When I began this blog about a year ago, it was to record my journey in Catholicism But about halfway through the year, I realized I was trying too hard and getting way ahead of myself. I say I realized, but that really isn’t true. Father Barkett had a lot to do with it. I needed to step away and let things just seep in.
I have such a long way to go.
So here’s a catch up post of where I’ve been, in no particular order.
1.People are attracted to joy, not rules. Be in love with God, not just in compliance.
2. The Narrow Gate is in the form of Jesus. Thank you Father Robert Barron. One Sunday after listening to this fabulous sermon, I was sitting in church, heard the words Through Him, With Him and In Him and was washed over with an incredible — and tangible — sense of hope. The light is within us all. The path is clear AND has a guide, and the way through to grace is the reforging of yourself into Him.
3. The ego is a very small dark and ugly little thing. Most of my troubles are when I think too much of myself and about myself. My self consciousness, my fear of making friends, my fear of being happy, my need for approval, my anger towards others — all revolve around someone or something not meeting my expectations. And it’s usually me. Worst part of it is that hanging around the old hood is that its easy and I’m addicted. . St Paul has a great line in his first letter to the Corinitians 4:3-5.
“But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. I do not even judge myself. I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then every man will receive his commendation from God.”
And, I can never think of Paul’s (Saint) Letters to the Corintians without thinking of Eddie Izzard. I promise to never put a sock in a toaster.
4. Fear is stooopid. No point it really. It’s kinda like worry and judgement. But it’s damn hard to shake.
I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33
5. I have learned more from reading the bible and learning about my religion than I have my whole life.
6. It’s the little things. My favorite saints, my favorite teachings, my favorite sermons — even my photography 🙂 all say the same things. Keep it small and simple. Love. We are all trying to get on in the world. I have no idea why it is so hard to be kind to those around me every day, but it is. I cringe when I think about how many times I could be nice, and how many I’m not. .
7. The saddest thing ever is to think of people who have no one to pray for them. It’s devastating really. But the fact that praying for these folks has been the main mission of Mary’s visitations to Earth is so beautiful. And the prayer that the angel taught the children at Fatima “I believe, I adore, I hope and I love you and I ask pardon for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope and do not love” is just as remarkable.
8. The rosary is a gift. I suck at praying it, I get distracted, I forget to pray it, and sometimes I avoid praying it because I think it will take too long, but almost always, hours later after I have prayed the rosary, I find myself saying “Wow, that’s a real gift.”
9. You must say yes to God everyday. It’s not a one and done thing..
10. I am being called. I do feel love. I am drawn to this through Grace. The more I love God, the more sorrow I feel for others lost and in pain, the more hope I have of happiness and redemption, and the more convinced I am that there is one truth, one life, one love.
11. Once the heart is set, the will and the mind will follow.
12. To surrender to God and live free, I need let go of #2, work toward #1, do more of #8, and pray #7. A lot.