Tolstoy, Luke, Mary and the whole enchilada

I sit on a man’s back, choking him and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by all possible means — except by getting off his back. ~Leo Tolstoy  Quote from: What Is to be Done? (sometimes translated as What Then Must We Do?) is a non-fiction work by Leo Tolstoy, in which Tolstoy describes the social conditions of Russia in his day.(1)  The title is a biblical reference (Luke 3:10-14)

 Luke 3:10-14  “What should we do then?” the crowd asked.   John answered, “Anyone who has two shirts should share with the one who has none, and anyone who has food should do the same.”  Even tax collectors came to be baptized. “Teacher,” they asked, “what should we do?”  “Don’t collect any more than you are required to,” he told them.  Then some soldiers asked him, “And what should we do?”  He replied, “Don’t extort money and don’t accuse people falsely —be content with your pay.”

This stolen Tolstoy quote comes by way of a blogger: Hasty Words and I thought it was just prefect for the topic of nurturing.  How so, Wilson you might be asking?  Think of what holds you back from getting, accepting, acknowledging the Divine nurturing you should receive – what is it?

For Catholics we believe that sin/woundedness holds us back from being in relationship with those around us.  And it is through relationships that we receive nurturing.  And what else is holding us back?  Relationships themselves.

Our spiritual relationship with God is unique because we can not physically “touch”, “see” or “hear” God, through we “touch”, “see” and “hear” God all through out the day.  How? Through those God moments we have all experienced.  Those Mommy AHA moments, those Divine interventions, those unexpected connections and solutions.  These moments are often hard to recognize as God moments because of all the white noise of the day; the phone, children, boss of it all, but God moments they are.

Over the next several week, months I will be creating a series spiritual exercises on our sister site Spiritual Lives Of Women:Spiritual Exercises Especially Designed for Mom.  On this site we will explore God’s call to us on how we can change our lives for the better, achieve the calling that God has given us and seek a balance in our lives.

Like Tolstoy and Luke’s crowd we are always asking what should be done, and God is always giving us solutions, suggestions and strategies; we just have to find time to ask the question and listen for the response, and that is what Spiritual Lives Of Women hopes to help you find: time in your day through mommy specifically designed spiritual exercises.

What are the Spiritual Exercises?  The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola are a month-long program of meditations, prayers, considerations, and contemplative practices that help Catholic faith become more fully alive in the everyday life of contemporary people. It is set out in a brief manual or handbook: sparse, taciturn, and practical. It presents a formulation of Ignatius’ spirituality in a series of prayer exercises, thought experiments, and examinations of consciousness—designed to help a retreatant (usually with the aid of a spiritual director) to experience a deeper conversion into life with God in Christ, to allow our personal stories to be interpreted by being subsumed in a Story of God.(2)  From Jesuits of Oregon

More simply put:  It is a way to focus more deeply on those God moments in your life.

What Spiritual Lives Of Women believes is that as women we have, by virtue of our feminine nature, a unique spiritual nature.  As mothers we understand more intimately some of the experiences Mary had as a pregnant young mom to be, a mother and faithful daughter of God.  We can journey with Mary and her experience to find Jesus in our lives; renew our faith and rejuvenate our Baptismal calling of: Priest, Prophet and Queen.

If this sounds like something that could and would benefit you than please join us on our Facebook page and see what its all about.

Is a spiritual director working helping moms find God in the everyday. She has been a spiritual director since 1998: worked as a Director of Religious Education for Holy Cross Parish(2000-2005), was Director of Project Rachel, a healing ministry for Post Abortive women(1999-2000). Patty worked a social worker for Catholic Social Services (1988 - 1995) Then studied for spiritual direction at the Dominican Center of Religious Studies, DeWitt Michigan

She is married 20 years and has four children

She has a BS/BA in social work from Aquinas College, CSD Certified Spiritual Director

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