We are approaching the one-year anniversary of Everyday Ediths, and I couldn’t be prouder at our humble beginnings – and, how far we have grown to support women in living their lives as faithful, Catholic women, no matter their calling or vocation in their lives. It truly has been a joy!
I am also excited for 2018 – continuing to spread encouragement, the Good News, and support to Catholic women, and some of the men who may also follow our blog. I am excited for how we will continue to connect with the hearts of those who read our words.
And, I’m humbled. This page is a work in progress, but our reach on social media has been immense in the past year. I’m grateful for God’s guiding Hand in our ministry. I’m thankful for those who support us in a manner in which we like to believe we support you.
Each month, we tackle a different theme – bringing our various contributing bloggers’ thoughts on themes which are central to our Catholic Christian Faith. That is something we are continuing in 2018, and I hope the themes truly do connect with our readers!
The theme for January is “Epiphany.” And, as always, our theme ties into our family, faith, or the seasons (whether they be physical seasons, liturgical – which would be faith, or seasons of life). I am looking forward to what each of our contributors have to say about this month’s theme!
A couple weeks ago, I was struggling. My prayer life, since Nineveh 90 this past spring, has suffered – not the spontaneous prayer I murmur through the day (those ones in which I ask God to grant me patience, or thank Him for the cute things my children are doing), but the routine prayers (the Rosary, a simple Guardian Angel Prayer, or St. Michael the Archangel prayer). Some, like the Guardian Angel Prayer and Prayer to St. Michael are still said, but I have struggled to really focus on those prayers.
In the middle of the night recently, I was laying awake, struggling to understand some personal things going on in my life. I wasn’t worried, per se, but I was asking a lot of “why” questions. To include why I was having difficulty praying. I felt as though I was going through the motions, in both my personal and prayer life. Not in a bad mood, necessarily, just detached.
As I lay there, listening to the heavy breathing of family and dogs, I had an epiphany:
I was holding something big back from God during my prayers.
I was not wanting to take Him the “why” and lay them at His feet without questioning.
You see, I wanted to do it all myself. I wanted to tackle life all by myself, and prove that I’ve got everything under control. Because, that’s my desire – to have everything under controlled chaos.
I don’t sweat the small stuff – the chaos the children create, or the messy house, or the last minute change in plans, or even the writer’s block I occasionally face. I have confidence that those will shake out.
But, I do want to have the big things under control – ensuring everything I am doing is pointing me back to the path toward sanctification. I stress the sins I commit on a daily basis. I have a tendency toward scrupulosity, and therefore, I don’t like even doing examinations of conscience – they unsettle me, and make me see everything in black and white. Then, I beat myself up. The whole concept of God’s grace is overshadowed when I am deeply concentrating on my sinful nature.
That night, lying there in bed, I realized I needed to give those worries over to God. I need to give Him my all:
and my ugly.
I need to stop holding back from Him.
Because, in a spirit of honesty, God knows I am a fallen creature, and I am going to be tempted to sin. He has faith in me, even when I doubt myself. He has faith I will acknowledge those times I have done something wrong, or… those times I have failed to do something right, whether it was a “right” or “wrong” action.
God doesn’t expect me to be perfect – He wants me to acknowledge my imperfections. He wants me to work toward perfection. But, He doesn’t demand perfection.
Because He loves me, regardless of my warts.
His grace and mercy save me from my imperfections!
I heard Him loud and clear through the stillness and dark of the middle of the night. I went to sleep with a prayer on my lips – a prayer of gratitude, and a prayer of promise – to work a little harder:
A prayer to give Him my good.
A prayer to give Him my bad.
A prayer to give Him my beauty.
A prayer to give Him my ugly.
A prayer to give Him my all.
This past week, I received affirmation of my epiphany when a gentle, loving reminder was placed in my newsfeed on Facebook. Fr. Mike Schmitz has some words of wisdom to impart on this exact subject. Click here to access his Christmas message on YouTube!
So, as we kick off 2018, I ask all of you, dear reader, to give your all to God in 2018.
I also ask that each of us, myself included, make time to being open to an epiphany – it can come at any time of the day or night, but if we make room, He will speak to us!
Let us embrace His message of love, mercy, and grace in 2018!
How will you open yourself to receiving an epiphany at any time during 2018?