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Jesus Is So Awesome

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Jesus Is So Awesome

Ok, so I've been a Postulant (a.k.a. "nun-in-training") for almost two years, so maybe it doesn’t come as a big surprise that I’m a bit smitten with Jesus. To clarify, though, I mean “awesome” not in the way it's used to describe a good pizza, but in the literal sense: “inspiring wonder, awe or fear.” 

I have so many reasons for being in awe of Jesus, but one big reason I've been praying with lately is just how patient he is with me. Think about it. Nine times out of ten, when someone is asked what they feel a need to grow in, the first thing they think of is patience. Personally, I find it easy to think of the many people and situations that test my patience. I often forget that others have many opportunities to practice patience with me! But Jesus doesn't struggle with that. Love is patient, and his love is perfect.  

So when I find myself bringing the same thing again and again (and again!) to the confessional, when I catch myself in the middle of saying something uncharitable, and when I struggle with doubts, it’s so consoling to know that he’s patiently waiting for me to come back to him with my whole heart, as we hear in the reading from Joel on Ash Wednesday. He invites me to come back. And when I wander, he sends the invitation again and again. The really beautiful thing about this is that each time I return, he draws me in deeper and deeper to the mystery of the love he has for me and for each person I meet.  

One of my favorite quotes, something that has brought me so much consolation over the years, is from Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman. In it, he explores this same mystery of the Lord’s patience with each one of us: 

For in truth we are not called once only, but many times; all through our life Christ is calling us. He called us first in Baptism; but afterward also; whether we obey His voice or not, He graciously calls us still. If we fall from our Baptism, He calls us to repent; if we are striving to fulfill our calling, He calls us on from grace to grace, and from holiness to holiness, while life is given us. […] He calls us again and again, in order to justify us again and again—and again and again, and more and more, to sanctify and glorify us (from the book Life’s Purpose: Wisdom from John Henry Newman).


When I read this, I imagine Jesus smiling at my efforts, gently lifting me when I fall, and excitedly encouraging me to follow him just a little further. 

With Lent approaching in just a few days, I find myself looking for ways in which I can respond with enthusiasm to Jesus’ calling me on and on. What are some things I can do to escape my inclination to selfishness, pride, and whatever else might be bogging me down spiritually? I’m sure I’ll find a few things I can give up, but there’s another positive action that I’ll be taking, and I invite you to join me.

See, one of the things that most strongly drew me to the spirituality of the Daughters of St. Paul was that in addition to our mission of using media to help spread the Gospel, we also take very seriously our mission of making reparation for media that is harmful to souls. As a former youth minister I have a deep appreciation for what the media is capable of, for better or for worse. There’s no need to fear these wonderful tools, but we do need to pray for them to be used in a way that is consistent with the Gospel and human dignity. So, I invite you to join me in praying the following prayer (or one you yourself write) throughout Lent, and may the fruit of this effort truly communicate to the world just how awesome Jesus is!

Father,
in union with all those
who today celebrate the Eucharist
I wish to offer myself, a small victim,
with Jesus, the Victim:

-in atonement for error and scandal
spread throughout the world
through the misuse of the media of social communication;

-to appeal to your mercy for those persons,
who, deceived and seduced
by the influence of these instruments,
stray from Your Fatherly love;

-for the conversion of those persons
who, in the use of these instruments,
reject the teaching of Christ and His Church
and thus warp the minds, the hearts,
and the undertakings of men and women;

-that we may follow Him alone whom You, Father,
in Your boundless love
sent into the world saying:
“This is my beloved Son, hear Him.”

Julie Turner, Postulant of the Daughters of St. Paul
| Categories: Inspiration, Lent | Tags: lent, holiness, mercy, love | View Count: (5301) | Return

Comments

  • Julie, You are wise way beyond your years! I love the prayer, and also your thoughts on patience! I'm going for increased patience this Lent, and encouraging my family to do the same! (Is that cheating, to get those around me to be more patient also?) Thanks for sharing! Mary
    2/17/2015 8:15:40 AM Reply
    • @Mary Meyer: Hahaha! Nah, I don't think that's cheating, just urging one another on to holiness, right? ;) It's always easier on a team! Praying for you!
      2/17/2015 5:36:40 PM Reply
  • Thank you for your spiritual guidance. I have been searching for "hip" yet meaningful ways to connect with my teen children during this year's "Lenten Journey". With technology being a major part of their everyday life, I look forward to sharing and reciting this prayer with them! God bless you and your gift of guidance!
    2/15/2015 11:10:10 AM Reply
    • @Erin: Thanks for your comments and for praying along with us! Here's something else your kids might love. There's a ministry that creates a monthly calendar with the names of "cultural influencers" to be prayed for each day! Check it out: http://www.mastermediaintl.org/calendar/
      2/17/2015 6:12:08 AM Reply
  • Julie, I too thank you for your accepting the call. One of the great things the Lord does and that is recognized by St. Ignatius is that he provides us with great consolation as we accept new challenges and yield to his will. We are so fortunate to bask in the light of your experience! Dennis
    2/14/2015 7:45:33 PM Reply
    • @Dennis: Hi, Dennis! Thank you for your encouragement. God is so faithful in providing so many graces... so that we can receive even more graces! What a gift. Thanks for that reminder. You're in our prayers!
      2/17/2015 6:04:38 AM Reply
  • Postulant Julie, do we refer to you as Sister Julie, yet? Thank you for sharing your reflection on Patience and most importantly on how Jesus is patient with us. God bless you as you grow in your Faith.
    2/14/2015 4:31:57 PM Reply
    • @Mary Jane Madeline: Hi, Mary Jane! Nope, I'm not "sister" just yet. Thanks for reading and for your prayers!
      2/17/2015 6:02:26 AM Reply
  • Dear Sister Julie, Thank you for your vocation, for which I pray, and for the beautiful prayer and Lenten reflection. God bless you and all of us, Maria
    2/14/2015 8:26:39 AM Reply
    • @Maria: Thank you for your encouragement and prayers. Know that we are praying for you, too! Blessings!
      2/14/2015 10:12:09 AM Reply
  • I am anxious to hear the reading from Joel on Ash Wednesday. Thank you for your encouraging words.
    2/14/2015 5:52:35 AM Reply
    • @Connie Paredez: All the readings from that day are beautiful! If you're able, it might be neat to pray with them before going to Mass. http://usccb.org/bible/readings/021815.cfm You're in our prayers!
      2/14/2015 10:11:30 AM Reply
  • Thank you for being "real." It takes courage but it, more than anything, speaks to people and connects with them. I find it very encouraging when a "holy one" is brave enough to remind me, and others, that they are human aka flawed. It reminds us, or perhaps presents the idea for the first time to someone, that flawed people are called and able to make change in the kingdom!
    2/14/2015 2:54:08 AM Reply
    • @Jill: Like I used to tell the teens in my youth group: If you aren't being real, you're wasting your time! ;) I have to admit that I chuckled a bit out loud when you bunched me in with the "holy ones", but flawed humans bringing the kingdom? That I can be on board with! Praying for you. :)
      2/14/2015 10:09:45 AM Reply
  • What a great idea it is to say this prayer. I will print it out and say it daily. Sister I loved your comments. Patience is oh so hard at times. I often wonder how God puts up with us failing time after time. You gave the answer. Thank you and God bless you during your formation and beyond!
    2/14/2015 1:43:11 AM Reply
    • @Rosanne Hughes: Thanks, Rosanne! Continue to pray for the sanctification of the media, and know that we are praying for you. Blessings!
      2/14/2015 10:06:47 AM Reply

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