Monday, February 27, 2006

No "Sex" for me

Today a boob-tubing buddy of mine were talking about series we wish to rent on dvd. She recommended Sex and the City to me.

I smiled and shook my head. "I'll never watch that show."

She asked, "Why? Is it the sex?" It would be too simplistic to say yes, but I did anyway.

She began to exalt the shows virtues and talent, humor and "excellence".

My friend needs to get to know me a little better.

This is a relatively new friendship I have been developing, and I love this woman dearly. She isn't a church-goer and is unfamiliar with most things Catholic, I would have to guess. She knows I am Catholic, and I hope I have gotten across to her that I am an actively practicing, orthodox one at that. But I am beginning to wonder if she knows exactly what beliefs I hold fast to and how my opinions and values differ from ones she may hold.

At the moment this conversation occurred, I immediately lifted my thoughts to the Hoy Spirit and asked Him to give me the words I needed.

Should I explain that I hold sex to be a sacred act expressing the profound sacramental union between husband and wife...and only husband and wife?

Should I go into how sex and marriage is symbolic throughout Scripture of the union God wants to have with His people? Should I explain how we are the bride and He is the bridegroom?

Should I share that while I hold sex to be sacred, I do fully believe that the erotic experiences it brings forth are holy and beautiful, for sex was created to be pleasurable since it relflects the ultimate pleasure we could feel when being united with God?

My boob-tubing friend's words quickly interrupt my thoughts. "You know, Sarah Jessica Parker wouldn't do any nude scenes the whole series! Sure, Kim Catrall was full frontal, but the other two were only topless and Sarah Jessica Parker wasn't nude at all!" Should I quickly interject with the question, "if there is nothing wrong with nude scenes, why do you have so much more respect for the actresses who refuse to do them?"

Maybe I could explain that I am certainly no prude; I really do think sex is fun, oftentimes hilarious, and that even the occaisional joke about sex makes me laugh (and if anyone has seen Everybody Loves Raymond, it can make one laugh heartily), but only if those jokes uphold the dignity of the act and those who engage in it.

And what about the intense union sex reveals a man and woman to have once they are sacramentally united? That is why man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife, and the two become one flesh. Genesis 2:24

And what of the fact that sex is the most powerul act in the universe, for it is the only one that unites humans with God to create life?

Should I prepare to explain the difference between being entertained by a show that may illustrate the human condition with the characters engaging in immoral acts versus a show which in its essence promotes immorality and suppresses virtue?

As these thoughts raced through my head in a matter of 10 seconds or so (yes, my brain works that fast), my final prayer to God was "Give me the words you want me to say at this time."

And as heads and ears turned towards me for my final word on the matter of Sex and the City, the only fumbling words that stuttered out of my mouth were," It's... It's just beyond me and my limits to watch that show."

And that was it. That was all God gave me.

I hope that was what he wanted.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Question of the Week

Do you see a blogger or commenter with a greater degree of credibility if they publish their actual name and location? Do pseudonyms cause someone to decrease in credibility when posting or commenting? How do you feel about completely anonymous bloggers or commenters?


Updated my blogroll and added a section featuring the websites of some of my friends. There's some newbies there, mainly Catholic women. Sorry it took so long! I'm still wondering if I should fool around with my template or not. I think mine is boring, especially compared to some of your beauties!

Featured links

For parenting humor: Jelly Mom

An incredibly moving book about the transformation of a family through the illness of their son, Dawson's Gift.

For those who crochet here is Dandelion Dreamers. She has some great patterns, particularly for soakers.

New blogs I've read

Up On a Christian Hill

The Lady in the Pew

The True Vyne

Vox Lauri

Some Have Hats

Perfect Work

Irish and Dangerous


Choosing Home

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Last night I was able to spend some quality time with my circle of friends. We've pretty much grown up together since our high-school days, and now we are married with children. In our single days we were on youth ministry leadership teams together, lived together in Christian communities, and would routinely get together for some intense "praise and worship" prayer gatherings, which are now few and far between.

We were able to have praise and worship again last night and we prayed over a friend who has been struggling with a number of issues and whose birthday is coming up soon. Afterward we sat and talked about how different it is now with all of us married and busy with family and work versus when we were young and got together for prayer weekly. All of us expressed how even though there are more distractions and less prayer gatherings, we wouldn't change it for the world.

We talked about how we all would be praying and experiencing intesne, ecstatic emotions in our youth. We would be on fire for the Lord and be physically bursting with joy. Now, if we can enter into one song and truly pray it from our heart in intense concentration, we are happy.

Before we would talk about how we want to go tell the whole world about the love of God and spiritually touch every young person we met. Now, we just want to survive our days without killing our children.

Yet we wouldn't change it, or go back. Interesting. Back then, if we experienced such droughts that we would be happy just being able to enter into only one song, we would have rushed over to the victim and laid hands on them and prayed for the well to spring forth again! OK, maybe a slight exaggeration.... but still. One of the men there commented that maybe, back then, we needed that abundance of consolations from God to get us where we are today. Maybe we needed that coddling by our Father in the beginning in order to have the strength to get through the droughts of today. It's similar to the way we raise our children, from the nurturing care of infancy to making them build strength, character, and responsibility as they increase in age.

It is hard to feel that zeal going on no sleep after nursing your baby all night, or feel that peace after wrestling your child down to the ground in order to insert the medicine dropper full of antibiotics into her mouth. It is hard to sit down in loving sweetness to pray with the man whoyou are arguing with over money, time managment, household duties, or whatever issues arise in a normal marriage.

The thought of getting dressed, preparing a potluck dish, finding (and paying) a babysitter for your kids in order to go to a friend's house and have some quality prayer time doesn't sound appealing all the time when all you want is to get into your comfies and go to bed early on a Friday night. Or, maybe it is the one thing you look forward to all week long. The point is, it is much more appreciated at this point in my life than it was before I was married. And I no longer demand that God fill me with warm fuzzies at every prayer experience in order for it to be considered "good" prayer time. I am happy with a quiet whisper. Sometimes I receive no consolation at all after prayer, but at this point in my journey I know that He is still there and I don't fall apart in rejection.

And why this change? Because, that's what a family does to you. It makes you less selfish, more patient, and more persevering. Yes, there are more distractions being a married woman with 5 kids, but the opportunities to grow in grace are around every corner, present in every minute that I must give up my selfish desires for my husband and my children. And I am much more willing to work for God's consolation than I was before, because I know it is a precious gift.

And maybe it isn't just family, but rather life and all its struggles. There must be that transition from childhood to adolescence to adulthood in every person, both physically and spiritually. And while the worries, responsibilities, and distrations of our older age may be more prevalent, more persistent, more pervasive than they used to be, the refinement of our souls is so much sweeter.