somebodylovesmeblog

Sharing God's love with the world, one heart at a time.


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The Sorrowful Mysteries

This is the second in the series of  “How Praying the Rosary Changed my Life.”  Please click here for the background of how I was led to The Rosary, and also to learn about The Rosary and The Joyful Mysteries.

Today I will cover the Sorrowful Mysteries, which are prayed on Tuesday and Friday.

My prayer is that The Holy Spirit will open your heart to these great mysteries, and fill you with the love, joy, and peace of Our Lord, Jesus.

There are five meditations associated with the Sorrowful Mysteries. I will cover each one.

  1. Agony in the Garden   Mark 14:32-46  Luke 22:41-44  (For true repentance of my sins)   Dear Lord, how can I even begin to understand the agony that you endured, as you prayed to your Father in the garden?  You knew exactly what was going to happen to you…that you were offering yourself as a perfect sacrifice in atonement for the sins that I have committed, am committing, and will commit in the future.  You took my place.  You also knew that you would be betrayed by some of those who were closest to you, and knew  you would be hated, spat upon, tortured, blasphemed, humiliated, and ultimately crucified by those who did not understand The Truth.  I am so much like your disciples, who could not even stay awake for one hour to keep watch.  Judas betrayed you with a kiss.  How many times do I declare my love for you, and then close my heart to your love, and to your presence in my life?  How many times do I “fall asleep” when there is work to be done and people to love?  How many times do I betray you by allowing my weakness and selfishness to come between us?  Help me to understand that even you prayed that your Father would take the cup away…and the angels actually came to strengthen you in your suffering.  Help me to remember that you are always with me…I am never alone.  Help me to always come to you in prayer, with praise, thanksgiving and petitions, and always  submitting myself to the Father’s will…not my own.
  2. Scourging at the Pillar   Mark 15:1-15  (For a Spirit of Mortification)  Lord, help me to face the hardships and suffering in my life as you did.  You accepted your scourging with love and humility.  You did not even utter one harsh word toward your tormenters.  Please help me to understand and always remember…You suffered in my place, Lord. Thank you for the perfect love that you offered me through your sacrifice, and the love that you are still offering to me now. Help me to find you through the difficulties, pain and suffering that I experience day to day.  Help me to accept them with joy…knowing that through the suffering I am closer to you.
  3. Crowning With Thorns  Mark 15:16-19  (For Moral Courage)   Lord it wasn’t enough that you were scourged; you were also mocked and blasphemed.  Through it all, love and humility radiated from you.  Help me to always be ready to stand for what is right in God’s eyes. When I am mocked or persecuted because of my love of you, I ask that you shower me with your mercy and grace so I can respond with love and humility.
  4. Carrying of the Cross  Mt 27:31-32  (For the Virtue of Patience)  Lord, the first thing that pops into my heard after reading this verse…is that Simon was forced to carry the cross.  Am I so different from him?  When I am sent crosses to bear, I am always looking for ways to alleviate my struggle, pain, and difficulty.  It seems that I am sometimes forced to carry my crosses…and in the process I become closer to you, and my cross becomes a blessing.  Help me to not only carry my own burdens willingly and lovingly, but also open my eyes to ways I can carry some of the burdens of those around me…lightening the pain and suffering of others so it is bearable for them.  Help me to be a blessing to all those in need, that you place on my path.
  5. The Crucifixion  Luke 23:34  Luke 23:45-46  (For the Grace of Final Perseverance)  My dear Lord, You suffered and died in my place.  Thank you for the love and mercy that stream from you.  Thank you for loving me.  When I am hurt or when evil surrounds me, help me to always ask God to forgive them, for they know not what they do.  And please fill me with your grace, that I may say, in total faith, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”

May your day be blessed in the love and light of Jesus, Our Lord. May your heart be touched through these Sorrowful Mysteries.
Please feel free to comment with any questions or thoughts.

Pray the Rosary A Saint Joseph Edition  A wonderful little pamphlet.

 


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How Praying The Rosary Changed My Life

My relationship with Jesus became  much more intimate, and my faith life, and life in general, was changed because of my relationship with His Mother. You can read a little of how that change was inspired here.

Praying and meditating on the Rosary transformed my life, and could transform yours, too.

Many people ask me about the Rosary, and do not understand why someone would pray to Mary, and not just directly to Jesus.  Although I am a cradle Catholic, I had the same questions for many years.

Until I was personally led by the Holy Spirit to meditate and pray the Rosary.

By opening my heart to Our Lord’s Blessed Mother, I was enveloped in her motherly love for me, and in and through that  love, was drawn closer and closer to her Son.  Once I realized in my soul that Mary is actually the Mother of God, the mother of Jesus, my heart was then opened to the knowledge that she is also my mother.  (think about it…if you believe that Jesus is the Son of God the Father and Mary, and God is also your Father (thus Jesus is your brother) …then it is logical to know that Mary is your Mother.  As our Mother, wouldn’t it be true that she would want what is best for us?  That she would want to guide us toward Jesus…our Savior?  That she would intercede for us to her Son, as she did at the wedding in Cana?

While praying the Rosary, there are four sets of Mysteries that are reflected on.  With prayerful meditation, these mysteries are life changing.  For information and instruction on how to pray the rosary click here.

In the chance that my meditations may be a blessing to you, I thought I would share some of my personal reflections associated with each one.  I certainly do not wish to insinuate that these thoughts are doctrines or formal teachings of the Catholic Church.  These thoughts are personal revelations or enlightenments to me, through the Holy Spirit.

The Lord will reveal Himself to you, personally, as you pray the Holy Rosary.

There are four sets of mysteries that are used for meditation on certain days of the week.  The Joyful Mysteries are said on Monday and Saturday.  Today is Monday, so I will start there.

There are five meditations associated with the Joyful Mysteries. I will cover each one.

  1.  The Annunciation  Luke 1:26-38   (For the love of humility)  Dear Lord, please help me to live my life with perfect trust in You, just as Mary did.  Help me to be your vessel…to have the openness to God’s will and the humility of Mary.  Help me to trust in you completely, even when not understanding the situation or where it may take me.   Allow me to say and have faith in Mary’s  words, “I am the Lord’s servant,” Mary answered. “May your word to me be fulfilled.”
  2.   The Visitation  Luke 1:39-56  (For charity toward my neighbor)  Dear Lord, please help me to be a vessel, allowing your light and love to flow from me to the ones you place in my life.  Guide me to be understanding of the needs of my loved ones, and also any person that you place on my path.  You are perfect love.  I can never be enough myself to love your children the way that you do.  I can never fill the holes in their hearts or heal all that troubles them.  I ask that you fill my heart with You, and pour your love through me, even when I am unaware of the miracle taking place.  Help me to learn to love as you love, to see as you see, to hear as you hear.  Help me to have the spirit and faith of Mary, “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful
    of the humble state of his servant.”
  3. The Nativity  Luke 2:8-14  (For love of God)  Dear Lord, please help me to remember that You were born  into our world in poverty…placed in a manger, lovingly and with full trust in your providence, by Joesph and Mary.  Help me to understand the importance of family, and that the strength of the family is dependent on the foundation of God and His Truth, Love, and Mercy.  Help me to be open to your Love, so that I can be a reflection of You, to my family and friends.  And as I fall short, please work through me.
  4. The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple  Luke 2:22-35  Luke 2:39-40   (For a Spirit of Sacrifice)  Dear Lord, help me to always offer my life, my marriage, and my family to you, that you will use our lives to further your kingdom.  When I was a young mother, I did not understand the beauty of sacrifice, and I selfishly wanted to keep  my children for my own, only seeking their happiness in this world, and holding back from presenting them and myself to you…for your purpose.  I ask that you fill in for my ignorance and selfishness, and ask that you infuse us all with your presence, while guiding us in your light, and in your purpose.  Help us to use the difficulties in this life to bring us closer to you, and help me to remember to present myself to you each and every day, for you to work through.
  5. The Finding of Jesus in the Temple  Luke 2:41-52  (For zeal for the Glory of God)  Dear Lord, help me to always desire to be in your presence.  You knew that you belonged in your Father’s house.  Help me to have trust and faith that I too belong in my Father’s house.  Help me to always invite you into my heart, to fill me with your love, mercy, wisdom, joy, and understanding, to help me and my life glorify the Father.

May your day be blessed in the love and light of Jesus, Our Lord.  May your heart be touched through these Joyful Mysteries.

Please feel free to comment with any questions.

Pray the Rosary  A Saint Joseph Edition  A wonderful little pamphlet.


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It Is What It Is…Except When It Isn’t

More and more lately, I am hearing people say a common phrase in a dejected kind of way…”It is what it is.”  I understand what they are trying to communicate, and many times they are correct in their assessment of a situation they are engulfed in.

Whenever I hear that phrase, it just doesn’t sit right with my spirit.  Because I know in my soul, the truth really is “It is what it is…except when it isn’t.”

You see, I have learned many lessons throughout my life, many of which took more years than I want to admit.  There have been countless times that my life seemed hopeless, and it seemed as though I was in a dark hole with no way to escape.  My personal reality during those dark times was filled with  seemingly hopeless situations that I allowed to rob my joy, and a life permeated with helplessness, confusion, pain, guilt, shame and no sense of self at all.   After the many times I tried to employ the “self help” teachings I learned about, and even made some progress, I eventually sunk back into the familiar black pit.

Looking back, I can see clearly when the changes started happening, although while I was living those years I did not “see” it.  When my oldest son was a year old, my husband and I had been married for three years.  We were going through trauma in our marriage, and at that time I was really sinking fast.  I loved my son, and my husband, but I was miserable.  Yes, the situation “was what it was”, but my eyes and heart were blinded to the miracles that were happening in the unseen.

While I was swirling around in the darkness, I was guided to attend a Renewal Weekend with my best friend at our Church.  I did not fully understand the concept of totally accepting Jesus into my heart and life on that weekend.  What I did understand was that God loved me and wanted the best for me.  All weekend I prayed only for my marriage.  I remember that I prayed that God would help my husband to love me even half as much as I loved him.

A simple prayer.

After the Renewal Weekend, our marriage and my life did not seem to change much.  I often  questioned why God wasn’t answering my prayers.  However, there were more little “miracles” that peeled layer upon layer of gunk from both of our hearts.  I was led to another Catholic Renewal Weekend, about 10 years later than my first one, and this time my heart and soul was touched in a way that is indescribable.  I understood what my stumbling block was from listening to the testimony of one witness.  My whole wall that I had built up around my heart was shaken when I heard one sentence that she spoke…

“I forgive you, daddy.” 

These words tore into me so hard that I ran out of the room, and was not only crying, but heaving and releasing pain from deep within my being.

That weekend started a new journey of healing and trust in God, and the decision that my husband and I made to dedicate our marriage to the Lord.  We made the decision to trust him to guide us, and teach us to be happy in our marriage…for neither of us had a clue how to be happy, and did not understand what the sacrament of marriage truly was.

This April, Joe and I will be married 37 years.  We have a marriage and relationship that I never even could have imagined or comprehended.  The Lord blessed me with a husband that is loving, kind, patient, trustworthy, and lots of fun.  We are best friends, and although enjoy spending time with our family and friends, our favorite place to be is with each other.  Our marriage is the crowing glory of our lives…it is our vocation and an important part of our ministry to share Christ’s love.

Now I look back and know that all through the years, the Lord was working all the stuff and gunk in our lives into good…totally in the “unseen.”  He was weaving a beautiful tapestry from the tiny little scraps we were able to offer him.  Because he loves us THAT much.

He loves YOU that much too! 

Always remember, “It is what it is…except when it isn’t.”  For the Lord works all toward good for those who love him…even when you can’t “see” it.

 

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.   Hebrews 11:1

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.    Ephesians 6:12

For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.    Colossians 1:16;

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans  8:28

 

 

 

 


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A Simple Path

After watching the beautiful film about Mother Teresa’s  ministry and life, I was led to read “A Simple Path” to learn more about her faith.

There is such simplicity in Mother Teresa’s total love and trust in Jesus that I cannot keep myself from being filled with the Holy Spirit as I read!

I would love to share a beautiful  prayer with you.  It is one of the daily prayers that the sisters say each day.  May God bless you as you read:

 

Deliver me, O Jesus,

From the desire of being loved,

From the desire of being extolled,

From the desire of being honored,

From the desire of being praised,

From the desire of being preferred,

From the desire of being consulted,

From the desire of being approved,

From the desire of being popular,

From the fear of being humiliated,

From the fear of being despised,

From the fear of suffering rebukes,

From the fear of being calumniated,

From the fear of being forgotten,

From the fear of being wronged,

From the fear of being ridiculed,

From the fear of being suspected.

 

Wow!  Love is simple.  However, this completely selfless type of love and trust in Jesus only comes to our hearts by the power of the Holy Spirit.

May God bless you and fill your heart with His love!

 

 


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Looking Outside of Ourselves

Recently, I was reading a convert’s testimony, and one of her thoughts flew out at me.

The idea is, that being human, we tend to compare ourselves and our lives to those that have more than us.  This tendency, coupled with the intense marketing of Hollywood and our culture, many times leads us to covet what we don’t have.  It’s such an “exciting” world out there, and we are missing out!  We start to focus and want (the catch phrase for this desire is “dream”) all the things that we feel we are missing out on.  Material possessions, status, beauty, glamor, lifestyle, education level, etc., start to dominate our thoughts.  We may even begin to wonder why God hasn’t blessed us with these things.  Why would He provide certain things for  others, and not for us?

When we allow our thoughts and heart to dwell on what we don’t have, we are stuck in the “me” position.  As much as we don’t want to face the truth, that is a very selfish place to be.

Instead of looking at all that WE don’t have, the better focus would be to open our eyes to the people around us that have much less than we do.  Not to feel “better” about ourselves in comparison, but to learn to be content and grateful for the gifts God has blessed us with, and look for ways to help our brothers and sisters.

In essence, we need to change our focus from looking toward ourselves, to looking outside of ourselves and seeing a world in need.

Lord, thank you for all the grace and blessings you have bestowed on me through your loving Spirit.

I ask that you open my eyes to the ways I can share your love and the blessings in my life, with all those who are in need.

Please enlighten me to become more aware of those who are hurting and lonely, and open my heart so I know how to be of help to them.

Reveal to me those who are hungry in order that I can share with them…not only food, but also love and friendship.

Open my heart and  fill it with compassion, for those who are traveling a dark path without You.  Help me to be there in love for them, instead of judging them.

Help me to always be grateful for the mercy  you have bestowed on me, and empower me to always search for a way to love those you place in my life each day. 

For it is through that love, that they will see your face when they look at me.

The Happy Prince   This is a beautiful story of selfless giving.  It has been my favorite since I was a child.  There are parts I literally can’t read out loud because they touch my heart so deeply.  Enjoy.


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Lord, Forgive Us

Yesterday was Election Day.  So many thoughts are going through my mind today.

How could there be so many with their eyes closed to what is happening right before them?  This country, and the world, would be a different place if we really lived our Faith.

How can a Christian support the killing of innocent babies in the womb?

How can a Christian support homosexual “marriage”?

How can a Christian support the government’s right to forcibly take away money, through taxes,  from its citizens and hand it out to others?  Shouldn’t we be loving and charitable with our money and possessions, in the ways we are personally called?  Have you seen some of the disgusting ways our money is being used? (take a look at what they are doing and teaching in our schools)

How can a Christian trust, support and give the right to the government regarding our healthcare?  Why would we give up our God given freedom and hand it over to the government?

How can a Christian support the government’s right  to be in charge of dispensing our hard earned money?  Why would we trust the government to use our money in any way they deem fit?  Wouldn’t a Christian want to support causes that the Lord leads them to…and choose the way he is led in charity?

Why do we support a government that is chipping away at religious freedom?  Why would anyone accept that “Heather has Two Mommies” is ok, however, “The Bible” is not?  Why is it ok for the government to force companies or Churches to comply with the government’s truth concerning areas of religious faith?

Why do we blame guns for the wickedness that is running rampant in the hearts of men, however, we are unable to teach the Saving Power of God, or even mention His name in our schools…when HE is the only answer to the blackness that is overtaking souls?

Please, let’s take a step back and look at what is happening all around us.  The questions I just asked are just a small portion of what has been sneaking into our country while we are sleeping.

Or are we just pretending to be asleep so we don’t have to take a stand?

What I see is a government that is phasing God out, and stepping in to take God’s place.

Is that what you want?  Is that what we desire for future generations?  Something to think about, isn’t it?

 

Lord, please forgive us for our laziness, complacency, and sinful pride. 

We ask that you send your Holy Spirit to search our hearts for the sins in our lives that need to be acknowledged, and ask for the humility needed to allow us to beg your forgiveness.

We throw ourselves at your feet, and rest in your healing mercy and grace.

Jesus, have mercy on us.  Jesus, save us.  Jesus, lead us to fulfill your purpose.

Amen.

 

Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,  Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations   Jeremiah 1:4-5

For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.   I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.  My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.  Psalms 139:13-15

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.   Romans 1:26-27

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.  Genesis 2:24

Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.  Luke 6:38

But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.   Acts 5:29


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Eye Hath Not Seen

It’s a funny time of year for me…it’s almost autumn.  The hot and humid days of the summer have disappeared, and for now, here in Virginia, we’ve been enjoying weather in the seventies and low eighties.  The sun is still shining brightly, however, there is that unmistakable crispness in the air.  The nights are cool.

All that is missing…is what I love the very most…the colors of fall.

Why do I love fall?  Let me count the ways.  The smell of campfires, and hot dogs roasting.  The beautiful color palette that spreads so beautifully right in front of our eyes.  The crunch of leaves under our feet as we walk.  Pumpkins, apple cider, beef stew, a big pot of chili with friends, apple cake.   Either a cup of warm cocoa or a cold mug of craft beer in my hand…there is a time and place for both, depending on the occasion!  For me, nothing touches my heart and senses like the autumn season.

When I think of the beauty of fall, and nature in general, my thoughts always drift to one of my favorite Bible verses:

“But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”  1 Corinthians 2:9

How could anyone doubt the existence, power and glory of God when witnessing the beauty all around us?  When I am outside, surrounded by the creativity and majesty of God, I feel so blessed and grateful.  Who really needs the artificial pleasures of this world, when God has gifted us with His holy and majestic creations all around us?

And let’s take that a step forward…according to 1 Corinthians 2:9, we cannot even FATHOM what the Lord has planned for us when we are in heaven with Him.  Perfect joy, perfect peace, basking in God’s perfect light and love.  Colors, sounds, feelings that we are not even capable of conceiving in thought, are being prepared for us right now!

Even more beautiful than fall?  Isn’t that exciting?

Dear Lord, please help me to always trust in your Word and your Love for me.  Help me to open my heart, mind, body and soul to your Holy Spirit, so as to fill me with the pure joy that only comes from you.  That joy is so complete, that I will not be able to contain it…help me to share your saving grace with a world in need. 

Help me to see that for me, the world is encompassed in my daily life.  Lord, please open my eyes to all the ways I can serve you today through reaching out, in your love, to the people you place in my life.

I ask these things in the name of Jesus.

For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse.           Romans 1:20