Let God Surprise You
Advent is here! Can you believe it? 2022 has simply flown by.
I always love the start of the new liturgical year, especially because we get to kick it off with the beautiful season of Advent. Advent is a time of great hope, joy, peace, and love, and so the next four weeks of newsletters will be focused on these virtues and reflections/resources that help me live these virtues in my life!
One big thing I want to focus on this week is giving God permission to surprise me, and being intentional about writing down these surprises so I remember them. To get started:
- I’m in Spain with my family this week, and last night we went to the Cathedral in Sevilla and were surprised with the most beautiful mass – with two cardinals! We toured the Cathedral the day prior, and our guide told us that they very rarely have a choir, and we got to experience a full mass with a choir and everything. Very special and unexpected.
- A couple of nights ago, we were walking home from dinner and ran right into a perpetual adoration chapel. I was able to go back after dinner and spend some time in quiet prayer. I truly think there is nothing more peaceful than sitting before the Lord in adoration. It was also super cool to see so many people and couples (young and old) pop by for prayer in the midst of their evenings.
How has God surprised you lately?
This week, I have some stellar resources to help us all grow in hope:
- This podcast episode rocked me – such a beautiful reminder that God is always intentionally willing our good, and He desires to surprise us with great gifts if we let Him. A great message of hope, and probably the best way to spend 30 minutes of your time this week.
- I’ve had my eye on this mass journal for the past few years and finally pulled the trigger. All I can say is wow. It’s so, so well done, and provides a space and journal promptings to prepare for the readings of each Sunday mass. If you’re looking for new ways to enter more fully into the mass each Sunday, I highly recommend the journal!
“Be Satisfied in Me” prayer
- Typically attributed to St. Anthony of Padua, this is a prayer I first came across a few years ago, and it never fails to bring great hope and peace to my heart. Often used as a prayer for a future spouse, it’s actually far more versatile and can be prayed in any state of life where we’re longing and hoping for something we don’t yet have (read: pretty much always). You can pray it below:
Everyone longs to give themselves completely to someone, to have a deep soul relationship with another, To be loved thoroughly and exclusively.
But to a Christian, God says: No, not until you are satisfied, Full and content with being loved by me alone, with giving yourself totally and unreservedly to me. With having an intensely personal and unique relationship with me alone.
Discovering that only in me is your satisfaction to be found will you be capable of the perfect human relationship that I have planned for you. You will never be united to another until you are united with me. Exclusive of anyone or anything else. Exclusive of any other desires or longings. I want you to stop planning, to stop wishing, and allow me to give you The most thrilling plan existing… one you cannot imagine. I want you to have the best. Please allow me to bring it to you.
You just keep watching me, expecting the greatest things. Keep experiencing the satisfaction that I am. Keep listening and learning the things that I tell you. Just wait, that’s all. Don’t be anxious, don’t worry. Don’t look around at things others have gotten or that I have given them. Don’t look around at the things you think you want, Just keep looking off and away up to me, Or you’ll miss what I want to show you, And then, when you’re ready, I’ll surprise you with a love Far more wonderful than you could dream of.
You see, until you are ready, I am working even at this moment. Be satisfied exclusively with me.
- For a hopeful beginning of the Advent season
- A community member’s brother and his wife, who are pregnant with twins after two miscarriages, that these babies will be safe and healthy!
If you or a loved one need prayers, just reply to this email or reach out and I’ll include them in next week’s newsletter!
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Jane was born in Australia, raised in California, and is overjoyed to now call NYC home. She graduated from UCSB with degrees in Political Science and Communication and spent the past two years working in criminal justice reform. She is currently an MBA student at NYU Stern, focusing on entrepreneurship and strategy.