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"I used to believe that prayer changes things, but now I know that prayer changes us and we change things." Mother Theresa
Photo Credit: Shelli Jensen
Wow…this blog has been changing like the wind lately!! To be honest, it's hard to think of what needs to be done next! But all of this change has been an incredible thing…the support has been outstanding, and God is truly pouring out His blessings upon everyone's efforts. And when I say everyone, I mean you, too!
We are a community of love, and we are all in this together. Just about every aspect of this blog has been prompted by someone else's suggestion….I guarantee you that I am not that inventive!
As I was considering this (the idea of change that is), I felt God's prompting to explore it a bit in this next blog. It does take a bit of a personal turn, but there is final destination, I promise! So here goes:
Change….for some it comes so easy, for others it brings complete panic. I happen to lie somewhere between the two, although I lean a bit heavily toward the panic end. It didn't always use to be that way. At that time, I didn't just lean towards panic; I toppled right into it! Praise God, over the years I have come a long way and can officially claim that I have at least climbed out of that extreme end.
You see, I was a bit of a tomboy back in the day, which in many ways I paraded as a facade to cover up my insecurities and fear of change. One of my earliest memories of handling substantial change was the day my family moved to a new home. I was seven years old, but I can still remember hugging the single large oak tree in our backyard and crying. I also remember sitting in the back seat of the car staring out the window as the home I had loved so much disappeared from view….and crying. Tears welled up frequently for months, even though the change was, in fact, a very good one.
Some might have called me a "dreamer" (they did, in fact) and I found myself very attached to everything: people, pets, toys, cars, my house, my room, my yard…I think you get the picture. (And don't even get me started remembering the imaginary friend...and dog...and cat...and horses that I forced myself to give up because I was afraid everyone would think I was crazy!) As life passed by and I experienced loss and the normal process of growing up, it seemed that sadness and fear always waited in the wings.
But, in saying this, it is important to know that I did NOT suffer from depression. In fact, for the most part, I loved life. It is also quite possible that my love of life may have been most of the source of my attachment to everything.
Thank heaven I was blessed to be raised in a family that put God as a top priority. I will always believe that this was my saving grace (pun intended!). Out of necessity, I leaned on Him constantly.
What is interesting to note is that when I consider the great pride and righteous attitude that I struggled with, I could so easily have spent my life looking for fun and excitement in all of the wrong places, judging everyone and everything that came my way and surviving a life without put any stock in my relationship with God at all.
But God knew my flaws. He knew my tendencies to sin. He understood perfectly what had to be done to give me the chance to stay on track.
It was absolutely essential that I realized that I needed to lean on Him. Yes, a good case could be made that my faith was so weak that I didn't have enough trust in my powerful Lord to overcome the fear and sadness. But, as in many cases, there is also another angle to consider.
In reality, I didn't only struggle with developing perfect faith. God was truly at work. The truth was that I was finding my powerful Lord in the fear. I was learning to understand His sacrifice and passion in the sadness and pain. I was connecting with Him on a level that cannot be reached through joyful contact alone.
How awesome is our God? We search so fervently for reasons to explain the pain, for an escape from the heart-wrenching fears and struggles that are woven through the fabric of our lives. The devil is in it all, weaving His deviant artwork in a grand effort to get us so lost in the pattern that we can no longer find love. The crazy and awesome thing is that God is actually IN the deviant artwork. He's inside it!! In Satan's grandiose attempt to lose us lies a path to an even deeper relationship with Love itself.
We have a deep faith, my friends. And a God whose love, joy, and very being is deeper and farther reaching than the universe extends His hand to us every second of every day.
Change? Yes, I'm still not a fan of it much of the time. But if it brings me closer to our awesome God, then bring it on.
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Prepare Ye the Way
Here are some beautiful songs just for Advent!
If a song's title includes (family recording), please refer to the blog entry on 3/8/16 for info...
Hi! I'm a Catholic mom who loves to encourage and support others in their journey to live the beauty of our Catholic faith in a modern world. It can be a struggle, no doubt, but God has given us the tools we need! Join my family (both immediate and extended!) and me as we take on this incredible journey of our path to holiness.
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