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Here are this week’s must-reads:

+ “We may not get to choose our circumstance, but we can choose the story we tell ourselves about it. Perspective changes everything. Gratitude changes everything.” — Hope Heals

+ “Life rarely looks quite like we thought it would. But God knows what we need better than we do, and He has a way of rearranging us to make a space for Himself in ways we really couldn’t have imagined.” — Claire Dwyer

+ “We always find that those who walked closest to Christ were those who had to bear the greatest trials.” — St. Teresa of Avila

+ “I remind myself that I’m praying to the God who let the Israelites stay lost for decades. They begged to arrive in the Promised Land, but instead He let them wander, answering prayers they didn’t pray. For forty years, their shoes didn’t wear out. Fire lit their path each night. Every morning, He sent them mercy-bread from heaven.  I look hard for the answers to the prayers that I didn’t pray. I look for the mercy-bread that He promised to bake fresh for me each morning. The Israelites called it manna, which means “what is it?”  That’s the same question I’m asking—again, and again. There’s mercy here somewhere—but what is it? What is it? What is it?” — Nightbirdie

+ “Reminder: you and your spouse are on the same time. You are either going to win together or lose together.”

+ “When I forgive someone, it is an act of hope. Through forgiving them, I have hope in the path that this person will take. I have hope for this person’s progress, this person’s conversion. I believe that this person, too, will meet Christ and his or her heart will be transformed. Hope is very powerful because what we hope for, God will grant.”– Fr. Jacques Philippe⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

+ The Twelve Promises Jesus Made to Those Who Honor His Sacred Heart

+ “The older I get, the more aware I am of my imperfections and the more grateful I am for God’s generous unconditional love and acceptance. We are all complex people, each with areas of strength and areas in which we are fragile or broken. In a fallen world, imperfections will attend our days until we move into eternity. But our intrinsic worth is not weighed down by our shortcomings. We must also see others through the eyes of God.” — Sally Clarkson

+ “Oftentimes we do not even know what ONE question to ask God in prayer. Questions like:

“Should I change careers?”
“Am I called to religious life?”
“Should I apply to graduate school?”
“What is God’s will for this one chapter of my life?”

“Mother Clare Matthiass, CFR told the group to go into discernment with a plan and structure. Give yourself not just one holy hour to pray about this, but (depending on where you are in your journey) give yourself a week, month, whole summer, or more to ask God your ONE question. You will hear God’s voice through The Eucharist, Mass, spiritual direction, adoration, or simply in the silence.” — Given Institute

+ “It may look like he’s just laying down a garden path, but really what he’s doing is saying, “Bonnie, I love you and I want to make you happy and I love you.” And it is just the most extraordinarily wonderful thing.” — Bonnie Engstrom

+ “Our words have the power to heal or hurt, uplift or tear down, inspire or invoke fear.⁠⁠ It’s important to reflect on how we communicate what we want and to recognize each person’s dignity and free-will. ⁠⁠ Sometimes we might not know that we’re communicating in this way; telling versus asking, but now you can start to make this small communication shift to allow your (spouse) to feel safe, loved and a part of the relationship. ⁠⁠ We never want to tell, demand, force or coerce anyone to do anything.⁠⁠ I know that telling can seem like you’ll receive an immediate answer or action, but it causes more emotional harm that what you’re intending. ⁠⁠By asking, you’re giving space to your (spouse) openly express themselves and/or take action on their own.” — Journey to Marriage

+ 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 & home decor.

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