Lessons of Day 60-63: Love is patient, love is kind…

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I have learned several lessons this weekend.  Love is not pushy.  Love doesn’t try to force something to happen because WE think it needs to happen a certain way.  Love is not manipulative and love is most definitely not to objectify the person of interest or affection.  Love is not being a brat to someone just simply because you are hurting.  Love is so much more than what we make it out to be.  With love, everything is simply possible.  We must place our trust and faith a little higher and let God drive.  It is rather comforting to know that He is the one in control of my destiny and all I must do is be obedient, ask for the desires on my heart to be revealed, and remain faithful.

I trust everything happens for a reason.  I came across this article today and I simply wanted to cry.  This is as senseless as it comes and I cannot see a reason for this act.  I suppose to draw attention to the fact that THIS is NOT love.  http://www.examiner.com/article/bullied-boy-dies-after-schoolyard-punch-the-face-leads-to-seizures-and-coma.  This is just cruelty.  We say mean things to which can make others feel abused and dead figuratively.  We need to be aware of that so we are not victimizing others.

I learned also this weekend that I have a past.  I have so much that I have done over the course of my short life and that has made me who I am today.  I am not proud of some of the things I have done, but that has made me a better person over all.  I am to the point where I can look at myself honestly.  I can admit and take responsibility for my faults willingly.  I can discuss my faults openly and for that I too am thankful.  That is a huge milestone.

There were many saints who “lived a little” before becoming so pious.  Saint Augustine is one of them.  I draw much inspiration from him.  I also see so much in forgiving one’s self for their faults.  I realized that I had already been forgiven by the Big Guy, but I needed to be forgiving myself which I think is almost harder than asking for forgiveness in the first place.  It is a different spot to be in to be honest.

I think personally being able to be honest with yourself about who you are and what you desire to become is the beginning of truly seeing yourself as God sees you.  We are each a gift.  We need to view and acknowledge ourselves as such or else I do not believe that we can ever fully appreciate and love ourself to achieve what it is we ultimately deserve.  We deserve to love ourselves for whatever we have become and what we desire to become and aspire to be.  If we cannot love ourselves for the unique beings we are, then how on earth can anyone else see and love us?  It would make it rather hard if you ask me.

Those who get it….well…get it.  Those who don’t….won’t.  Pray for more people to get it.  It makes the world a better place if so!!

Found this little gem...

Found this little gem…

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52-56: Monday and the Broken Vase

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Sorry it has been a while.  There has been a lot going on in my world.  I am coming to know just how beautiful imperfection is.  I have been releasing the skeletons from my closet in hopes to cleanse my heart and soul of the negative and such I don’t need.  I don’t desire to be held back or down any more.

For the record:  Monday-0 and CatMan-3.  I stopped myself from a major melt down this morning over a work project that I had to redo and it was frustrating.  I also broke my power cord for my computer to which I also had good luck there spending only $9 for a piece rather than $80 for the whole cord.  And I got a message across, pissed some people off, and I didn’t stress out about it.  WHOHOO!  I win x’s 3!

I have admitted to myself a few hard harsh facts.  Those will remain in private.  My heart over all feels better.   Yet, I still keep pressing on!  Even though we might feel like a broken vase, we can be repurposed and turn out just beautiful!  Take a look at what I mean: http://fab.com/sale/17991/?navEmail=1&utm_source=Triggermail&utm_medium=email&utm_term=monday_daily_sale_list&utm_campaign=daily_sales_mailer&email_user=catie.manning%40yahoo.com

I allowed myself to feel like a broken vase until I realized “oh wait CatMan, you can pick yourself up and make yourself into something great!  Let’s get creative!”  Clearly, we are given several chances to be created into something beautiful. That is the power of forgiveness.  I am working through that right now.  So like this broken vase, I too have been put back together and I too can still feel beautiful even though I have been broken a few times.  God is the glue that keeps putting me back in such a way that is still usable to Him and presentable to society. He does this for each of us as He loves us dearly.  If He didn’t, I would still feel broken and a mess.

Love allows us to heal.  Love allows the holes to be filled in with seeds of hope and desire to be better than what we are right at this very moment.  Love makes everything beautiful possible even if we are just broken vases!

Have a great Monday!
CatMan

PS Mars and her lemon cake are expecting a baby!  Life is sweet!

Day 51: Prime Number

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“Love others as God has loved you. Ask God to grant you the grace and goodness to keep no record of the wrongs done to you.” (as posted from my cheer coach)

I think this is very fitting for today as last night I totally got thrown a curve ball.  An ex-bf that hurt me so much contacted me last night.  It really took me by surprise.  I had this inkling in the morning that something might happen, yet I just forgot about it.  You see, 2 years ago yesterday was the date we started dating.  Interesting timing, right?  This was Nomad and he didn’t connect the dots there.  It was a crazy time but there was a lot of joy there too.  Needless to say we hadn’t talked since New Years and it was nice hearing from him.  I forgave him for all he had done to me.  I also forgave him for breaking up with me on Valentine’s Day in the coward fashion he did.  I am in a better place.

It was random and actually made me very happy.  Even though I was taken back by it, I have just recognized that he and I will always be better served as friends.  I am over the hurt and I actually have him to thank as I can help and relate with other friends going through the similar.  It is a hard thing to realize, yet I am at complete peace.  I feel like that is exactly what I needed to test it too.  He seems to be doing the same ole same ole, but his heart is softer.  For that fact, I continue to pray for him.

I titled this post “Prime Number” as I think this is the prime concept needed in beginning to love a person.  As humans, we hurt ourselves, beat ourselves up, and project that on others which allows them to feel just as bad as we do.  We really as a whole need to work on that.  Once you see that it was nothing so personal and it was just a reflection of hurt in their own life, it makes it easier to forgive them.  I have forgiven him…I pray to forget that hurt and build a stronger foundation.  This foundation will then be set upon mutual respect and love.  Only then will that friendship, relationship, etc grow in goodness.

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.”

Day 50: Observe

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Day 50: Each and every day, God never ceases to amaze me with the awesome people and encounters. Love can be seen in other’s great examples. Be patient and observe….love is more than just a four letter word

Day 39: I am tired and this is getting hard…

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As Jonathan Livingston Seagull said, “keep on working on Love.”  Dumb book, good quote.  😉 (as delivered by a friend)

Even though this is hard, I will still find humor!  I must as this is a rather heavy post.  Just jam to this one for a while….good ole’ Whitney Houston classic!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8C-fD54Inn8

Love most definitely is something that is to be worked on throughly each and every day.  It is hard to think, but much like anything that is a seemingly new way for our brain process we must think about it in everything at first until it becomes second nature.  Love is not something we learn over night, yet if integrated into our lifestyle now, it will become easier and easier to love.  They way of love is deep and intimate.  You start to look at a person and love them despite hurting you.  The hurt as I understand it is what comes across when someone is deeply troubled.  Look past the initial wrong doing.  Stare a little deeper into their heart and soul and realize that this person is very special despite their flaws.  I was taught not to judge another as that is not loving them.  We are taught to help our brother and sister’s out if we are able to yet not to be taken advantage of.  We are encouraged to look through the eyes of God and not that of our human nature.

It is easy to sit and judge a person.  It is harder and more challenging to love on them and pray for them.  The more we pray, the easier it will be to come into a loving light with them.  There are a lot of people in my life that have hurt me or hurt those that I love.  I tend to react verse take a step back and see the reality of the situation.  Emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual misfortune whether warranted by self or other such situations is something I have been called to look upon with TRUTH and conviction.  Yet, if I am really loving this person, then I need to love them in a real way and not speak everything on my mind even though this person lies to themselves, others and really uses and abuses himself and others involved.  We say you are old enough to know better.  It is a tricky sort as to say “he should know better”.  But if a person is really ill, then should we say that?  I think the thing that makes me less tolerant of this specific situation is that the person involved is above getting help.  So as reckless as this road is he is walking, he is the only one that can choose otherwise.

How to have compassion toward someone that has a problem with substance abuse, how to have love toward someone whose demons seemingly mask themselves underneath the surface–then they are OK until the next episode where they manipulate their way back,  and how am I to do this??  I will tell you.  I am called to pray for them.  That is the hardest.  Pray for their awareness.  Pray for my ability to have compassion and to speak the TRUTH toward him and be the beacon of light to which I am called to be.  That is how one develops compassion through times as such.

I am a big proponent that if someone has a problem, you hit that nail on the head.  You fix the problem and you move on….in many cases it is not that simple.  I would like to think that everything should be so simple, yet due to fear, anguish, guilt, and other such negative thoughts that are infiltrated into our core as we are humans all cause such complications as to “not deal” with the situation rather put a temporary bandaid on it.  Bandaids will fall off and nothing will be corrected.  That part frustrates me.  Get help.  I say this out of love because I am tired of seeing the same wrong doing repeated toward others.  I am tired of seeing those I love hurt.  I love him, really I do.

Today’s Prayer:
“Lord grant me the ability to love this person as you love me and all of my many faults as I know I am not perfect.  Let me think about every word before it escapes my lips.  Let it be words driven by truth and love.  Let me contemplate my every action before it is done.  Let my action be driven by truth and love.  Let my thoughts be pure and think only out of love of my family, friends, and those who are placed in my path today.  Let all of my life be driven by love! Amen.”

Exhaustion at it's finest

Exhaustion at it’s finest

3 + 8 = The Road Not Taken

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A Robert Frost original….

Today’s lesson on love:  Love sometimes takes us through an unknown path.  Love is a choice.  Learning to go the way that others are not and rising above this infatuation thing is key when learning the ways of love.  Know God.  Trust God.  Put God first.  Put your SELF second.  It is the way to truly live a life of love. It is through our love of God we learn to love our brothers and sisters to the fullest.

“Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

35: A Quote

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A saint is capable of loving created things and enjoying the use of them and dealing with them in a perfectly simple, natural manner, making no formal references to God, drawing no attention to his own piety, and acting without any artificial rigidity at all. His gentleness and his sweetness are not pressed through his pores by the crushing restraint of a spiritual strait-jacket. They come from his direct docility to the light of truth and to the will of God. Hence a saint is capable of talking about the world without any explicit reference to God, in such a way that his statement gives greater glory to God and arouses a greater love of God than the observations of someone less holy, who has to strain himself to make an arbitrary connection between creatures and God through the medium of hackneyed analogies and metaphors that are so feeble that they make you think something is the matter with religion.
-Thomas Merton

Ignorance is not bliss…

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“Where there is charity and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance.”
St. Francis of Assisi

On a side note, today started with laughter and it continues to do so.  A friend of mine’s texts just made me crack up!  Life is so very funny and it makes me glad knowing other people that have “incidentals” that they can share that don’t make my incidentals feel like I am the only one that accidentally wears a black undergarment under a white shirt either.  🙂  Super Woman just is the best.  That all being said, this is just my thoughts this morning.

It amazes me the amount of sheer ignorance people have.  Life for me has been so busy, hence why you haven’t heard from me in a while.  I started school in August and I am going proudly for Cosmetology.  I am excited at this change.  I personally figured out how to pay for my schooling.  I figured that out and made it work.  I do not expect anyone to help me pay this money back.  I do not expect or think that I am entitled to have anything.  I have been blessed to be given what I have and for that I make the most of it.  Some people simply don’t get it.  People become victims of their own excuses because they are lazy and don’t want to work for it.  Lazy never gets anyone anywhere.

Managing one’s resources is key to our very survival.  Managing our views and perceptions as well becomes a large part of this equation as well.  It seems there is a large amount of mismanagement and fear driven actions going on in this world today.  Also, it might be a lack of awareness and rising above the negative to really get results.  I, first of all, want to say that is hardly the way we should be living as we will be constant slaves to our current state, if that is truly the case.  Learning the basics of what our strengths, weaknesses, perception of self, what we NEED to survive…etc…we need to be able to personally identify these items within ourselves so we can make the most of our resources given.  It would be a complete shame for us to look and say “I have nothing to offer” as even the smallest most amount of anything.  Kindness is one thing anyone can offer and it doesn’t cost a thing!  But, I must remind you though, kindness is sometimes very hard when we are looking at someone we do not like.  If it is truly a gift then we should give it freely despite who it is toward.

I am learning that ignorance is one of the leading diseases to living is fear and death in our world.  Side affects include: apathy, negativity, anger, lack of understanding, sarcasm, laziness, unhappiness….etc.  If you think you are living in this state, you are wrong!  You are a mere zombie.  If you are truly living, what are you afraid of?  If you have all your ducks in a row, you do everything as you ought to and you pray daily…God never says it will be easy, but you will always be taken care of.  These security blankets of “stuff” you possess cannot be taken with you so why should we worry about what happens to a book, a hat, a new shirt…because of pride, that is why.  We take great pride in ourselves to which if in check is a very good thing.  We cannot let pride be the main objective; however or else it will become like fear and consume us wholly.  In the end, these negative feelings hinder our ability to see what we can posses and give others.

Today, I will personally stop making excuses and raise my level of personal awareness and show compassion and kindness toward those who aren’t there yet.  I can give that much.  I can do so generously without money either.  Isn’t that the greatest gift that keeps on giving anyways?

Give what you have and all will come back to you.  Let us not be victims of our own circumstance.  Let’s treat the disease and move forward.  Let us release the negativity and offer it up. I always find the more I give the struggles up, the more it is thrown back as positives.  At the end of the day, the positives are what propel you, drive you, and make a difference.  Keep your head and chin up.  Stay on your knees and let’s work through the ignorance together.  By raising our awareness, we will increase in wisdom and give more charity in return.

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Affirmation and Mantra for today:  “Let me raise my personal awareness.  Let me not be a victim of circumstance and negativity.  Let me give gifts of compassion and kindness to all I encounter.  Let me walk fearless knowing God is with me always.”

❤ The CatMan