Tag Archives: church

Whatever it is you have planned for today, I ask that you take a moment to remember what Memorial Day actually means. It is a time to remember those who lost their lives serving this country. Whether or not you believe in the causes behind war, please remember that these brave men and women signed up to fight for your right to have those beliefs. By all means, use the day as time to spend with family and enjoy, but please don’t forget what today is really about. I’m lucky in that the love of my life, my best friend, is only currently away for a short while and I’ll see him in less than a month. Others are not so lucky.

My heart goes out to everyone who has lost a loved one in the United States Armed Services. May their sacrifice never be forgotten.

A verse for all who currently serve in the United States Armed Services:

Psalm 144:1-2 “Of David. Blessed be the Lord, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle; he is my steadfast love and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield and he in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples under me.”

A verse for those who we lost in their service:

John 15:13 “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

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So completely inspired by Kristyn’s post last week,  I started contemplating my own spiritual journey. I say journey, because honestly, I don’t think you can ever stop growing in your relationship with God or the church, whatever either of those might mean for you.

Corinthians 13:4 bible verse print

Recently, as in the past couple of years, I’ve felt a connection with the church in ways that I haven’t in a long time. I grew up with church every Sunday, Vacation Bible School every summer (attending and then as a counselor) and when I was in college, there wasn’t a church family on campus that I felt connected to. As an Episcopalian, I wasn’t permitted to take communion at the Catholic service, but the protestant service just wasn’t for me- much more evangelical than what I grew up with. To be honest, the Catholic service would have been a much better fit, with a very similar service structure and basically the same prayers, but communion has been a big part of my church life since I was little. Although my church did have an official “First Communion” service for the kids in my age group, I was allowed to partake after several weekly lessons with my mom and proving to her that I knew what the wine + wafer meant.

When I came home from college though, I became a lot more involved at St. John’s Olney. Unless I was working (dang retail hours!) I went to church. I became active in the outreach committee with Baby’s Bounty and it was nice to go back to surrounding myself with the church family that watched me grow up. As with Kristyn, I found that moving into DC took another toll on my spiritual life, until I went to my friend Matthew’s confirmation and started going to St. John’s Lafayette with him and a group of EpiscoPALS. I had what I like to call at God moment at that church. It was the Epiphany service and there was a bit of a mini pageant when we sang We Three Kings. As we sang the final chorus, for the first time, I cried in church just because I was overwhelmed by God. It’s so hard to explain, but it was a moment I can never forget.

I was very, very lost for a few years, probably more than most people ever even saw. My heart had been broken over and over again and I wasn’t treating myself very well. I often look back on some of my behavior and cringe. But God stood by me, and kept listening. I recently had a long talk with a family friend about my engagement and he asked me, “do you know who had to do what to make sure that you ended up with Kendall? This was planned.” It was planned. I prayed for Kendall not knowing who he was or when I’d find him. So did my (friend’s) Grandma Bernice. She literally walked up to me at Tiffany + Patrick’s rehearsal dinner and said to me, “Hello I am Grandma Bernice. We know each other on Facebook and I pray on my rosary every night that you will get married and I’ll come to your wedding too.”

I believe in the power of prayer. As a little girl, I saw my congregation pray for a girl my age who became paralyzed during surgery and was never supposed to walk again. Within 24 hours, her toes could move and later on we ended up in the same high school dance company. I was stuck in a snow storm in a convertible and lost- Lord’s Prayer over and over until I could make it safely to a family friend’s house. Prayed for a special love all my life (literally since I was old enough to pray silently by myself) and to quote Kristyn: God showed up and showed off! I thank him every day for my blessings and the people in my life and a running list of things that I know are on the hearts of my friends as well. My mom may have been instrumental in getting me to church, but my relationship with God + my many guardian angels is one that I have had to foster on my own through the years. I’m nowhere near where I want to be spiritually, but I’m working on it.

I want to leave you with my favorite words from the Bible, you may have already seen them if you looked it up from my Instagram bio. This describes perfectly how I feel about my faith:

Do not remember the sins of my youth
    and my rebellious ways;
according to your love remember me,
    for you, Lord, are good. –Pslam 25:7

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