I was tipped off to Fr. Emil Neubert’s classic My Ideal: Jesus, Son of Mary because of the many times I saw it quoted in my daily Mary Vitamin. The quotes pulled me in, made me think, simmered over into other parts of my day.
And, as it turned out, I needed what Fr. Neubert provided in this book.
It’s written as instructions from Jesus and Mary, a style that was, at first, a bit uncomfortable to me.
It didn’t take long, though, before I was captivated. There is a great deal of wisdom, but, even better for a busy mom who’s always finding herself busier, there are ways to apply the principals in your life immediately.
Take the advice to pray and speak to Jesus. I tend to nod along with that sort of thing and then promptly forget it.
In My Ideal, Mary says this on page 49:
Speak to Him as if you saw Him. Is He not in you? Does He not hear your voice as truly as He formerly heard St. Peter’s, St. Mary Magdalen’s, and St. John’s? Does He not love you as He loved His disciples; you especially, whom He has given to me, like John, my child of predilection?
Speak to Him directly, without any set formula of prayer. Tell Him in all simplicity what you are thinking, what you are feeling, and what you desire, just as you would speak about it to a brother or an intimate friend.
At first, you might find yourself nodding along and walking away, but read it again. (I’ll wait.)
There are tips in that passage – and throughout this whole book – that really changed how my morning prayer time and my middle-of-the-day-in-the-midst-of-chaos prayer pleas sounded.
Not sure how to do it? Mary mentions, right after the quoted passage, "Do not forget to unite yourself to me in these intimate conversations with Jesus."
This has, lately, become the book I recommend first to people who ask for a recommendation. It’s uplifting, even as it’s challenging. It’s imaginative, even as it’s practical. It’s packed with material, even as it’s short and quick to read.
After you read it, tell me what you think. And, while we’re talking books, what’s your favorite spiritual read?
Copyright 2010 Sarah Reinhard
About the Author
When she’s not chasing kids, chugging coffee, or juggling work, Sarah Reinhard’s usually trying to stay up read just one…more…chapter. She writes and works in the midst of rural farm life with little ones underfoot. She is part of the team for the award-winning Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion, as well as the author of a number of books. You can join her for a weekday take on Catholic life by subscribing to Three Shots and follow her writing at Snoring Scholar.