praying the way of the cross in photos, and other things

CSLentIPJI’ve been posting a photo journal for Lent inspired by CatholicSistas.com, and it has been a real challenge to let pictures say a 1000 words. The challenge for me, of course, is that I never shut up, so to have my voice cut off…well, I am running the risk of not communicating what I want. Then again, there’s a positive side to that — perhaps I am communicating what someone needs to “hear.”

I hope you are enjoying it.

I’ve also revived my blog in Spanish, Petalos de Maria, where I’m endeavoring to post at least one entry a week. The wonderful Lisa Hendey at CatholicMom.com has picked that up and is running the Spanish with the English translation on Thursdays. I hope you check out one or the other.

In the meantime, here’s what I posted this week, and below, you can read it in English.

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Lent is well under way.

I usually have many ideas about what I need to do for myself at the beginning. For me, it’s like an opportunity for a spiritual reboot, a chance to begin again. It’s not unlike making New Year’s resolutions.

And like those resolutions, my Lenten ideas tend to peter out sometime into the second week, and I fail to accomplish the lofty goals I set for myself.

I thought I’d keep it simple this year. Stick with the simple, which doesn’t necessarily mean easy.

One of the things I’ve set out to do is work on my prayer life. Because of the nature of my schedule, I can’t make a commitment to daily Mass. I’ve added certain prayers and routines over the years, so the challenge is to find a place to add, to enhance what I’m already doing.

There’s no question that my prayer life would benefit greatly from a more robust approach to prayer. With that in mind, I’ve made a commitment to the Stations of the Cross on Fridays, and rather than attending a group worship service in the evening, I’ve started going alone in the late afternoon.

I’m stretching myself with an hour of prayerful meditation on those Friday afternoons. I think enjoy is probably not the right word for this exercise, but it has definitely been something worth doing, and very likely, a practice that I could incorporate year round, if not weekly, then perhaps monthly.

In walking along with Jesus in His Passion, I’ve been able to participate in His suffering, to meditate on humility, and focus less on what I have and meditate more on what Christ has given me in Salvation.

It is a journey of suffering that accounts for my stumbles and falls, and the graces, too, as I experience with Christ, humiliation, weakness, pain, and also tenderness and love.

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Lenten Photo-a-Day Journal: Catholic

just a regular Friday

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Had breakfast with a friend. Stretched the creative muscles. Bought honey for my honey. Prayed with the monks. Put my pen to paper. Received lovely virtual flowers. Watched an artist at work. Sat in the sun. Chatted with a bluebird. Walked. Sent a postcard. Prayed a rosary.

Breathed.

Deeply.

a simple prayer

 

20140404-063849.jpgI recently had a conversation with friends over a beer or two. It was a delightful afternoon full of laughter and insights. One of the topics that came up was about using social media. My friend said that she often prayed through her news feed, stopping to offer brief prayers even when there was no request for prayers. Especially, she said, when there was no request for prayers.

It got me thinking about how quick I am to repost the silly, wasteful cat memes instead of looking for something a little more edifying. About how quick I am to let loose with my tongue or my pen keyboard instead of thinking before responding. For today, I’m going to make this pretty reminder, which I swiped, naturally, from a social media site, my prayer.

some wisdom from Brother Lawrence

So make it a habit little by little to Worship in this way. Ask Him for His grace and offer Him your heart from time to time during the day in the midst of your work — at every moment if you are able. Offer Him your heart in faith, with love and humility. ~ Brother Lawrence

do you know where your children are?

Remember that ad from years ago that asked, Do you know where your children are? I always thought it was a little creepy, but now that my kids are grown, and they aren’t necessarily checking in several times a day, I’ve had to learn to let go, and let God….

I’m at CatholicMom.com this week sharing a little prayer I’ve picked up in the past few years that has helped me release my worries.

I know my schedule has kicked into high gear with the beginning of the term and everything, but I’ve lost track of when the younger kids go back to school. I don’t miss the anxiety of those days, although taking that “first day of school” picture was a lot of fun….

These days August is a little slower around the house. The oldest has been on her own for several years, proudly serving our country. Two are still in college, one finishing in the next year, and the youngest following quickly behind her. There’s still a revolving door to the house, but it seems to be opening out more often than in. And that’s OK – I suppose it’s the way it should be….

[read the rest here]