Are you looking to grow your yes to God? Let’s talk about how that might look. In 2016, a friend gave me a necklace that said, “Fiat”. I didn’t know what it meant and she told me it is Mary’s yes. Fiat comes from the Latin “let it be done”. Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum means let it be done unto me according to thy word. It is Mary’s yes to everything God was asking of her. To be the mother of God, the mother of heaven and earth, to watch her son suffer and die on the cross.
Trying to Grow My Fiat
That year, I was trying to get to know God better. I would sit on the floor with my three little boys and read the Gospels while we played magna tiles. I had been trying to hear God but I was struggling to. One morning, I read Matthew 10:37-39.
Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.Matthew 10:37-39
I sat there and struggled with it. Is it really possible for me to love God, who I can’t see and struggle to hear, more than my children and husband who I spend every day with? If I can’t over come this, then what? I won’t go to heaven? I struggled to reconcile this message from God with the merciful traits of God that had been emphasized especially that year as it was designated the year of mercy. How can these be the same God? I prayed, “God, I just wish I could hear you more.”
Noticing where God is working in my life
The following Sunday, the SAME message but from the Gospel of Luke was read. Then, the homily was about Saint Mother Teresa of Calcutta who often felt she couldn’t hear God or that God had left her. I sat there in awe and very thankful for God’s reminder to me that he is listening and he does speak to me. The more I sought to hear God’s voice, the more I noticed it cropping up. In all kinds of different places that I would have missed before.
And we have this confidence in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.1 John 5:14
A few weeks after the “you must hate your family to follow Jesus” gospel and Saint Teresa of Calcutta homily, I was still struggling with it and praying over this gospel passage. So, I listened to some podcasts of homilies from that weekend. I would encourage you to do the same if there is a Sunday reading you’re struggling with. You can find lots of options on Youtube or podcast apps. Sunday homilies with Fr. Mike Schmitz by Ascension is a good option. You’ll find some priests who phrase things in ways that are helpful to you.
After listening to homilies on podcast from that weekend, I came away with telling God, “Okay, I can’t tell you that I love you more than my family, but I am going to try to put you first. This moment. This day. This week.” I hoped that would help me grow in the right direction. The next day at Mass, I smiled, as the first thing I heard was the priest in the opening prayer ask that we would be able to put God first in our lives.
Seeing the growth of your Yes to God
That was the start of my journey of looking for God and noticing where he acts in my life. I struggle with doubts creeping in so I keep asking God to increase my faith. Like most growth in our lives, it’s a slow process and we don’t always see it unless we look back at where we’ve been. In July of 2022, when our 18 month old died, I was able to see how much my fiat had grown.
Over the past years, as I tried to grow closer to God, I had learned that I could trust him. I learned over and over again that his plan is always more beautiful and more joyful than my own plan. So, I grew in trust of his plan for my life. I knew what I wanted most was for our family to get to Heaven. I figure God’s plan for us is our shortest and easiest route to Heaven. So, what he wants is what I want, too.
The most famous St. Augustine quote says, “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” It’s true. The only way to find lasting happiness is with God. So, I figure it is with God’s plan, too. That gives me peace to follow his plan for us, however it may look.
We talked a bit about this at Augustine’s vigil if you’re interested in hearing it here. Also, his funeral Mass was the most beautiful I’ve ever been to (I may be biased). You can watch that, here. My very small and meager “yes” was simply to try to put God first. Over time, God took my meager offerings, and like he does with everything else, he grew them. Until I found last summer that I could say “Jesus, I trust in you and your divine plan” even if it meant losing my son here on earth. Like the gospel I struggled so much with a few years prior.
Now, I am still a work in progress as I try and fail to live out God’s will for me. But it’s fun to see how small things, like struggling to remember to talk to God, have transformed into praying between many of my daily activities. Even if I didn’t prioritize my quiet prayer time well that day.
Grow your yes to God
If you’re looking to grow your fiat, my advice would be to read and journal with the scriptures. You could do this multiple ways:
- Read the Gospels Start to Finish
- Read it like a story. Get to know who Jesus is.
- The Daily Readings
- These are chosen for the date, the day of the week, and the time of year, so they teach and form you in a beautiful way.
- Liturgy of the Hours
- Not only are these chosen for the date, day, and season but also the time of day. So, they provide words that we often can’t come up with. These are mostly psalms but there is a reading for each “hour”. I usually pray them with the app iBreviary. You can pray on YouTube with Sing the Hours, with Word on Fire videos, or with a book subscription to Word on Fire’s Liturgy of the Hours. Of course, you could buy a Breviary, too, but that has a bigger learning curve.
I prefer reading Scripture on paper instead of online whenever possible. Grab a notebook. Read a part of scripture. Read it again. See what jumps out to you. Ask God what he is trying to tell you through these words. Write a note to God and then write a note back to yourself from God. If you want more detailed help, this book is great.
Remember, Scripture is the Living Word of God! So, God can speak to you on a specific day to where your heart is at the moment. You can read the same Scripture one day and get something completely different from it a different day.
Journaling in the notebook can help your prayer in the moment. It can also help you look back and remind yourself how God has worked in your life. That confidence in God will build your trust in him and your own personal fiat.
God loves you and he wants a relationship with you. Don’t doubt that he’s there to interact with you. You just have to practice opening the door to hear and see him. It’s a beautiful journey, enjoy growing your yes to God, your own personal fiat!
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