Hail Mary

About two years ago I started feeling called to pray the Rosary.  I was excited to pray it and wanted to spread the call. I asked a friend to pray with me.  I bought Rosaries to give to the homeless and asked them to pray with me, and I bought a book about the Rosary, The Secret of the Rosary by Saint Louis de Montfort.

And then the time came to pray… every time I would begin to pray, I lacked patience, the desire to complete it left me as soon as I began and honestly I kept falling asleep in the middle of saying it.  My attempts became fewer and fewer and my excitement waned.

Then about six months ago I had an interesting discussion regarding the strong connection between our physical actions and our prayers, and I decided to begin trying to pray the Rosary again, but in action this time.

I decided to connect praying the Rosary with an exercise I love, yoga. Below is how I have been been praying the Rosary of our sweet and wonderful Mother, and I hope that if you struggle to pray the Rosary this will help you.  Use this as a guide to pray with me, or as a spark to ignite a new idea within you to honor and pray the Rosary of our sweet Mother Mary!

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I begin the Rosary by praying the Apostle’s Creed in the humble position of prayer on my knees with my hands together in prayer.

I then pray the Our Father with my arms spread wide and my face tilted upward open to both receiving and giving according to His Holy Will.

For each Hail Mary I go through a vinyasa yoga flow.

I begin in the downward-facing dog pose, a humble position showing Mary that I desire to learn from her.

Hail Mary full of Grace, the Lord is with thee.

I then flow into a plank pose, a position of strength acknowledging the great and unimaginable strength required by her to FULLY surrender to our Lord.

Blessed art thou among women,

I then lower into a prostrate position and spread my arms wide to form a cross as I speak of her Holy and Blessed Son, Jesus.  I desire to be one with the dust of the ground when speaking of our Lord.

And blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy Mary Mother of God

I then bring my hands in and press up into a cobra pose, the pose of a snake acknowledging that I have sinned and I have caused others to sin just as the snake in the Garden of Eden did so long ago.

Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.

Pressing back into downward dog pose, I continue this flow for each Hail Mary.

Then at the end of the first 3 Hail Mary’s or at the end of each decade I sit back into a child’s pose, a pose of rest and humility, honoring the Trinity, begging for forgiveness and mercy and once again acknowledging that Mary is my mother, and I long to learn from her as I pray.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit: As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to Heaven, especially those most in need of Thy mercy. Amen.

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Acts 1:14
They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.

Connected

I think deep down we all know that we are somehow connected whether we acknowledge this or not.  The connection isn’t immediately visible in this world, and yet many of us feel it and know that it is there.  Those who have accessed this deep knowledge in times of silence or brokenness or even great joy, experienced this connection and wanted to share it with everyone and thus many creations and inventions have been born from what we know within, spoken and written languages, roads, art, books, mail, morse code, televisions, telephones, and now the internet – connecting our whole world.

Yet – anything we create here is a simplistic, broken and eventually a corrupt copy of what truly exists, what is real yet invisible!

Let us use our inventions to spread LOVE despite their brokenness, but let us NOT allow them to overshadow the true and real connection that is buried deep within each of us – you will find it in the SILENT and INFINITE DEPTH of each PRESENT MOMENT.  Within each moment it waits to be discovered – a buried treasure whispering to us – Come, come and see!

Matthew 13:44-46
The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in the field, which a man found and hid again; and from joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking fine pearls, and upon finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.

The Golden Touch

If we could realize the merit concealed in the actions of each moment of the day… if we understood that surrender to the will of God is the true philosopher’s stone that changes into divine gold all our occupations, troubles, and sufferings, what great consolation would be ours!

I read this the other day in The Joy of Full Surrender by Jean-Pierre de Caussaude (chapter 9, Holy Made Easy) and I immediately thought of King Midas.

I’m sure you have heard of King Midas.  He was a king of great fortune who wished for – The Golden Touch, for everything he touched to be turned to gold.  Initially he received his wish with great joy, running through his castle turning everything to gold, but his joy quickly turn to fear as he realized even the food he tried to eat turned to gold before reaching his mouth, and finally his fear became true horror when he turned his own daughter to gold by giving her a hug.

Isn’t it crazy how quickly the desires of our flesh that seem good, can be twisted and turned into horrors?  Yet with the eyes of faith, a heart of love, and a true desire to fully surrender to the Will of God, we all gain The Golden Touch and everything we do is changed into divine gold in His Heavenly Realm.

Matthew 6:19-21
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will Be Done!

Pray with confidence

Sweet friends, we must pray with confidence in our Sweet Father’s ability to do anything and believing in full faith that our sweet Father in Heaven longs to answer and provide the purest desires of our heart!

Do not pray in fear, instead pray in confidence. In our minds and hearts we must release Him from whatever box we have tried to build around Him and place all confidence, trust, belief, faith in Him.

We might watch the news, see the homeless, see the refugees, see the slaves or look in the mirror and see our greed, see our sin and then for a moment teeter on the brink of despair, but look up, look up and see Him, the biggest, bravest, strongest and most amazing Father who knows it is all worth it, everything is worth it… and then smile as the sweet Holy Spirit renews our confidence in Him.

Thank You sweet Father for everything, thank You sweet Holy Spirit for our renewed confidence and faith moment by moment, thank You sweet Jesus for being YOU!

Crazy on a soap box…

I used to live in Chicago.  I worked downtown and walked by the corner of State and Washington almost everyday.  As I was walking by, almost every evening  a preacher  was standing at the corner with a microphone and speaker addressing everyone walking by.

I never stopped to really listen, but in the hundreds of times I walked by I know I heard him talk about the fires of hell and our need to repent.  Unfortunately the few times I even took notice of him, I thought to myself, “Oh my… he’s crazy!”

As I read a passage about John the Baptist this week, I thought about John’s passion and how many at that time thought he was crazy, and my friend back in Chicago came to mind.  I am starting to think it would be better to be standing next to him and labeled “crazy” than to be swept away by the desires of this world.

Lord, thank you for creating  other souls that are overflowing  with passion for You.  Please open my eyes to their example of love and zeal for You alone and rise up in me a great passion for You and Your Will and please remove my internal and self imposed obstacles so that I too might someday provide a safe harbor for at least four of Your little souls from the rushing river of this world.

The circle of giving!

Imagine a place where we passed on our things every day.  We didn’t sit around with full pantries, closets,  or attics, but instead cleaned out and passed on every night before bed.  Imagine the cleansing we would do, and the new opportunities that would arrive right on our door steps!

I am pretty sure I am a break in this circle, but how I would love to mend my broken piece.

Please pray for us my friends.  Please pray that the spirit of generosity will rise up in our souls like a burning fire, and there will be nothing that will quench this desire of ours but to give, give and give!

He makes all things new!

Since I first thought, prayed and wrote about Our Best Life, I have changed, I am different… I think I am becoming new.  I have told friends that I don’t know why this change has come about, but I am starting to realize that I  do know why… it is because of Him, and only Him.

When I first starting praying for Our Best Life, someone very close to me was going through two very difficult and life changing events.  Her suffering and pain finally opened my eyes to my own selfishness and allowed me to step outside of myself for a moment and begin thinking of and praying for others by praying for Our Best Life.

This changed my direction, but He in His infinite humility still didn’t step in until I invited Him in through a prayer to be the seed that has been sown on good soil.

He heard my prayer and came running to help me.  Regardless of how much work there is to do in me, He pushed up His sleeves and began working to make me new!  Anything kind, loving, patient, thoughtful, considerate, generous that I do is because of Him… it is NOT me!  There is still so much to be done, but He is here and my thoughts run to Him as I talk with my husband and my children, work on homework and play with my children, read, listen to music, wash dishes, fold and iron clothes, clean our home, make our dinner and even while kneeling on the floor a few weeks ago to clean up my daughters throw-up.

Thank You My Love for being here with me… I do not just need You, I desire You from the depths of my heart.