Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam

Happy Feast Day of St. Ignatius of Loyola! For those of you who do not know, he was the founder of the Society of Jesus, or the Jesuits! The Jesuit motto, “Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam,” or “For the Greater Glory of God” has always been special to me. It’s been the signature line of my email for quite a few years now and it’s really good to think about.

Earlier today I was picking raspberries out in the yard and I began to think about what it means to really do things for the greater glory of God. I got to thinking about what this practically looks like in our lives, and how even the smallest things can be done for the glory of God… for instance I was picking raspberries. But I had my ipod in and I was listening to praise and worship music while I worked. But then I realized that every berry I picked could be offered up as a small gift to the Lord. Berry by berry I offered God a little gift of love. It was simple, but it was one way of making even my little job of picking raspberries a way of getting closer to God.

Thinking about why we do something can make all the difference. Sometimes (okay more like any time I have to wake up before 9 am) I struggle to wake up in the morning. I am very much a night person and so this is hard for me. But a couple weeks ago as I laid in bed struggling to get the will power to sit up, I realized that even this little act could be offered as a gift to the Lord. I thought to myself, “Jesus, I love You more than how much I want to lay here.” Rather than trying to convince myself to not fall back asleep, by offering this little struggle to the Lord He gave me the strength to actually do it. And this can be used in so many other situations, too, by filling in whatever it is you want to offer. “Jesus, I love You more…”

When we allow our lives to become filled with little gifts of love to Jesus, when we do the little things out of love for Him, when we do all things for the greater glory of God… this world will slowly be filled with more and more beauty. Do something beautiful today; however small the act might be, offer Jesus the gift of your love.

You are Beloved.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

Wow. Read that again.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

You may have heard this before, but have you heard this before? What I mean by that is have you allowed this truth to resonate in your heart? Have you allowed your heart to hear this truth from God Himself, allowed Him to tell you that He created you for a purpose, you are cherished, and you are loved?

If you haven’t, then give Him a chance. Ask Him to show you His love and He most certainly will.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

Due to my forgetful nature, I have to ask God to show me that He loves me basically every day. Although He shows me over and over, I forget… over and over. But every time I ask Him, “Lord, show me you love me,” He always answers. He will answer you as well! But He will answer in a way that makes sense to you, and that’s the beautiful part… for example, one particular day last week I asked God this very thing – that He would show me His love – and He answered me in a most unusual way. I was just sitting outside, it was a nice and sunny morning, and I looked over and I saw a praying mantis! This might not be so spectacular to someone else, but I hadn’t seen one in at least a couple years! I think they’re so neat to look at (maybe my favorite insect if I had to pick one), and it was just a really small but profound way of God showing me that He loved me that morning, by sending a sweet little praying mantis my way.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

You are so loved. It’s hard to see it, it’s hard to know that we are the beloved daughter of the Father, but we truly are. Little girls understand this so much better than we do sometimes. Something gets lost as we get older. But think about a little girl wearing a twirly dress who is just spinning around wanting everyone to look at her. She knows how beautiful she is and although she may not know it in her head, she knows in her heart how beloved she is. We need to have that same kind of confidence about us. It’s time we reclaim that identity, because it is truly ours! God has given it to us. He has made us in His image and likeness.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

Allow the Lord to speak this truth to your heart. Allow Him to tell you, “You are my beloved whom I love, for whom I died. Come to me. Rest in me. I love you.” Claim this, and allow your world to be changed.

You are a beloved daughter of God.

Our Hearts Were Created for Love

My favorite chick flick of all time is Leap Year. After a rough day, there is nothing like sitting down, watching the movie, and eating some chocolate. But 27 Dresses, Pride and Prejudice, and Tangled are all up there on the list as well… But I don’t think I’m alone in this, because almost every girl has her favorite chick flick. 

Why do we as women enjoy chick flicks and fairy tales so much? 
What is it about these stories of a man and woman falling in love and living happily ever after that we can’t get enough of?
I would like to propose that the answer to those questions is actually very simple: our hearts were created for true love. But by true love I don’t mean the gushy, superficial love that we see in Hollywood. I’m talking about a fulfilling, I will go so far as to say eternal, love that satisfies the longing each and every heart experiences. When we watch chick flicks, we are left wanting what we see. We long for a similar love story to happen in our own lives. And this is because we are created to love and to be loved. 
The thing is, before we can love and be loved by anyone else, we must first be fulfilled with Christ’s love. Ultimately, His love is the only thing that will ever fully satisfy our longing hearts. Men will always fail us because they are human. We will be the happiest when we first allow our hearts to be filled with Christ’s love and we find our identity in Him. You are a beloved daughter of the King! We must allow the Lord to gently whisper this truth into our heart: “You are beautiful. You are beloved. You are cherished. You are enough. I love you.” It is then that we will be filled. Ask Him to show you how He sees you. You are so beautiful and beloved to Him! 
Women long to be sought after, and we find it very attractive when a man has enough character to fight for us. But what we don’t recognize is that 
while we are waiting for the “perfect” man, the truly perfect man has been seeking after us for our whole life! He has a plan and will allow the right man – a man worthy of you – to step in at the right time. But as St. Josemaria Escriva put it so beautifully: “When you approach the tabernacle remember that He has been waiting for you for twenty centuries.” The Lord is the perfect gentleman and is seeking after your heart! In other words, He is knocking on the door of your heart, all you need to do is open it! He wants to flood you with His love. He wants to satisfy you with His love. He wants to fill your little heart to the point of overflowing with His love. 
Ask Him to show you. Receive this love, beloved daughter. 

Blog posts coming soon…

To all readers: although it’s been about 3 months since my last post, I promise I will be posting soon!! Since my last post, I have returned to the States, spent some time at home, spent the last 8 weeks traveling around the diocese as a Totus Tuus teacher, and I have so much beauty to post about! Coming soon! :) 

Totus Tuus Maria.