Copyright 2016 Phoebe Dill, Unsplash
August is a pretty crazy month. It’s usually filled with summer vacation, camp, Vacation Bible School, and trying to get ready for school–which is no small thing anymore with the very long list of school supplies and hard-to-find items that you need to get ready for the beginning of the school year. And in the midst of all of this, there aren’t any really exciting Catholic holidays and so I think Jesus tends to get left in the background in the month of August.
August is dedicated to the Blessed Sacrament and even in that I feel like we kind of tell ourselves, “Oh yeah, I’m going to Mass; that’s probably good enough.” I know that in my calendar for the month of August, I didn’t make any plans to get to adoration more often than I regularly do. After writing this, I’m going to change that!
August is also dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and every time I picture that beautiful red heart with gold rays coming out of it I think, yeah, that’s kind of what August feels like. It’s filled with love and it’s warm and it’s active. And yet through all the hustle and bustle of this busy summer month, how many of us are even thinking about the Immaculate Heart of Mary? She too gets pushed into the background and we remember her more when we head into Advent.
I know I could do a better job of loving my Lord and giving my heart to Blessed Mother in the month of August and so I came up with 15 ways that I can do that before September starts and we all tuck our noses into school planners and curriculum.
- Bring your rosary with you everywhere. This is a great thing to do at the beach, waiting in the car, sitting on a deck, watching your kids at the pool and enjoying the heat.
- Do a daily examen of conscience at the end of the day. If you’re out of the habit of doing this, recommit to it. Even if you spend your day frolicking and forgetting about your Catholic faith, this is a way to not let the sun go down without forgetting your father in Heaven.
- Download the bible on your phone and read the Proverbs every day. It’s short and sweet and yet jam-packed with wisdom.
- Read a book from www.catholicmom.com; they have some great ones out right now!
- Write down one of the Catholic prayers you haven’t memorized yet. If you’re still relying on a missal to get through the Creed, August is a wonderful time to practice memorizing it!
- Ask five people this month about their conversion story. Everyone chooses Jesus on their own even if they were raised with the faith.
- Share your conversion story with five people. Most people are interested in hearing how you came to give your life to Christ.
- Keep a gratitude journal. Keep a few pieces of paper or a small journal in your purse and write down all the blessings you have this month so the stressful days don’t steal your joy.
- Go to Adoration once a week. I try to do this all year long but it’s easy to let a few weeks go by during the summer without going. It’s a balm for your soul. Make the time.
- Download some Jesus jams on your phone and try to listen to uplifting Christian music instead of what’s on the radio.
- Read a book about one of the Saints. I find books about saints highly entertaining and always challenging to my faith.
- Try to visit a different church each Sunday just to experience something new! This is especially easy if you’re on vacation.
- Buy or find a free print of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, frame it and put it up in your house. She will watch over you all year.
- Go to confession. You’ll never see a list from me about improve your faith without this. Do it every month! Do it the first Saturday of every month so you don’t have to think about it.
- Make a meal for someone. There is always someone who just had a baby, just had surgery, is having a hard time or just needs to feel some love. Whip up a meal and take i to them.
I hope some of these ideas seem reasonable to you. I hope you can find at least one way to get reconnected with Jesus and His loving spirit this August. Don’t leave him in the background and don’t forget about his Blessed Mother either. They never forget about you.
Have a wonderful, fun and safe last month of Summer! Thank you for continuing to be part of the CatholicMom community even when you’re busy. We love writing for you and being apart of your lives as well!
Copyright 2016 Sterling Jaquith