Simply Divine Mercy

Category: Sacraments

grateful for guilt

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I have struggled immensely with guilt in my life.  Anyone can tell you that.  But I have decided to rejoice in this gift!  Guilt keeps me going to Confession!  It keeps me striving to be perfect as our Father is perfect in Heaven.

We must take care not to dismiss or disregard the guilt of others as insignificant.  There is so much of that in our world today – so much justification of little sins. 

There are so many excuses made for our errors, faults, and imperfections.  One may say, “But God knows this is just how I am!  So it’s okay!” 

Yes, but He overcame the world to give you strength to overcome yourself.

Our guilt is there for a reason.  Namely, that we confess it to God, and move on with a little more knowledge, a little more life experience about how to do better next time. 

Sure, some guilt is unfounded and is the result of sins of scrupulosity.  But that guilt we must give to God, too.  Scrupulous thinking is the work of the devil, no doubt.  It keeps us in a negative spiral so that we think we are not good enough to go to Christ.  I know this all too well.  I know how satan tempts me all too well.  And this is excellent and as it should be. 

satan loses his power over us when we can see ahead of time all the cards in his hand – when we know exactly which card he is going to play next. 

Yes, I am grateful for my guilt.  I am even more grateful for the One who takes it all away. 

 

P.S. God is Merciful & He loves you… pass it on…

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3 Steps to Mercy for You

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*This article originally appeared on VirginiaLieto.com here.

 

There’s a lot of mercy talk these days in the Church. Why?  Because it’s the time of mercy!

The Church recently celebrated Divine Mercy Sunday. If you’re not familiar with this message and devotion, take a moment to learn a little more here.

We should strive to show mercy to everyone we meet. Mercy is a great virtue, no doubt.  But today I want to ask you, how often do you show mercy to yourself?

Are you your own worst critic? Are you hyperaware of your faults and not sure how to actually improve?  Do you ever beat yourself up at the end of the day for not doing a better job at keeping it all together?

I’ve been working on kicking these bad attitudes for a while now, with great success. How?  Divine Mercy!

 

3 Steps to Mercy for You

Here are 3 steps you can take today to help you start showing mercy to you:

 

1. Participate in the Sacraments Frequently

I’m not saying you should get married frequently, nor do you want to take a “collect ‘em all” mentality and start preparing for your last rites, but frequent Confession and receipt of Holy Communion are beautiful ways to stay close to Christ. Mercy is waiting for you in the confessional!  Mercy is waiting for you on the altar at Mass daily!  Show up.  You deserve mercy!

 

2. Educate Yourself

Pick up a copy of the Catechism. Bring questions to a priest.  Read the Bible.  Study up on Divine Mercy.  Learn the works of mercy.  It’s actually an act of mercy to instruct the ignorant, and we’re all ignorant of many things.  Learn all you can to strengthen your relationship with Christ!

 

3. Forgive Yourself

You’re going to fall short. Every day you’re going to fall short of the person you want to be, and the person God is calling you to be.  Pick yourself up.  Forgive yourself.  We talk a lot about forgiving others, but it’s so important to forgive ourselves.  Would you forgive a friend if she apologized to you?  Well you can be that friend who just apologized to you.  Having a healthy relationship with yourself is vital to having a healthy relationship with others, Christ included!

 

So, take some time today to show mercy to you, because you’re worth it. Jesus died for you!

P.S. God is Merciful & He loves you… Pass it on!

the gift of the Eucharist

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As Mothers, we are programmed to pour out our love for our children.  It happens automatically and subconsciously.  We pour of ourselves.  Our children literally eat of ourselves – the milk we produce gives them nourishment.

In exactly the same way, our Mother Mary placed Jesus in the manger, a feeding trough for animals.  ‘This is your nourishment.  This is your bread.  This is your drink,’ she said to us through this profound gesture.

This is the gift of the Eucharist.

Mary poured out nourishment for Jesus with her body through her precious milk.  Jesus poured out nourishment for mankind with His body through His precious blood.

We are called to eat the body that Mary nourished for us.  We are called to drink the blood that Jesus shed for us.  And we are called to pour out nourishment for the world with our bodies through our precious merciful love of one another.

It is true that we are what we eat.  We must eat what is pure that we may become what is pure.

The milk that sustained Jesus was pure.  The blood that sustains mankind is pure.  So too must our merciful love be pure!

Let us guard our hearts that we might make of ourselves a pure and holy sacrifice, burning with merciful love that is pleasing to our God!

Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. – John 6:53-57

P.S. God loves you and He is merciful!  Pass it on…

Come to the Feast!

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You guys – Heaven is going to be awesome!

I was reminded of this during a family reunion a few weeks ago.  It was a huge celebration, and almost all of my cousins were able to attend.  When you have about 30 cousins, that’s a big deal, and a big celebration!  Many of us have several children now, so the numbers add up fast.

We live all over the country, which makes getting together extra special.  I have some awesome cousins who I don’t see very often.  But I still love each of them so much.

And you know what?  When we get to Heaven, that’s what it’s going to be… a huge celebration, full of the laughter and joy that come from a huge family celebration and feast.

Because that’s what we are: family of God. Read the rest of this entry »

Erasable Pen, Wite-Out, & Divine Mercy!

Sometimes in our human condition, complete and total forgiveness is just not possible – not possible without God’s help, that is! Not possible without Divine Mercy!

Hello, my name is Kaitlyn, and I struggle to forgive and forget.  There.  I said it.

Several years ago, this wasn’t as much of an issue for me.  I remember someone telling me awhile back that she was able to forgive a deep hurt, but that she could not forget.  At the time, I didn’t understand how that was possible.  How could that be true forgiveness?

Now I totally get it.  It’s human forgiveness.

Why do I get it now?  Well, I’ve had a little more life experience, I guess.  I’ve learned that sometimes, a hurt can be an ongoing thing.  Sometimes, you’ll never get a formal apology from someone.

Sometimes, you can’t completely erase a hurt away.

But God can.

My flawed human forgiveness tends to work about as well as an erasable pen.  Read the rest of this entry »

Help Your Kids Learn to Love the Sacraments!

This DVD resource would make a great addition to any homeschool group, any parish that provides faith formation classes, or to any family wanting to help their children learn to love the sacraments.  I loved it… because when it comes to helping my kids love their Faith, I’ll take all the help I can get!

*This is a sponsored post but all opinions are totally mine.

 

My 2.5 year old daughter and I walked to the back of the church near the confessionals.  She had made a couple of bad choices and was becoming disruptive in Mass.  She asked me what the little rooms were for, and I explained the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

“These are rooms where you can go and tell Jesus you are sorry for things that you do wrong, or for bad choices that you make,” I explained.

She proceeded to kneel down and tell Jesus she was sorry for being disruptive in Mass, and for a couple of other incidents earlier in the month that I had completely forgotten about.  I was glad for her honesty and openness!

Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 18:3-4

What a gift we have in the sacraments!  What a beautiful opportunity we have to share this gift with our children!

It’s great to instill knowledge of the sacraments when children ask questions.  But let’s be honest, they don’t always ask.  Read the rest of this entry »

How We Put God at the Center of Our Marriage #TOB Talk

We learned about how we were created to love each other openly, how our marriage could be a prayer to God, and how we could trust Him to plan our family. I remember thinking, “Why has no one ever told me this stuff before??”

My story was featured on CatholicMom.com this week during their special focus on the Theology of the Body #TOBTalk.  Here’s an excerpt:

It wasn’t until years later when my husband and I attended our Engagement Encounter weekend with the Catholic Church, that I was taught about the option of Natural Family Planning (NFP).  We were walked through the Theology of the Body and listened to a couple enthusiastically share their personal experiences using NFP.  I remember being amazed that throughout decades up to our present day, the Church’s methods of postponing and spacing births – when practiced as recommended – were equally as effective as the birth control on the market at that time. 

We learned about how we were created to love each other openly, how our marriage could be a prayer to God, and how we could trust Him to plan our family.  I remember thinking, “Why has no one ever told me this stuff before??” 

At the end of the retreat we both still had questions, but we knew this was what God wanted for our marriage.

 Click here to read the full article on CatholicMom.com!

A Gift for Every Marriage: The Power of a Praying Wife

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Image created with Canva

I’ve been praying for my husband for a long time. Actually before we ever met, way back when I was in high school, I remember asking God to please let me meet my husband as soon as possible. I figured that if I were able to meet him as soon as possible, I’d be able to maximize my time on earth with him. It just made sense!

And sure enough, on the very same day that I moved off to college – the very first day we were in the same city – I met my husband. It was move in day and my parents hadn’t even left town yet. My Mom gave me a choice that night, “Well, do you want to go back to the hotel with us or stay in the dorms?”

I chose the dorms. My random roommate and I walked around together meeting all kinds of people.

I remember the first time I ever saw my husband. He was sitting at a picnic table with a friend, a deck of cards, and just about the entire girls’ soccer team. Eventually some of the girls left the table and I made my way over. My life would never be the same.

Yes, I’ve been praying for my husband for a long time. But after reading this book by Stormie Omartian, “The Power of a Praying Wife,” I learned a totally new way of praying for him – one that I have found to be very beneficial! Read the rest of this entry »

My First Holy Communion Keepsake Journal – Charming, Sweet, and Fun!

A sweet gift for any child making their First Holy Communion!

Photo copyright 2016 Kaitlyn Mason. All rights reserved. Image created with Canva.

This is a sponsored post, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Do you remember making your First Communion? I vaguely remember sitting in the pews with my class, wearing a pretty white dress, and going through our renewal of our Baptismal promises. I remember that because the priest was going through a long phrase, and we all started saying “I do” before he even finished the sentence. Our parents and the parishioners all had a good laugh. I remember tasting the Eucharist for the first time – it was so exciting!

I also remember tracking how many times I received the bread and wine with little tallies on a piece of paper that I kept in my headboard. I imagined celebrating my 100th Communion, my 1,000th Communion, and so on. If I remember right, the amount of times I received the host was always higher than how many times I had wine, because I didn’t think I should have wine very much as a little girl.

What a special time, and what a special age!

What if we could capture this time of innocence and pure Faith in a girl’s life, and preserve it for years to come? Read the rest of this entry »

Our Dependence on Bread & Water

The sacrifice of the Eucharist is God’s invitation to us to physically and spiritually live on the bread that is the Word made flesh. Thanks be to God!

Photo copyright 2016 Kaitlyn Mason. All rights reserved. Image created with Canva.

 

Ever noticed that humans are completely dependent on food and drink? We literally can’t survive without food and drink. I find it fascinating that God wired us this way.

In order for mankind to survive, we must quench our thirst. We must make and accept the sacrifice of plants and other animals, kill them, ingest and feed on them, derive nutrients from them, and turn those nutrients into energy that we can use to move and live.

And yet Jesus reminds us that, “One does not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

Furthermore, in the book of John we learn that, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). And that, “God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life (John 3:16).

God gives us bread to eat and to nourish our bodies. But He also gives us the bread of life in and through the Word made flesh – His Son, Jesus Christ!

Jesus also tells us that, “whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:14).

God gives us drink to quench our thirst and fuel our bodies. But He also gives us living water in and through His Son, Jesus Christ!

How awesome is this??

In order for mankind to survive, we must quench our thirst. We must make and accept the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, understand that He was killed because of us and for us, ingest and feed on His body and blood, derive graces from them, and turn those graces into loving action that we can use to carry out God’s will on earth. In this way, it is “in him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28).

This is what Christ instituted in the Eucharist! (see Luke 22)

We never neglect to partake in daily meals at home, and yet we have a beautiful, tangible sacrament available to us each day in the Eucharist. At any moment in time, there is a Catholic Mass going on somewhere in the world, and the Eucharist is being offered for us. How incredibly beautiful and powerful!

The sacrifice of the Eucharist is God’s invitation to us to physically and spiritually live on the bread that is the Word made flesh. Thanks be to God!

Copyright 2016 Kaitlyn Mason