A Grace from Lent: As Always More Abundant Than I Thought Possible 

I am finally reading the Acts of the Apostles during Easter Time! I have wanted to do this for years and always allowed myself to be distracted. However, one of the gifts of this Lent was the grace to make the time!  

I love it, because when we hear the Acts of The Apostles proclaimed during the Easter season at Mass,  I think to myself, “Oh there you are Peter, or Stephen etc.!” It feels like seeing a good friend after you’ve been following them on FB, because you haven’t been able to connect in person. 

 
And when I think about it, just over the past weekend, the Lord has led me to reconnect with some of my dearest friends who I have likewise been missing in person!  There is no substitue for being in their presence. 

I love how He does that! 

  
   
    
 Spending time with the Scriptures and life of the early Church reminds me of my spiritual history, who I am and who I am called to be.  Much like being with these wonderful people again, I am refreshed and renewed.  Abundance!     

  • Where are you finding His gift of grace to refresh you?  
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I’ve seen a few posts so far this December about what people want for 2106.  I am inspired by words of hope, kindness, tenderness and positivity.   The resolution to put down the phone and focus on the people around us.  

When I look at 2015 and realize how many people I’ve encountered, moments we’ve shared, what a difference those moments have made. How I’ll try to make the time for more, I’ll definitely drink to that!

  
What’s on your mind for the new year? 

Some of the precious moments from 2015!

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

    

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

I knew going back to school for an entirely new field of study 20 years later would be a challenge.   

I knew I was so grateful for the opportunity.  

 

 I knew if I applied myself, I would receive an education to grow into that field.   
 
What I didn’t know is the gracious genuine friendships I would be offered and the encouragement and kindness I would encounter.  That is what has been the most beautiful and filling blessing.


       

 Where have you been unexpectedly blessed? 

Being in Communion 

A number of my “babies” in Christ whose famines I have journeyed with since they were very little, received the gifts of the Holy Spirit last night in the sacrament of Confirmation – Auxiliary Bishop Zarama, celebrant.     I have been a part of their lives, and they have been a part of mine. I love them, I love their families.  They have shown me a great love in return.

 This theme of community keeps humming in my soul.  I am beginning to see the deep simple Truth of it that resonates in my soul.  To see the community God brings to surround me with His love and protection, to guide me and advise me.  

This community has been the source of my strength in my weakness and light in my darkest days and the echo of celebration in my greatest joys.    We are called to walk together, share our lives, and grow to know each other, to find Christ Jesus in each other and walk with Him.    Walking with these beautiful souls has changed me, and helped me to encounter the living Christ.  Is there a community where you have encountered Him? Have you allowed yourself to know Him there? 

Being the Body of Christ

Community. A word that has been ringing clearly in my soul after a recent conversation with a dear friend.  We spoke of many things and imparted many words to each other, but that one rang a note with me and has stayed in my soul and opened my eyes to such beauty and grace in the face of recent events. 

To have a community is so important. Find one that is authentic, where you know God’s love when you are gathered- that listens, forgives, prays, admonishes, guides and celebrates with you. The love, compassion and support of a community can help you get through and beyond some of life’s toughest moments.

We recently lost my Father-in-Law and I was reminded again and again of the community gathered – family- my SIL, husband and I- My FIL’s brother and his wife and their kids, but further out too, extending into the local community established neighbors and dear friends, co-workers and parish leaders. I was aware of the ties reaching out even further into the hospital community that was newly developing around us.  Praying for him and us and offering their love and kindness even in their brokenness and pain. 

Community – The Body of Christ – a gift of God to be acknowleged, cherished and savored. 

Bible verses in community

A gentle, but poignant reminder that God’s surprise course corrections lead us to experiences and people – better than anything we could plan for ourselves…in other words have Faith.

We weren’t lost, but getting off at the wrong exit left us miles and miles off our planned route to get us to evening Mass, I was so afraid we would miss it but God was making a point with me. Not only did He lead us through my husband’s calm thinking and action to another church for Mass, but to the most welcoming and gracious parish we’ve ever been to, St. William’s in Shelbyville TN. As we drove in there was man walking in wearing a Steeler’s jacket, who returned my native greeting “Go Steelers!” and something nudged me inside – “see this is what I have for you.” Inside we met the gentleman and his wife and grandson as well as other parishioners who were genuinely glad to have us visiting- nudge. The music -the pianist/cantor played and sang like an angel it filled the Mass with praise, so uplifting and engaging – nudge. The usher asked Brian and I to take up the gifts, and thanked us for our service – nudge! A first for us as a couple and a beautiful new memory too.

I needed the nudges– the gentle reminder right now that no matter how off course things can look in our eyes, God’s got something beautiful waiting for us if we have Faith and don’t give up Hope then His Love can take root and then Wow what we will experience! Let yourself be nudged – have faith! Oh and always “Go Steelers!” 😉

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