Inspiration

Pruning Hearts

Today’s post, on this second Sunday of Lent, is written by a guest contributor Melanie Boutiette.  Melanie is my sister, mother figure, and friend.  I am pleased to introduce you to her and an article from her blog Just Beloved, Words of Encouragement for you!

I love to garden. I love digging my hands in the rich soil, planting beautiful flowers, and transforming a once barren area into a beautiful bed or landscape. The whole yard is filled with a variety of flowers and plants. I especially love the front of the house. I have an English garden there that once was just an ugly plot of ground after disease destroyed all the bushes and plants. To look at my yard right now in the dead of winter, you cannot tell that I love to garden.

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Inspiration

Reclaiming Peace

Photo by Gift Habeshaw on Pexels.com

Another blow.  Why can’t we catch a break?  These were my thoughts as I drove my husband to the emergency room. He had only been home from the hospital 20 days after previous admissions adding up to more than 200 days following his bone marrow transplant last year.  Sometimes it is just too much to be surrounded by all the suffering, the uncertainty life brings, and waiting in the fear of the what ifs.  The blanket of heaviness can descend upon me covering me in darkness when all I want to do is bask in the light. 

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Inspiration

What Are You Thirsting For?

In this first week of Lent, I am realizing how my heart is being purified to be undivided.  It has been a challenging week where we truly entered the frigid desert here in Texas with a historic storm that crippled our infrastructure.  This arctic storm took away our power and electricity, water, internet, and spotty phone service.  To whom did I turn?

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Inspiration

Growing In Good Works

I hope this post finds you settling into your word of the year as well as having a plan mapped out to get to know your Saint buddy. My prayer time this week included a plea for guidance on how to best get to know mine, St. Joseph. The next day, I was listening to the Godsplaining podcast and low and behold, they were discussing the Year of St. Joseph. This conversation gave me a good starting point for my plan. I love how God works! Do you have a plan to nourish your mind this year? Another practice I wanted to share that supports my growth is identifying twelve books that will challenge my thinking. Getting through this stack feels good when I complete in December.

Have you started thinking about Lent? 

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Inspiration

Do You Have a Word of The Year?

Last year’s word of the year for me was Be.  Upon reflection, Be was the perfect word that fueled my spiritual growth and cultivated my peace of mind.  Flash back to last February.  In my journey to understand love, the way our Creator intended, I stepped away from a 35-year career to support my husband through his lifesaving bone marrow transplant.  Little did I know, we would be contending with COVID the following month to add complexity to his immune compromised state as well as facing a grueling year of multiple complications from the transplant.  Hiring in my field of philanthropy slowed down as well and positions of interest were and continue to be on hold.  Since much of my time prior to the transplant and COVID was focused on working, it was hard to be still and just Be. Being is an uncomfortable space to find yourself in after years of doing.  Through faith and trust, I learned what it meant to Be and was blessed with many gifts through this surrender.  By being still last year, I was able to see and understand God’s grace and His goodness.  I started writing about this goodness which I hope inspires you in your journey.  Have you taken some time to reflect on how God has worked in your life this past year and written a few key moments in your spiritual journey and identified your hopes for the new year? 

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Inspiring Goodness

Inspiring Goodness: An End and a Beginning

Photo by Rakicevic Nenad on Pexels.com

Dear Jesus, I have done so little for you in the past year. I do not know what you have in store for me for this year, yet I accept it with its joys, sacrifices, sorrow, pain, and even death—joyfully—for it is your choice. You will help me to do my part and cooperate with your grace, refrain from my habitual sins, overcome my faults and defects. O Jesus, you know that without you I am nothing. Be with me! Allow me to spend this coming year in your love and service, without counting the cost.

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Be Smitten, Inspiring Goodness

My Peace I Give To Others

I believe what we hold in our heart is a microcosm of what we bring into the world.  During this fourth Sunday of Advent, we prayerfully light the Angel’s Candle or the Candle of Love in the Catholic tradition.  This symbolizes the Christmas message of the angels “Peace on Earth, Good Will Toward Men.” You can find the full message here. 

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Inspiration

Inspiring Goodness: Our Lady of Guadalupe

instagram.com/@Father Ian Vanheusen

I was inspired by goodness this morning and my heart was opened in awe while reading about the historical event of the great feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  This was a cultural game changer, opening individual hearts to love and humanity. 

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Be Smitten, Inspiring Goodness

Is Goodness In Your Thanksgiving Plans?

Its been a rough year for sure with the pandemic and other social challenges we face.  As we begin our week, I invite you to focus on the true meaning of Thanksgiving.  Sure, it is nice to have a day where we overindulge in turkey, fixings, and pie until we are in a food coma but let us pause and focus on the true meaning of Thanksgiving. 

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