Something I decided to do this year is 365 Days of Grateful. Basically all I'm doing is writing down one thing that I'm grateful for at the end of every day for all of 2014. Let's just say working in this ministry has not left me scrounging for things to write down, although not all of them are directly related to the ministry either. So what I thought I'd do is just share some of the things that I have been grateful for over this past month and a half.
- Humbling moments- While they are extremely difficult to swallow, they remind us that we are human and we make mistakes. We all have selfish desires that we will probablyyy give into at one time or another. We can try to imitate Jesus but we will never be perfect like Him for this reason. It's so important to remember this, especially when we make mistakes, but it's also important to remember that He gives us forgiveness through Confession as well as the chance to lay our burdens on Him after we've done all we can do.
- A Home with Heat- During these freezing (aka -50 below) temperatures it's unimaginable to be in the situation where you do not have heat in your home or do not even have a home at all. It's so easy to take this sort of thing for granted. I'm so grateful that a heated home is a privilege I have been blessed with through the hard work and love of my parents as well as through my fortune of being able to live at places like Stonehill and SPIRITUS that have that ability to provide.
- Sisters in Christ- Even on a boring day stuck inside watching TV we can still bond and have a great time together, especially over the random conversations we have that always end with us in tears from laughing so hard.
- God Moments-
- 8th graders who are usually "too cool" to participate actually joining in singing the opening song or answering a question
- An 8th grader who was so excited to sign up for not just 1 but 3 intercessory prayer cards because he wanted to pray for his fellow classmates
- Jayme- We met her on a Confirmation retreat and mentioned we might be able to stop by the Pizza Hut she works at, at some point. The day we stopped by the expression on her face when she saw us was priceless. As we talked she explained she'd been thinking about us possibly coming all day. Then she went on to say she wasn't even supposed to be here at this time but she happened to read the schedule wrong (God's timing right there). It was a blessing to be able to see her joy and know we had a little something to do with it.
- Janesville Retreat- George, Dan, and Father Steve were all amazing hosts. There was so much hospitality and a pure joy just to be hanging out with us. It was a blast enjoying time and games with them as well as Eric, Michelle, Kristine, and Robbie who I'm rarely on retreat with!
- SEAS Confirmation Retreat Small Group- They were honest and open and genuinely interested in discussing faith. They also really cared about my own thoughts on the topics. One of the best small groups I've led.
- Spontaneous Movie Nights- 13 going on 30 and Fireproof and the ridiculousness that ensued before, during, and after watching them.
- Welcoming middle/elementary schoolers- Growing up you become bombarded with things to be insecure about which keep you from welcoming others into your life. Students at this age don't yet have those inhibitions and I love it.
- Daily Mass at St. Bernard's- At this particular Mass I was just overwhelmed by the Lord's presence surrounding me that I was almost moved to tears.
- Laughter- On SPIRITUS there is never a lack of laughter due to the guys doing weird dances, the girls talking about the weirdest topics, roadtrips in Xavier, Valley girl and other obnoxious voices, nicknames, etc. The list goes on forever :)
These are just a few of the things that I've written down that I've been grateful for in 2014. I thank God every day (including the more difficult days) for bringing me to SPIRITUS where I have been able to grow so much closer to Him. It has truly been a blessing and I'm looking forward to all the things I'll be grateful for over these next few months here as well as the rest of 2014! May God bless you and your loved ones always.
P.S. Happy (belated) Valentine's Day!! Sending love to all of you <3