"Broken" by Elizabeth Desiderato (CatholicMom.com) Via Pixabay (2016), CC0 Public Domain

That last couple of years have been difficult for my family. Many hurts were caused to my son and to myself. All of my family and close friends were and continue to be a phenomenal support system.  The journey has been difficult to the point that I became hardened. I began to grow a tough, rough shell in order to be strong for myself and my son. Without really realizing it, I became very hard on myself and thought that this shell, I created, would keep my heart and soul safe from anymore wounds or hurts.

I thought I had put all of my hurts, wounds, and pains at the foot of the cross, but I know now that I still was holding on to them and hiding them under this shell. This hard shell. My soul felt exhausted and I felt unworthy of being loved by God and claiming to be his daughter. You see, if I did think I was worthy of being loved by Jesus then why would I have created this shell.

[tweet "If you think you're worthy of Jesus' love, why do you create a hard shell for your soul?"]

Thankfully my sister shared some exciting information about a retreat for women called ACTS. It stands for adoration, community, theology, and service. She really  recommended I go because she thought it was a wonderful experience even though she had been very reluctant to attend. She went because a friend "encouraged" her to go.

The stars aligned and the dates worked for me for the upcoming retreat. I just attended last weekend, and boy am I different. My shell has been broken to pieces and left at the foot of the cross. My sisters in Christ assured me and showed me how much God loves me and has been with me and continues to carry me and let me rest in him.

I have learned so many wonderful things from my sisters in Christ and from Our Lord that I shall never be the same. I feel lighter, happier, and see the world and its problems in a totally different way. Yes, my problems are still there, but now I carry my cross with my head held high knowing I can stop and rest with my Lord.

I thank my sister for sharing her experience so it could transform my life. My prayer is that I will also share the love of Christ with others.

Have you ever gone to a women's retreat? Is God calling you to change your life?

Copyright 2017 Elizabeth Desiderato