It was important to me that Smitten with Goodness launched last year on All Saints Day. Because saints love God and they love what is good, I felt putting this stake in the ground would be a guiding force for the journey. When we show up and say “Yes” to God, He uses us to touch lives, bring His love to the world, and walk the path of holiness and sainthood.
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God. Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love.1 John 4:7-8
The definition of Smitten with Goodness is being struck by strong feelings of attraction in the direction of being good, holy, and pure. We fall in love with the good. We are smitten, deeply affected, or infatuated with goodness or godliness. A state of being free from guilt and sin, it is being in the presence and flow of pure love.
It was through the desolation of 2020 that God touched my heart; I encountered His goodness, and He called me to use my experience to encourage others. We are all called to His goodness, but sometimes we don’t know how to begin, get back on track and or even walk on the path. We wander our way around looking to everything we think will satisfy but doesn’t. It is only His goodness that will settle our hearts, quiet our minds, and fill our souls. Smitten with Goodness is a simple journey but a hard one to make as it is always a struggle this side of heaven. But with each “Yes” we say to live a life of virtue and goodness, we build a good life and learn to love. We broaden our limited perspective to a more expansive, eternal one. We learn to love a self-sacrificial love, impacting our own identity and positively impacting those around us and serving as an inspiration to others.
Do you know when God is inviting you to action? One way is when he places something on your heart, whether that is something that makes you cry with sadness or get angry with the injustice, or when you say to yourself, “somebody should do something about that!” Well, He is talking to you. For me, He convicted my heart to encourage lost and weary souls to look for inspiration and peace through seeing the light of His goodness. You see, we are all called to be saints, which is simply living with God as the center of our life. But we live in a constant spiritual battle with the world, and it is a hard battle to fight. Armed with wisdom and support, we will prevail! We all have this higher meaning and purpose. Do you know what God is whispering to you? And do you have the courage to say “Yes”?
God writes his name on the soul of every man.Venerable Fulton Sheen
Smitten with Goodness is about a journey of growing in relationship with and falling in love with God. It’s the integration of the body, mind, and spirit. Many of us approach God with our intellect but that only gets us so far. He wants our heart. Why else would He have humbled himself and became man in Jesus. He came to help us get our heads around trusting Him with our hearts and souls, to show us the path to love.
Many of us have limited trust in God due to distorted human relationships that build a distorted framework, so we end up putting God in a box based on that distorted framework. When we let Him out of that box, shift our perspective, and trust in His goodness, it is overwhelming. We become new, living in joy peace hope love all the things he promises. We just must have a little more courage than fear and open our hearts.
This past year has been a crazy season of personal growth in confidence and trust in God’s goodness. Staying faithful has helped me grow in love for God, my husband, family, and friends. Often it is through loss and suffering that we find meaning and purpose. Amidst the suffering of the pandemic and isolation, my husband’s complicated recovery from a bone marrow transplant, my job loss, anxiety, and uncertainty about the future, I leaned into prayer, living in the moment, being still, listening to God’s voice, and seeing His goodness. I was given the gift of presence and encounter. I learned about the powerful role models we have in the saints and how they are still rooting for us from heaven. And the beauty of our guardian angels assigned to us at birth that protect us and lead us to the good life. Although uncomfortable, I leaned in. This season taught me so much about my faith and how to reframe my priorities to help me have me peace and joy despite what is going on around me and my circumstances. It has given me focus and purpose knowing my role in helping God shine His goodness in the world.
The Goodness of Accomplishment
This past year has been one of exploration and learning. There are many things that have shined a light on God’s glory but here are a few highlights of the Smitten with Goodness journey last year:
- Touched 6,138 known souls, as well as countless unknown souls.
- Published There is Something about Mary ebook devotional rosary/prayer resource.
- Journeyed through the liturgical calendar, exploring God’s goodness with more than 256 posts.
- Explored the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit.
- Studied sin or dis-ease and its cure in virtue.
The Goodness of Gratitude
There are many people that have provided encouragement of Smitten with Goodness but I would like to give a shout out to some special angels and those who said “Yes” when asked to help:
- Jenny for your example and encouragement to just do it and launch the site.
- Jacquelyne, our Smitten with Goodness Editor in Chief extraordinaire, contributing writer, spiritual sister, and overall saintly role model for me.
- Melanie for her creativity and beautiful original art in the Fruit of the Spirit series as well as her guest posts and links to Just Beloved, words of encouragement.
- Muffy for her enthusiastic design work, branding, and logo.
- My always supportive husband who encourages me each day, helps me grown in God’s goodness and always says “you’ll figure it out.” And with God’s grace, I do!
As I celebrated another birthday last month, I heard God say, “you are my good and faithful servant” and it made my heart sing. When I surrender, say “Yes” to His inspiration, and get out of my own way, I fall deeper in love with goodness and become truly smitten. The loop of grace in action!
With a new season on the horizon, I will love my husband, family, and friends with a deeper love. I will serve again in the noble profession of fundraising with a new job in higher education. I will begin the journey of a spiritual director where I will companion individuals who desire to cultivate a deeper relationship with God. I will continue to pray persistently and say “Yes” when asked.
Stay tuned for more goodness to come. Now that we have the fundamentals in place, we will contemplate how we can live a good life. I hope you enjoy the journey. Let us know what resonates with you and please bless a friend today who needs to hear or see God’s goodness through you!
Smitten with Goodness,