This year during Lent, a poignant time when Christians all over the world reflect, repent, pray, and prepare our hearts for Easter, I have felt God’s abiding presence so clearly during this holy season as I spent even more dedicated time studying scripture and reflecting on what God has for me to understand and experience, while daily striving to leave at His feet all of life’s cares and concerns, completely trusting Him about every detail of my life.
During Holy Week, we experienced the darkness over the crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Good Friday and our joy and light at his resurrection on Easter Sunday. While nothing on earth can compare to our Lord’s crucifixion and ultimate sacrifice, there will be occasions in our lives when we all will experience many of the same emotions that must have been felt by those close to Jesus during that somber time – great loss, sadness, sorrow, emptiness, and uncertainty about what happens next. Then, Jesus did something miraculous that no one could have anticipated, rising from the grave victorious, providing salvation to all believers and offering Christians like me all over the world light, hope, purpose, and a Blessed Savior.
As a young widow, I’ve prayed for the Holy Spirit to direct my steps and show me how to live my best life in faithful commitment to Our Lord, asking for an extra measure of strength and contentment on those days filled with sadness and longing for the presence of my husband and loved ones now in heaven. I bring to God in prayer the smallest of requests and concerns, along with the big things too, feeling deep within my soul His faithfulness and the sensitivity of a Father who not only hears but listens with His heart. He shows me in so many ways how He lovingly cares, is always with me, and has a perfect plan for my life – even though I don’t always know the way and where the journey will take me.
In a recent newspaper article, I read where during the celebration of the Easter Vigil at St. Peter’s Basilica, Pope Frances urged priests, bishops, cardinals, and ordinary Catholics gathered together to remember when they first found their faith – “Do I remember it? Have I forgotten it? Look for it. You’ll find it. The Lord is waiting.” Trying to remember isn’t an act of nostalgia but rather a way to bring the “fire” of faith “to all people, to the very ends of the Earth,” he said. While not Catholic, these words spoke to me so vividly and profoundly as if to say, I am YOUR Heavenly Father and you already have everything you need – just trust me. Seek me – I’m here and I always will be! What blessed assurance this is to me.
So, as I continue to live this journey called life as a single Christian woman with a servant’s heart and burning desire to know and serve our Lord the best I can, my daily prayer is to have the courage to live the life God has created for me and along the way, to tell those God puts in my path of His faithfulness to me and how they can experience God’s salvation and grace just like I have and will continue to enjoy throughout the rest of my life into eternity.
One of my favorite quotes from Sarah Young, Author of Dear Jesus, serves as a heavenly roadmap for me, “Look for a star of guidance in your life, and be willing to follow wherever I lead. I am the Light from on high that dawns upon you, to guide your feet into the way of peace.”