A Friday Flashback from a special week on A Seeking Heart, when I featured Dawn Eden’s newest book, Remembering God’s Mercy, from Ave Maria Press. Like most of the books, I am blessed to receive each month, I had no idea what to expect. In fact, knowing her awesome reputation, I did something I rarely do – sought an interview with her before even reading a word! THIS is when I become even MORE keenly aware of the Holy Spirit’s working in the world – and in particular my own life. The Holy Spirit did not let me down, as the LORD said through Dawn’s writing and in our amazing interview – exactly what I NEEDED to hear!
Mainly, whether discerning if I am trying to draw near to God and what HE wills, or if I am still trying to draw HIM TO me and my will? Do I love God for being God, or for what HE does for me? Guess which one I discovered it was?? It was a subtle, but poignant, distinction as I discovered as I read Dawn’s recounting of St. Peter Faber’sreflections in the “Memoriales”.
Come close to God, and
God will come close to you.
Wash your hands, you sinners;
purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided
between God and the world.
For more listen here:
“Delight yourself in the LORD;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
What a promise – I am not sure which intrigued me more when I first read it? How one delights themselves in the Lord or what desire I would want fulfilled.
The first part was easier than I thought to accomplish because the Catholic faith is so rich in ways to encounter Christ in our everyday life. I could not imagine my life not filled with prayer, the Scriptures and the Sacraments. St. Paul exhorted us to pray without ceasing, so whether folding laundry, driving the car or reading a book, I do everything with a prayerful heart. I will say a Hail Mary for each member of my family as I put their dishes into the dishwasher, say the rosary on my way to an event, or give thanks for the author’s talent as I read their book.
My introduction to scripture, only 10 years ago, has transformed my faith life, providing me this amazing gift of learning how Jesus spoke, and therefore having a better sense of His voice in my life. Scripture good for all teaching and reproof has become the center of my faith and my hope, not a day goes by I don’t take a moment to ponder a verse or two. It was also important for me to memorize a few special verses to embrace on tough days when I need encouragement, particularly helpful when writer’s block strikes or my teenage son is teetering on that last nerve!
Lastly, the Sacraments are where I go to dip into God’s well-spring of grace. Grace is that undeserved yet freely given gift of God’s Holy Spirit within us (that is the simplified “Allison abridged” version of grace – by the way). When I am feeling distant or discouraged, the remedy is always found in participation in the sacraments – particularly for me daily Mass, time spent in Adoration or making a really good confession. Gifts are best when they are used, and I try my best not to waste the grace present, promised and abundant, in the Sacraments!
So, what about the desires of our heart? How do we discover those? That is where God is the most generous – since He has given us our brains (and even our heart’s desires), He is well aware of them. He knows them long before we, so focusing on delighting in the Lord is truly all we need to concern ourselves with.
Last September, I received a phone call inviting me to host my own radio show. Reluctant but curious, I asked for a few days to pray about my answer. Off to Eucharistic Adoration I went with a notebook and pen. I sat before Jesus and asked for inspiration – if I said yes, what on earth would the show be about? As I sat pondering, the Holy Spirit reminded me that I had a degree in English, a passion for books (especially Catholic books), and had lead book/Bible study for nearly 10 years – that was to be the foundation of my show. From that time in prayer, A Seeking Heart with Allison Gingras on Real Life Radio was born. Each week, I focus on just one book. Monday-Thursday we discuss the themes, contents and inspirations gleaned from the book and then on Friday, I am blessed to spend an hour with the author. It is not a review show but an on-air book club – it is interactive, interesting, and truly fulfills one of my heart’s desires. I love connecting people and books, especially when I know it will change lives and grow faith.
All Rights Reserved, Allison Gingras 2017