On Christmas Eve I went to confession for the first time in one, maybe two years. All week I had been going back and forth whether or not I would actually go through with it. Confession makes me nervous. I know priests are obligated to keep confidentiality, but the fear of being judged nagged at me. I should have kept the lyrical genius of Miley Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop” in mind: “Remember only god can judge us. Forget the haters, cause somebody loves ya.”
I’m relieved I followed through though. If you’ve ever gone to confession I have a question for you: Do you feel lighter walking out of the booth? I felt like a huge weight was lifted off my shoulders. /end cliche. Tears welled up in my eyes as I made my way to a pew so I could give penance. A smile was spread across my face the whole day. It made me feel so blessed. I don’t know if you’re supposed to keep your own confession experience to yourself (What happens in confession, stays in confession?) but the priest said one sentence that really stuck with me: “God loves you.” I know this fact is reiterated in so many aspects of the Catholic faith. But hearing it in an intimate, personal situation is different than listening to a homily spoken to the entire parish.
Because of this one idea I’ve decided to base my New Years Resolutions around my faith.
- Love The Lord above all others. Placing less of an importance on materialistic things and more on The Lord.
- Never lose faith. Too many times in 2013 I felt lost. I wish I had turned to God more, even when I wasn’t facing hard times. My family is currently hosting the Virgin Mary statue at our home so we’ve been praying the rosary daily. It’s nice to have a reoccurring conversation with God.
- Go to mass every Sunday and Holy Day of Obligation. I rarely miss mass, but I know there have been a few Holy Days I’ve forgotten or wasn’t even aware of. I would love to extend this resolution to catching a weekday service once or twice a month. Also, a sub category to this is to be attentive during mass and prayer; not just mindlessly go through the motions.
- Be confident. No more self-pity. No more insecurities about my life or talents. I have to trust myself more. God put me on this earth for a reason. I need to find that reason.
- Love my neighbors. Practicing restraint in being judgmental will be one of the most difficult habits to break.
- Love and respect my family. I must keep in mind it is my turn to give back to my parents. They’ve done so much for me. They deserve the world.
- Keep a cool head. Often I get easily angered by the littlest trigger. I lose my temper. Lately I’ve been trying to count out loud to ten when I feel heat rising to my head. It helps. Sidenote: Did you know you feel emotions in different areas of your body?
What are your New Years resolutions? Do you keep them throughout the year or fail within days?