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 ❤️

through the lens

You guys know how much I love writing about finding God through beauty! I mean, it’s the basis for my blog after all! But what I just keep coming back to over the years, is how present and close I feel to God in the natural world.

I can’t get enough of the sights, smells, and wonders that come with the passing seasons, diverse landscapes, plentiful plant and animal species, weather patterns, sun rises and sun sets.

It’s in these moments that I feel close to God. How can I forget his love when it’s literally painted across the sky, the sea, the fields, the stars?! God doesn’t waste a moment trying to win our hearts and remind us of his steadfast love.

So today I wanted to share a few photos that reflect those times where I felt the immense power and beauty of God, the divine Artist.

Lemon tree in the Angelicum garden in Rome, Italy. Perfect moment.
Prairie sky after a little evening rain. Even a little rainbow if you look closely!
Exploring the city of Heidelberg, Germany brought us to this incredible path leading us to a gorgeous look out point!
Dreamy sunset with colours that melt my heart!

All these photos and more can be found on my instagram account theauthorofbeauty! God bless and keep delighting in all that is truly beautiful…

a little bit of everything

Happy Easter Everyone!

We made it! After what feels like 40 years, we’ve finally entered the Easter season. Alleluia! Lent was an especially long and challenging journey this year. Hopefully, we’ve all come out a little stronger in the Lord and ready to embark on the next season ahead of us!

Tonight’s post is a little mix of things that were on my mind that I wanted to include you in! The first one is an invitation. I’ve just started an instagram account, so feel free to find me there under the username theauthorofbeauty. I’ll be capturing and sharing the beautiful moments, people and places along this pilgrimage called life!

Next, is a movie that I’ve been meaning to write about for a long time. I know that people can be pretty particular when it comes to movies, or at least I am. But I think this movie is an exception. It’s just so all around heart warming, I can’t imagine people disliking it. The movie is called The Peanut Butter Falcon. It follows the journey of a young man named Zak who has Down syndrome and wants to pursue his dream of becoming a professional wrestler, despite living in a nursing home. Through unexpected evens, he meets Tyler, a rough and troubled man running from his past, and the two embark on an unforgettable adventure.

I was touched to tears (the good kind) a few times in the movie, because of it’s (indirectly) incredibly profound pro life message. In a world so obsessed with darkness, death and crime… this movie was refreshing, authentic, hilarious and life giving. I was left with a beautiful hope and gratefulness in my heart.

In these long and isolating times, why don’t you go grab a cozy blanket, grab some snacks and watch The Peanut Butter Falcon! Before you know it, you will find yourself immersed in the incredible adventure of Zak and Tyler, wanting the story to continue long after the credits.

Holy Spirit & the baking aisle

Howdy!

So, one of my hobbies in isolation has been cooking and baking. I’ve been trying out new recipes, and even ventured to make fried pickles! It’s been both fun and challenging because a few of the recipes didn’t work….the perfectionist in me was quite agitated!

But nevertheless, I decided that since Easter is coming up, I would make a few traditional German cakes to celebrate 🙂

With my newfound baking zeal, I zipped over to the store to grab some flour, quickly realizing that everyone else and their dog had the same idea: the shelves in the baking aisle were bare! My first reaction was grim. I imagined myself walking out, empty handed with all my baking dreams crushed… when all of a sudden, I spotted on the bottom row the LAST bag of Robin Hood flour. I didn’t care that it was 10 kilos too much. I didn’t care that I could hardly pick the thing up and hurl it over the side of my cart… I just saw my baking dreams coming true! It was a sweet , sweet moment.

Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

But then it happened AGAIN today. I went to grab a few last ingredients, and while taking a stroll down the baking aisle (in a new store this time) I found myself staring at nothing but empty shelves. Like what the heck people?! Isolation brings out many hobby bakers I guess? I was pacing up and down the aisle searching for icing sugar. It wasn’t looking good. I mean, everything was stripped clean. A bit like what piranhas do to their prey. It wasn’t until I decided to crouch down a little, crane my neck, and peer into the abyss of the middle shelf area, when sure enough, what do I find, but the LAST bag of icing sugar.

Then it hit me. This was a Holy Spirit moment. He saved it for me. I felt that way with the flour, but I knew it with the icing sugar! He knew that I needed this little blessing, wink from the heavens, reminder that I am loved. It sounds so simple, but that’s the beauty of it. Sometimes the Holy Spirit can speak to our hearts with the smallest of things.

Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

So, what are the winks that you are receiving from God!? They might be something small or something great! Perhaps you haven’t felt them… so I invite you to ask Him to send you a wink. Ask Him to show you His love- especially in these trying times. God isn’t hiding, and He surely wants to remind you, that you are His beloved.

God bless you!

yes to trust.

It’s really nice to have a solemnity in the middle of Lent! Especially this Lent. I don’t know about you, but I’m finding it hard to fast and keep up my Lenten observances with all this covid chaos. The temptation to eat away my sorrows with chocolate is strong …

Today is the solemnity of the Annunciation of our Lord, and I think this solemnity is exactly what we need to hear right now. Why? Because Mary can teach us something about our current situation.

Mary, received the incredible and UNEXPECTED message that she was to conceive Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit. She didn’t request this, she didn’t plan for this, and she surely didn’t know how things would turn out.

Fast forward to today. World leaders are up in arms, countries on lock down, hospitals overloaded, families in isolation, people are dying, infection rates are sky rocketing, and many are anxious and fearful. We didn’t expect this. And we definitely didn’t plan for this…

Perhaps accepting our current situation like Mary, is exactly what we need to be doing! To take on this attitude of the handmaid of the Lord. Of course, Mary’s situation is lightyears away from a comparison to Covid-19- but it’s about finding the right approach to a complicated, and unplanned time, like Mary. She trusted in the Lord, with a trust so pure and loving.

I pray that we, like Mary, can use this time of uncertainty, to trust in the Lord more deeply! To surrender our fears and anxieties to He who came into the world, to redeem his beloved people.

spiritual seasons.

Hi!

I realized something today. I will never be one of those scheduled blogging types, managing to faithfully post each week… it feels like forever since I’ve written. Sorry for the delay!

There has been a LOT happening in the past few months, because were moving back to CANADA! Back to the land of my ancestors, the land of maple syrup, the land of my childhood. It is a very blessed and beautiful time in my life right now, with so many things (big & small) falling into place. It feels great.

Over the past two years, I didn’t say “things are falling into place” very often. It actually felt like I was constantly faced with one obstacle after the other. Instead of doors opening, doors were slamming. Instead of prayers being answered quickly, waiting was required. Instead of joy overflowing, despair was creeping in.

raining in the city

Photo by Josh Hild on Pexels.com

I am starting to learn that indeed, there are seasons of the spiritual life. I’m sure there are Saints or theologians who have expressed a similar concept with much greater eloquence… but this is how I have felt the “seasons” lately:

Spring Season– many moments of consolation, growing in the spiritual life, feeling the rays of the Son.

Summer Season; mostly moments of consolation, everything seems to be in bloom, constantly basking in the presence of the Son.

Fall Season– moments of consolation & desolation, lots of change in the spiritual life, seeing yourself/world/God in new “colours”.

Winter Season- primarily moments of desolation, feeling cold and far from the rays of the  Son, faith/spiritual life feeling bleak/grey.

So, whatever season you find yourself in right now, if you can, thank the Lord and remember it won’t last forever! That is sooo much easier said than done. I spent the past two years in pretty wintery conditions… and I definitely wasn’t always praising the Lord for my moments of desolation. But sometimes it takes someone who is in a slightly  “warmer” season, to remind you that you are not alone, it won’t be like this forever, God is faithful, God is working in your life, and the grey skies will turn to blue.

photo lavender flower field under pink sky

Photo by David Bartus on Pexels.com

May God continue to bless and strengthen us as we battle through the spiritual seasons of life. Let’s continue to pray for each other, that we do not take the moments of consolation for granted, or waste the precious moments of suffering.

You are loved! God bless!

glory to God in the highest

Happy New Year Everyone!

On the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord,  I came across a magnificent quote by Saint Gregory the Great (in my Magnificat prayer/mass book). I had recently watched the movie Planet Earth II ( which I highly recommend- very well made, adorable & inspiring)  which rather unexpectedly, renewed in me a sense of wonder, awe and beauty for our home here on earth. So with these sentiments already in my heart, and a thankfulness for God’s gift of nature, I read the following words of Saint Gregory the Great with a blissful and joyful heart:

“When the king of heaven was born, the heavens knew that he was God because they immediately sent forth a star; the sea knew him because it allowed him to walk upon it; the earth knew him because it trembled when he died; the sun knew him because it hid the rays of its light” 

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Even the great and uncontrollable weather systems and created world bow before the King of the universe. The earth and all it’s beauty are simply a glimpse into the wonderful being of God, our Father and Creator. If we appreciate and are amazed by the complexity of the galaxies, the seasons that bring forth change, the animals and plants that bring life, then we have received an incredible gift. A gift meant to bless us, amaze us, and ultimately, bring us back to the Giver of the gift. Back to God. Back to the Author of beauty.

I pray that 2020 be a year of deep encounter with the wonders of God that have been painted all around us. May the black and white view of the world, that so often threatens to bring us down, or deceive us, be replaced with a vivid and magnificently bright and colourful lens.

God bless!

thank you.

Happy Saturday & Good Morning ☕️

I wanted to thank you, my followers, for investing in this blog. Thank you for taking time to read the thoughts, poems, and musings that I share here. I usually see people thanking their followers after a significant milestone of followers is met. I didn’t hit any milestone (although I consider each follower a true blessing), but I wanted to thank you nonetheless. It truly means a lot, and this blog has helped me to open up, take chances, and follow many vibrant and beautiful writers along the way!

I am also thankful to the way that God moves and works in our lives! Believe it or not, watching the gladiator last weekend ended up creating a beautiful encounter with God. Sounds crazy I know. But that’s what is SO incredible; God will use whatever it takes to speak to us and show us his love. Often that happens through people, but it can be a gift, a smile, a bible verse, the sacraments, a song, a moment in nature… or even a movie like the gladiator (😂)

Perhaps I’ll share the whole gladiator story another time, but what matters is that God is searching for our hearts, and he wants to share his unconditional love with us! During advent we prepare ourselves for Christmas, where God became a humble, tiny, human child. Our God came to earth to be as near to us as possible. He hasn’t changed his mind since then. He wants and yearns to be close to us, even now! I pray that we might all come closer to Christ and receive His joy and peace this advent 🕯