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Here are this week’s must-reads:

+ “Yeah, I know it all looks impossible up ahead — but the truth is: “Only one thing is necessary.” Luke 10:42 The only thing necessary today — is to let everything else come after keeping company with Him. Just keep company with Jesus. Just keep saying: ‘I trust you, Jesus.‘Simplicity isn’t a matter of circumstances, it’s a matter of focus. Simply focus on Him.Simple things become complications because of your expectations.And today the only expectation? Is to trust Him without limitation.” — Ann Voskamp

+ “Home is your garden of life, so to speak, and you are free to order it and plant it as you will, to nourish it well and uniquely, to manage and guide it. But all great works of life must be planned in order to make them productive, useful, and flourishing.

How can you guide your garden, your home, in the direction of beauty and flourishment today?” — Sally Clarkson

+ Here’s a peek at one of my past Catholic Wife, Catholic Life Newsletters that I share every Monday. It always includes two gluten-free recipes, a reflection based on Sunday’s Mass readings, and links to budget-friendly fashion & Catholic home decor.

+ “The purpose of silence and solitude is to come face to face with yourself and God. Silence and solitude is not an escape from real life, but rather is entering into a deeper reality. It is not meant to be checked off your to-do list. Silence and solitude is a constant seeking after God. It is a silencing of our hearts regardless of our outside circumstances. This is the place where you can depend completely on God and release yourself to Him. It is in doing this, that we will find true rest.” — Intentional Disciples

+ “Suffering that is not transformed is transmitted.” — Sister Miriam James Heidland, SOLT

+ “Marriage is a vocation – not motherhood, not careers, not hobbies, and not acts of service, despite how beautiful and good each of these things can be. Marriage is our vocation, and it is there we will experience the most grace, the strongest purification, and, if pursued in the way God intends us to, the clearest mirror of the type of intimacy God desires with each of us. Because of this, it will also be our marriages where we will experience the deepest wounds, trials, and spiritual attacks. That is why it is essential we learn to mirror the Sacrament of Reconciliation in our marriages.” — The Contemplative Homemaker

+ “Because our marriage is based on a “virtuous friendship” (which Aristotle describes as a friendship where two people have a common goal and each desires the good of the other), our goal is to get each other to heaven and help each other to be holy. This may hurt like hell in the process, since it is extremely painful to recognize and root out our own selfishness, vanity, pride, laziness, anger, lust, envy, doubts, fears, jealousies, etc., but it is the path of every disciple, and the grace of the sacrament and the healing power of God (and often therapy) helps it to be actualized.

“One of our greatest fears as humans is that someone will leave or abandon us when they find out “who we really are.” In a marriage, where we can’t escape or pretend for very long, all of our “stuff” comes to the light. Our faults, our annoyances, our past. The foretaste of heaven in marriage is not just the ecstasy experienced in sex, but the heart-melting reality that someone still loves us—loves us even though they have seen the worst of us. Loves us even when we have shown the side of ourselves that may be comparable to smelly old clothes.” — Jackie Francois Angel

+ “God takes pleasure to see you take your little steps; and like a good father who holds his child by the hand, He will accommodate His steps to yours and will be content to go no faster than you. Why do you worry?” — St. Francis de sales

+ “I need this reminder often: that holiness is not a competition. We’re all meant to be on the same team together striving for Heaven. There’s more than enough of God’s love to go around—and there’s more than enough of God’s work to go around. He personally invites each of us into this work to bring His love to the billions of people who so desperately need it. Yet the moment we start to compare ourselves to others, our focus shifts from freely loving others to selfishly trying to serve and preserve ourselves….

“Affirming someone else’s goodness does not take away from our own. In fact, actively seeking to recognize another’s dignity allows us to become more like God and see them more clearly through God’s eyes. Today, commit to building the Kingdom of life and love in one simple way. Look in the mirror and affirm your own dignity and goodness—then go find someone else and affirm theirs, too.” — Megan Hjelmstad

+ St. Gianna’s Lifelong Marian Devotion

+ Did you know that St. John Paul II’s mother was advised to have an abortion? She looked for a second opinion after her doctor recommended one. Thank God for that. Little Karol Jozef Wojtyla was born and the world was changed. Every single child conceived is a gift and a miracle, someone to be protected and cherished. Let’s pray for that today. For the protection of this gift — for the unborn. // ”If you want equal justice for all, and true freedom and lasting peace, then, America, defend life from conception until natural death!” (St. John Paul II)

+ I shared here one of my husband’s favorite meals 🙂 It’s so good!

+ “For years I drudged through winters, not feeling like I was capable of doing that “hygge” thing because our couch is grubby and we are usually neck high in laundry, Legos, some other accumulation starting with the letter L which I can’t summon to my brain right now but rest assured, it’s there.

“It wasn’t until I realized that all I needed to do was discover our personal brand of “hygge” and find a way to work it into our home education routine. It’s one of those things that many mothers figured out miles before I have- a natural conclusion- but I had to read it first to think “of course!” 💡 thanks to the inspiration and beautiful words of encouragement from @elizabethfoss and @sally.clarkson , our winter days don’t feel as miserable as they used to.” — Carolyn Svellinger

+ Lastly, here’s what’s featured in this week’s Catholic Wife, Catholic Life NewsletterI share these every Monday and they always include: two gluten-free recipes, a reflection & prayer based on Sunday’s Mass readings, and links to budget-friendly fashion & Catholic home decor. 

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