Persistence in Prayer with Kylie Hein

Episode 36: My Tree Isn't Up And Other Advent Failures

December 19, 2023 Kylie Hein
Persistence in Prayer with Kylie Hein
Episode 36: My Tree Isn't Up And Other Advent Failures
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Show Notes Transcript

This week, we embrace the beauty in the imperfect and find profound lessons in the unraveled moments of the Advent season. 

Do you know someone whose Christmas tree is still in the box or whose presents remain unwrapped, maybe even still on store shelves? Perhaps that someone is you. Whether you've had your gifts ready for months or are just starting, there's something we can all learn from those who don't seem to have it all together on the outside.

Join me as we explore the wisdom found in the messiness, in the unfinished corners of the holiday season. Let's dive into the stories of those whose houses aren't yet decorated and who might be deemed 'behind' by cultural standards.

In this episode, we'll draw inspiration from the Gospel of Luke, learning the virtue of patience from Elizabeth, and reflect on the lessons we can glean from Mary as we approach the culmination of Advent. You don't have to be perfect. You aren't behind. You are perfectly where you are supposed to be in this season.

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Do you know someone whose Christmas tree is still in the box? Or whose presence are unwrapped. Or maybe still on the store shelves. Maybe that someone is you. Whether you've had your gifts wrapped for months, or you're just now beginning. I think that there's something that we can all learn from those who just. Don't seem to have it all together yet on the outside. Those. Whose houses aren't decorated. Those who. Are maybe behind by cultural standards. in terms. Of the Christmas. Christmas. season. Isn't. That is what we are. Going to dig into. How being different, how. Going against. against. the norm. Is something that we can all learn from. Hello, beautiful souls, and welcome to the Persistence in Prayer podcast hosted by Catholic Mindset coach, wife, mother, educator, and speaker, Kylie Hine. Kylie is passionate about helping you deepen your relationship with God through the power of prayer. This podcast is a space for high achievers who want to do it all, but also want to prioritize their spiritual life and grow in faith. Join us as we explore the beauty of persistence in prayer and the transformative impact it can have on our lives. Get ready to discover practical tips, insights, and inspiration to help you develop a daily prayer practice and cultivate a deeper sense of trust in God's plan for your life. Let's journey together towards a more fulfilled and faithful life as we invite the Holy Spirit in. Let's begin. The other day and a Facebook group. I read a post from a mom who has two toddlers at home and her husband. Is traveling for work. And she was just feeling really down on herself about not having her Christmas tree up. And I had to giggle because. I. I have a five-year-old and an eight year old. And my husband is home. And my Christmas tree. I was still in. The box, in fact, It was in the box. Until last. Last night when we finally. Finally. Got it out and. It just. Made me take a step. Back and look at the perspective. Of what it's like sometimes to be different, how we can so easily compare and feel like we are behind when Someone else's. Is moving at a pace that is different. Than what we are moving at. When we. We. Place expectations on ourselves because of what someone else has done. Those of you who. We're on my email list. I got an email last week talking about my 2000. Dollar hot Chocolate mishap where I talked. It's about detachment. And letting go of expectations because this is one area of my life where I struggle. I either make plans and get really upset and flustered when those things don't go out the way that they are. Are supposed to in my mind, for example, Sample. Last week was Tuesday. I. I was supposed to get a podcast episode out. That was my goal. I was loading up my computer. I. I was getting. Ready. To put everything out there to click the buttons. And. And I spilled hot. Hot chocolate. All. Over my laptop. And. I started. Brain. I started cleaning up the mess. You guys, the mess. Hot chocolate dripping everywhere. And this isn't even normal hot chocolate because I can't. I can't have dairy and I'm not supposed. Opposed to have sugar. So. So, this is like, The pretend version. Of hot chocolate and it is. So. So dark. And messy and. And it dripped. All. All over my. Papers. On my desk, onto my lap all over my blanket, onto my leather chair, onto the carpet. And of course my immediate concern was the laptop knowing. That was the most expensive thing. In the room and that it was the most. Necessary. For me to do my. My work. And grabbing it and trying to turn it. Off and. Grabbing towels trying to wipe off the keyboard. And just. Seen the sparks inside the keyboard. Board because. I could not get. The laptop turned. Off. You guys it's devil. Devastating. If you've ever had this happen. And the thing is. It's not even about. The laptop it's about. about. the fact. That. I had plans for how my day was going to go. Go. And of course I leave a little wiggle room in there. I know that these unexpected. Instances. We are going to come up. I'm going. To be interrupted by kids. or. or. something's going to happen? It's inevitable. In. The world that we live. In. Our plans are not God's plans. And. They're not anyone. One else's plans either. So things are going to come up. Up.// So for this, I'm going to start off by going to Elizabeth first. Today as this episode is coming out is December 19th. And the gospel for today comes from the first chapter of Luke chapters, five through 25, and it is talking about Elizabeth and Zachariah. And as you guys know, Elizabeth was barren. She was older in age. And. She was living a good life. We actually know this, her and Zachariah, they were prime examples of. Of the way that we should live for the Lord. And yet this prayer. Had not been heard. You probably know a mother who has been praying for a child. And that child has not come yet. Or they've lost a child. And. It is a struggle that goes so very, very deep. And we look at Elizabeth. And. We see her patients. We also see her suffering. Because at the time. When. She lives. It was considered a curse for the Jews to be without children. She was a stigma. She was the person who didn't have the perfect ornate Christmas tree. And all of the presents wrapped and ready to go. Her life looked different. Then what the expectations were for her and her husband. I was gone that listening. Did he not care about her struggles and her anxieties and her frustrations? Of course not. In fact, the angel Gabriel says to Zechariah that his prayer has been heard. God's plan has been unfolding. God, doesn't ask us to ignore. Our suffering. Or our pain, but he asks us to trust him with faith. To bring our needs and concerns to him. To be confident that our prayers are heard and then surrender the outcome to him, whatever it may be. Because. Again, we know this, we know this, we know his plan is always better than our plan, but it's hard and it is difficult. And this is where we can really lean on these incredible women. Like Elizabeth. Or maybe your favorite Saint. And to just recognize the glory and all of the good that came. But first there was waiting. There was much waiting. From Elizabeth. From Zachariah. So that's the first person. I would encourage you to kind of sit and maybe ask for her intercession as you are waiting for something. Or as it feels like your prayers may be aren't being answered this advent season. Or maybe as you reflect on this past a year, All of the things that have not happened. And then also take a moment to really celebrate. The beauty and the good of the prayers that have been heard. This is where I love my journal. I absolutely love. Going back. Even 10 years or so when I only wrote maybe a handful of times a year, And looking at the things that I wrote, that seems so ridiculous now, but how God has answered those in. The most astronomical ways. Think about how many of your prayers have been answered this year? And trust that, whatever it is that you're going through right now, whatever it is that you're waiting for. That the Lord. Is bringing. Beautiful and wonderful and good things to you. So again, the first person I would look. Two is ELIZAs. Elizabeth and just the way that she lived. Her life, the way that. that. her prayers were heard, even though it seems like. Maybe. For a while. God wasn't there. But she. she./ was persistent. She did not turn from God. She stayed with him. So ask the Lord right now, too. Help you to recognize. His hand. hand. in the sufferings. Things and the hardships that. That. Or in. Your life right now. Ask him. him. for greater trust. And surrender. So immediately following this, if we were to continue. Continue reading in the gospel. Of Luke, we would see that the angel Gabriel. Then comes to Mary. And this story we know quite well. We know that the angel comes. He says the child will be holy. And we called the son of God. And he continues and says no. This to your kins woman. Elizabeth has in her old age, herself conceived a son. And she whom people call Baron is now in her six month for nothing. It is impossible to God. Nothing. Nothing. is impossible to God. So, no matter how long you've. I've been waiting. If you have taken it to prayer and God tells you to continue to wait. Then it's our. Responsibility con. To continue. to wait. We can look to Mary. Again, the. Qualities of patience and surrender and trust because. Her whole life. Life. Is. His patients. And surrender and. and. trust. So I think this is a really great time. If we're looking back at the tree example, my tree is still being in the box and comparing it to everybody else. Am I trusting in God's plan or am I surrendering my power and my joy to my own plans? My plans, my expectations for what my home should look like. And honestly, I I'm so grateful to. To my mother for all the times that she didn't have it all together. I remember there was a year where we put. Put up our tree on Christmas Eve, it was like, we don't have anywhere to put the presents. We have to put up our tree on Christmas Eve. And. I really, it was okay. My parents were both teachers and anyone who was in the teacher world knows. That. Leading up to Christmas. is so busy. And overwhelming. And chaotic. Kotick. I, I just talked to a teacher the other day and He's. I'm in charge of Christmas concerts and things. And he had Christmas concerts and basketball games and all of these things in such a short span of time. And. We're so hard-earned ourselves about what our homes look like. But look at all the good that he was doing in these other situations. And we have to remember that. And also, if we're looking at the liturgical year, we have. All the time in the world to celebrate Christmas. Once we actually get to Christmas day. We don't have to do all. All of the things before. I hand the Christmas. Ms cookies. The carols. All of those things, the Christmas cards. Don't get me wrong. I love getting Christmas cards, but I am absolutely terrible. Getting them sent out. I think since I have been married, we have sent out Christmas cards with one. One time and it's not because I don't have good intent. I, by. Christmas cards all of the time. Getting them sent out. It's my brain just. Doesn't always have the space or capacity for it. And so I have to prioritize and you know what I. I give myself grace. It is. Okay. So if you never get a Christmas card from me and you know, me personally, Don't think that you're just. Not on my Christmas I just didn't send out any cards. I'm that person. Who writes, thank you's and cards. And puts. Them in the envelopes and sometimes even gets a stamp on them and they never make. Make it to the mailbox. And then I find them two years later in debate. Should I send this now or not send. I have to open it cause. I don't even know. So when it was from. And. And that's just me. And I'm at the point in my life where I have the freedom to just say, people can love me as me or they can not. And that's okay. Because. Their perception of me. Is not necessarily my problem. They get to decide what they want to think about me and that's okay. Because I know my intent, my intents are good. And of course I will try to do better. But there's only so much capacity in my brain. I'm only able to do so many things. And that's not always my number one priority. But again, go back to this question, ask yourself, am I trusting God's plan or am I surrendering my power and my joy to my own plans? To someone else's expectations. Another really great question. I think that we can ask when we are struggling to be patient. Because again, admins all about patients. How am. At utilizing my prayer. Prayer life. To help me grow inpatients. Are you asking God for exactly what you need during this time? And I also just want to take, I think I'm going to do a whole nother episode on this, but. If you're going to prayer, I've seen a lot of people. Lately asking about dryness and prayer or being distracted because. I know those of you listening to this, your brains are always going a million miles an hour, and it can be really hard to just sit in the quiet and listen. It's really important to take time, to get recollected before you start praying. So. I feel like man, I have 20 minutes to pray and I come in and I sit down and I just automatically think that I should be able to hear God. And why can't I hear him? And my brain is going all over. It's important to take time to, to slow down first. That's why I love. Praying in the morning. Because. I don't have quite so many distractions on my mind. Unless I've gone to bed with a lot of distractions because I didn't finish things and I'm, I'm anxious. But that time right away in the morning before you've looked at your phone before you have filled your brain with the to-do list. It's a really great time to pray and being consistent is super, super helpful. But allow your self sometime to get recollected. So if it's been a really busy day and you're trying to pray in the evening, maybe listen to some soothing calming music for 10 minutes before you start your prayer. Yes. We can utilize that as part of our prayer, but we really want to get to the point where we can start to sit in the quiet and. It takes practice. To really cultivate that muscle. And especially for brains that go. Go go. And have all the. the. tabs open and don't know how to rest. Just taking a little time to slow down. And. Let. Let. yourself settle. And be distracted for a minute. If you need to be. Write down all the things that in your brain do a, do a quick five. five. minute brain. Dumped to get all of those things. Out, so that then you can set. And be with God and we'll be more open to listening. Okay. Like I said, that's a whole nother podcast. but another question you can ask here is if I am asking God for exactly what I need. And I'm not seeing the fruits of that prayer. What might God be offering me instead? Another thing we can do is. Offer up ourselves, our anxiousness or worry that comes with the waiting and the patients. And asks ourself. Who might be saved because of it. Or how might my penance be for the healing of another or for myself even, and really invite God into your suffering. If you are high cleric or melancholic, you probably. Want to just do it yourself. You may not want to invite the Lord in. It's like God's already done enough and we're self-reliant and we like to just. White knuckle and power through, but God wants to be part of all of our lives. Every single bit of it. Every second of every day is an opportunity for us to grow closer to the Lord or further from him. So I just want to encourage you. As you head into this very Merry Christmas. To keep your eyes on Christ and to really open up yourselves. To the opportunities that he is presenting to love. To be present to the moment that is in front of you. So. Oh, Whether your tree is still in the box. The gifts. Are not wrapped. Or maybe. You're dreading. The upcoming encounter. With. A relative. I remember that Christ. Christ. Isn't all of it. You are exactly where you are supposed to be. And you have a choice. For how you want to show up in those moments. AlSo, you know, your mind sometimes just keeps going and you can't turn it off. So you'll be listening to the person in front of you. Who's talking, but. You actually have no idea what they just said, because your mind was thinking about. The project that you wanted to be working on or all of the things that you haven't gotten done. So I help women who struggle with that to create space from all of their obligations. And desires so that they're actually able to be present with their loved ones. I imagine being able to press pause on some of those tabs in your brain to really dive into conversation and create better relationships with your loved ones. or better yet to have an intimate relationship with God, instead of just knowing about him. To be able to sit and pray. And hear the Lord's voice instead of. All of. your own thoughts are racing at a million miles an hour. So anyway, console calls are always free. So get signed up before the new year and I get booked out. The link is in the show notes. Thank you so much for being here. I will see you all. Next time. Beautiful souls, thank you again for journeying with me. If you have been blessed by this episode, it would mean the world to me if you would leave a review. Be sure to screenshot it, share it on your social media stories, and don't forget to tag me on Instagram or Facebook at Kylie M. Hine. Stay persistent in prayer, protect your peace, and as always, share the light of Christ with everyone around you.

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