The following is a transcript of a Raised Catholic podcast episode. To listen to the episode, click here.
Today is episode 106: Be Held
Hi friends. I’ve been under the weather this week, so I don’t have a full episode for you, but I would like to offer a few thoughts on what it means to live out your faith when you are not at your best.
If you were born and raised Catholic, you may have been taught that your practice of faith was about the stuff you do – you know, go to mass, say the prayers, make the sacrifices, all of that stuff. So, what do we do when it is just not in us to ‘do’ much of anything? In these times, are we failing in our faith? Letting God down? Are we just taking a break? And when this happens, does it mean that God leaves us or that He is even mad at us?
Our answer to that question may be based on our own experience of relationship with God. And this is why a contemplative practice is so helpful – the more we develop our own ear to hear and commune with God directly, the better our understanding of who God really is and this is helpful if you, like me this week, didn’t actively pray or really ‘do’ very much at all.
Friend, I’ll be honest, this has been a hard week for me, physically, mentally, and emotionally hard, but my intimate understanding of God as parent, shepherd, and as friend helps me to know that He sees and knows just how hard it has been, and that He is actively taking care of me through it, regardless of whether or not I’ve asked him to in a form that sounds like structured prayer.
I’ll share a little bit of what I mean. One night this week, I was having some troublesome symptoms and I rolled over and just said, out loud, “I love you, Lord.” And immediately I felt the love that He has for me, like, I really felt it. It brought me to tears, honestly. He sees and knows me, and He knew I needed just to be held by Him, to rest in God who is love. And it was so good, so needed, and even amid all the tissues, a truly holy moment. The only thing I needed to do in that moment was to feel held, like a baby in her mother’s arms. Safe. That is who God is for us, friend.
And not only was that enough, but it was a prayer.
As humble Brother Lawrence said in a book which was compiled after his death called The Practice of the Presence of God, “Our biggest mistake is to think that a time of prayer is different from any other time. It is all one. Prayer is nothing else than a sense of God’s presence.” And friend, truly, there is nothing more that I would wish for you.
So, when we’re not at our best, I hope we remember that God does not leave us. Quite the contrary. And if our prayer takes the form of a few words or a breath or listening to a song or even just awareness, I want you to know today that it is enough. His presence does not depend on us. He is with us because of love. He is love. He’s good and He’s got us. We can be held and rest in Him. What good news.
Thanks so much for listening to this short episode today, friend. If you need me, you can find me on Instagram @kerrycampbellwrites or on my blog at mylittleepiphanies.com. Thanks so much for rating, reviewing, subscribing and most importantly, sharing this podcast with a friend. That really makes a difference in growing our community, so thanks. If you’d like to support this podcast financially, there’s a way for you to do that in the show notes, along with some resources related to today’s episode, so do check all of that out, but before we go, let’s pray together.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, amen.
I love you, Lord. Thank you for seeing me today. Simple as that, friend. Amen.
Okay, thanks for listening. Be well, I’ll see you next time.
Today’s episode comes on the heels of a week of illness for me. It’s a short one, but I did want to offer a few thoughts on how to handle our faith lives when we’re not at our best. I hope it’s a blessing to you.
If you’d like to connect with me, find me on Instagram or on my blog. If you’d like to help support this podcast financially, there’s now a way to do just that, and thank you – visit me on my page at buymeacoffee.com! Thanks as always for sharing, subscribing, rating, and reviewing, as this helps our community to grow!
Here are some resources I hope will help you to engage with this week’s topic in a deeper way for yourself:
1. The Practice of the Presence of God, by Brother Lawrence
2. Song: Goodness of God, by CeCe Winans