Just over fifty words, the Suscipe is brief. But by moving me to complete three major actions — letting go, giving thanks, and asking for help — it transforms my mindset and softens my heart with each recitation.
We make hundreds of yes or no decisions daily, even if just to ourselves — no, I won’t stay in bed even though I kind of want to; yes, I’ll invite a new neighbor over for coffee — and good reasons for both our yeses and our nos can lead to wholeness and holiness. But looking back on my life, I see that a few yeses, which, like Mary’s, came in the face of uncertainty and even bafflement, have led to a life that I love.
As St. Augustine once explained, a Sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible grace. I may not think that Confession is a necessary prerequisite to receiving God’s forgiveness, but I do experience God’s grace through the Sacrament.
Poetry has the potential to convey deep ideas and valuable lessons with just a few words beautifully strung together. Sharing poems with our children is a practice that can help them—and us—grow in faith and understanding of God.
Learning about and praying numerous variations of Lectio Divina during a two-week period that I spent at a Benedictine monastery opened the doorway for a major turn in my prayer life.