Just a reminder that you and I serve a wonderful, merciful, omnipotent God. His love is unconditional and all-consuming. He also knows that we, as mere human beings, cannot begin to understand the implications of His love and mercy, so … Continue reading
“Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.”
William Shakespeare Sonnet 116
Some believe that a man ‘decides‘ to romantically fall in love with a girl. I am not sure how a person would decide to have romantic feelings nor do I believe that this would be a good thing. Instead, I hope to convince you that romantic love is sacrifice, not a decision. Sacrifice is often the most revealing sign of romantic love.
Actions Are Evidence
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Please don’t scroll past this video. Whatever you’re doing, I’m begging you to take the time to listen to this song and remember that you are a unique, handsewn, handpicked creation of God, who makes no mistakes. Stop trying to … Continue reading
I’ve been lazy lately, I guess. I’ve been posting songs rather than actual blog posts, but maybe these songs can say more than I can. This one in particular is really beautiful, a song I just discovered recently on accident. In the indie folk genre, you’re, of course, bound to find plenty of religious cynicism and anti-Christian sentiment, but Sufjan Stevens is clearly the exception. A devout Christian, he lets his faith inspire much of his songwriting.
So, listen to this, it’s beautiful. The lyrics are simple and honest.
Hey, guys! Happy Friday! Sorry, I know I haven’t posted much recently. Busy.
Anyway, not sure if you guys know who Danielle Rose is, but maybe it’ll ring a bell if I tell you she’s the one who sang “Crown of Thorns” (which she wrote) at the Verizon Center pep rally for the 2011 March for Life. I’ve seen her twice, and I really like her.
This song is called “The Saint That Is Just Me.” I think we can all relate to that feeling that we want to do something BIG to prove our faith to God, ourselves and those around us. We look at the saints and see these great acts, these brutal martyrdoms, and we begin to think that if we want to be true followers of Christ, we have to follow suit.
My patron saint is St. Maria Goretti. Her story is beautiful and very famous in the Catholic world. An eleven-year-old girl is stabbed fourteen times in the stomach and chest defending her purity AND the purity of her would-be rapist. As she lies dying in the hospital, she tells the priest that she forgives her murderer and wants him to be with her in heaven. How incredible. The problem is, for a while, I actually prayed for martyrdom. I prayed that God would let me show my love for Him through some dramatic act of witness.
Then I listened to this song, and the lyrics really opened something inside of me:
“If it weren’t for all my sins and wounds and weakness, then You wouldn’t have married me upon the Cross.”
You guys, God isn’t asking me to be St. Maria Goretti or Agnes or Lucy or any other. He’s asking me to be Katy, and right now, I don’t fully know what that entails. I just have to trust God, swallow my pride, let go of the desire for my own personal glory, and accept that God’s calling me to serve Him in my own unique way.
I’m going to close with a simple but powerful quote from Mother Teresa:
“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.”
“Christ is my spouse. He chose me first, and His I will be. He made my soul beautiful with the jewels of grace and virtue. I belong to Him whom the angels serve.” – St. Agnes of Rome
This is the first saint quote I ever learned, back when I was about ten. I think it’s so beautiful, and the words, mind you, are coming from a girl of about twelve, right in the face of Roman persecution. Yes, a twelve-old-girl was martyred over these words in the third century. All I’m saying, when I get to heaven, God willing, she’s getting a serious high-five. May we all follow her example.
Sorry, I haven’t been posting much lately. I have half a dozen saved drafts, but I guess I haven’t had the time to really write. Anyway, today during Morality, our campus minister gave a beautiful, inspiring presentation on service.
She ended with this video. The song playing is “Tears of the Saints” by Leeland, and it’s great. The clips in this video just reminded me what it means to be a true disciple of Christ, light to a world in darkness. If you’re struggling to remember your greater purpose, I think this will help. ♥
You taught the sun to shine so bright,
to hide beneath the hills and trees at night.
You made all things with a purpose,
You gave us each a soul,
and, Jesus, only You can make me whole.
I spent a long time struggling in vain
to make sense of existence based on chance,
a universe without a God to tell the skies to rain,
where chromosomes and DNA declare us all the same,
and love is the effect of raw endorphins to the brain,
and I am no creation of God’s hands.
Those hands that hold and love and give,
hands that curled in pain
as He, by His children, was tortured and slain,
so that sinners like me could live,
and choose to misuse and hate and abuse
and refuse His very name.
We hurt Him and aggrieve Him,
but He loves us all the same.
Jesus, I’ll know You’ll be with me
for whatever comes.
my soul waits for the day You’ll call me Home.
I’m writing you a letter from the front pew.
The people around me are crying.
I look at them,
and I wonder whether I should be crying, too.
Everyone expects me to be the one girl
monopolizing the Kleenex box
as she tries to write a coherent, cohesive letter
to a friend who changed her life,
a tear-stained, tell-all, pour-your-heart-out letter
saying everything I never told you.
But mostly, just to say “Thank you.”
I think my dry eyes are a product
of my belief that,
at any given moment,
we’ll all turn to see your smiling face,
hear your every-bit-as-smiling voice,
and dry our eyes.
That’s just the effect you’ve always had on people,
And now I’ve joined the weeping bunch,
because I’m remembering.
I know that voice, I’ve seen that smile,
I remember your scent
and the exact tightness of your hugs.
I was thirteen when I met you.
You were sitting in a canvas chair,
you wore a bandana
because you didn’t have hair.
I was skinny and pale and depressed,
I’d barely left my room in months.
But when I talked to you,
I somehow knew
that at least one person cared.
Claudia, you said
how amazed you were
to see the changes in me.
I saw them, too,
and I saw that you had hair now.
Dark, thick curls like mine.
I thanked God—
—something I had started doing more often lately.
I really was different.
I never saw you lose your hair again.
I don’t even remember the last time I saw you.
I never told you that you saved me,
but you didn’t care whose handiwork it was:
you were just happy to see me happy,
and that made me happy to know you.
I think that’s why,
at your Mass,
I’m more grateful for you
than sad about missing you.
I didn’t really find God until my freshman year of high school. At my school, all freshmen take Doctrinal Foundations as an introductory course to the Catholic faith. As you can imagine, that class involved memorizing a lot of Greek- and Latin-based vocabulary that only Catholics use. That’s how I learned the word metanoia, Greek for “change of heart.” I’ve never forgotten that word. It was just so applicable to everything I was going through at the time, and everything I still go through on a regular basis.
Right now, though, metanoia is applicable to the theme of conversion, one of the most wonderful things I can name. Just recently, I came across this article about Leah Libresco, a former atheist blogger who experienced a beautiful conversion to Catholicism. In popular culture, actor Mark Wahlberg speaks openly of the personal experiences that led him to become a devout Catholic who attends daily Mass with his wife. Do we all see how incredible metanoia is?
One of my favorite Scripture verses is Psalm 130:6: “My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for morning.” Every soul thirsts for Christ and His love. Often, we just don’t realize it, so we end up searching elsewhere for something or someone to take the edge off our longing. I tried too damn long to drown out that emptiness before I found God. Nothing worked. God came to me in the peak of my depression and self-loath, and He blessed me with metanoia. That change of heart has made all the difference in my life.
Goodnight, you guys! I hope you all sleep well, remembering that Jesus knows your lowest lows and loves you all the same. Turn your heart towards Him, and He’ll never let you fall. ♥
~ katy, thelightiswhite