Wednesday, March 30, 2011

When God Writes Your Love Story

I just finished reading a very good book entitled "When God Writes Your Love Story" by Eric and Leslie Ludy.  Ms 19 yo had gotten it for her birthday from a friend and it looked intriguing so I decided to give it a read.  I am very glad that I did.

Written by a now-married couple, the book tells the story about how each of them independently came to the realization that they needed to turn over the pen of their love life to God and let Him write a love story for them.  It tells of their struggles, their fears and their successes as they learned how to immerse themselves in Jesus Christ and to relish this time of singleness as they waited to see who, if anyone, God would bring into their lives for them to marry.

This book is funny, touching, sad and romantic all at the same time.  It was fascinating to read about how God led each of them to completely trust in Him to find the right person.  Neither one of them had led exemplary Christian lives, so seeing how they repented of their former ways and began to trust was very moving.

Besides being a great guide for the youth of today, the book was packed full of great advice for everyone.  There is an incredible chapter on the role of the family in a young person's love story; family in the sense of their existing family and not their future family.  This chapter is something we can all learn a lot from.  

There were some very memorable lines interspersed throughout the book, too.  Like one I am going to have tattooed on my arm:

You are only as holy as you are at home.

Wow, that one really packs a punch, doesn't it?  You could meditate on those 10 words for quite awhile.  Or this one,
There are two ways each of us can approach life; spending our days meeting our needs or looking for ways to meet others' needs.
This book is basically about getting out of the worldly dating game, giving yourself over to a life of falling in love with Jesus Christ, our eternal bridegroom, and letting Him script your love story; letting Him take the lead and letting your future spouse, if there is to be one, find you in Him.


To end with, there's a lot of great stuff about the beauty of purity, which is a message that is seldom heard by most young people of the world.  Here is a great excerpt:


As women, we are given a great gift: our purity.  It is like a priceless pearl, tucked safely away in a protective shell, growing and becoming more beautiful with time.  Our purity is so much more than just our physical virginity: it starts with who we are on the inside.  Everything that makes us who we are emotionally - our feminine nature, our sensitivity, our vulnerability, and our desire to give ourselves fully to one man - is part of that gift.


I highly recommend this book for anyone who is, or knows, a young adult.  I want my husband to read it, too, because there is a lot that even we as parents can learn from it.  I am also going to share that chapter on the family with some of the other kids.  Maybe hearing it from another person's "voice" will make it sink in better :)



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A B See - C is for

The Crowning of Christ.  I thought this would be an appropriate one for Lent!

If you'd like to see more entries or join in the fun, just click on the image below!



Friday, March 25, 2011

7 Quick Takes Friday


1.

Happy Feast of the Annunciation.  Not only is this a big day in the Church (it must be big, we get a Lenten reprieve to celebrate it :), it is a big day in our Domestic Church!  Every year on this day we do two important things:

a.  We renew our consecration to Mary through the method of St. Louis de Montfort.  We've been doing this for years and it is something we look forward to every Lent.

b.  We pick a new name for the unborn baby that we will be praying for each night at dinner.  We are up to the letter I for the coming year so that means that we each get to pick a name starting with the letter I and then every night at dinner we say the following prayer:  

Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I love you very much.  I beg you to spare the life of the unborn baby, which I have spiritually adopted, who is in danger of abortion. Amen.

Simple, yet powerful!

2.

This year we will get to renew our consecration at the Miles Christi Evening of Recollection along with other friends who have also been preparing for this.  I think it will prove to be a very moving event.  Renewing our consecration after a beautiful Mass and two hours of talks and adoration.  Wow!


3.


Yesterday we ran to Redbox to rent "The Tourist".  My husband and I had seen it in the theater but we were anxious to watch it again and see if we could follow certain things better.  Overall we thought it was a very good movie, although I am quite partial to Johnny Depp, so I might be a bit biased.
4.


Speaking of Johnny Depp...Just under 2 months until "Pirates of the Caribbean IV" comes out.  Can't wait to see it!  Even if the movie isn't that great, I'll  LOVE listening to the music!


5.


On a more serious note, God seems to be trying to tell me that I need to trust in Him completely and try my darnedest to do His Will!  Everywhere I've turned lately I've run into those two messages.  To that end, I've just ordered the book "God's Smuggler" by Brother Andrew on the recommendation of Jennifer at Conversion Diary.  I am SOOO looking forward to getting my hands on this book.  I'll let you know what I think after I devour it!

6.


I was reading the Gospel account of the miracle of the loaves and fishes last week and was picturing how different the scene would be if it were to have taken place in modern-day America.  Can you see 5,000 Americans being content to sit in groups of 50-100 and wait to be served dried fish and bread from baskets?  I'm having a hard time imagining that.


7.

If you're looking for inspiring stories about how people's health and lives have improved dramatically by taking Reliv, check out my other blog Ready, Set...Reliv!  Hope you are inspired, too!


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Psalm 91

Psalms
Chapter 91

 You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High, who abide in the shadow of the Almighty,
Say to the LORD, "My refuge and fortress, my God in whom I trust."
God will rescue you from the fowler's snare, from the destroying plague,
Will shelter you with pinions, spread wings that you may take refuge; God's faithfulness is a protecting shield.
You shall not fear the terror of the night nor the arrow that flies by day,
Nor the pestilence that roams in darkness, nor the plague that ravages at noon.
Though a thousand fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, near you it shall not come.
You need simply watch; the punishment of the wicked you will see.
You have the LORD for your refuge; you have made the Most High your stronghold.
No evil shall befall you, no affliction come near your tent.
For God commands the angels to guard you in all your ways.
With their hands they shall support you, lest you strike your foot against a stone.
You shall tread upon the asp and the viper, trample the lion and the dragon.
Whoever clings to me I will deliver; whoever knows my name I will set on high.
All who call upon me I will answer; I will be with them in distress; I will deliver them and give them honor.
With length of days I will satisfy them and show them my saving power.
 
 A prayer for now and for the times to come.  Remember, the safest place to be is in God's Will. 
 
 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A B See - B is for...

Ballet!  Here is my entry for the letter B, ballet slippers from our performance this past December of the Silent Nativity!  


If you'd like to enter into this meme, just click on the above link to check out the rules!  Have a peaceful Sunday.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Happy Feast of St. Joseph!


St. Joseph, Pray for us!!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day

I'm not usually a crafty person but these puppets were so easy and fun that we tried them...


and they came out cute!  Thanks, Lacey!

Also on board for today's festivities are Mass this morning, the Veggie Tales version of St. Patrick (we love that one!) and the Tommie DePaolo book on St. Patrick.

Tonight...lots of corned beef, cabbage, potatoes, carrots and Irish soda Bread!  Can't wait.  

St. Patrick, Pray for Us!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Meditation

This is from "My Daily Bread":

I need not think that I am less loyal to our Lord when I have lost that feeling of devotion which I desire to have toward God and His saints.  Holy feelings are  a favor which God grants for a moment.  They are a short foretaste of Heaven.  They are not meant to be a permanent gift in this life.  Therefore, I must not depend on them.  My true virtues and merit are best known when those feelings are not present.  In everyday, hum-drum activities how well do I fulfill my duties?  What kind of resistance do I offer to my unreasoning tendencies and desires within me?  How devotedly do I try to please God in all things?  The devil has not a chance against me if I am really doing my best.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

A B See - A is for...

Addition.  I found this cool meme where you take one picture a week corresponding to a letter of the alphabet. Not only does this give me more practice time with my camera, I'm also learning a lot of neat stuff with Photoshop!



In keeping with my OCD tendencies, I will very likely go in order.  So here is my entry for the letter A.




Saturday, March 12, 2011

Like Mary

Right now we are in the third part of the St. Louis de Montfort Preparation for Total Consecration.  When I was reading the introduction to it yesterday, I paused at the part where St. Louis lists the 10 principal virtues of the Blessed Virgin.  This being Lent and all, I thought it might be helpful to me and maybe others to post them here.  If we picked one a week to focus on, at least we could become familiar with over half of them before Lent is over:

1.  her profound humility
2.  her lively faith
3.  her blind obedience
4.  her continual mental prayer
5.  her mortification in all things
6.  her ardent charity
7.  her heroic patience
8.  her divine purity
9.  her angelic sweetness
10.  her divine wisdom


It is hard not to be intimidated by this list. Remember, however, that Mary is the most perfect human being created so try as we might, we will never come close; but also know that she is there to help and that all God asks is that we try.


While we haven't come close to "angelic sweetness" yet, the amount of complaining has been cut down dramatically by our Lenten bracelet campaign (okay, so it's only been 3 days, but I'll take it :).  Heroic patience seems to me to be the hardest of the list! Well, let's face it, they all seem pretty hard but that shouldn't stop us from picking something here to strive for!  Which one will you pick first???


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Our Lenten Undertaking

I had read about this idea on a few blogs last week and decided that it would be a good project for our family to take on.  Little did I know that it was part of some larger, international movement!
 
I'm talking about not complaining for the duration of Lent.  We've all picked out our own "bracelets" to wear and the idea is that every time you complain, you have to switch the bracelet to the other wrist.  Of course we had to set down some rules like:  

~ What exactly is a complaint? Any negative response to a request or command, any whining, any going on about something you don't like...
~ Do facial expressions count? yes
~ Do thoughts count? Sure, but let's work on outward complaints first
~ Can I point out someone else's complaint?  Well, this was a tough one...if you complain about someone else complaining, then both parties have to switch their bracelets.  If you catch someone complaining, you can kindly point to your wrist to let them know they were just complaining and they have to switch their bracelet.

I have to say that at least for the two days we've done it, everyone is cooperating very cheerfully.  It's a good, competitive thing, too.  Everyone is trying to see how long into the day they can go before they find themselves complaining. 

The bigger movement of this is for people to wear their bracelets and keep this up until they've gone 21 days without complaining.  We'll see how successful we are at the end of six weeks!

Last February, I banned complaining in our house and it went very well.  It was so nice to have such a pleasant atmosphere in the house for that month.  However, once March came, everyone fell back into their old ways.  Maybe by the end of six weeks it will be more ingrained in our minds not to complain so it will last longer.  Maybe we could shoot for no complaining through the entire Easter Season!  Well, I'd better not get so far ahead of myself.  


I read somewhere that the season of Lent offers us extra graces.  I think we will all need them in order to keep this up as cheerfully as we've begun.



 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Sunday, March 6, 2011

"Waiting for Superman"

It is not often that I do a movie review, but we watched a movie this weekend that was phenomenal!  Not quite sure why I picked it, but I happened to be walking past a Redbox and it kind of jumped out at me! 


This is a 2 hour documentary on the state of the public school system in America.  Now I thought for sure no one would go for this, but we all sat down last night, at 8:30 no less, to watch it and it was fascinating.  Seems kind of weird that a bunch of homeschoolers would be interested in a documentary about the public school system, but we all sat there riveted by this movie.

I think it made us truly appreciate the gift of homeschooling and feel so sorry for the people who are caught in the system with very little chance of getting out.  It is absolutely reprehensible that bureaucracy can mess with the lives of children.  

Homeschooler, private schooler, public schooler...doesn't matter.  EVERYONE should watch this movie!

 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Humility

We've been discussing humility around our house again because one of my daughters has to do a skit about a saint that exemplifies humility.  So many times we have a false idea of what humility really is.  Humility is really about knowing who you are in the eyes of God. It's about giving Him the credit for all of the good in you and about you accepting that any bad that exists comes from your "hands" alone.

That being said, it got me thinking about the misconceptions that people have of devout Christians. The first time we encountered this was right after my husband and I had our reversion back to the faith.  Of course everyone thought we had just become part of the "holier-than-thou" crowd, when in reality, one of the first things we realized was how sinful we actually are!

It might appear that a conversion experience would make one stand up and say, "Look at me, now I am so holy!" when in reality the first thing it did for us was to make us fall to our knees and weep over the many sinful choices we had made in our lives.  It was a very humbling experience and how thankful we are that God provides that experience for us over and over again!

A true conversion isn't about wanting people to see how holy you are, it is about turning your eyes to God and letting Him show you the way He wants you to be.  It's about giving the glory to Him for the good things and talents He has bestowed upon you.  It is about turning to Him in mercy when you fail to live up to them.

Humility isn't about denying your talents or telling others that you are worthless, but I have to wonder...does a truly humble person really know they are humble? I mean, do they wake up one day and say, "God, I believe I'm humble?" Isn't that prideful?  Or should you tell someone you think they're humble?  Would you put them at risk of becoming prideful because you complimented them about being humble???

Well, anyhow, Praise God for providing us so many examples in the saints of what true humility is all about and for being so merciful to us so that we can continue to climb the life-long ladder called HUMILITY!


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Happy Birthday Edition