Monday, August 22, 2016
February 24, 2016:
Today has gotten off to a much better start. One encouraging thing that I continually praise and acknowledge is Christ’s strength in me. That regardless of how hurt I am or how deep my wounds run, I always have a well to draw from of love and hope. There is always a sense that tomorrow will be better. I woke this morning feeling pretty rough. I decided to make my bed. This, in a small way, provided some encouragement and gave me motivation to begin my day. Then, I went outside. Something happened last night. The streets are covered in slush and sludge. I kind of wish I had bought more resilient shoes. My feet were drenched by the time I reached the bus. Then, on the bus, I looked out of the window and saw someone walking through a knee high puddle! I got two letters this morning. I’m at Starbucks right now where I am going to finish writing a chapter in my novel. Opening the letters, one was from my sponsored child in Ethiopia. I was so encouraged to receive this. She drew a little picture of some houses and dictated a letter to me. It was so nice. I am and will always remain thankful. Tonight I am going to my RCIA class. Sometimes, when people are acting out, lashing out and being defensive that is when they need love the most. I know it’s hard to see them as deserving it. I know how difficult it can be to love someone who is being an outright jerk. But, maybe if we look deeper and assess why they are acting like that, we can find something to empathize with. I’m not talking about me. I want people to hold me accountable. When my defensiveness and complaints are unwarranted. I’m just saying that maybe sometimes people are not so bad. When they’re having difficulty, we need to accept them while also disciplining them. Continuation: I went to my RCIA class this evening. I sat in front of the Tabernacle a bit before Mass started and prayed the Rosary. The class this evening was very cool. The leaders spoke a bit about prayer. To begin with, they asked what prayer meant to us. There is a young girl in the class who answered the question very well. They then spoke about the different types of prayer. Vocal, contemplative and meditative. I found myself censoring myself a lot lately. I think it’s out of shame that I am feeling this. I want to remind myself that my opinion matters a lot and that I matter. I find it absurd that I keep having to tell myself this. But I think it’s important to have empathy for myself. And that others may want to hear what I have to say. Anyways, I have experiences with each type of prayer. My experiences with contemplative prayer had to have been one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. In the time I spent at the monastery in Georgia, I also remained silent for my time there. This was quite a peaceful experience. Anyways, later in the class, one of the leaders asked if any of us had had a spiritual experience. I suppose it was that sense of self-censorship that silenced me as well. I tried to convince myself that I was just being modest. But really, I have no reason to be shy about such a wonderful experience. I should be speaking about it more often. It’s because of the shame I feel that I have difficulty finding a voice. It’s a reason I chose to write about it. Anyways, I am going to prepare myself spiritually and emotionally to go back on my fast. I want people to know that I will not stop fighting. I have to keep trying. My fight is not over until it’s over. I will keep fighting until my end. I want people to know that when I am looking at someone for a long time, most of the time, I’m trying to gauge their reaction to me to see if they’re angry with me. It’s messed up I realize. It’s I guess a defence mechanism that I have developed in order to anticipate abusive situations or abusive people. Later though, this defence strategy would evolve for me into a way to understand others, but mostly myself. I always want to know what others are thinking of me in order that I may be able to compensate and make them happy. It used to be an issue I had surrounding shame. We are blessed to live in an area of the world where you can literally have and openly express any idea. This is freedom. An ideology that demands if you’re not with us, you’re against us is flawed. People are allowed to disagree with others. That’s called freedom. I just want to encourage you to use reason in the developing of your ideas. Use logic in your debate. Most important thing I can do today is remember God’s love for me. That God will love me through all. It’s Satan’s dirtiest manipulation to convince people that his work is the work of God. God only wants the best for people. What God wants for us may hurt at times. But it is certainly for our best. The hurt and pain that has overtaken our world is Satan’s work. That’s why the most important thing we can do today is remember that God loves us and will love us through all. If Scripture was inspired, what’s to say that human and institutional systems weren’t also? There is corruption sometimes. That’s not what I’m talking about. I like the tradition. Something in the fact that the Church has withstood the test of time, has withstood persecution, war and famine and has always stood tall. I do not disagree with Christianity. I see though, some aspects of Catholicism that appeal to me. Please remember the work I did among you. You are all very precious to God. Listening to the guidance of the Spirit does not always have to be an intellectually grounded and logical decision. Most of the time, it’s not going to be that. We need to have faith that it is for our best. We just have to have faith. In spite of how much we have been through, we have to have faith through everything in God’s undeniable and unshakeable love for us. I’m just going to live my life. I’m going to stop being so concerned with pleasing others. Not that wanting others to be happy is a bad thing. But your being doesn’t have to revolve around this idea. I am valuable in and of myself. I am valuable because I am a human being. Most of all, I am valuable because God loves me. In Downsview today, I saw a gentleman to whom I often offer a bit of money each time I see him. He noticed me and told me that he was going to be receiving some money soon. He wanted to know where he could meet me so that he could reimburse me. I told him that I didn’t give to him with the hopes of receiving anything. They were gifts.