I have spent the last several months doing a lot of soul searching. I'm going to admit something here that I have not admitted to anyone...not anyone. It is really hard for me, but I feel it is necessary. I fell into a spell of doubtfulness. Like Thomas before me, I was having a hard time believing. I was succumbing to the evilness in the world. Not something I have EVER experienced before. In fact, I always prided myself on my unwavering belief. Well, pride goeth before the fall...isn't that what they say? I suppose most people go through times of questioning...usually it happens earlier in life than your mid-50's but for me, I have never questioned my faith...until recently. And it's not so much that I was questioning the existence of God or His love and mercy...but something just didn't feel right for me. The world seems like it is spinning out of orbit. Things are crazy out there people! But instead of falling wholly on the Lord for strength...I questioned. I'm not proud of it...but there it is. Why do these trials come upon us? I think sometimes we need to go through the trial to get to a new place of understanding and devotion. That is where I am right now. On the brink of a new understanding and a deeper devotion. I share this with you because maybe someone who will read this will be going through the same thing and possibly, through prayer, we can lift each other up.
Usually for Lent we give something up as a sacrifice...candy, caffeine, soda...you get it. But this year I have decided to do something different. I'm going to pray the rosary...everyday until Divine Mercy Sunday (the second Sunday in Easter). And hopefully by that time I will have made a new habit and I will continue to pray the rosary everyday. That is my goal. And just maybe you might be tempted to pray along with me. Here is my plan:
Both my parents were very devoted to the Blessed Mother. It served them well and so I've decided to look to Her for guidance in my quest for a deeper devotion. I will pray the rosary everyday with the intention of peace in the world. I am so upset, horrified and frightened by the things going on in the world right now. I feel called to pray for peace. I have also been reading about the Marians of the Immaculate Conception and Divine Mercy Sunday. They inspire me. If you are interested you can follow the link to their website. It has lots of info and even a section on how to pray the rosary. So what is Divine Mercy? The following is from Fr. Michael Gaitley's book Divine Mercy Explained:
Okay, so what is Divine Mercy? What is this thing that gets to the heart of Sacred Scripture and to the very center of our faith? To begin, mercy is "love's second name," as John Paul II said. It's a particular kind of love, a particular mode of love when it encounters suffering, poverty, brokenness, and sin. Divine Mercy is when God's love meets us and helps us in the midst of our suffering and sin. In fact, because this side of eternity we're all sinners and because suffering is our lot in life, God's love for us here always takes the form of mercy. It's always the Lord stepping out in compassion to help us poor, weak, and broken sinners. From our perspective, then, every good we receive is an expression Divine Mercy.
Poor, weak, and broken sinner...that is me.
So this will be my Lenten journey. The rosary and Divine Mercy. I hope some of you will take it with me. We need to pray for peace.
Peace be with you my friends.