confession!

Confession has been the one sacrament that has been relatively easy to receive during the chaos of Covid-19. I don’t know about your experience, but we could make appointments with our parish priest anytime and every Saturday morning from 11:00-12:00 there was “drive through” confession!

I found so much solace in the sacrament of Reconciliation, because it was the closest I could get to Jesus when our masses weren’t taking place.

The Lord knows how painful these times have been and still are. He wants us to receive him again through the Holy Eucharist. He wants to be united, heart to heart. But if we are unable to go to mass, don’t forget to encounter Jesus in confession, as well ! It is a powerful encounter where Jesus himself, through the priest, can heal all our sins, anxieties, mistakes, fears and missed opportunities to love.

I can testify to the power of this healing and life giving encounter with Jesus through confession! Every time I went to confession during the “pandemic”, Jesus was speaking so clearly through the priest about my heart and the areas that needed deep conversion. That kind of realization is humbling, but I drove away every time feeling more loved, joyful, peaceful, motivated and light. It’s a feeling you cannot buy, and one that comes only from the healing touch of Jesus our Saviour.

God bless you all!

right now.

So last Sunday, we were watching the mass with Fr. Mike Schmitz and he said something in the homily that has stayed with me all week. He said ( I’m paraphrasing here) we can’t encounter God in the past or the future, only in the present.

Obvious? Maybe. Profound? Definitely. If we actually believe this, it has the power to change our attitude, our perspective and our life!

How many of us are guilty for playing on repeat the mistakes of the past, or the way things should have gone? Or how about the worries of the future? How much time is wasted thinking about what might happen, what could be, or the perfect scenario?

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What Father Mike is encouraging us to do, is to radically trust in the power of God working in the present moment! Isn’t that freeing?! Just think: actually letting go and surrendering all that happened in your past, and all that you worry and fear for in the future. Just living moment to moment with your Heavenly Father.

Lord Jesus,

You see each one of us right now. You know our hearts, and our thoughts. You see the burdens we carry from the past and the fears that we hold for the future. We surrender all of these moments, worries, anxieties and hopes to you. We want to live in the freedom that you have won for us on the Cross. We want to live with you right now! Come Jesus into our hearts and meet us in this exact moment. Show us how to live a life that is truly present to you and your people. Send your Spirit to guide, inspire and enlighten us. We love and thank you.

Amen.

steeped in love ☕️

I think it’s safe to say that most of us experience desert like conditions in our prayer life! Perhaps our prayers seem insincere or maybe we have no desire to enter prayer because we feel lost, empty or confused.

That’s pretty much where I found myself today during my prayer time. After a lot of non prayer related thinking and worrying -I tried to actively receive the love of the Lord. Father Larry Richards gave a talk in a virtual conference a few weeks ago, and he mentioned how crucial it is to let ourselves be held and loved by Jesus. That talk and his words have really stayed with me and came back to my mind in prayer today.

So after finally letting go and just focusing on the love of Christ- I had this beautiful image. It was a very simple cup of tea. The tea bag was released into the hot water, and slowly the water was changed into a beautiful rich brown, full of flavour and depth.

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It seems to me that we could be likened to this bag of tea. We are called to steep in the waters of the love of Christ; in his warm, constant and life giving presence. Christ gives us this daily invitation to accept, receive and steep in his constant, perfect and all fulfilling love. What could be more wonderful?

Quote for the soul ✨

“ …A duty performed solely from a sense of duty may prove wearisome and difficult; the same duty performed out of love becomes easy and pleasant. Love always minimizes the difficulties in its path…” -Fr. William R. Bonniwell, O.P

A beautiful reminder to let authentic love guide our words, actions and thoughts this day ❤️