Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Spiritual Devotions and Finding Peace in Our Hearts

by M. J. Joachim
One of the things that keeps me grounded each day is reflecting on the Stations of the Cross. I have a little booklet, complete with frayed cover, dog-eared corners and smudges on the pages.

Some days, I could sit for hours just looking at all the pictures. Then there are times when I read each word and try to do the devotion correctly, according to the way my pamphlet intended. Other days, it’s all I can do to ramble off a quick prayer, “We adore you o Christ and praise you, because by your holy cross, you have redeemed the world.” Most days, in fact, the latter will suffice.

At first, I thought I might be being disrespectful to utter my reflections in such a flash. After a while though, a couple of months or so, I realized that that little instance of turning to God, opened the gate for me to think about Him all day long.

I’d be walking the dog, folding laundry, making dinner or working when (without warning) a sudden calm would overtake me, and I’d find myself thinking about Veronica, Mary – “Behold your Mother.”, Pilate and a crowd of people or any other individual station Jesus embraced for us.

These are private moments, when Christ speaks directly to my heart – telling me to slow down and not worry so much. I’m a mom. It comes with the territory. Somehow, Jesus affirms my very existence in these moments. I feel loved, even though I didn’t spend hours on my knees in prayer, or have time for long periods of spiritual reading.

At times like this I remember one thing, “The heart says in a moment…” I believe it’s from Imitation of Christ. This too has a way of inserting bits and pieces into my day.

God knows me. He’s my friend and Savior, not my enemy. He understands the culture I live in, my responsibilities, hopes and desires. He’s not out to blast me for not being pious enough. He’s embracing me all the time, to assure me that the world cannot get the better of me, unless I let it.

I think we forget, or maybe we never truly knew, how much we are loved sometimes. Yet we were loved into existence, and we are loved enough to die for. Trusting in this one thought is enough to be at peace within ourselves, no matter what happens each day in our lives.

That’s all for now, kind people.
Until next time, I wish you well!

M. J.

©2013 All Rights Reserved
Photo Credit:  Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain, Budapest Museum of Fine Arts, Sebastiano del Piombo (1485 – 1547)