Control and Abandonment

by | Feb 6, 2024 | Bold in Faith, Bold in Life

Hi friends! On Sunday afternoon, I returned home from an incredible four-day silent retreat. We stayed in an old English manor nestled in the blue hills of Virginia… If anyone is in the DMV area or wants to make a trip, I cannot recommend Longlea more! It had been hyped up to me for a veryyyy long time and still surpassed my expectations. I prayed for you all, a lot!

I experienced so many graces, but I wanted to share one specific reflection with you all:

In one talk, the speaker mused that we live in an interesting contradiction: to be a successful, functioning adult, we need to have a level of control over our lives. We need to keep a job, follow through on commitments, pay our bills, nurture our relationships, and stick to a schedule. To be a mature Christian, however, we also need to live with total abandonment to God. So to be a mature, Christian adult we must simultaneously manage our lives while maintaining openness to God’s Will and whatever He wants to do with what we offer Him. In her words, “that is the work of a lifetime.”

When we live like everything is in our control, we wrestle with worry, anxiety, fear, and striving. But if we are doing our best, and pursuing excellence, then we can leave everything in the hands of God and we don’t have to worry about outcomes. He sees our efforts, and He takes care of everything. The fruit that comes from living this abandonment is peace, joy, and love.

I’m pondering that this week and invite you to do the same: Where is God asking me to take more ownership of my life? Where is He asking me to release my grasp and abandon the results to Him?

It’s the work of a lifetime for sure, but maybe we can take a step towards greater abandonment (and spiritual maturity) this week.

In Christ,

Jane


What I’m loving lately….

Lent incoming!!

Can you believe that Ash Wednesday is in one week?! How did that happen so fast? Since we have some time, here are some ideas that I’ve been noodling on to grow closer to God this Lent. Giving things up is always good (it reminds us that in the way we crave something good, our souls are always craving something SO good in God), but I also find a lot of grace in adding something into my spiritual practice. I love to ask the question, “What is one thing I could do this Lent that would transform my relationship with God by the end of it?” Usually, lots of great ideas come from that. Here are some places to get started:

  • Pray the stations of the cross. I try to do these on Fridays in Lent, and I absolutely love St. Josemaria Escriva’s Way of the Cross! The meditations are incredible.
  • Read through the Gospels. On this retreat, I was introduced to the Navarre Bible and HOLY MOLEY, it’s good. The Gospels are accompanied by commentary, context, and notes that enable me to go so much deeper. This is my plan for Lent! I’m starting with the Gospel of St. Luke.
  • Pray the Rosary. In just fifteen minutes a day, I find so much joy, peace, and light – plus the Rosary gives me a focused chance for intercessory prayer for the people I love (including you!) and my own intentions. I’ve grown so much closer to Mary through the Rosary, and Lent is a great time to get this practice started.
  • Daily meditative prayer. Sometimes the simplest commitments are the most fruitful: how would your life change if you set a timer for 10 minutes of prayer each morning? Just sit in silence and let God speak to you. He always shows up!

Obsessed with my kettle

I’m a big tea girl and I cannot tell you how much I LOVE this kettle because it keeps my water hot for 2 hours after boiling!! I love jumping up to refill my tea and having hot water waiting for me. It’s a tiny bit of a splurge but I love her.

Crafting

Coming back from my retreat I had a surge of creative energy, so I spent Sunday afternoon running around DC to find supplies to make my own plaster canvas. I’ve been looking for a big piece of art like this for weeks, and finally decided to make it myself! I bought the supplies for $40, and saved the $900 I would have spent on this art by making it myself… plus it was so fun! I’m trying to live more leisurely, and I’m thinking some more arts and crafts will be part of that.

    Prayer requests

    • For all of the women I went on retreat with this weekend
    • For the women in my Fiat90 group
    • For a special intention

     

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    Jane Kennedy

    Jane Kennedy

    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.

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