God’s love is Scandalizing

As I have written for a while now, things in my life have been a little rough for the last 2 years or so. There have been moments of pure Grace that have flooded over me like a nice hot bath, but for the most part, it’s been a long uphill walk for me. (And my husband, but this is my blog and I don’t write a lot about his thoughts, because they are his thoughts. These are my thoughts)  I have learned more from this uphill walk than I did when I was floating on Cloud 9 of a new conversion . God knows what He is doing and He knows when to allow certain things to be done. He knew that I was a very prideful person with low self-esteem and that is a terrible combination.  He pursued me, even when I wanted nothing to do with Him and then when the time was right, He wooed me with a herd of sheep on a country road in Rome knowing that would make me fall deeply in love with Him and that I would spend the rest of my life at His service out of love. I also fell in love with my husband on that road, for the third or fourth time in my life. I have fallen in love with that man so many times that I can’t even count them all.

Conversion is crazy. I didn’t have a St. Paul conversion really. I kind of think of his conversion as one where Jesus said “Hey! What are you DOING ya crazy person?!” And St. Paul came to his senses and felt bad about the things he had done. I did not. I mean, sure I realized what I had done was wrong according to the Catholic Church and I recognized that She was the pillar of Truth and was right, but I didn’t really feel bad for having done them. I felt bad that I didn’t know the truth for most of my life, and I was even a little mad at the people in my life who didn’t really ever tell me what the Catholic Church really was about. But I didn’t feel at fault for not knowing it.  However, I did think that since I now knew that Truth, that I would have to be a completely different person. I would have to talk different, sound different, like different things, expect my kids to be a certain way, for my house to look a certain way, to do things a certain way and to be like all those “good” Catholic women. And I thought all of this should just happen because I had this life changing encounter with Jesus.

I became so hard on myself. I compared myself to every Catholic woman, especially the ones on Facebook. The homeschooling, family rosary saying, 17 kid raising, open to life with a joyful smile. holy sex having, clean-cut kids at mass, and self-giving women who I found myself surrounded by. I am surrounded by amazing women who are heroes daily for the way they love and care for their families. I found myself thinking that I had a lot of work to do to be a good Catholic wife and mother. I needed to do all the things that good Catholic wives and mothers do. The dialogue in my head was “you are bad, you suck and you’re fat and getting fatter. You can’t clean your house, your kids are heathens and you are stuffing your face with cupcakes. You suck, you suck, you suck”.  Oh, and I’m a pervert for wanting to have an orgasm when I have sex with my husband. Finally after feeling like I was about to lose my mind and after many confessions of being lazy, a bad wife and mother where Father told me that I needed to be easier on myself, I sought out a therapist. It began as marriage counseling, but ended up with me going to her by myself for an hour each week. I cannot really tell anyone just how much this has helped me in my life. And in my marriage. I had wasted so much time trying to be a good Catholic that I wasn’t spending any time trying to just be a saint.

My therapist, who is Catholic and is approved by my Pastor,  has been a lot of help for me to understand the role that my childhood has in my life with my husband. Why things bother me and how to deal with those things in healthy ways, not ways that end with me in jail or my husband’s things laying in the front yard.

I took a lot of things personally; including discussions on Facebook or in comboxes, when they are not personal. I get validation that I am good at something,  from FB “likes” and when I start winning a debate of some sorts. And I tend to think of people I don’t even know as friends and then feel betrayed when they delete me, when the truth is that I don’t know those people and if they chose to not wanna see my 20 million daily rants, then that is ok and it doesn’t mean that I’m a horrible person.

The greatest thing that I have gotten out of therapy is that it is ok for me to be me. I am not going to be so and so, who seems to have all her shit together and has a perfectly clean house, with a perfect marriage and clean kids. I do not know what the inside of her life is, and it is none of my business. My business is my life, my husband, my marriage, my kids, my spiritual journey. I talk how I talk, I think what I think, I try to look at my flaws and fix them out of my love for Jesus, not out of some need to be better than my sisters in Christ and I write what I write. I offer it all up to Jesus Who is the only person Who can make anything good come from it. We women are sometimes our worst critic. I saw an article where Kim Kardashian said she felt like she should hide while pregnant because of all the rude comments on her weight when she was pregnant. I thought to myself how sad it is that one of the most beautiful women (in my opinion) thinks that she is ugly if she doesn’t look a certain way that the public deems “pretty”. How sad that she doesn’t realize just how beautiful she is in the eyes of God, regardless of her weight. Is it good to work-out and be healthy? Yes, but because our bodies are gifts, not because some random people on the internet will call us fat if we don’t look just right. We have to learn how to love ourselves in a way that is aware of who we are as children of God. Not that we deserve to be worshiped by the men who love us and that we should be in control of everything and have things the way we want. I think that a lot of that need for control is about us wanting to look a certain way for others to “approve” of us or look at us and say “wow. She really has her act together”. And really, the only Person Who’s opinion of us that matters is God.

God loves me. He is good to me even though I have failed in every way possible that there is to fail, and yet He blesses me every day. He gave me an amazing husband who loves and supports me. Who makes me laugh and who gets me when I storm into the bathroom as he’s taking a relaxing bath to rant about how masturbating is completely different than self-stimulation during the marital act. He doesn’t kick me out, or tell me to get off the internet talking about that stuff or look at me like a deer in headlights either. He listens and then says “yeah!” like a best friend should.

For the first time since the night that I sat in my car knowing that God was calling my name to come to Him, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God loves me. I am so sure of that, that I can jump in feet first into things without fear of failure because it is not by my works that I will be saved, it is by His Grace and Mercy alone that anything good can come from me. Will it be scandalizing to some people at times? Maybe, but that’s ok, God’s love is scandalizing.


11 thoughts on “God’s love is Scandalizing

  1. Dear “Crazy Face”, I like your unpretentious and genuine way you express yourself.  I am a “revert” starting back 20 years ago and it has been a rough road for me as well.  I too have had to bear up about the overbearing and bragging, and in feeling I am not “enough”.  I had 4 kids and 3 I never see, and a grandchild I have not seen in way over a year. Sometime being real, as well as politically incorrect, has its price. What it seems to me is that your dislike people “shoulding” all over you.  I resent that up to high holy Heaven.  I do not fit the ideal that some think a 61 year old grandmother should be.  I come off as an old hippy and 21st century “Jesus Freak” that prefers the Tridentine rite, sings in a Latin choir and a women’s chant schola, plus am an activist sometimes for mostly moral & important  political matters.  My older 3 adore my sister who is the grand madam of embracing the upper middle class culture of avarice and esoteric. She has love lace and pearl tea parties, is very fashion and culture conscience..  While the type of tea party I go to is a march on Washington DC.  I get with other pro-life people and lay belly down on the pavement in the summer heat to thank God the abortion clinic strategically planted close to black  & Latino community closes. That was a day to rejoice!  I am sure not the type of mom that fits into a tidy little label.  I write poetry and in the middle of a nice suburban sub have a “1/4 acre Farm”.  I put up raspberry ginger jam from my own berries.  Most of my family thinks we are weird. My youngest son is at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit as a commuter student.  His siblings have cut him off of any contact.  He is a pretty rugged guy at 23, but his siblings think his life is also a spectator sport.  Just remember this; “When life give you lemons… Throw it back and demand chocolate! ”   Bless you bunches, Kay-Marie   PS. Thanks for being real.


  2. Sacred Heart is where Dr. Ralph Martin is and I LOVE him.

    Thank you so much for this comment! God bless!!


  3. I’m glad you’re the way you are. You have a unique voice, and yes, it’s the ramblings of a crazy face, and it’s hilarious and heart-wrenching and wonderful and exciting and I love it. Keep on keeping on, sister!


  4. Okay, enough talk about sex toys and the fine points of masturbating. I want to hear about those sheep! Did they talk to you like Balaam’s ass? If you already explained about them in an older post I missed would you let me know which one?


  5. I’m also not the type of Mom who fits into a “tidy label.” I’m a convert at age 27 and often feel like a fish out of water in my new Catholic home. I love my kids, but I hate being pregnant. I’ve cried every day through 23 weeks of morning sickness. I talk to Jesus as a friend, which means that sometimes I get into screaming fights with him inside my own head.

    I write how I think which out much self-editing, maybe a second thought here and there of “is my husband comfortable with me sharing that online?” As a result, I started crazy fight in my comment box. Strangers have told me it is a sin to ever get mad at Jesus, even when a child dies. I’m a poor Catholic because I don’t pray right, I don’t homeschool right, I don’t teach my young children to be totally silent early enough in the Mass. Somedays it feels like the “Mean Girls” clique is actually worse inside of church rather than the public school lunchroom.

    At this point in my life, I try to take a more measured approach to criticism. Where is this coming from? Who is this coming from? If a correction is made in Love, I feel encouraged to do better. If it’s made with false charity, I feel defeat and ashamed before I even begin. I have might tight little circle of trust. If a comment from a stranger really hurts my soul, I talk it over within my circle. (Jesus (in prayer), my husband, a few close friends, and my spiritual adviser.) If they say, “I have no idea what that stranger is talking about, you’re nothing like that” I shrug it off.

    “I’m not everyone’s cup of tea.” As I get closer to age 40, I try to give people space to have their own thoughts and feelings about me. I’m His! His love is stamped all over my soul. Time to stop worrying about how many times I’ve failed Him in the past, and start focusing on how to serve Him better in the present moment.

    Keep writing!


  6. Moses got mad at God. I get mad at Jesus all the time. And I have screaming matches with Him too. That’s not a sin, He already KNOWS what we are thinking, I think it’s a sin to keep things from Him. He is waiting to help us, even if it means hearing us out.

    I also cuss when I talk to Him. Not AT Him, but you know in conversation. I’m just me with Him, He made me, He is not shocked at shit that comes out of my mouth. LOL!

    Thank you!!


  7. Oh, heck, I used to get mad at God all the time. And I’m not saying that I won’t do it in the future—I just haven’t gotten mad at Him for a while. It isn’t a sin. We get mad at people we love; why not get mad at God?


  8. I cursed worse than a sailor (apologies to sailors) when I had a meltdown a few months ago, cursing not at God, but at my trials, though I did scream at God, asking if anything would ever work out. Sure, I could have kept it in, but God would have known my rage was there. It boiled and festered until a minor problem sent me over the edge. So I am in the same boat with ya, sister. Make sure you bring lots and lots of cupcakes, on the boat, too, ’cause I will be stuffing my sinful face with them right next to you.

    For Abigail, the “Mean Girls” analogy is correct. They don’t see the sin of pride that they have.

    Kay-Marie, blessings and admiration to you for standing up for your faith, even at the risk/loss of your children. Most parents put their children before God’s Word and are afraid of and adamant about not losing them. Christ didn’t come to bring peace, but a sword. My sister is losing herself to realtivism, in large part because her children have left the church; she has vowed to me more than once that she will never do anything to hurt her relationship with them. What she’s done to that end has been sad.


  9. Wow! What a wonderful story! Sometimes I think God invented sheep just so He would have them to teach us more about our relationship with Him.


  10. Kay Marie, you sound very much like my Mom. And after 13 years, I am one of the first of her 9 living children to get back into a relationship with her. Be patient, and and love and accept them for who they are, and you never know… They may just have an awakening.

    And Leticia, it’s thanks to 6 months of counseling from Catholic charities that i have the compassion and detachment necessary for that relationship. Thank God for counseling. I’m so happy that you have that grounding help and aren’t trekking it alone! And thank you for your writing. I read it all but usually can’t figure out how to comment 🙂


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