Wednesday, January 23, 2013
What I Learned Wednesday #7
1) Well, I made it through two Sunday (well, one Sunday and one Saturday Vigil) Masses in a row. Yes! This is the first time I've been able to do so in months. My stomach problems (going on 6 months now... wow) have kept me from it but I've been fighting back. I found that attending confessions at one parish (closest one with Saturday confessions), coming home to get something to eat, and then heading to our home parish for Saturday Vigil Mass works best for me. Last Saturday was also the first time I had been able to receive the Eucharist in a long time. I cried tears of joy when I did and thanked God for allowing me the opportunity to do so. You know how much you love the Eucharist and that feeling of being able to receive it until you are unable to. The Luminous Mysteries prayers in the 54 Day Rosary Novena have us focus on and ask for the petition of love for the Eucharist and it has certainly made me more aware of what a blessing it is. I've done the novena two times before but never has this particular mystery impacted me more than it has this time around. I even noticed how calm I was when I was taken to the E.R. (it was a combo of stomach problems, anxiety, and perhaps a bit of dehydration since I was given an I.V.) and even, when I was by myself and had nothing to do but recuperate and think, calmly looked up and said "God, I will do your will. Use me as you wish." I'm basically learning to trust God more and let my own anxieties go (which, any person with anxiety and panic disorder will tell you, is hard to do when you're worried about what may happen to you).
2) I've also noticed something about my prayer life. Since I have started properly praying The Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary my prayer life and faith has greatly improved. When I mean properly I mean doing it at the assigned hours (much like the Liturgy of the Hours). A lot of the worries and stresses I had don't seem that important anymore. It's not easy to keep up with the prayers, especially after long nights that lead to waking up late, but I've been making an honest effort to keep it up. I've also been doing the pre-Vatican II prayers instead of the ones from post-Vatican II and I've found that I prefer them because of the language. I'm someone who appreciates language (hi, I write for a living) and I feel more centered and connected with the "old fashioned" language than I do with the modern version. Some people might find some things in the prayers "harsher" (because of how strong -- but not profane -- some readings are) but I know it's definitely kept me thinking more about my words and actions during the day. You have to get out of the "it's all about me" mentality my generation is plagued with and think more about doing His will.
3) I've been catching up with the Catechism in a Year emails and have found them more fulfilling than the two years at my CINO college alma mater. By far. Let me get this bit of sarcasm out of the way: 'cause you know, why on earth would a "Catholic" college teach Catholicism? That's crazy talk! Pfft. lol. Okay, now that that's out of the way, I'm happy to say that a lot of things I believed have been affirmed instead of being told I was wrong, close minded, or hearing that the Church is this and that. There were a couple of times in which I was reminded of a lecture in which a professor said the opposite and it made me laugh... and cringe. I am sure these things are still being taught and I'm sorry I'm not there to at least put up some kind of fight. In the homily this past weekend, Fr. Timothy talked about the gifts we were each given. When he said "maybe you have the gift of writing" something in me moved. I am not saying that I have a gift of writing or of words but it's my preferred way of communicating. During the rest of the homily I thought about how to best use the gifts I've been given and how to use it for good. Since I've been on writing roll (freelance assignments, novel, etc) lately, I've been thinking that it would be a good time to start that book about my experiences at the CINO college. It will definitely be easier to write than my novel (which I am still editing; it's the never ending edit-a-thon). I've cut down my leisure time (well, I've cut out wasting time watching shows I am not interested in, playing online games, etc but have increased my reading time) so I have the time. We'll see. ;)
And this is officially much longer than I anticipated. Sorry! You know my excuse: I'm a writer... I love to write. lol. I haven't written in a week so, you know, I'm making up for loss time? lol.
Anyway, I should go finish cleaning my room (which isn't that bad but still) and make myself some lunch before I continue with my freelance writing assignments. I hope to have them published soon-ish. I will provide the links to the website where they'll be published as they become available. :)
I hope y'all are having a good week thus far. Don't forget to send me your prayer requests if you have any. :D Oh! And if you write a #WILW post, let me know and I'll edit this post with your own links. :)
As always, thanks for reading and God bless.