Your duty is to sanctify yourself. Yes, even you. Who thinks that this task is only for priests and religious? To everyone, without exception, our Lord said: Be ye perfect, as my heavenly Father is perfect. St. Josemaria

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Transforming for Christ: Pray & Fast!

First, I hope that during your 33 days of transformation you were inspired to transform your soul, body and mind.

So much has happen since then for myself, that I would like to share with you. My transformation in a sense has come after our trip to Mexico and visiting our most beautiful mother, Our Lady of Guadalupe.

I had so much time to really think, and we visited so many beautiful Churches where Christ is so honored and loved, and time to have Chris transform my soul.

I knew that coming home couldn't be the normal again, where everything is done half with heart, where Me, Myself and I rule...  I knew to be really successful as everyone wants to be that I had to put my whole 100% as I did when I went to collage or my teaching career.  But I am not talking about Earthly successful but a heavenly one on earth.  So I started on my final journey, or "college course" to my final exam: judgment and death.

God has given me an inspiration that I can't ignore any more: to prepare for my death.  This thought would come over and over in my prayers in these last few weeks being home.   I have to prepare daily for my death for I don't know the hour or day that my Lord will call me.

How do I do that? How does someone prepare for their death without really knowing when it will happen?  After many long hours in doing research and praying and spirituals reading and other books and God's inspiration: I feel that I found how and I have been implementing it these last weeks and I want to share it with the world. Why? Because it has transform me in so many ways that I will not do it any justice in my poor writing.


I found myself transforming for Christ by: Pray and Fast.
" Perfection consists in accomplishing the will of God in a constant and generous fashion"

PRAYING
  I was able to read for a second time the:  Counsel of Perfection of Christian Mothers .  I have taken  more out of this book the second time around.  Also again the goal that I have to prepare myself for death, for Heaven gives you the sense of priority above all.

Some thoughts that I took away from this book:  Rule of Life (which I had but never truly lived it), spending of Time, and Rising.

Rule of Life:
 "She who lives by a rule finds time for everything".   What are my true goals? and How to get them?
 I am able to do it all: my soul, kids' school, clean house, healthy meals, and lots of fun. 

Spending of Time:
" I shall never put off what I can do now."   For years , I have a day set to do a certain part of the house to clean, what clothes to wash and what we'll have for dinner. I see the true gift in doing something now and not later.
"I shall never remain idle, nor lose one single instant of my time." Monsignor P. Lejeune

Rising Early:
"By rising early the best hours of the day will be yours. If you defer your rising an irremediable disorganization will continue throughout the day from this first faulty." Monsignor P. Lejeune

I finally took the Heroic moment that some many saints talked about, such as my dear friend, St. Josemaria writes: "The heroic minute. It is the time fixed for getting up. Without hesitation: a supernatural reflection and... up! The heroic minute: here you have a mortification that strengthens your will and does no harm to your body."


Again, Monsignor P. Lejeune writes, " To rise at an early hour will be irksome. However this sacrifice will be a very sweet act of love to our Lord. Oh! How happy day is in which our first actions are stamped with sail of sacrifice."

So I start the day at 5am; I do my morning prayers, spiritual readings and mediation.(everyday it gets easier to rise at 5am and start the day). I am really bless since I sit in my Florida run and I watch the sun come up with such colors that wake the trees and the birds. So Blessed I am.

Some of my prayers come from the Mother Manuel , I really like these prayers especially the prayer for my husband, my childrens' protection and for their vocations. In some ways , my new ipad has been a blessing to have with the apps for prayers and such.

Our daily work is our prayer to God. How we clean the toilet, serve milk to the child, fold the clothes and put it away, and so much more is our prayer to God, is our way to God and our walk to being Saints.


FASTING

Many of you might recall my quest to lose the weight. Trust me, I have see it and done it.  Coming back for our vacation from Mexico where eating is a national pastime and very good one, I knew that I was back to square one. But I was just sick and tried of being in this square.  I started back on WW but I just can't picture or see myself counting points all my life. So asking or more like begging God for something, anything.  Something out of the square, outside the box.

He came through to me in a way of a film on something that I have done before but in no way as formal as now and seeing many more benefits that I have ever dream of!  

Its called Eat, Fast and Live longer a BBC program. Its worth all 59 minutes of it.

 Dr. Moseley does have a book out but you can't get it in the USA until Feb. 26 but another book that I did get on my kindle that gives you a view in the life of Intermittent Fasting and its well written is The 5:2 Diet Book: Feast for 5 Days a Week and Fast for 2 to Lose Weight, Boost Your Brain and Transform Your Health

Its big in England, they call it the 5:2 diet but really its not a diet but a lifestyle change. You eat as normals as  you can for 5 days and 2 days (not back to back) you fast, you cut your calories intake to 500 for the day for women and 600 for many.

Here is another great resources that gives you info on intermittent fasting.   So that I have learn before hand about eating and such, this will kick you in the stomach.

Here is a resources on Fasting in the eyes of the Church.

My Fasting:  I have start to do this for two weeks now; I do 3 days of fasting (Tues. Thur. and Sat.)  but starting on Ash Wednesday, I will go to two days (Wednesday and Fridays).

My 10 Takes on Fasting:

1. I always offer up the Fast day with pray and a special intention, such as for my husband, end of abortion, etc. I change it very day. So when it gets tough especially around 2 to 4 ish, I pray and think of that special intention and I get through it.

2. I have lost weight, about 8 pounds so far.

3. I save my 500 for one meal at the end . Some people do very little meals throughout the day. You just keep track of those 500 cals. (It is amazing how fast it can go)

4. Lots of tea and water.

5. First day was the hardest; headaches, light head and tired. But I never really knew how it feels to be truly hungry. (Cooking the meals for the family is very hard)

6. I love the challenge of it. I really feel powerful that I can really work on my will and be successful on controlling my willpower.

7. On Fast day, I do think of food and what I will eat the next day but the most surprising of it all: the next day comes and I am not eating as much as I thought I would or dive head first into a box of cookies, etc.

8. On Feast days, I also notice that I wait until I feel those hungry pains before I eat instead of always eating and never know when I was truly hungry or just bored!

9. Its funny but it seems such a taboo thing. I don't go around looking or telling people.. I am fasting, look at me. I do take my supplements. Do I do try to stay cheerful.

10.  I can enjoy eating, not thinking about counting points or portions or calories on the feast days but I also see myself eating healthier because you start to see what it is you put in your mouth or not.

" For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but a spirit of power and love and self-control."

 
So I am finally living and preparing for my death. It is strange to think in those terms, but by preparing for your death you must live this life , God has given us so that we can live forever with HIM.

I am now going to challenge you.  Lent is coming upon us. See if you can transform yourself,  your family, and our world by : pray & fast. It's a rose with it's thorns.

So let me know if you are going to take this challenge of Pray & Fast.  What better time to start than LENT. Come back and let us know if you are going to join us. We'll journey together on this bumping road. We'll share our tricks and trades and joys and tears.  Grab the image below and let the world know!



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2 comments:

Lena said...

Praise God for your fruitful journey. May you continue to cooperate with His grace to live with your end times held near. (my family's mission is, "Live each day as though it were your last, ALL FOR THE GREATER GLORY OF GOD!")

I will be joining you in prayer and fasting this Lent. However, may fasting will be different since I will have just given birth and be nursing.

Trust that your Lenten journey will be in my prayers.

ad Jesum per Mariam, Lena

Cecilia Escobedo said...

Lena.. I pray that you have a beautiful birth of your beloved child. Yes, your fasting will sure be different but fruitful and joyful during this Lent season. Many Blessing to you and your beautiful family!