St. Anthony, find … me

I’ve had this mysterious St. Anthony pendant in a jewelry box for almost 10 years now.  The pendant is taped to his prayer card and looks as new as it did the day it was made. Every time I opened my jewelry box, St. Anthony was there to greet me.  I never knew why I had it, where it came from, and how it got into my possession at 10/11 years old, but I simply remember thinking, “one day, that’ll mean something…”

Oh, how glorious the Holy Spirit works in prompting such a wise and thoughtful comment because sure enough, I “found” why St. Anthony just so happened to mean something.

Recently, I’ve been contemplating and praying that God would bless and inspire the words I speak.  Not only because our words have the power to bring life, the Gospel, and smiles upon others, but also because words are important when it comes to teaching and presenting the faith (two things I find myself doing with my professional endeavors).  Sure enough, I found out this dear, gentle saint had the gift of eloquent speech.

And it dawned on me that St. Anthony was a saint I use to pray to a lot when I was little, but only when… I lost things. (Guilty too?)

But, now it’s safe to say, dear St. Anthony found me and led me to Christ.

There came a point in my faith journey where I told our Lord I was exhausted, burned out, and tired of trying to figure it out.  I used to live this life trying to perfect myself for Him.  I’ll lose weight and THEN present myself to you Lord because I look icky now.  I’ll wait until I’m truly happy with life and THEN I’ll thank you, Lord.  I’ll accomplish this, graduate college, and find some good friends, wait for the perfect life, and THEN be good enough for you, Lord.

Wrong.

I would place myself before God, tell Him what perfect plans I was ready to accomplish and then put Him on the sidelines to watch.  Needless to say, without His help, I fell flat on my face.

“Okay, Jesus, I’m done trying to find you, I think it’s time for you to find me.” 

And in that moment, He told me I don’t have to have it figured out, I only need to trust Him.

He told me not to do it alone. He wants to walk with me (and sure, sometimes I didn’t invite Him alone for the ride)

He told me He loved me and has the best plan for me, I just have to be patient.

And in the moments I lost sight of Him and the world got a hold on me, He told me, “don’t worry, I’ve got this.”

And letting God find me was when I started to find beauty and goodness in all areas of life.  It was then I “re-found” my St. Anthony pendant and (finally) wear it with love.  It was then I found, Jesus, and met him where I was at and He accepted me for who I was.

To know that there is only so much that I (the weak, imperfect human) can do is freeing.  It is not my job to move the mountains, heal the brokenhearted, or find the happiness, but it is my job to trust–to know that I’m being taken care of–and that my plan in Christ will come to me if I remain open to it.

And that’s the little reminder I wish to encourage you to keep in mind in your relationship with God.  It remains true that while we need to try our best, strive for virtue, and avoid sin, we should always place ourselves in the presence of God and let Him find us. 

“It wasnot you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you.” -John 15:16

If you’re like me–exhausted and trying to figure it all out–be still and know that God is bigger than your issue.  He is the only solution to the issue, and He wants to help you.  Lay it down and let God do what God does best.

So today, let’s not pray to St. Anthony to help us find our keys or our wallets, but to help us truly find Jesus.  To truly find purity, selflessness, trust in God, peace in our hearts, and hope for the future.  And when Jesus presents himself to you, proposes a great plan and asks if He can lead you to it, may you rejoice in knowing He has nothing but goodness in store along the way.

WhoisStAnthony

Be Satisfied with Me

St. Anthony of Padua

Everyone longs to give themselves completely to someone,
To have a deep soul relationship with another,
To be loved thoroughly and exclusively.
But God, to a Christian, says,
“No, not until you are satisfied, fulfilled and content
With being loved by Me alone,
With giving yourself totally and unreservedly to Me,
With having an intensely personal and unique relationship
With Me alone.
Discovering that only in Me is your satisfaction to be found,
Will you be capable of the perfect human relationship
That I have planned for you.
You will never be united with another until you are united
With Me alone,
Exclusive of anyone or anything else,
Exclusive of any other desires or longings.

I want you to stop planning,
Stop wishing,
And allow Me to give you the most thrilling plan existing,
One that you cannot imagine.
Please allow Me to bring it to you.
You just keep watching Me, expecting the greatest things.
Keep experiencing the satisfaction that I Am.
Keep listening and learning the things I tell you.
You just wait.
That’s all.
Don’t be anxious.
Don’t worry.
Don’t look at the things you think you want;
You just keep looking off and away up to Me,
Or you’ll miss what I want to show you.
And then when you are ready,
I’ll surprise you with a love far more wonderful than any
You could dream of.
You see, until you are ready and until
The one I have for you is ready
(I am working even at this moment to have you both ready at the same time),
Until you are both satisfied exclusively with Me
And the life I prepared for you,
You won’t be able to experience the love that
Exemplified your relationship with Me.
And this is the perfect love.

And dear one, I want you to have this most wonderful love,
I want you to see in the flesh a picture of your
Relationship with Me,
And to enjoy materially and concretely
The everlasting union of beauty, perfection and love
That I offer you with Myself.
Know that I love utterly.
I Am God.
Believe it and be satisfied.

 

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