Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Mother Teresa and Me: Ten Years of Friendship (A Book Review-Final)

When I started reading this book, I was so excited to share with our readers about it that I stopped in the middle and created a preview review of this amazing book.

Then I was off to finishing this book and couldn't help it and just had to finish the book; I couldn't put it down again! The author gives you an different view of the real Blessed Mother Teresa by sharing personal letters that she sent her as well as quoting her through various conversations they had over the phone or in person. I've always been drawn, from an early age, to service to others. I've gone to "extremes" and worked in soup kitchens or volunteered at orphanages in the past. Since starting my own family, I haven't been able to do these "extreme" works of mercy and felt bad because of it. After reading this book I realized that as mothers, we have to server those around us and also that food isn't always what others need. There are people around us all the time that need time, love and compassion, as well as our prayers! Starvation isn't always related to food and nourishment, it also has to do with being and feeling wanted, needed, and loved! How many times do we treat someone in our own families poorly because they "bother us"?

On this note, I've gotten to meditating on the idea that those people that you and I might not like, Jesus and Mary LOVE them as much as he loves you and me! What a concept! If we keep this in mind every time we come across people in our own families that "drive us nuts", "get on our nerves or under our skin", just think, "but Jesus loves them, so why shouldn't I?" I'm certain there are times when you and I do things that make you wonder who would love us after they knew our worse sins. The beautiful aspect of being Catholic is that our Lord gave us the amazing Sacrament of Reconciliation and since He loves us he forgives us, so why not do the same for those around us? As, the author states in her book, there is a Calcutta all over the world.

Another thing that stayed with me from this book is that we constantly make excuses for not serving others or doing more for our own faith. We say things like, "If only I had more money to share", "If I had more time", "If I had more energy"....we waste so much precious time with "Ifs" and not doing enough for our own family members! God has placed you were you are for a reason, he didn't give you more money, time, energy, etc., because He has sent you what you need for the mission He wants you to endure!

This book has been a wake up call for me in so many aspects of my life as a mother, a wife, a sister, a daughter, etc.. Instead of waking up each morning and wishing I had more of this or that, now I wake up and ask, "Okay Lord, what do you need from me today?"

Thank you, Donna-Marie, for writing this marvelous book! It truly has been like a mini retreat for me; one which I will definitely turn to in a couple of months because this is the kind of book you'll want to read again and again!

This review was written as part of the Catholic book Reviewer program from The Catholic Company. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Mother Teresa and Me .

Monday, January 4, 2010

Mother Teresa and Me: Ten Years of Friendship (a review in the making)

Soooo....I opened the book Mother Teresa and Me: Ten Years of Friendship by Donna-Marie Cooper-O'Boyle on Saturday morning and I COULD NOT put it down!!! I walked around with it all day, lol! Every second I could sit and read, I did (while watching my lovely 4 children, of course)...I got to Chapter 7! Stopped for the day and Sunday to let it all sink in, I have one word to describe how I feel after reading thus far, "WOW!" I also noticed something that was definitely from God, total inner peace...no matter how nutty things got with the kids, I was SUPER calm (not the way I normally handle things, lol). Hence, the kids reacted back the same way, it was so sweet and lovely to have this little interaction!

Also, I have felt a feeling of being "full" and have wanted to eat very little, this happens to me when I've come back from Ignatius Retreats in the past, as if my sould was filled to the brim and my body need-not the usual amount of nurishment! Have you ever experienced this? I've read about it, in the lives of Saints...it's a beautiful feeling!! I just wanted to thank Donna-Marie for this wonderful book and for sharing her story because although it is hard to leave my home to go on a retreat because of all the kids, I was actually graced with a mini-retreat on Saturday, while reading your book! It truly grounded me, or I should say lifted me up spiritually but most of all as a mommy!!! =) God bless her!!!! Once I finish reading the whole book, I'll write my official review for the Catholic Company of this amazing book, so stay tuned! If you are interested in ordering a copy for yourself, visit the Catholic Company or click here for the author's website. Now, I'm off to keep reading, can't wait! :)