Hey there, and welcome!
I think I left off last time, talking about how Pinterest has been such a big help in my spiritual life this year. I know that sounds crazy. I wouldn’t believe it either, unless I’d lived it. So grab that tea and that comfy spot, and I’ll tell you all about it.
It might surprise you to know that Pinterest has a lot of Christian boards. Christian music boards, Catholic boards, all sorts of things. They have been a great help to me this year.
When I was at the end of my desert experience, I didn’t know I was even close. I’d go to pray and one of two things would happen – either I’d run out of words in about 10 seconds flat, or else I’d be stricken with what I called spiritual ADHD – a complete lack of ability to concentrate. I was so frustrated! I could remember well the times that spending literal hours in extended prayer was my greatest joy. Now, I couldn’t spend even 5 minutes in focused prayer.
So, on a whim one night while I was on Pinterest, I typed in ‘prayer’. Amazing! I also saw lots of stuff for rosaries. Now, being a dyed-in-the-wool Protestant for 40 years, I didn’t want anything to do with praying to Mary. Or whatever it was they did with those things; all I really knew was that I’d been taught all my life it was wrong, so I wanted no part of that. But at the same time, I knew I desperately needed something to aid me in re-establishing a meaningful prayer life.
I discovered other prayer beads, all sorts of beads – Jesus Prayer beads, hindu beads, Catholic rosaries, and one that really intrigued me: an “Anglican Rosary”. You can do your own search for it, and can find all the information on it including how it’s set up, prayers to use, etc.
In a nutshell, I discovered that an Anglican Rosary can be used to pray pre-written, sometimes quite ancient prayers, or you are actually encouraged to write your own, use bits of Scriptures, etc. There’s even a YouTube video of a young priest demonstrating how he prays it. It effectively jump started my prayer life. Great tool!
Then, in April, I found the pin by Denise. I had no idea that she was a semi-famous Catholic columnist when I found the pin, and the article it went back to. I had no idea that my relationship with God and how I chose to express that relationship was about to dramatically change forever. The pin was on ‘The Absurdity of Decluttering the Catholic Faith’, and said this:
“No. Do not declutter my precious faith. Do not reduce it to something too small. Do not suggest that it is better to have a faith that is summed up in five bullet points and one passage from Scripture. I. Want. It. All. I need it all.” You can read the entire post from her blog, Catholic by Grace, here.
When I was ready to explore more about the Catholic rosary, a pin appeared: “Ready? Take the 33-day rosary challenge!”
I’m following a board whose creator posts lots of ‘current tidbits’ from Pope Francis.
When I wanted to keep all the new Christian music in one place, I created a board for that. When I wanted to consider ideas for creating a dedicated prayer space someplace in my house, I created a board – and found many others with the same idea.
I’ve found information on liturgy, prayer, the Catechism, the saints, Mary, early church fathers, all sorts of things. I have a board for Christian art. I’ve learned to weed through the questionable sources to the good ones, and have learned to use some of those. I’ve been challenged to re-think my position on several things, encouraged to dig deeper on other things, and introduced to all sorts of wonderful people. I found lots of resources for children. They were actually quite perfect for someone just dipping their toes into the Catholic waters. I’m not ashamed to admit that I view myself as a spiritual toddler in some senses, so what could be better than tools to teach them?
All this in addition to all the usual crafty, foodie, clothing style, decorating, etc. stuff that most people know Pinterest for. So, now you know. I suppose I could boil my spiritual life down to becoming “Catholic by Pinterest” Now that’s funny, right there. 😉