Happy Wednesday, everyone! I am excited to present a guest post from another digital friend and fellow Catholic blogger, Allison Gingras. May the joy of the Lord be your strength!
Delight Yourself in the Lord
The first part was easier than I thought to accomplish because the Catholic faith is so rich in ways to encounter Christ in our everyday, ordinary life. I could not imagine my life not filled with prayer, Scripture, and the sacraments. St. Paul encouraged us in his letter to the Thessalonians to, “pray without ceasing”, so whether folding laundry, driving the car or reading a book, I do everything with a prayerful heart. I will say a prayer of thanksgiving for each member of my family as I put their dishes into the dishwasher, say the rosary while taking a walk, or praise the Lord for the talent bestowed an author as I read their book.
Introduced to the Scriptures, ten years ago, has transformed my faith life. Scripture offers me an opportunity to listen to Jesus speak which naturally produces within me a better sense of his voice in my life. Learning that Scripture is good for all teaching and reproof allowed me to give it a more prominent role in developing my faith; not a day goes by I don’t take a moment to ponder a verse or two. For me, I wanted to memorize a few special verses to embrace on tough days when I need encouragement, particularly helpful when writer’s block strikes or my children are teetering on that last nerve!
Here are a few of my favorites:
Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. ~ Phil 4:6-7
Whoever acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God remains in him and he in God. We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us. God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him. In this is love brought to perfection among us, that we have confidence on the day of judgment because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love. ~ 1 John 4:15-18
Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence[b] of things not seen. Because of it the ancients were well attested. By faith we understand that the universe was ordered by the word of God, so that what is visible came into being through the invisible. ~ Hebrews 11:1-3
Lastly, the Sacraments are where I go to dip into God’s well-spring of grace. Grace is that undeserved yet freely given gift of God’s Holy Spirit within us [ That is the simplified “Allison abridged” definition of grace]. That Spirit born from His great love that moves us to deeper faith, obedience, and hope. When I am feeling distant or discouraged, the remedy is always found in participation in and living out the grace found in the sacraments. Particularly finding additional times during the week for Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, or making a really good (and frequent) Confession.
Gifts are best when they are received, opened, and used. I try my best never to waste the grace present, promised, and abundant in the Sacraments!
The Desires God has Placed upon Your Heart
So, what about the desires of our heart? How will you discover what that means to you?
How do you delight yourself in the Lord? What desire of your heart has He fulfilled? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.