Catholic Faith · Conversion · Davis Family · Italy · LadyEm · PrayerLife · Saints · Word of the Year

Word & Saint of the Year…

Dear Ones,

Happy Monday! Happy 24th Day of 2021! I hope it’s going well so far, for you.

I’m sorry it’s been three weeks since I’ve blogged. What you need to know about me is – when I get worried or life gets busy, I don’t tend to come to my blog. Why? Because I don’t have a lot of nice things to say sometimes. The boredom of not working and being shut down in a foreign country, the lack of Mass and normalcy, and all the political and COVID news has stunted my brain. Our home is full of angst-ridden people. Sigh.

Take heart… there is so much HOPE! Today we celebrate the Conversion of Saint Paul. And I have to say, when I was reading this morning about him, I was reminded how awful he was to Christians. He sought out Christians to have them out to death for following Our Lord. And as I sat there reading about his conversion in The Acts of the Apostles, I thought to myself – “Look what God did with Saul/Paul! There is HOPE FOR ME!”

You know, my WORD OF THE YEAR is TRANSFORM (Thanks @Jennifer Fulwiler). And while I know it must seem lame to y’all that I just can’t get it together, I can assure you that it’s no joke to live it. When Mama is out of sorts – the house crumbles, y’all. Sigh. And while I am working hard to remain positive and get things done, I also keep things REAL!

PLEASE NOTE THE WORD CONVERT!

After much prayer… it’s clear that this is the year of ME. Now wait a minute – you know, if you follow my blog that I do many things for everyone else, to the point that I don’t always get done what I need to get done. I need to take a step back from humanity… and I need to get healthy mentally and physically and take back my life a little bit. In a way that may sound selfish but is completely necessary. God has really put on my heart that I need to transform the way I live… the way I think… the way I pray…. I need a conversion of heart and mind. In all the woes of life, I really have lost sight of my purpose. Which sounds entirely ridiculous. But it’s true. Things I am working on in my conversion…

  • Putting Catholicity First – Living Liturgically — in a way that we have not done here.
    • When we homeschooled and were super plugged in to our great Parish in Fort Worth, it was so easy. But the transient Military Catholic Church is not the same. Sigh.
    • Revamp my prayer life.
  • Get mentally and physically healthy
  • Get back to Blogging for the Lord
  • Get back to working a job (any job)
  • Get back to crafting more. I miss it.

I think part of my exasperation comes from feeling separated from Jesus in the form of the Eucharist… Yes, we do say the Spiritual Communion, but I feel like HE IS MISSING from the Mass when we watch from home. Because of our lack of Eucharist and Sacraments, I believe we ARE distant from our Faith – in a way that I can only describe as climbing a mountain that keeps getting taller. You just can’t reach the top. Sigh. We do go to Mass every couple weeks. And we count ourselves blessed to be able to receive Jesus. Pray for Us!

Funny enough, my SAINT OF THE YEAR is ST. TERESA OF AVILA. It is not lost on me that she is the patron of People in Need of Grace, amongst other things. People are always saying, “Emily, you need to give yourself grace!” Sigh. Part of my giving myself grace is transforming myself back into a more organized, self-healing kind of lady. I’m going to spend my year getting to know her.

Back to Saint Paul’s Conversion… if you are feeling low, and full of angst, anger, doubt about faith, our world, and other things. Put yourself on the path to Damascus with Saul (now Paul – Paul is the Greek translation of the Hebrew name Saul, fyi) and ask God to help you transform whilst you walk with Him. God took a murderous atheist that was hunting Christians and not only forgave him but converted him into one of the Apostles, and builder of His Church. And God will certainly come to us when we call on him as we walk our own continued conversions. But it’s up to us to listen for and act on God’s plans for us. We must learn to control our thoughts. We must put our pasts behind us. This is the hardest for me. But it hit me today that I am JUST AS FORGIVEN and malleable as Paul. And I am so thankful for the Saints before us and their great and HOLY examples.

I am hopeful and determined today, Dear Ones, and I hope you are too. No matter what – Jesus loves you. Walk with Him!

I’ll be back soon.
Love, Hugs & Blessings…
Lady Em

Catholic Book Reviews · Catholic Faith · Catholic Mom · Emily (Me) · Equipping Catholic Families · Prayer Journal · Uncategorized

Book Review Wednesday – Prompt Me to Pray

It is NO exaggeration to say that life is BUSY. Even in the midst of a COVID shut down here in Italy, I am still mom, wife, dog walker, animal feeder, PTSA President, friend, writer, paper crafter, family taxi, counselor, secretary, janitor, schedule coordinator, menu planner/shopper… you get what I mean – right?

I have told myself for years that God understands the busy-ness of motherhood and wifedom. God wants more from me (from you too) – and that is what this book will help each reader accomplish. Wherever you are in your prayer life, this book presents ideas and prompts to help you focus and grow your daily prayer into a better relationship with God. 

I purpose to read the Magnificat and pray Novenas, and Rosaries, etc. Many days, these things happen, but I will admit to you dear readers, that sometimes I get busy and forget….

Enter… Prompt Me to Pray

I have read many books about praying, but really, the tagline in that picture above, where it says “A Practical Plan for More Consistent Prayer from the Heart” – NAILED IT! Just saying.

This book encouraged me to start a prayer journal — not just writing out prayer requests for other people, but actually stopping to think about what I am asking, praying for and waiting on guidance. In essence, this prayer journal I am creating is like recording my conversation with God and the action plan He sets forth.

For some readers, this book presents a plan to find prompts and notice what prompts you (the reader) to pray throughout the day. I love that part, but I am already there. So when I told Monica I’d review this book, I thought – this is going to be my “dig deeper” resource. And it is. 

I am a prayer warrior. I constantly pray for other people. It’s a gift. But what I forget to do is purpose to pray for my needs, my family’s needs, our world, and every little thing.

I write down prayers for others, but I don’t take the time to write out my prayers for ME. And that, dear readers, is what is missing in my Prayer/Conversation with God. Yes, I pray for things I need. I’m human.  But I don’t converse the way Monica writes about in this book. And that has to change.

If you ask me who should read this book, I’d say anyone over the age of 11. I think it will appeal to teens learning to implement prayer journaling and purposeful praying into their everyday lives. Certainly would be a great book for Confirmandi to use.

Because of how the base chapel is run, I need to become the DRE (Director of Religious Ed) here at home. When I homeschooled, I was so good about it. Life has really overtaken us, and I am going to purpose to pray and use this lockdown the take back our Catholicity. I know that God will lead me. Pray for me, dear Readers.

I almost forgot. 

I am super excited about the Catholic Mom Bundle for Advent 2020. It can be overwhelming to even broach the thought of an organized and Liturgical Advent when you have littles. BUT – I promise you there is something in this bundle for everyone. For me, it’s the Prompt Me to Pray Advent eBook. It’s NOT available online yet, but is free with the purchase of this bundle, using Monica’s Affiliate Link.

This picture below is from Monica’s Website – Arma Dei – Equipping Catholic Families. The Affiliate Link mentioned is here – Catholic Mom Bundle Advent 2020

And don’t forget to check back on her website where I am sure the Prompt Me to Pray This Advent will eventually be sold as a standalone purchase, along with Prompt Me to Pray with the Saints !

Dear Ones, thank you for reading my post as always. May you find the path to God through Prayer – like the Saints did. Who is your favorite praying Saint? I mean – they all prayed, but we all have personal favorites. Let me know.

Love, Hugs & Blessings,
Lady Em

Catholic · PrayerLife · PrayerLifeStruggles

Prayer Life — There Will Be Dry Spells

…there will be DRY SPELLS!

Happy Monday Dear Ones,

When you think of your heart healing, what do you see? It’s funny, I googled “healing hearts” and there were so many images, but this one to the left is what I feel like my heart looks like. It’s patched, and cracked and worn, but red and has light around it. God is healing me! Thank you Lord.

I have prayed my whole life, as long as I can remember. I have lived through things that I pray most people don’t experience. I’m one tough cookie. But I have a fatal flaw… ok, a couple.

Before I point out my flaws and talk about Dry Spells in Prayer life… I wanted to say this…

It is not enough to say to a person who walks through tragedy, loss, a move across the ocean (read: this is also about me) “Pray About It”. It’s like telling a Catholic person they should go to Mass and receive the Eucharist. DUH! Right? WE KNOW!

Yes – people mean well, they do. But most of us have prayed all our lives. The thing is, we must be effective in our prayers. We must allow ourselves the chance to listen to God. We must take a step back from things (read: also people) that cause us to sin, and regroup so we can focus on the message. In short, we must keep walking through the desert of the dry spell when it seems like God has forsaken us, is not listening to or communicating with us in any way. These are the times he is most effective in teaching us.

This brings me to yesterday’s Gospel — The Gospel of St. Luke, Chapter 12: 32-48. Bottom line – we don’t know when our time will come. We have to be ready for it. We have to live our lives the right way, and love our families/friends and even enemies. Did you just hit that brick wall with me? Sigh ENEMIES. I have to love them too? YES! Yes you do. Welcome to my fatal flaw. I’m sick of ugly people that cross my path. SICK of the judgment. SICK of them. Thanks for listening. God doesn’t care that I am sick of them. He needs me to see something in this. He needs me to pray for them and learn from them. (Is being too dramatic a FLAW?)

God never promised us that life would be easy. Those of us who are faithful struggle as much or perhaps more than those who are not. Because when we can see the truth, we know what we are supposed to do – AND we all have a conscience. We always feel bad when we FAIL. And we fail. Don’t we? We condemn ourselves as not good enough; not thin enough, smart enough; not worthy of friendship; or even not a good enough Catholic…. (MAJOR FLAW). I hope it’s not just me (also a flaw).

I really feel like I am in a prolonged dry spell where my prayers, seemed unanswered. To make it worse, here in Italy, I have come across many who are only kind/helpful to people they perceive to be in authority. The rest of us are just in their way to perceived glory. It’s both sad and overwhelming at times to never be good enough for people like that. But I know this… I am in a DRY SPELL because I am not listening (FLAW). But I heard him recently, and I have learned this:

I have to stop letting other people’s perception of me define me. God made me. And their opinions don’t matter. They can’t. I am supposed to ONLY rely on and listen to God. THIS IS MY ITALIAN LESSON. I am ready to “get it” and move past it so I can stop driving myself crazy to be good enough for everyone else, when all I really need to concentrate on is God and His Love, and His Guidance and the good people HE placed in my life to love me – in spite of my flaws, because they are HIS people and they are MY people.

Let me turn now to a wise Priest’s words from the Magnificat. Words that I hope help you understand that we can’t ever stop trying to hear God’s words and on God’s Plan for our lives.

These are clearly the words of Father Haggerty and not mine.

What I read in this Meditation of the day is perseverance, silence, indomitable spirit — in short, blind faith, is what gets us through these dry spells. If you are in a Dry Spell, YOU are not alone. Keep Walking towards God. I am here with you because God needs us to see and feel others walk through things so that we can see and feel HIM in those of us lucky enough to be His Vessels.

Dear Lord,
Help me be a good enough person to acknowledge my flaws and help others not feel so alone. Help me listen when I don’t want to hear. Help me focus on what is important – YOU!
AMEN!

I hope in some way this post helped you. I want to face my flaws and acknowledge my dry spells so I can conquer my humanity through Him.

Praying for you all!
And if you want me to pray specifically for an intention, leave me a comment.
Love, Hugs & Blessings,

Lady Em