Too Much Tuesday: Simplicity in Spirituality

While rereading Dom Hubert Van Zeller’s outstanding Holiness for Housewives (and other working women), my primary Advent spiritual reading this year, I ran across the following words of wisdom I thought worth sharing. So often we make growing in our faith a complicated matter and are discouraged when we don’t seem to make much progress. Or, alternatively, we can become complacent and coast along in our spiritual practices and not really bear much fruit along the way.

I believe this holy Benedictine priest nailed it when he wrote this book as his way to holiness is, in Benedictine tradition, one of stability, obedience, and ongoing conversion–all the while balanced by moderation. I hope his words–summed up in his phrase “religion is yielding to Christ” are helpful to you as well during this time of waiting and preparing for our Lord and Savior’s birth.

“Training in spiritual things…can be done only by the combined activity of God and yourself. Concentrate on the service of the will…Obedience to God’s will is…is all that religion amounts to. Religion is God. Religion is recognizing God in His own setting. The setting is provided by Him, not by us…Religion is yielding to Christ.

The only thing that really matters in life is doing the will of God. Once you really appreciate this truth, and act accordingly to its implications, you save yourself a lot of unnecessary heart-searching [overthinking] and resentment.”

Dog Days of Summer

“But life is glorious when it is happy; days are carefree when they are happy; the interplay of thought and imagination is far and superior to that of muscle and sinew. Let me tell you, if you don’t know it from your own experience, that reading a good book, losing yourself in the interest of words and thoughts, is for some people (me, for instance) an incredible intensity of happiness.”

― Isaac Asimov

I am looking forward to kicking back this afternoon with a favorite book. In my case that is Elizabeth Goudge’s The Heart of the Family, the third book of the Eliot family trilogy. If you haven’t given yourself permission to get lost in a good book lately, why not do that today?

 

Back to Basics: A Simple Prayer to Make a Difference

In the midst of another pile-up on our living room sofa–because I do my paperwork and phone calls et al. from my comfy wing chair, thereby sometimes resulting in a nearby crazy pile of clipboards, papers, and other paraphernalia related to household administrative activities–I definitely needed to be reminded of this prayer!

“Dear God,

Thank You that You have a purpose for me in my job. Help me to recognize ways I can simplify my work spaces and working habits so I can better accomplish what’s before me.  Help me to make a positive difference in the world through the work I do today. 

Amen.”

Marcia Ramsland, Simplify Your Life: Get Organized and Stay That Way! 

http://www.organizingpro.com

Back to Basics: A Simple Prayer for Perseverance

Here is another great prayer for help with getting things done when for whatever reason you might be struggling with accomplishing the things that need to be accomplished.

“Dear God,

Thank You for putting a roof over my head and a place to call home. Help me to keep at the clutter and cleaning pick-ups so my home becomes my castle. Help me to persevere and stay focused. I am grateful that at least You and I know what I did today.

Amen.”

Marcia Ramsland, Simplify Your Life: Get Organized and Stay That Way!

http://www.organizingpro.com

 

Back to Basics: A Simple Prayer for Help

Over the past few weeks I’ve been on new meds and am feeling better than I have in over a year–praise God!–so naturally I’ve been tackling the backlog of chaos around our home. Having energy, motivation, and focus–not to mention less pain–go a long way in my getting things done. So, I’m spurred on to get into a regular routine again for a variety of reasons including that it’s the beginning of school for the last year for our son and so our family routine changes. The following prayer states my intention perfectly. Maybe it will also reflect yours.

“Dear God,

I really would like to simplify [and thereby help stabilize] my life, but I’ve tried before. This time help me actually do it, especially when I don’t feel like it.

Amen.”

Marcia Ramsland, Simplify Your Life: Get Organized and Stay That Way!

Writers’ Wednesday

Long day. Late night. Tired brain. But you, tireless reader, shall not be left without something to peruse since I have committed to providing you with grist for your writing mill. I’ll keep it short and sweet. It’s my three all-time favorite books about writing.

Madeleine L’Engle: Herself—Reflections on a Writing Life, compiled by Carole F. Chase

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, Anne Lamott

Freeing Your Creativity: A Writer’s Guide—How to write more and better than you ever thought you could, Marshall J. Cook

These gems are time tested classics for me and were instrumental in pushing me past thinking about writing (although I did journal, naturally) to actually writing. I hope at least one of them will be both inspirational and instructive in helping you take the next step in your unique writing journey.

Shrove Tuesday

Lest I forget, here’s my favorite verse for this day of feasting before our days of fasting (“There is a season for everything, a time for every occupation under heaven…” Ec 3:1, NJB)

Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine
There’s music and laughter and good red wine.
At least I’ve always found it so.
Benedicamus Domino!

Hilaire Belloc

 

 

Previous Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: