Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Grace-filled Life

As I have dealt with health problems over the years and difficult, complicated pregnancies, one thing the Lord has had to keep reminding me is that his grace is sufficient for me. He even told me once that the only difference between me and someone without these issues is I just need to rely on more of his grace.

This has made me wonder how to best do that. Often I have felt inadequate and like I must be doing something wrong because I often have not felt I had the strength and ability to do all the things I believed I needed to do. In my mind grace equaled strength.

I have come to realize however that grace does not always look the way I think it should look. Sometimes grace comes in the form of my children getting along and playing nicely with each other so I can lie down and rest. Sometimes grace comes in the form of a friend helping me with something I am not able to do by myself.

There have been times when I have been down on myself, feeling like I should be doing more with my children and I haven't done enough to teach them about the Faith. Grace in that situation is that my children are still passionate about following Christ even though I was often lacking. I am actually getting teary-eyed as I am writing this, thinking about how blessed I am. My oldest daughter is in college and I am so proud of her! Not only is she doing well academically and being responsible living on her own, but she has gotten involved in the Catholic campus ministry at UCF and plans to attend the March for Life in January. My 16 year old daughter, who still lives at home is experiencing a call to become a religious sister and desires to join a certain order when she turns 21. The only credit I can take for any of this is that I have always surrendered them over to the heart of Jesus. When they were little, there were often days I was too weak to get off the couch. I could barely take care of their basic needs and I let them watch cartoons to keep them out of trouble. Since I didn't have the strength at the time to do the things I thought needed to be done, I didn't think I was tapping into God's grace but now I realize his grace is that he has always made up for my own weaknesses and where I have been lacking.

God's grace truly is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me (2 Cor.12:9).

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

God's Judgement or His Mercy?

I once had a professor in college that would say God's judgement wasn't usually in the form of natural disasters and such. Sometimes God's judgement is when he steps back and lets us have what we want. I am wondering however if we ever really receive God's wrath. Everything he does and everything he allows stems from his great love and mercy. I think of the song by the David Crowder Band, "How He Loves". God has a jealous love for his people and will do whatever it takes to help us follow him more closely. It seems to be a fact that people do have a tendency to cling more closely to the Lord during times of turmoil. Whatever happens in life however, we can know that God is still in control and he will ultimately use tribulations for his glory and to bring about good.

One reason I am wondering if we are coming into hard times is because several months back I had a vision of a big, black dragon swooping down and crushing grapes with it's talons. I believe the grapes represent the Body of Christ, the Church. I had the sense that God was going to allow persecution so we can be poured out like wine for the salvation of others.

On a more uplifting note, around the same time I also had a word come to me:  "It is coming! It is coming! It is coming! A great harvest of souls is coming! Now is the time to get ready! I am raising up a Royal priesthood, a Holy and chosen generation! Now is the time to get ready!" When this word came to me, I had the sense that people were going to be flocking to the Church like we have never seen before. He is preparing us for this now. Now is the time to get ready!!!