As Catholics, we are called to meet people where they’re at. I am hoping, that you will do that for me. Meet me right where I’m at. I would love to have a funny, smart 7QT, but that’s not where I’m at. I’m in the middle of the land of struggles. Aren’t we all? But instead of dwelling on that, I have been given prompting to share here what’s been keeping me afloat, this week. It’s selfish. I am doing this so when the struggles come back around, or I’m caught in a weaker place, I can refer to a little cheat sheet. These come from conversations with my son, Lexicon and from praying the Liturgy of the Hours daily. There’s a reason to read scripture.
Psalm 51 Indeed you love truth in the heart; then in the secret of my heart teach me wisdom.
I love the Truth that is our faith, the Word of God, the Sacraments, Tradition. For me these are the truths, and if I hold fast to them, the Lord will give me wisdom. Wisdom as in, for me, his comfort, his blessings, a little more light on the next step in my journey. He will give me just enough light for me to continue forward – always holding my hand.
Galatians 2:19b-20 I have been crucified with Christ, and the life I live now is not my own; Christ is living in me. I still live my human life, but it is a life of faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Yesterday was tough. I had to pick a letter of recommendation up from my priest for my application to the Lay Fraternities of the Dominican Order and we spoke for a bit. In this unequally yoked marriage of mine in all of it’s beauty, pain, sorrow and love, I actually spoke something that I hadn’t to my beloved priest and I hope I can recapture the weight of it here. I wonder if my husband feels that he wants his old wife back. The one before she fell in love with God. Now that I am in love with the Trinity (as my name so prophetically translates Cristina Trinidad – follower of Christ and the Trinity), I am different, my life is not mine anymore, but Christ within me living this life. And while it is a change to be sure, subtle, gradual at times, but mostly deep and unspoken, I wonder if a large part of this struggle is our coming to grips with my choice to follow what He has written on my heart. How can I help this marriage to understand that?
Sirach 18:19 Before you speak, learn. This week has been exciting and unexpected to be sure. I hope you know or have heard about a little project I am working on with Tiffany and Em to try wearing a veil for Advent (with a link up and up to 4 giveaways) and to encourage other women to do the same. We are excited and hoping to get a conversation going about #veilproject perspectives. However, the response – while overwhelmingly and mostly positive – there has been some backlash, judgement and comments made that were hurtful. Understanding that we would have gotten this negativity from those who were not religious or maybe even Catholic, the genesis of these comments came from our own. From Catholics. I know. I was shocked too. We let it be a lesson for each other. Before we speak, learn. Who are we to judge? Really? Who are we? Sons and Daughters of the most high God. That’s who. If that is what we are, then we are all perfect to Him, we should all see Jesus in one another. Believe me, the Puerto Rican, Brooklyn part of me wanted to share a piece of my mind. Instead, I looked at all of the scripture from Sirach that I have at my desk, and landed on this one. Thanks God. You’re the Man.
Ephesians 4:29-32 Let no evil talk come out of your mouths, but only what is useful for building up, as there is need, so that your words may give grace to those who hear. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were marked with a seal for the day of redemption. Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.
I shared this with my son, Lexicon when he was having a hard time fitting in at school. It’s been a tough process to be sure, and one that we’re still dealing with. I realized that if I can dish out the advice, I gotta take it. I can’t be hard on myself. I can’t have the negative self talk of “if only I could” or “if only I would” or “maybe I should have done”. That’s doubt. And in my line of work as a practicing Catholic, I have to have more faith in God’s plan. I’ve been chatting quite a bit with St. Therese of Lisieux about this. She, of course has seen this all before with me and I keep getting from her “meeker, meeker Cristina. You must be meeker” Got it.
Psalm 143 Lord, listen to my prayer; turn your ear to my appeal. You are faithful, you are just; give answer. Do not call your servant to judgment for no one is just in your sight. I, along with Tiffany are having a weekly adoration for deep, personal intentions for one an other. We are also praying the Rosary Novena for these same intentions. We are in the first half – called the petitions. In the second half, we pray with thanksgiving. When I am in the silence of our God, this is what I pray. This is what I feel, this is what comes up in the depths of my heart with all sincerity.
Psalm Prayer from Liturgy of the Hours Morning Prayer God our Father, great builder of the heavenly Jerusalem, you know the number of the stars and call each of them by name. Heal hearts that are broken, gather together those who have been scattered, and enrich us all from the plenitude of your eternal wisdom. I must love this prayer because when I searched for the scripture, this popped up. My blog, past prayerful Thursday. I am known. No matter what I go through, He is with me. He knows me and will enrich me. No matter how far adrift I feel from my own soul, from my own heart, from my own perceived successes and failures, He is always there, on the shore waving me in.
Luke 1:38 Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her. You had to know. You had to know that I would go to Mary. You had to know that when I am on my knees begging and pleading from the depths of my heart that Mary is beside me, on her knees with me confirming to me that I, too am the servant of the Lord – His will be done and I will be ok.
Thanks for letting me be selfish and create this little cheat sheet. I will have this now to refer in my moments of weakness. Maybe you can too?
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