Name Your Addiction

+ JMJ +

What’s the most addictive substance on earth? Yeah you know. If not before, you know now because of the feature image.

I didn’t know how addictive sugar was until I fasted from it to overcome a habitual sin. I felt like I was dying. Yes. Sugar has withdrawal effects. It effected my clarity of thinking and how I felt physically…

But. My reason here is not to give a post on the crazy amount of people who are sugar addicts. I’m wanting to speak to the invisible addictions in our lives.

Like…

TV shows. Video/computer games. Smart phone. Social media.

There are more… but I’m choosing these, as I’ve been the victim.

TV Shows

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When I was a kid, I had a friend invite me over to pray the rosary (Christine H. B.). I refused, because Spiderman was on then… It opened my eyes, because that wasn’t the first time I turned someone down due to the TV. (I was probably… 11/12) I realized that I was placing the importance of a cartoon over a friend–and of course the Lord.

Video/Computer Games

Sims_Social_LogoY’all remember when Sims came out? Yeah; I do. Oh boy! I played it so much it infiltrated reality. I went to a party and was like this is getting droll. They need music. They need more food. They need… It was like I saw the meters over everyone’s heads and the tips scrolling in front of me. When I left, I was like alright… I’d rather live in reality and be with people–real people; not simulations of people. I canned the game.

Smart Phone

Yeah… I get lost in my phone. So much so, I am checked out when it comes to my Liturgy of the Hours, even though I have to make my Mary Poppins bag (my purse) heavier.* Is it because I like being old school? I do, but that is not it. It’s because when I open my phone there’s a million other things to do on it. On top of that, it’ll push me to make sure I know there are a million other things to do on it…

What happened to putting the phone in your purse when you go out to eat with your friend? Wait. What? I need to take a picture of the food I’m eating and a selfie with my friend!

What did we do before cell phones? Uh, we survived. If you go out and forget your phone, I bet people are not going to automatically think you up and died… well with my response rate, I know some people think I die. I have read many, “Are you alive?” texts.

I took a video on my phone of a friend’s album release party… part of it I’m glad, but at the same time I missed the experience of “being” and listening. It was in May. I have watched the videos once. Yeah. It wasn’t worth it. I wasn’t focused. Plus, if I really want to see it again, I can pest them to give me access to their professional video sometime, which I think will knock my tremored-iPhone video out of the park. My pictures with His Own would have been extremely satisfactory negating the videos.

Social Media

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If we talk social media, there’s no argument that it is addictive. People have the whole compare and contrast issue. Me… It is a time drain. I mean y’all know all I really post is stuff about my homeboy Jesus and the marvelous models of how to live the Christian life, the saints. Sure, but the time I’ve wasted finding out what my name means in a non-existent language, what JTT look like now, what was the most wanted toy the year I was born…

Are those articles bad? No. But… Everything needs to be done in moderation. There is a lot of time that these consume my life.

Well, It’s Not Alcohol or Drugs…

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No; but we are all asked to keep everything in moderation.

Are you A2J?

I get asked this every time I see my friend, Rocky. Are YOU? It stands for “Addicted to Jesus”. I get asked, “Are you A2J? Every day? All the way?” Yeah. haha. I am. I don’t mind being a Jesus freak. People think I’m crazy, but I’m high on the Holy Ghost. My side effects of being addicted to Jesus are joy, kindness, compassion, smiles, hugs, encouragement, support, generosity…

Still, with every addiction there is withdrawal effects. Don’t withdrawal from Jesus. The symptoms are loneliness, despair, despondency, hopelessness, darkness, hurt, restlessness…

Be A2J. All the way. Every day.

+ Pax

Kristen Elizabeth Thérèse von Clef, OFS, A2J

*my purse weighs enough to need a seatbelt… (passenger seatbelt light goes off)

He and I

+ JMJ +

As a Catholic, I believe marriage is a Vocation. And I believe I’ve been called to it. Although the struggle has been real in this limbo between childhood/adolescence/20s/30s/when it is going to happen! and walking down the aisle. I would definitely put it into the suffering category for me.

I’ll be transparent. Even though I felt called a couple years ago, the questions have still come in: Is there something wrong with me? Are my standards too high? Am I going to be single forever? I could list many more, but those are some of the big ones–all of which I know I’ve heard before from many other single ladies.

Silence is Golden

This past weekend, I went on a silent retreat to the Abbey of Gethsemani. I had a good deal of time in solitude to pray and talk with God. In 2013, I started keeping a prayer journal and it’s semi-steadily grown in my many conversations with Him. One of the nights that I was there, I opened up my collection of heart-to-hearts with God and began a new letter of love. …well if you could call it that.

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I entered in with a line of desperation. “Lord?” He responded and I continued. “You called me to marriage, but I’m 30 going on 31 and no one has come. How long am I going to wait? I know all is done in your time. However, I don’t… I don’t… I don’t know what to say…” I didn’t know what to say. I felt as if I didn’t have any words to convey my emotions—my yearning for my own beloved. Then He answered.

He Speaks. I Listen.

He said, “In time. In time he will come.” He continued by describing to me the man that had many of the characteristics of the man I desired, but they were the ones most women desire. The height, the eyes, etc. Of course there were some that were personalized for me, “He [would give] you better hugs than anyone in your life.” Oh, how He knows me! 🙂 He said he could tell me He’d have him for me and that I’d probably be eager to wait if I knew that was a definite. However, He didn’t promise me that.

He told me that He has a man for me, maybe not with those characteristics, but He knows who is best for me. He says, “He’s not perfect. He makes mistakes. He isn’t always kind. He will upset you. He will try to take care of you, but even then, there are times he will fall short. He forgets to take out the trash. He leaves the toilet seat up on accident. He leaves the milk out on the counter. He doesn’t always want to cuddle. But. He loves you. He wants what’s best for you. He mirrors My love for you-in that cracked mirror that is his. I know you’d be content with [someone without the aforementioned characteristics]. I know you know these are superficial. My point is this: That I have someone that is great. […] A man that will be there to help you grow in My will. He could be 6′, but just know he’s not perfect in the world’s eyes, still, he’s perfect for you. Are you willing to wait?”

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At first my response was, “I think so.” But shortly after His message to me, I realized something. If I know I’m called to marriage, which I do, I’m also called to trust. He told me that right now He calls me to patience. (I’m like oh boy! I’m on the struggle bus where patience is concerned.) In that patience I need to trust Him, because it’s true—He knows what’s best. He knows who’s best. He know when’s best.

In His Time

This is almost the equivalent to a cuss word when it comes out of people’s mouths. I know I’m not the only one that’s heard it a kagillion times. The issue with me, and I assume every other recipient of that comment, is that the answer is vague. I don’t know when that will be. However, when I talk to God and He tells me it will come in time, it digests a little better.

I’m hoping that, after this time in contemplation over my conversation with God regarding the big “I do”, I become more content with the waiting process. I know it’s going to be hard, because patience and I aren’t the best of friends. Still, He and I will walk hand in hand, until I’m joined with my own beloved.

+ Pax + | KK