It’s not a goodbye, it’s a see you later!

There are few things harder than losing a loved one. Losing someone on a special holiday is perhaps even worse. No one wants a day that is supposed to be filled with joy full instead with sadness and the gut-wrenching realization that a loved one will never again walk on Earth. No one wants to endure saying goodbye to family on days when you’re supposed to say hello to visiting loved ones. No one wants their Christmas Day to be their grandmother’s last day on Earth, but unfortunately, we don’t always get what we want. We always, however, get what we need.

I lost my grandmother on Christmas Day this year. She had been sick for a while, and had already escaped death multiple times. I knew that she was probably not going to live much longer, but I never imagined that I would lose her on Christmas Day.

My morning started off earlier then expected, as my family was going to open presents around 9:00 a.m because we had gone to midnight Mass. Instead, my dad came in to my room around 7:00 to wake me up and told me that we were going to go visit my grandma later (she lives a couple hours away). After going through our normal Christmas routine, we got ready to leave for our visit. Just minutes before we were going to head out the door, my mom received a call from her brother. My grandmother had died. My entire family immediately broke down. I remember saying “We’re too late,” to which my father immediately responded that we weren’t too late, that my grandmother would be with me forever.

My father was right. It was very hard to lose my grandmother that day, but she got a very special Christmas present: eternal life with Jesus received on the day of His birth! Think of the party in heaven that day! My grandmother needed to be free of her pain and suffering on earth, so God fulfilled that for her.

Losing someone is hard, but it’s our selfish desire for them to be with us that makes us sad. We don’t want their time to end yet, for we still want to be with them. But God knows what He is doing. My grandmother no longer has to feel the pains and sufferings of the world. She received eternal life!

Some of you may be wondering how I know she went straight to heaven and bypassed purgatory. Well, my grandmother’s favorite color was purple. She loved purple. So I asked The Lord for a sign of something purple. I received several signs, including the following two. When opening presents at my other grandmother’s house later that day, my sister turned to me when she pulled a toothbrush out of her stocking and said simply, “It’s purple.” Later, I was looking at the new suitcase I got for Christmas. When I saw it Christmas morning it looked more pink than purple, but when I saw it the next morning it looked very purple. God gave me the signs I needed. These night seem like silly, simple things, but The Holy Spirit filled me with conviction and understanding so that I could recognize God’s signs.

It can take a while to actually come to turns with losing a loved one & deal with their death. The most important thing to do is pray. Pray for them to receive eternal life. Pray for peace. Pray for happiness. Also, don’t dwell on being sad for too long. Think of how your loved one would want you to act. Would they want you to be sad and mope around? I know for a fact that my grandmother would want me to continue to be happy, to go on with my life. So, that’s what I need to do. I need to pray and continue with my life, keeping the memory of her close in my heart.

So don’t dwell too long on the sadness of losing a loved one. Celebrate their life, pray for them to reach Heaven, & thank God for giving them eternal life. Live your life happily, and always praise God. Don’t forget that it’s not a goodbye, it’s a see you later, for we are all called to live holy lives that allow us to reach Heaven!

Stay strong!
💜Cecila Liz

#TheStruggle

Everyone has troubles. Everyone has struggles. Whether it be a sick relative, stressful classes, problems with the faith, or anything, everyone is struggling in one way or another. That is why it is important to lean on The Lord for guidance, love, hope, and encouragement. He WILL help you get through any troubles you are dealing with, if only you ask Him. So, never worry. For if you lean on The Lord for strength, He can and will help you.

Stay strong,
❤Cecilia Liz

Pity Party

Today was my first day in class after Thanksgiving break, I woke up sick with a sore throat,headache, and ear ache, I’m exhausted, and finals are next week with several exams this week too….. my life sucks.

 

^That was the easy way out, here is how I long to approach each struggle the Lord has handed me.

Today was my first day in class after thanksgiving break. I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to spend time with my family and friends for the holiday. I am thankful for safe travels in spite of snow storms and for quality time with the ones I love.

I woke up sick this morning, probably because my immune system was down after a few days of relaxing over break. Yes this is challenging but I know that I have God on my side. One of my favorite quotes perfectly illustrates this.

“I know God wouldn’t give me anything I cannot handle, I just wish He didn’t trust me so much.” ~Mother Teresa

I have a lot of exams in the coming weeks. I thank the Lord that I have the chance to get an education and to be in classes which are preparing me for my future career. Plus, what comes after finals? I get a whole month off to celebrate the coming of Christ with my family and friends. I think it will be worth the two weeks of learning, The feasting is always better after the waiting…it is Advent after all.

I must try to grasp the idea that the Devil is going to continue to pull me towards the side of self pity and doubt, but what do I have to feel bad about? I have God. “I know who goes before me//I know who stands behind//The God of Angel armies// Is always by my side!”

“By the anxieties and worries of the life, Satan tries to dull man’s heart and make a dwelling for himself there.” ~ St. Francis of Assisi

I am challenging you all to not let Satan find a dwelling place. Be like the innkeepers of Bethlehem towards Mary and Joseph. Wherever Satan tries to creep in,  slam the door in his face by glorifying God.

Sorry Satan, there is no room for you here.

God Bless,

Lucia J. Francisco

You are not alone.

I just want to post and say you are beautiful inside and out. Don’t let others tear you down. I get insecure, we all do but just remember you are loves by God and He made you perfect. God doesn’t make mistakes.

I will honestly tell you that I get insecure too. I always think oh my gosh she is so pretty, prettier than me. I will admit I have self image issues. I just try to remind myself that God loves me but life ain’t easy. Some days will be better than others. Some days I feel great about myself others not so much. I just try to stay positive.

I will also say that I feel out of place a lot. When I am with my friends I am okay but with new people it is terrible. I always feel like I talk too much or I am just the odd ball out.

The reason I wrote this post wasn’t to rant about my problems it was just to show you that we all have things in our life we need to over come. This is just mine. If anyone ever needs to talk I am just an email away at adelaideburgan@gmail.com
By the way you should smile more it looks good on you! 🙂

Love you and God Bless
Adelaide

My Musical Conversion

As someone who has spent the majority of her life involved in choir and band, music has been a big part of my life. Like many people I constantly have the radio on in the car, earbuds in at the gym, and music blasting in my room.

Who doesn’t right?

Growing up I never had a particular taste in music. Like many other aspects of life, I saw music preference as a way to “fit in” with a particular group of people. So my “favorite” songs were often the exact ones listed on the weekends Top 40 or iTunes Top 10.

Right about now you may be asking, “What’s wrong with popular music?”

The answer is twofold:

1. The Message

Sadly, in today’s society, music is used to reflect the deteriorating morals. Crude language and sexual phrases send the message that these sins are perfectly okay, and even normal. Young kids often grow up not really understanding what certain lyrics mean, but their innocence is still obliterated because they slowly develop a lack of respect for true beauty and purity. Of course this rule is not without its exceptions. Many songs which portray a good message have become popular over the years, yet the majority have grown increasing worse in terms of the message they send.

2. Fear of Unacceptance

Secondly, in a many cases, our taste in music is often shaped by the secular world. For me, I was constantly trying to listen to the stations and songs all my friends listened to so I could “fit in.” As I grew older and became more confident with myself, I began to listen to more of the songs I liked. I switched from Pop and Rap to Country, and eventually to Praise & Worship. Yet I was still embarrassed and would quickly switch the station whenenver someone else joined me in the car.

I have come along way in how I view myself. Rather than feeling the need to conform, I am my own person. I listen to what I like, and what I like is Praise & Worship. (Accompanied occasionally by other genres).

Why do I like Praise & Worship so much?

1. Focus on God

As we go through out our busy days, it is so easy to forget about living our lives for God. Hearing songs praising the Lord keeps me focused in what us truly important in life, God.

2. Calming

As someone who often suffers from anxiety, I find great peace in worshiping God. So when I get to be overwhelmed I just turn on one if my favorite Pandora stations and continue on with what I’m doing, often in a more relaxed manner.

3. Mood

When I listen to a song that is uplifting and glorifying God, I am bound to be in a better mood than if I were listening to a song that was degrading and immoral.

Now I do not judge people who don’t share my live of Christian music. I have simply found that it helps me to live a more theocentric lifestyle. It’s that constant reminder when I’m driving, working out, studying, etc that all I really need to worry about is pleasing God.

Thanks for Reading & God Bless!

Lucia J. Francisco