The Journey of Self-Love, Faith, and the Beauty of Interruptions

Catholic and Diverse
The Journey of Self-Love, Faith, and the Beauty of Interruptions

The Journey of Self-Love, Faith, and the Beauty of Interruptions

By Dr. Alice Prince

Every week, I find myself on a journey of introspection, pondering what to write and reflecting on the depths of my heart.

My writing process is a dance with inspiration, one that can strike like lightning at any moment. Amid this creative journey, there's one guiding principle that has illuminated my path toward a happier life: the deliberate pursuit of glimmers.

A glimmer, in its essence, stands as the antithesis to a trigger. It's that ephemeral flash of peace, joy, or happiness that often eludes our notice amidst the chaos, challenges, and obstacles that fill our daily lives. Over time, I've cultivated a habit—a practice, really—of actively seeking out these glimmers.


During my recent travels, which took me from the bustling streets of New York to the serene landscapes of Kentucky and Wisconsin, my thoughts were consumed by the transcendent power of love—a universal language that knows no boundaries.

I couldn't help but contemplate the profound importance of expressing love to others, a quality that I believe resonates deeply with the readers of this faith blog. I have no doubt that those who engage with this platform are individuals who continually demonstrate love through their actions.

Among our readers, we find individuals who serve tirelessly on church committees, educators who go above and beyond to nurture their students both academically and by recognizing their inherent beauty, guardians who extend love to their children and older parents unconditionally, and members of the faith community who make immeasurable sacrifices for the greater good. The list of acts of love could extend indefinitely.

But now, a question arises: Do you extend this same love to yourself? Are you showing up for yourself with the same unwavering dedication that you offer to others? How deeply does self-love resonate within your mind, body, and spirit? Remember, love is not a mere sentiment—it is a dynamic and transformative action.

Recently, I had the profound privilege of addressing a gathering at the Catholic Center during a retreat for the staff and partners of the Archdiocese in Lexington, Kentucky. While the beauty of Lexington's community and countryside left an indelible impression on me, it was a simple yet profound statement that reverberated within my soul.

Following my presentation on the topic of belonging, a man named Jeremy Hughes, the Coordinator for School Administration for the Diocese of Lexington, approached me. He shared a sentence that resonated deeply within my soul: "The work is in the interruption." I paused, allowing his words to penetrate my being. "The work is in the interruption." This phrase reverberated within my mind and heart. It took me a moment to respond, but when I did, I said, "You're preaching now."

Indeed, what Mr. Jeremy Hughes conveyed was undeniably profound. The essence of our life's work often lies hidden within the interwoven pieces of interruptions. These interruptions may symbolize the spiritual battles we all face, periods of darkness and depression, financial challenges, or the relentless temptations that life throws our way.

But as I continued to reflect on this powerful statement, I began to realize that it is within these very interruptions that we find the crucible of our endurance, the deepening of our faith, and the moments when we must summon the strength to persevere and pray, even when understanding eludes us.

In these interruptions, patience becomes our ally, situations demand de-escalation, and acceptance becomes our refuge. In the midst of the interruption, we must rely on our faith and trust in God's heart when we can't trace His hand.


Interruptions, I've come to realize, are not obstacles to our faith journey; they are integral to it. These moments of disruption challenge us to lean into the Word of God, drawing strength from the timeless wisdom found within its verses. As the Bible reminds us, "And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." (1 Corinthians 13:13, NIV). In the midst of life's interruptions, we find an opportunity to cultivate and express love—both towards others and ourselves.

In these moments of disruption, I also look to the lives of Saints for guidance and inspiration. Saint Teresa of Ávila, in particular, stands as a remarkable example. She dedicated her life to seeking a deeper connection with God and nurturing the soul, emphasizing the importance of love as an action word. Much like Saint Teresa, we can draw strength from her teachings, recognizing that even in life's interruptions, we have the potential to find beauty and growth. Her unwavering devotion to self-love and self-discovery serves as a radiant beacon on our own spiritual journeys, urging us to embrace interruptions as opportunities to deepen our faith, find solace in God's love, and grow in our capacity to love others and ourselves more profoundly.


Prayer of the week

Heavenly Father,

As we embark on this new week, we come before you with hearts full of gratitude for the profound insights and inspiration found in the words we've read and meditated upon. We thank you for the reminder to seek the glimmers of peace, joy, and happiness that you generously scatter throughout our lives, even amidst the challenges and interruptions we encounter.

Lord, help us to be intentional in our pursuit of these glimmers, not only for the benefit of others but also for ourselves. Grant us the strength to extend the same love and compassion to ourselves as we do to those around us. May we show up for ourselves with the same unwavering dedication and tenderness that Saint Teresa of Ávila exemplified in her relentless pursuit of a deeper connection with You.

We recognize, dear Father, that interruptions are not obstacles on our faith journey but integral moments for growth and reflection. In these moments, we lean into your Word, drawing strength from the timeless wisdom it imparts. As the Bible reminds us, "And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love." (1 Corinthians 13:13, NIV). May we embrace these interruptions as opportunities to cultivate and express love—both towards others and ourselves.

As we navigate this week, may your love and wisdom shine through us, illuminating our path and enabling us to grow in faith, hope, and love. In the spirit of Saint Teresa and with the grace of Your presence, we offer our prayers and aspirations.

Saint Teresa of Avila, Pray for us.


Reflection Questions

  1. Self-Love and Self-Care:
    • How well do you prioritize self-love and self-care in your daily life?
    • Are you as compassionate and devoted to yourself as you are to others, as exemplified by Saint Teresa of Ávila's teachings?
    • What specific actions can you take to show up for yourself with greater dedication and tenderness?
  2. Recognizing Glimmers of Joy:
    • Can you recall a recent "glimmer" of joy or happiness in your life that you might have initially overlooked?
    • How can you cultivate greater mindfulness to notice and appreciate these moments of grace in your daily life?
    • Are there practices or habits you can incorporate to help you actively seek and cherish these glimmers?
  3. Love as an Action Word:
    • Reflect on your actions towards others. In what ways do you actively demonstrate love in your relationships?
    • How can you deepen your capacity to love, both towards others and yourself, as encouraged by Saint Teresa of Ávila's devotion to love as an action word?
    • In what practical ways can you express love and compassion to yourself and those around you?
  4. Embracing Interruptions:
    • Think about recent interruptions or challenges you've faced. How did you respond to them, and what did you learn from those experiences?
    • How might the recognition that "the work is in the interruption" reshape your perspective on life's disruptions and difficulties?
    • Are there specific moments of interruption in your life that you can approach with greater patience, faith, and trust in God's guidance?
  5. Drawing Inspiration from Saint Teresa of Avila:
    • In what ways can you draw strength and inspiration from the lives and teachings of Saints, such as Saint Teresa of Ávila?
    • Are there particular aspects of Saint Teresa's devotion to self-love, self-discovery, and nurturing the soul that resonate with your own spiritual journey?
    • How can Saint Teresa's example encourage you to find beauty and growth in the interruptions and challenges you encounter?

Saint Teresa of Ávila, also known as Saint Teresa of Jesus, is a spiritual luminary whose life and teachings resonate deeply with the themes of this blog. Born in 1515 in Spain, she was a Carmelite nun, mystic, writer, and reformer during the 16th century. Saint Teresa dedicated her life to seeking a profound and intimate connection with God. Her teachings emphasize the importance of self-love, self-discovery, and nurturing the soul. Much like the message conveyed in this blog, Saint Teresa recognized love as an action word and encouraged her followers to actively express love through their actions. Her unwavering devotion to deepening her faith and experiencing the transformative power of love serves as a guiding light for those on their own spiritual journeys. Saint Teresa's writings, particularly "The Interior Castle" and "The Way of Perfection," delve into the inner journey of the soul, the significance of seeking God's presence in all aspects of life, and the beauty of finding growth in life's interruptions. Her legacy reminds us that, in both our pursuit of faith and our commitment to self-love, we have a powerful and inspirational role model in Saint Teresa of Ávila.

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