Being Loved in Distant Places

IMG_3952“Your sister really loves you,” a friend said after I told her about my trip to Gatineau, Quebec to visit my sister and her family. During that week I was touched again by Sylvia’s generosity and thoughtfulness. From buying my airplane ticket to arranging hikes and bicycle rides, to moving and cleaning a couch for our niece, she displayed God’s hands and heart.

I felt deliciously spoiled. I also felt humbled and saw where I needed to grow. Yet, I knew I couldn’t make this happen any more than I could make myself grow taller.

As I pondered this, I remembered some wise counsel by a Jesuit priest. In essence he said that if we want to become more Christlike, we need to ask God for more love. The more love we are given, the more freedom we will have to live generously and thoughtfully.

That’s what God was already doing! Over the years, God heard the child in me, like a hungry Oliver, holding up my heart like an empty bowl and saying, “Please sir, I want some more.” And God has filled it–again and again.

Receiving God’s love, given in a myriad of ways, creates a spaciousness that opens me to others. So I find that when God shows me small ways to be generous or thoughtful, I’m more able to respond. I don’t do it to get anything, because I don’t need anything. God’s love is more than enough. I’ve always known that theoretically, but God is bringing this message to the distant places in my soul that only hoped it was true.

Hold on by Luc De Leeuw

Take Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all that I have and possess. Thou hast given all to me. To Thee, O lord, I return it. All is Thine, dispose of it wholly according to Thy will. Give me Thy love and thy grace, for this is sufficient for me. —Ignatius Loyola

Love Mischief for the World

Knits for PitsJoAnna Rickard started Knits for Pits in January 2015 to help raise money for HugABull Rescue and Advocacy. She writes, “My little dog, Chia, is the inspiration behind everything I do. I want to make sure that all dog owners can find housing and feel safe travelling without fear of having their dogs taken away and euthanized just because of their breed. Heidi Braacx has helped my dream of being able to help animals without harming them with her amazing vegan yarn. I’m so grateful I’ve been able to combine my two passions of knitting and dogs!”

What love mischief are you and God doing to care for the earth?
 Let me know and I will include it in an upcoming post.

Credits and references:
Photo of Sylvia (on right) and me taken by Claude Lemire. Used with permission.
“Hold On” by Luc De Leeuw. Detail of a stained glass window representing Father Damian and a leper. Used with permission.
“Knits for Pits” by JoAnna RickardUsed with permission.
© Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim, 2016.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without permission from Esther Hizsa is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided there is a link to the original content and credit is given as follows: © Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim 2013, 2014, 2015.2016.

About Esther Hizsa

Esther is a spiritual director and writer. She lives in Burnaby with her husband, Fred, and they have two grown children and two grandchildren.
This entry was posted in Childhood, Creation, Ignatian Spirituality and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Being Loved in Distant Places

  1. Nancy Harper says:

    I love the reference to Oliver! I’m lifting my bowl and asking for more love!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gail says:

    This is so true Esther..”The more love we are given, the more freedom we will have to live generously and thoughtfully.” We only need to live into all the love we have already been given. Now there is a place of freedom! Thank you for sharing your journey!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Susan says:

    Esther, I was deeply touched by this reflection and will take it with me this week. Your observation that we can’t make ourselves grow in love any more than we can make ourselves taller hit home for me. So often, I have prayed for more love to give to others, and given in order to get. But to pray to receive more of God’s love is a new thought for me. I love your observation that God’s love creates spaciousness in me that opens me to others.
    Thank you for blessing me today.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Esther Hizsa says:

    You’re welcome. Thanks for your encouragement. Wish you could be with us this weekend at the gathering. Maybe next year.


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