St. Rose of Lima

About My Girl, Saint Rose of Lima

Her feast day is today, August 23. Saint Rose grew up in Spain and, according to history, she was quite the looker. They nicknamed her Rose because she was really beautiful.  Saint Rose definitely did not like the attention and wanted to dedicate her life to God. Her parents wanted her to marry (and quick!). She refused and kept on asking to go into the convent…her parents refused the request. 

Saint Rose then did the only thing she could do: obey, but with a twist. She stayed in solitude in her home with her parents. She dedicated her life to The Third Order of Saint Dominic. She cared for the elderly, homeless children, and the sick. She still got offers to marry, though, so she quickly did things to make herself less beautiful. As we all know, though, beauty is on the inside. 

Saint Rose covered her face in pepper, which caused sores. She also wore a silver crown with thorns that cut her head and she cut her hair in a displeasing way. Her beauty shined through her everyday obedience to God and to his will helping out the locals. When she died, multiple men from the community carried her casket.

A Saint for Me

Saint Rose’s story made me (and still does make me) cry. slShe lived her life in a way that was beautiful. She obeyed her parents and God’s will for her life. She went through many sicknesses and employed extreme self-discipline tactics that really put her health in danger. 

What I love about her is that she stayed the course and she got stronger in her convictions. Saint Rose never gave up her faith and dedication to God.  She knew that she would have to have discipline in her life to do her vocation. 

St. Rose & My Marriage

In every marriage, I feel there is some area that needs growing and attention more than the others.  There might be more than one area, to be really truthful.  In my marriage we don’t have a ton of self-discipline. You are probably wondering why  you need that in marriage, right? 

When I read Saint Rose’s story I was thinking to myself, “How I can apply this to my life?” God definitely used this cool Catholic woman to show me a lot of areas where I need self-discipline.

1.       Prayer

It was a huge surprise for me when I started to deeply think about self discipline; that prayer was an area that I needed help in. I pray every day and I make sure to say certain prayers. So why was God pointing out the hubby and I needed more disciplined when we pray? Well you know how sometimes you want to do things quickly so you can hurry about your life? Hubby and I do that with our nightly rosary, or we only do a decade because we are exhausted.  I read her story to the Scientist and the first thing he said (without any prompting for me) was “We need to be more intentional with our nightly rosary.”  I was in shock that he thought the same exact problem that God showed me.  Our solution? Move it out of our bed and into the family room,  in front of our home altar.

2.       Family Time

The second thing I dwelled on in this conversation with God was my family time. The Scientist and I spend every waking minute together, whenever we have the chance, so it didn’t seem like we needed anything here. However…we need to be more intentional about what we are doing in those moments together. We love to play cards, chess, and board games; listen to music; watch YouTube videos, movies, or TV shows; plan our dream house; talk about budgeting and frugal living; make plans with our friends and  family…you know how it goes. What it comes down to is that we leave our door open to other distractions when we are together. When we play games, our phones are out and Facebook is also there, playing with us. We need more discipline to put our phones up and away when we are together. We can check emails and social media when we are not spending quality time together. Our focus is on quality time rather than distraction by our beautiful little piece of technology.

3.       Mass Times

I am going to be honest with you, Sundays are one of the two days, The Scientist and I like to sleep in. We are fans of the weekends. The Scientist not only works during the day, he also coaches football, so usually we are up at 4:30 a.m. each weekday. We like to spend time together working out, praying, and eating together before he heads out. The team he coaches usually practices in the morning, before school.  But on Sundays, we like to sleep in until 8:00 or 9:00. I know it is still early for some, but it’s late for us. The mass that we love to go to is 8:00 a.m. Mass. It is wonderful and I just love it.  Growing up we always had one set Mass time that we went to. I feel it adds structure to your day and week, but lately The Scientist and I have been sleeping in and Mass-hopping and rushing to get there. The solution here  is to tighten our belts and make sure we get up right away when the alarm rings.

One Last Nugget of Saintly Wisdom 

My favorite quote from St. Rose is “The gift of grace increases as the struggle increases”.  I love this so much because it is the truth. When I intentionally pray, put my phone down, and stay with the planned Mass time, my marriage improves one hundred percent.  

Back to School 

It’s back to school today, and my sweet Little Miss enters the third grade today. Third grade! That’s insane. I can remember this day four years ago, when she excitedly hugged me as I walked her into her Kindergarten class and only called me back to open her Play-Doh. I cried.

Today, while I doubt I cry, she’s entering the phase of school where she has a homeroom and switches classes. How did she grow up so fast? Her amazing Kindergarten teacher says, “Don’t blink!” because it goes so fast; and she’s right.

My wonderful husband starts school today, too. He’s teaching 5th grade and is having his first first day of school in this capacity. I’ve watched and supported him on this journey and am so proud that he’s arrived at this moment.

We’re up earlier today and have a strict schedule and routine to stick to. It’s the first day of school. But I know that today is going to be the beginning of an amazing year.

The Scientist starts school today, too. Would you keep our three in your prayers today? What do you do in your house to simplify this hectic back to school time?

Kristi

FIAT: Faith in All Things The Friendship Project

We are big fans of friendship here at Hail Marry, having been founded by two best friends, so when we were offered the opportunity to preview the new book The Friendship Project by Michele Faehnle and Emily Jaminet (authors of Divine Mercy for Moms, too!), we jumped!

Not only did we get to read the book (which is great!), we also got to chat with the lovely ladies on this week’s podcast as part of their Friendship Friday Blog Tour to promote the release of this great book.

Make sure you listen closely for wonderful conversation, a super deal on bulk buying The Friendship Project, and how they make it so easy to read together in community as a small group.

If the media player doesn’t load, click here to stream or download on Libsyn or subscribe and listen on iTunes!

Have a phenomenal weekend and a great Friendship Friday!

Friendship 

Friendship is so important. We’ve talked about this before and have encouraged people to reach out to their friends with an actual phone call and an actual outing, rather than a text or on social media…but this came off potentially judgy. We know that in some cases, texting and social media are all you’ve got. And in other cases, they just make more sense! Here’s how that looks in my life.

The Friend in a Different State

One of my high school besties, Juliana, moved to the Midwest after college. We share the same birthday, but we havebt celebrated it tofether since approximately 2004. We’ve missed one another’s weddings, become parents, moved on in our careers, and bought houses. Every year on our birthday, though, we text. We have nice textversations or chats on Facebook messenger about 3 times a year. That isn’t much, I  know. But it’s how we’re able to maintain our friendship, even if it isn’t quite what it once was.

The Friends Who Were Your Group in College

We refer to ours as “SFA Sisters.” Comprised of four of us, we all majored in the same thing, and three of us worked in costume design. Three of us live in Texas and one is in Missouri. Two of us still work in theatre. We have a Facebook Messenger chat group that’s filled with all of our exciting news as well as a ton of gifs. We’ve announced pregnancies, jobs, houses, and randomness to one another in these groups. I’d say our closeness is still pretty strong.

The Friend Who Lives Nearby

It’s even hard to hang out with these friends sometimes; the ones I consider my closest friends. These are the ones I text most frequently, but we also call one another. We tag on Facebook about local events we can go to and email each other interesting articles.

Friendship: Not One Size Fits All

In conclusion,we have plenty of tech helping us maintain our relationships, and although we LOVE hanging out with our friends in person, sometimes it just isn’t feasible. Don’t feel badly if you’re in that boat, too. Reaching out and letting your friend know you miss them and are there for them is important, regardless of the media you use to do so.

Seeking on Rocky Waters

Yesterday at Mass, I heard salvation, hope, direction, and inspiration to succeed in my everyday life.  

Familiar

Those words that inspired me were words I’d heard before, but my focus was elsewhere; my attention was interrupted by noise. I realized just how much noise there is in the world.  

Noise

It surrounds me and my environment every day. Loud, intrusive, offensive, argumentative, rude, selfish, crazy, nonsense, righteous, judgmental, unloving, uncharitable, opinionated….noise. I could go on forever about the noise that surrounds me.

Seeking

We all look for God in one way or another in that noise; some find him, and others are still searching. Just like Elijah was looking for God in yesterday’s reading. He was in a cave, lodging there. 

How many of us are just lodging like that? Just lying around not doing much with our lives? He was in a state of waiting, I know I can compare myself to Elijah in that respect: I’m also waiting for direction.  

Elijah was told by the Lord “…What are you doing here…?” (1 Kings 19:9), it seems to me that Lord was confused on why Elijah was just sitting there. He then told Elijah “…Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord…” (1 Kings 19:11) The Lord told Elijah that he was there and wanted Elijah to see him.  

In the Calm

In the readings Elijah went and stood out on the mount. He experienced huge winds, earthquakes, and fire; but God wasn’t in any of those elements. It wasn’t until the entire ruckus calmed down that Elijah was able to hear the little whisper of God.  It was when Elijah was calm and his faith was steady that he heard God.

Rocky Waters

The Gospel was about Peter, and we’ve all heard the story of Peter walking on water with Jesus. Peter was in a boat that was in the rocky water.  Jesus came to Peter and the others in the middle of the night, the fourth watch. They all believed Jesus to be a ghost; except Peter: he knew it was Jesus.  He followed what Jesus said “… Take heart; it is I; have no fear.” (Matthew 14:27)  

He put his faith in the Lord when he was in the rocky water. He walked on water toward Jesus, but the wind (more noise) scared him, he faltered and started too descended into the water. Jesus who was right there grabbed him and said “Ye of little faith, why did you doubt” (Matthew 14:31) 

Peter faltered in his faith because his attention was on the noise, not God.  When Peter was quiet and his faith was steady he heard God.

Seeking on Rocky Waters

I can count how many times in my life that I’ve been in rocky waters or the noise engulfs me and I am nowhere near where I need to be with God. Times when I am still fuming from what I read on Facebook a couple of minutes before I started praying or am distracted.

There is a ton of fear and negativity in our world right now.  Theres a lot of life going on, too. How am I going to focus on God and not the noise? Well, I came up with five things that I am going to start doing for less noise in my everyday life.

1.       Before I pray, quiet myself and surroundings.

2.       Put away my phone during “Family and Friend” time.

3.       Be more positive and charitable with my responses.

4.       Listen and think before I respond to anything.

5.       Thank God for all of the blessings in my life; not harp on what is wrong.

We would love for you to drop your prayers in the comments or share with us how you quiet yourself so God can shine through.  

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Rachel