April 6th, 2012 | Posted by Bryn in Faith - (Comments Off on Good Friday – What Love Really Means)
Today is Good Friday, the day all Christians commemorate the passion and death of our Lord, Jesus Christ. What He did on the cross was THE ultimate act of love, so let us remember today and always that we are NOTHING without Him. He was perfect in every way, never having sinned even once, and He willingly allowed Himself to be nailed to the cross for your sins, for my sins, for the sins of the entire world, past, present, and future. That’s what Love really means.
Lord, You are all that is good, our Creator, and our Redeemer. We are sorry for the sins we have committed that nailed You to the cross. Words cannot express the gratitude we have for Your sacrifice. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Please help us to always appreciate the gift of Your grace, and keep us close to You always. Amen.
Here’s a free printable to help us remember what Love really is.
Click on the image to enlarge. This is for personal use only. Please don’t crop out the website at the bottom.
March 25th, 2012 | Posted by Bryn in Faith | Kids - (Comments Off on Pledge to Wear Black on Fridays to End Abortion in America)
AbortionBlackout.com is turning into a movement in the United States. Their short video (click below to view) explains simple statistics regarding abortions. It’s heartbreaking to realize how many children we’ve lost to abortion just in the last 30+ years.
Even if you feel you can’t participate in the Abortion Blackout each Friday, please pray for the children lost to abortion, their mothers and fathers who are probably suffering, and the healthcare professionals that they may have a change of heart.
Today we are giving up the “Luck of the Irish” for the “Faith of the Irish”.
How many times have you discussed with your spouse or colleague what you would do if you won the Powerball? You can get lost in that dream world of “what if.”
Projecting out into the future what life would be like if you had the winning numbers, creates an illusion that more than likely will never come true. Instead of putting your hope in the lottery, put your hope in the same God that St. Patrick put his hope in. Today for Lent, let’s emphasize that we are not dependent upon luck, such as Powerball and pulltabs but the providence of God and His faithfulness.
Jeremiah the prophet said, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).
There are things in life that are more important than material things. Jeremiah goes on to say, “There is hope for your future, says the LORD, and your children shall come back to their own country (Jeremiah 31:17).
Jesus said, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal” (Matthew 6:19-20).
Just to show you how serious I am about this, I’m not even eating Lucky Charms for breakfast today.
PS: The Irish have a longstanding history of spreading the Catholic faith around the world. We need to pray for our Catholic brothers and sisters in Ireland today.
My own plans fall through all the time, but I trust in God that He knows what He’s doing, and He’ll take care of me. Why Catholic? this year is focused on prayer. Last week and the next few weeks, we are focusing on the “Our Father”. Although many of us can recite it without even thinking about it, the challenge is to really think about each line and what it means. Pray with me (and think about each line!)
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
“Thy will be done” is the phrase I’m focusing on this week. Which parts of the “Our Father” are the most challenging to you? Which parts comfort you?
March 8th, 2012 | Posted by Bryn in Faith - (Comments Off on Back to Blogging: My Ketchup Day)
My honey and I were on vacation for 8 days in the Caribbean (aaahhhh) without cell phone service or internet access, so I feel like I’ve been off the radar for ages. Our cruise was just what we needed–to reconnect, to relax, to spend some time in the sun in the middle of winter. Pure bliss.
Anyway, this week I’ve been running around at 100 mph getting back into the kids’ routines and making sure my part is done for my brother-in-law’s wedding this weekend. Thursday is our jammie day, our go-nowhere day, my “ketchup” day. Get it? Catch up/ketchup? Oh, who knew I was so clever? 🙂
So that’s what I’ve been doing–catching up on my blog, on emails, on work, phone calls, etc. I am still not quite finished with my blog post for Catholic Mothers Online, which was due March 1 (sorry Angie!), but hopefully by the end of the day that’ll be on my done list as well.
Here is what I (and maybe you!) missed while I was gone:
1. Brett Miller is recovering at home after his brain surgery on February 24th. This is not the official website that his family updates. For the most up-to-date news on Brett’s condition, please visit his CaringBridge website.
2. A QND alum passed away this weekend. Brian Nuessen (who I remember as one of the “big kids” in the neighborhood) was a good friend to all who knew him and will be greatly missed. One great story about Brian that I’d like to share is about my older sister. She and Brian were in the same class in 5th grade, and one Saturday evening he called and asked her to go to a movie with him. My dad told her to tell him, “Sure, in about six years.” (We weren’t allowed to date till we were 16) I don’t know if they ever did go to a movie together, but what a stud to ask a girl out at 10 years old! 🙂
I’m praying for his family as they say goodbye, share memories, and lay him to rest today.
3. Kony 2012 is sweeping the nation! This 30 minute long video will change your outlook on what our military does in countries where fear, death, and sadness are the norm. I hope and pray that Kony is found and sent to prison for life for the atrocities he committed against children. Please watch the video here and if nothing else, pray.
Today’s Make-A-List Monday is things I never had to think about before I was the mama. Being a mom is one of the greatest gifts anyone can receive, but it also comes with major life changes. So here was me, before I was Mom:
It took a half hour at most to get to the grocery store, shop, and get home.
I peed alone.
And the only butt I had to wipe was my own.
And I didn’t stand up and announce, “I need to go potty!” every time I needed to go.
And I had never had a toddler say (loudly), “Good job, Mommy!” after I finished “going potty” in a public restroom.
My house was still unorganized, but I had no one to blame it on but myself.
I had never planned an entire day around nap time. Oh, nap time, how I love thee.
I never noticed how many f-bombs are in R rated movies.
My favorite brands were NOT Graco, Osh Kosh B’Gosh, and Carter’s.
I kept my make-up in the bathroom, not the van. These days, it’s either mascara at stop lights or nothing.
I didn’t know it was possible to love my husband any more than right then.
I relied more on myself than on God. My faith has grown 100 fold since I had children because most of the time, I have no idea what I’m doing and just have to rely on Him. I’d go crazy with worry if I didn’t have faith in God.
I couldn’t function on less than 8 hours of sleep. Haha, that one just makes me laugh now.
Lunch with my mom consisted of actually having a conversation with her and catching up on each other’s lives, not chasing or quieting or encouraging small children to eat more than just ketchup.
Time went by more slowly.
While driving, I actually listened to music or talk radio instead of babbling of babies and toddlers.
I never knew how intensely my own parents loved me. Or how annoying and sad it was when I fought with my siblings.
I had no idea how strong I am. Or how amazing the human body is. Or that labor pain wouldn’t kill me, but could actually bring another life into this world. I was much less confident about my body then.
I didn’t know how much love my heart could hold. It’s like my heart grew bigger with the birth of each child, and I’ve grown to love my honey even more seeing him as a father. Oh, how He loves us!
My four loves at Rocky Mountain National Park last fall. I AM SO BLESSED!
January 29th, 2012 | Posted by Bryn in Faith - (Comments Off on Obamacare's Violation of Religious Freedom)
So yesterday I attended a wedding shower for my future sister-in-law and did a music trivia night to benefit our local Catholic high school, so I ran out of time to post anything for my Saturday Spruce-Up. I know my rabid readers are so disappointed, and I apologize…
Anyway, I was just introduced to a great article detailing the slippery slope we may be on in Obamacare’s mandate that everyone pay for things such as contraceptives, abortion causing drugs, and sterilization, even if it’s against one’s own conscience. Here is an excerpt from the article on WSJ.com by Timothy Dolan:
The Catholic Church defends religious liberty, including freedom of conscience, for everyone. The Amish do not carry health insurance. The government respects their principles. Christian Scientists want to heal by prayer alone, and the new health-care reform law respects that. Quakers and others object to killing even in wartime, and the government respects that principle for conscientious objectors. By its decision, the Obama administration has failed to show the same respect for the consciences of Catholics and others who object to treating pregnancy as a disease.
This latest erosion of our first freedom should make all Americans pause. When the government tampers with a freedom so fundamental to the life of our nation, one shudders to think what lies ahead.
In addition, Dolan explains that it’s not just the Catholics that object to this mandate.
Certainly many of these good people and groups [who objected to the mandate] were Catholic, but many were Americans of other faiths, or no faith at all, who recognize that their beliefs could be next on the block. They also recognize that the cleverest way for the government to erode the broader principle of religious freedom is to target unpopular beliefs first.
The government is basically attempting to take away freedom of conscience for the individual, which is against the Bill of Rights (Remember the first amendment – Freedom of Religion?). So what can we do about it? Pray, pray, pray. Spread the word, and don’t be afraid to speak up.
No matter what you believe, this is not just an issue about contraception, it’s a direct violation of everyone’s freedom of religion. If we just let this go, what’s next?
Happy New Year everyone! Welcome to 2012. First, I have a question for you, do you call it “two thousand twelve” or “twenty twelve”? Just curious. I think I’ll call it “twenty twelve.”
Anyway, we are three days into the new year, but there is always time to make resolutions. I don’t usually take new year’s resolutions too seriously, but this year, there are a few things I’d like to do.
Pray more. I’d like to start doing a daily devotional and praying with my husband more often. In our Why Catholic? group this fall, we talked about prayer and spontaneous prayer (rather than memorized prayers) with our spouse. This is something I’d like to do more regularly.
Go on dates. With my husband, of course. I’d like to make a point to go on a fun, creative date once a month.
Be healthy. It is totally amazing how exercise, eating healthy and drinking boatloads of water can make me feel. Sure, I’d like to lose a little weight and get thinner, but being healthy so I can have the energy to keep up after the kids is my main goal here.
No more CHAOS.Flylady says that many of us are living in C.H.A.O.S. – which stands for Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome. Many days, that’s true in my house. This is the year I’m keeping my house picked up and clean and getting out of CHAOS for good! (If you haven’t heard of Flylady, click here for more info. She’s awesome.)
Be bold and enterprising. I plan on expanding my blog this year and have a couple other projects on the back burner. This year I’m not going to chicken out or make excuses, I’m just going to go for it and use my God-given stubbornness on something worthwhile.
Simplify. I need to continue to organize and declutter my house and my mind. Instead of talking about selling and donating our excess stuff, I’m actually going to do it. See above on CHAOS.
Keep learning. I’d really like to learn how to sew. I have a really nice antique Singer that was left at our house by the previous owner, so I might as well. I’m also going to start actually doing projects I have pinned to my Home & DIY board on Pinterest.
More quality time with the kids. This is a constant thing for me. More trips around town, more reading, more playing. And less TV.
What are your resolutions for 2012? Any suggestions on how I can get on track with mine?