So this past Sunday, we continued watching True Beauty: Broken, Healed and Holy, we watched the first two episodes last week.
The pressure for young women to become sexually active is everywhere. TV shows glamorize young women experimenting sexually losing their virginity and starring in their own reality TV series when they find themselves pregnant. While there’s a lot of research and press that covers the physical side of sexual behaviour, little attention is given to how these life-changing decisions affect the hearts and emotions. The hurts and wounds young women experience because of past decisions, behaviours or activities can haunt them for years, extending well into adulthood. Unresolved, these wounds will bleed into their relationships, including their relationship with God.
We need to know, in the midst of the pain and shame so many young women face today that there is healing. Our God is a God of second chances and regardless of whats happened in the past, young women need to know that God is bigger than any situation and He wants to lead us into a new fresh start.
SAY “YES!” TO GOD
· So much depends on the “yes” you give to God.
· The forgiveness God gives doesn’t equal total healing; brokenness still needs to be healed.
· You are not defined by your weaknesses or your past.
· Only God can undo the damage we have caused ourselves.
· There is no shame in asking for and getting help to work through your pain. The real shame is holding onto the brokenness, wounds, and secrets we carry around.
· Jesus can give you the grace to handle any obstacle in your life.
· God wants what’s best for you, but you have to want what’s best for you first.
5 STEPS TO HEALING
The world has many expectations for us, but the closer we get to God, the more we become who he created us to be. Here are 5 steps:
1. The starting point for healing is confession
2. The Eucharist can do powerful things in your life. Attending Mass will give you grace, strength, and courage from the Eucharistic table
3. Find sisters and friends in the church who will hold you accountable and help you live out a virtuous life.
4. Avoid the false consolations – the places and things that tempt you.
5. Know your standards and self worth
· Don’t ever underestimate the power of your testimony to the world and what God wants to do with you.
· The Samaritan woman’s testimony brought her entire town back to Jesus.
· Don’t be afraid of being transformed into a woman of God.
GOD IS BIGGER THAN YOUR SITUATION
· If you’re being abused, you have to tell someone – your are not powerless
· God is bigger than any situation
· If something is so wounding, so paralyzing in your life, give it to Jesus. Then move on and tell someone that can help you.
· You are not the sum of your mistakes or other people’s sins
· You can be made whole again
Communication is EXTREMELY important when dealing with your “stuff”
We said last week that sin tends to isolate the sinner. That same isolation becomes an incubator for so much negativity that it might seem there is no way out from that deed. Whatever the case may be, THERE IS NOW SITUATION BIGGER THAN THE GOD WE SERVE. We all say this, but in a state of sin, it becomes harder to believe. With the love that God has for us, anything is possible. But don’t stay quiet in the sin, come out, go to confession, speak to a friend, take the steps needed to live the life God wants you to live. This is not to say you might not stumble but in talking to someone about your weaknesses, you begin to bring yourself out of that isolation and realise its not about how or when you fall but knowing you have people to help you back up and hopefully keep you upright.
Our individual disposition to Gods will
How willing are we to listen to God and obey him. We as human beings tend to like to do whatever it is we want to do when we want to do it. This means that from time to time, our urges get the better of us – which leads us to sin. Now, take St. Augustine of Hippo for example, he was definitely not a saint to begin with! But with time and prayer, his disposition to Gods will in his life increased and he fulfilled the destiny that God willed for him. It is all a process but one we must all take seriously. Strengthening our prayer lives and making our relationships more holy is a very important step towards cleaning up our “dwelling places” for Jesus to enter. We are lowkey like secret agents just waiting to be activated by God. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is going to be a beautiful one. Just keep praying and enriching your relationship with God and have faith that God will handle the rest as He has always done.
How important chastity is our lives and our relationships?
So our eyes were opened today when Fr. Anthony enlightened us that chastity is not just about sex. EVEN KISSING BROTHERS AND SISTERS. Now I have to say this made a lot of weak but it makes sense. Kissing is arguably the most common form of human intimacy and is almost always the gateway to other sexual acts. Good things come to those who wait, I am sure we are all familiar with this saying. But in practise, the word good doesn’t even justify the level of awesomeness that chastity brings to a relationship. When we were younger and we used to give things up for lent, chocolate etc, when lent was over and you had that first chocolate bar, how great did it feel? How much more did you appreciate what you gave up? Now in a relationship, chastity emotionally, physically and spiritually conditions you to your partner. It is such a key aspect of our faith and the union between man and wife because of how special it makes the coming together of the 2. The discipline in waiting to share that special moment with someone amplifies the beauty of that moment when it occurs. It is its own reward and with God’s grace we will receive the blessings of chastity so that our relationships can be even stronger
Getting a spiritual director
This was an important topic raised in this session and one that was foreign to a lot of people. A spiritual director is someone who is strong in the faith, has the time and knowledge to guide those who wants to get closer to God and will have the trust of the individual in order to have a free open relationship without the fear of judgement. It make sense to have someone who is a member for the deity for reasons like confidentiality etc, but on a whole the idea is amazing. We often say this our little group is like a support group but we find sometimes that we don’t want to air our dirty laundry but it is so important to have someone to talk to regardless. It is something that is encouraged by the church and it will aid dealing with those difficulties that tend to isolate us as individuals. Knowing there is someone you can talk to often makes so much of a difference. Take care when picking your spiritual director because it will be such a key relationship in your life. Pray about it, and ask God to provide the right candidate for you. Feel free to reach out to the priest for advice because it is a good way to stay on the right track and lets face, the journey towards living the life God wants us to live isn’t as easy as we may like so we need all the help we can get!
Food for thought