Monday night was the first time in many years that I participated in a Charismatic Prayer Group.
I began my journey with the Charismatic Movement when I was in college at Aquinas. It was during the heights of the movement; the 1980’s. The group I was involved with was quite large about twenty young college women so excited to be involved with the movement, ready to receive the Spirit of the Lord.
I remember being very disappointed that I wasn’t “speaking in tongues” as many of the young women were, I am always quiet, saying little, praying silently. I thought there was something wrong with me, that the Holy Spirit didn’t want me, wasn’t going to “give me” a gift. It took me many years to understand that I was given a gift, that my style of prayer was just fine, many of my Charismatic mom friends would say that my prayer life “ran deep”; the still waters run deep kinda thing.
I am glad to be back with a group. The fellowship is wonderful. Being with people who don’t judge you about your emotional-spiritual life is so reassuring. The point of the prayer group is to give you a time to be with God, listening for Him and to Him. In a group you will find a gathering of people who care about what happens in your life, what happens to the world, and the Church as a family.
If you are interested in participating in a Lansing Michigan Charismatic Prayer Group I have provided a list below
It is my favourite meditation of his and I thought I would share it with you all:
“Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you, and though they are with you, and yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love, but not your thoughts.
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward, not tarries with yesterday. “
The Labyrinth is a prayer walk meditative tool, a walk of quiet meditation. It is a large circular walk that draws people walking it from the larger outer circle to the smaller inner circle. The walk is not a puzzle, game or problem to be solved, it is a walk very reminiscent to our own lives. The outer circle those broader issues, situation, events that create our lives and as we walk deeper into the Labyrinth we start to contemplate those more specific issues, situations, events of our lives; looking more closer at how our lives have evolved.
Walking this path engages our minds, bodies, spirits to invite the Divine into conversation with us. The rhythm of the walk is soothing and quieting. If we concentrate on that rhythm we begin to lose the world, the sounds of the city/forest/green space that we find ourselves walking. We enter into a meditative state that opens us to God. This meditative state is something we may experience if we lose our self in Mass and suddenly are brought back by a change of song, or a prayer, or our own child asking us what we are thinking about. This state is also the state that Theresa of the Little Flower also experienced.
If we have an opportunity to walk the Labyrinth it will help us slow down and listen for and to God, something so important in the business of our lives.
Mommy Mantra August 4, 2014: MT 14: 27 “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” a
Need I say more. This is for all moms with prayers that need answering, and for prayers that have been answered. For moms who need the courage to stay strong.
Mommy Mantra August 3, 2014: MT 14:13-21 The five loaves and two fishes.
Ever have an unexpected guest come to your house for dinner, maybe a friend of your children’s, or neighbour, family member? FHB, means family hold back taking as much as you want for dinner so our guest can have enough.
Well, of course Jesus invited the five thousand plus to stay for dinner, so he didn’t hold back. Instead he gave until everyone was satisfied.
Let’s pray in support of those who must hold back, that one day they will have enough to be satisfied.
A Lansing Michigan Organization helping the poor Loaves and Fishes, an overnight shelter
Tom McKay wrote of the success of the Harry Potter books in “teaching young people around the world to battle prejudice.”
But he missed so much more. Our eldest twin girl has issues she battles everyday: issues of self worth, anxiety, and others. As she was growing up reading the books, watching the movies, (what am I saying, she memorized the books and movies), there were so many positive images and attitudes than just defeating prejudice. Unless you think of the prejudice we have for ourselves. The prejudice of not feeling worthy in who we are or what we do, or how we look, think and feel.
Defeating the Dementors who come to suck the souls of the books characters was an excellent way to help teen age girls see how depression can suck out their own soul = joy of life, and leave them feeling depressed and isolated by self hatred, self harm and self abuse. Defeating those Dementors means learning to trust or relearning to trust in parents, teachers, counselors, religious, who can help them find their way back. By using an everyday version of the Patronus charm: for us it was prayer, remembering three good things about the day, three good things you, she, did that day, and three people you, she, could trust to help her, you; she began to to build a better view of herself and her world.
Than there are the positive images of intelligent likable girls like Luna and Hermione who don’t see themselves as oddities. These girls helped our daughter but can also help our teen girls, tween girls and young girls to that confidence is built not given. Luna and Hermione seek solutions, don’t wait for the boys to do it for them, work hard for goals they want to achieve.
Than there are the other major themes that help our tween/teen girls see the world, understand their issues, feelings and difficulties.
There are themes of self reliance: Bad things happen, but I can and will survive.
The book deals with larger questions of life: who am I, what is my purpose in life?
The characters wrestle with issues of responsibility: Was it my fault that such and such happened, (the death in the maze), how do I deal with strong emotions, deaths of loved ones, harm that came to loved ones because of my actions/inactions.
These are major life issues that many tweens/teens can find difficult to face, or impossible to understand; and when a beloved character faces them and does well, it gives hope and shows our children they can as well. Our girls can analyze how the characters did what things and find out what happens when things are worked out, and see a brighter future when there is success. The girls can also see that success often comes from failure, or unexpected situations, and that it is alright that there is no prefect plan.
From my Facebook time line this morning, written by a mom of teens: “When do the growing pains of your children stop hurting and stressing you?”
My response to her was: Sweetheart. I am with you. Trust. Trust in your mothering instinct. Trust in your gut. Trust in love and grace. Trust in hope. Trust in the strength of your mothering. Trust in the larger positive picture. Trust that you know when to reach out, when to hold back, when to lovingly confront.
As with all things God connects us one to the other. Earlier this week there was an incident with our eldest twinnie, and the wisdom of her sister gave me more insight into parenting. It was an “Aha” moment, a God inspired comment from someone that is directed to you, God speaking directly to you: She said it was time to put the anchor into the water. How apt that image is.
The anchor became a key Christian symbol during the period of Roman persecution. As Michael Card observes in his recent album, Soul Anchor: “The first century symbol wasn’t the cross; it was the anchor. If I’m a first century Christian and I’m hiding in the catacombs and three of my best friends have just been thrown to the lions or burned at the stake, or crucified and set ablaze as torches at one of [Emperor] Nero’s garden parties, the symbol that most encourages me in my faith is the anchor. When I see it, I’m reminded that Jesus is my anchor.” ~Christian History
Jesus calmed the seas, Peter tries to walk on the water to Jesus, Jesus tells the apostles to haul in their nets when they were sure they weren’t going to get any fish; how much like parenting situations these are. My friend has teens, but this is just as fitting for any mother of any age child. We often find ourselves in rocky, turbulent waters of life.
We try to have faith to walk out in trust onto those churning waters of troubled parenting waters. We try to stay strong, to keep our eyes on the parenting prize: having children who are what God calls them to be., but there is always that rogue wave that knocks us off our stride. we begin to sink, and find Jesus’ firm, steady hand reaching out to us.
He asks us why we have little faith? Faith in our own instincts as mothers, faith in trusting God. Faith in our judgement that when and what resources we need we will get.
Jesus doesn’t chide us for our mistakes, fears, doubts, he just asks us to cast out our net again, to try again, to keep going, keep trying. He knows that positive emotional movement forward is the best way to help turn everything around.
We are the anchors in our children’s lives. We are the secure link between the fear they have of becoming adults and the roaring need they have to be adults. We need to be stable, secure, strong and calm in the face of their uncertainty about life, who they are and how to live life.
Jesus is our anchor, our strong link, so we may be all our children need.
Always look to the big picture, the pain will lessen as long as we are anchors, anchored to Christ.