2.11.2013

Marching for the Unborn, or for Me? Experience 1 of 3



((Sorry it's been so long. My hands have been full! And I'm horrible at wording things like these, so hang in there.))


More than a year ago I attended the March for Life 2012. More than a year ago, my whole life had changed. 


To give you a preview of my stance in my past life: I was a nice girl, a good student. I was a Christian. I knew right from wrong and what was expected from me. I prayed every night(sort of), attended youth and Sunday church. I wouldn't say my prayers were actually prayers though. More of pleas for material things and people. Even though I attended church and youth physically does not give the excuse that I wasn't there mentally and spiritually. It seemed as if I was just a physical substance wandering aimlessly with no reason to actually be. It was like that for a long time, seemed endless.


Before I attended the March for Life I had the expectations of a fun time, long bus trip, snow, new friendships, and saving the lives of the innocent unborn. Little did I know, Christ had so much more. I actually believe that others had the same feelings because countless times did they tell me to "pray for the preparation of your heart". I had no clue what that meant. The closest things I came up with for any reason to prepare my heart was for vulgar images and stories about abortion. The whole reason for me going to the march was for the cause of stopping abortions,saving babies and being pro-life, not much more.




Finally the day of departure to Maryland came and I was stoked to stand up for something that I believed in. --Before that, though, I had strange things happen to me but I couldn't give a reason as to why these things happened. Later on, after talking with a friend, it all made sense. It's personal so if you wanted to ask me or you're curious about this situation, feel free to! I just don't feel it appropriate to post it on a blog.-- I had been packed for days and couldn't have been more ready.

SNOW



I don't remember exactly all where we went but the place I will never forget was our first/second stop. The Dominican Sisters in Nashville, Tennessee. There are a whole bunch of reason as to why this place is unforgettable. 
1.) It's beautiful
2.) The people who occupy the convent are even more beautiful and radiate joy. (It's contagious.)
3.) Considering that I was Baptist, I had never experienced this way of life or gave it any thought of mind.
Most importantly..
4.) Christ actually SPOKE to ME. Yep, I was shocked. I wan't even expecting it either. Once we got to the convent we had time to go and pray in their new Church(BEAUTIFUL). It was dark in there, except the altar and the Monstrance were lit up, and it just kind of settled your heart for prayer. So I took up a spot in the back, admired everything, everyone, and then closed my eyes and started to pray. You know how sometimes when you're praying and you ask God a question and you think He replied but you're 78% sure that 
that was you giving yourself the answer you wanted? Well, it happens all the time for me. But this time, it definitely was NOT me. I was most probably rambling on about my day and then all of a sudden I hear this Voice saying "Come, follow me. Do my Word." That was totally not in my brain waves and I had no intention of ever telling myself that. Completely random. But I replied "Of course, Lord, whatever you say." Even though I had no idea what He meant by that. Sure thing. (His words all came together later on in this journey.)




We attended daily Mass and had MP3's while in Maryland. MP3's consist of music/party time, Eucharistic Adoration, Confession, and a rocking story time. I had been to Adoration before at Steubenville and it was like no other experience. Steubenville 2010/09?, I believe, was actually the start of my conversion. But that's a whole other story. Anyways, through Adoration, Jesus was molding my heart to where I began longing for something greater and to where I knew that I was made for more than what I thought.

On that trip I began to actually have a relationship with Christ and I got immensely closer to Him. It was absolutely lovely. But the hard part was coming home and having to face reality, especially in this newfound way of life. Thank God for Joe, Emily, and good friends.

After having experienced this spiritual revelation I knew it was only the beginning. But I didn't particularly know the beginning of what. I asked Joe and Emily numerous amounts of questions about the Catholic faith and why the Church teaches this and that, etc. To my delight, they had answers and the answers were all referenced from the Bible, God's Word. So after my critical review on the Catholic Faith, I thought back to what Christ had told me and was like "dude, if what the Catholic Church teaches and does is the real deal and have actual scripture to back them up, then why the heck am I not doing what Christ said?" Also I've seen and experienced the wonders of Christ in the Holy Presence of the Eucharist so I had no reason not to believe the what the Catholic Church taught in the light of Jesus in the Eucharist. Unless I totally closed my heart to what God desired for me. 

Through all of the questions, answers, books, prayers, letters and conversations 
- I felt the call to Catholicism and I attended RCIA. The process, spiritually, was not easy and I went to war with myself (and others) multiple times. But Christ gave me the strength to press on and to discern Truth. He showed me support through things and people and it was truly a blessed journey in my life. Even though some have said I am way too young to make a huge decision like that, I believe that you are NEVER to young or old to do what Christ is calling you to do. It may seem ridiculous and impossible at first, but when you have faith and give it all to Christ you will realize through Christ all things are possible and beautiful.

I was received into the Catholic Church April 8, 2012. And may I just say that I had the best Easter EVER! I can't imagine me anywheres else but where God planned for me to be today. That's another thing.. God's plan for your life is way better than your own plan. I have had struggles in this journey, of course, but through those struggles I have come closer to Christ, and in many ways I can't understand, but I would never trade in those struggles for anything. 





Even though I touched the surface of my conversion, I believe you get the picture. The Catholic Church is my home, it is where I find, feel, and know that this is where I am suppose to be. It is where I further my relationship with the Holy Trinity, as well as the Holy Family and am able to ask for prayers and intercession from extraordinary deceased people (Saints) and come to know, learn, and do the Word.


With all of that said, I just hope that you always keep your heart open to whatever Christ is calling you to do and do not be afraid. He will do magnificent things through you, you just have to allow Him to. 


God bless.




Thank you, Lord, for putting in mind Your best interest for me. Allow me to become everything that You intended for me to be.
+JMJ+


"But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect.
 No, I worked harder than all of them-yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me." 
 1 Corinthians 15:10
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