Abandonment and Attraction
For the past few months, I’ve slowly been making my way through the book, Abandonment to Divine Providence. It is so good, and I usually have to pause after each page to fully digest what I’ve just read. I also frequently send photos of pages to friends, and I’ve been known to whip it out and read sections to unsuspecting passers-by (jk, it’s mostly been to people I know).
The idea of abandonment to divine providence is a deceptively simple one: by giving all of ourselves (in essence, abandoning ourselves) to God, we give Him the power and freedom to do with us and our lives whatever He wills. It’s how saints become saints, and how we can experience incredible joy and freedom in our daily lives. When we trust that God has the best for us, we can give Him everything, knowing that He will make our simple offerings and gifts greater than we could ever imagine.
The whole book is good, but one paragraph stuck out to me recently. In it, Fr. Jean-Pierre de Caussade offers the three steps necessary for abandonment:
- Carefully fulfill the duties of your state
- Quietly follow the attraction given to you
- Submit peacefully to the dealings of grace to body and soul
Seems easy enough, no?
What really sticks out to me, though, is the second step. One of the hardest parts of accepting the call to abandonment is the fear that we will no longer “get what we want” or be happy. On the contrary – abandonment frees us from the useless worry and desperate grasping that we so often engage in when we want something to go our way and struggle to trust God.
And so it is SO important to be aware of and responsive to our attractions. Do you feel a stirring to sign up for a marathon? Shift to a new role or company? Start a bible study? Pick up a new hobby? Reach out to a friend you haven’t seen in a while? God uses our desires and our attractions to draw us closer to Him and to form us into the people He created us to be. Therefore, we must pay attention to the little attractions and desires we experience in daily life, prayer, and relationships.
Of course, we also have to fulfill the duties of our state and be open to grace, but I think that openness to attraction is a good challenge for us this week. Let’s ask the Lord to reveal any places where we may have been silencing His nudging, and for the grace to say yes to any opportunities to love Him and experience a greater joy in our own life. This will be fun!!
What we’re loving lately:
Podcast Episode 87: Gentleness with Kendra Diaz | Fruit of the Spirit Series
- I can’t believe we’re wrapping up our Fruit of the Spirit series! This has been so much fun for me – and I hope for you too. I can’t think of anyone better to close us out. My dear friend Kendra Diaz is here today, and she’s giving us all the secrets to living a life of strength and gentleness. Enjoy! Tune in here on Apple Podcasts and Spotify!
Try a new mass!
- Last week, I was chatting with a friend and we realized that we both have been loving going to different churches for Sunday/daily mass than our usual spots. Why? Sometimes when we go to places where we know lots of people, it’s easier to get distracted by what’s happening all around us and more challenging to focus on God. If you’ve been getting lost in the mass recently, I highly recommend trying somewhere new once or twice!
- Do you have a retreat spot you love? Please reply to this email and share! I’m working on pulling together a resource for great retreat houses across the country to share with readers!
Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
- I’m a bit of a late bloomer on this book, but I’ve been devouring it. It’s a memoir about a man who grew up in Appalachian Kentucky/Ohio and the story of his family. Reminds me a bit of Tara Westover’s Educated.
You can’t win ’em all
- I have never received as many positive responses to any newsletter as the one I sent last week about Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner and curiositas… but I’ve also never had so many people unsubscribe in a week 🙈 I found that pretty funny, and a great reminder that you can’t win them all! Thank you all for choosing to be here and for reading these. I’m grateful for you!
- For a reader’s spouse struggling with addiction
- For a good friend who is pregnant!
- For a special intention
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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.