Through her we may see him
Made sweeter, not made dim
And her hand leaves his light
Sifted to suit our sight.
-Gerard Manley Hopkins
The Blessed Virgin Compared to the Air We Breathe (1918)
After I was struck by lightning, meaning when I came to full realization that my God loved me enough to stalk me my whole life until I finally turned to see Him there and fall into His arms, all I knew was that I wanted, I needed to pray more. I knew with all my heart that my God loves me and wants to spend my days with me and because of that, I knew I needed to get to know Him better. He wanted me to talk to him more, to hang out with Him in church and in Adoration. When I knew he wanted me to strengthen my prayer life so that I could better understand His will for my life, suddenly, into my life appeared a Secular Discalced Carmelite group. This group, from what I could tell from the onset, was devoted to prayer and that was exactly what I needed.
Carmelites are called to seek the face of God in prayer. We pray morning prayer, evening prayer, silent prayer, and attempt to pray without ceasing during the course of the day. We seek to be alone with the Great Alone as much as we can. St. John of the Cross says that "He is in your soul so desire him there, adore him there and do not go in pursuit of him outside yourself." He is always with you. Spend time with the One whom we know loves us.
Carmelites have a unique devotion to our Blessed Virgin Mary. We love her as our model and our way to Jesus. St. Louis de Montfort wrote that "God the Holy Ghost, the more He finds Mary, His dear and inseparable spouse, in any soul, the more active and mighty He becomes in producing Jesus Christ in the soul and that soul in Jesus Christ." Additionally, our Blessed Mother exemplifies the authentic life of simplicity, detachment, humility and complete trust in the Lord that we Carmelites attempt to live in our own lives.
If you want to better understand and deepen your relationship with Jesus, come visit us. Know that we are praying for you.
Original reflection by Secular Carmelite