May Reflection from Peggy Guevara

The Grace of God in the Present Moment // Tiffany Montreuil

Peggy Guevara is a graduate of St. Martin’s University in Lacey and works as the university’s current Laboratory Manager. The Genesis bible story sparked a love in her faith journey for the relationship between Science and Faith. She loves her students and has grown with a cycle of new freshman to graduating seniors! Outside of the lab, she enjoys hiking. Peggy is known to wear funny quotable graphic tees, especially one with the periodic table - even though she probably knows it by heart.

In the fifth installment of The Offertory, Tiffany Montreuil gave witness to her journey of changing her daily actions in order to live in the present moment. She realized that by living in the moment, you will be able to experience God’s Grace.

Struggling to live in the present moment can clog our channels of Grace.

Tiffany was called to consecrate her life to God. She said her vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience after attending a vocational discernment high school. In her time there, she notices a feeling of anxiety and was later diagnosed with it. The apostolate helped her stay active in the arms of self-giving, which she focused a lot of her energy on.

She saw that people are meant to be channels of Grace to one another. As we are interacting with each other, God’s Grace flows between each person. Thus, she understood that her coping mechanisms were essentially blocking her channels of Grace. The more in tune she became with others around her, the less in-touch she became with herself.

If we do not confront what we are feeling right now, in the moment, it will be harder to hear God’s teachings, see His works happen around you, or feel His healing. God gives His Grace to us through one another. For both parties to receive that Grace, each person must unclog their channel by confronting their feelings and offering it up to Jesus.

Try not to live in the future or past to avoid feeling in the present moment.

Being human means our thoughts and feelings play a big part in our lives. Tiffany describes how we, as humans, sometimes look into the past to beat ourselves up... Or look to the future to preoccupy our minds. Her experience calls us to be more aware. She expresses her awareness in the form of a Feeling Box. She names out the feelings and thoughts, holds it, sits with it, and then offer it up to Jesus.

From staying busy with activities, binge watching TV shows, turning to a podcast or reading a book—our world provides millions of possibilities to escape our emotions that we do not want to address. But, if we press pause and sit in the moment, we will be able to meet with God in our present reality. We can then offer to God what we have and, by His Grace, our offering will be dealt with as Jesus intended.

God's Grace is experienced in the present moment.

Setting the grounds to what a present moment means, Tiffany described it as, “an encounter of two people”. Then she continues with Moses’s encounter with God. Moses asked God what his name was to which God answered, “I Am”. Not “I will be” or “I was”, but “I Am”. This is not to say that God was not with us in our past or that he will not be there in our futures. However, to encounter God is only in the present moment.

Tiffany uses her witness of Niagara Falls of experiencing God’s presence and His Grace. She stood by those falls and thought how this was God’s design. Seeing the intensity of the water falling had her envision that His Love is more powerful than that of water flowing off the cliffs and pounding onto the rocks below. Standing there in the presence of God’s creation, she thought of the intensity of His Love. Also, she wonders how often she pictured the immensity of His Love in front of the Blessed Sacrament.

In that moment, where she finds herself in the presence of God, she finds peace.

Wisdom from Tiffany’s Story

The wisdom I will carry with me from Tiffany’s testimony is to listen to my feelings and to slow down in order live in the present moment. It made me reflect that a majority of my life was point A onto B whether it was with:

* Work – starting with a To-Do-List and getting as much done as possible.
* Relationships – where are you with your friends and family and how you can further enrich it.
* Spirituality – praying and meditating with God to further understand Him.

However, in each of those aspects, I was focused on what needs to be done and its end product. Thus, having eyes only towards the future. I didn’t stop in the developing moments to make those true encounters and open up my channels of Grace with others. Going forward, I look to not dwell on those mistakes of the past. Instead I, too, will offer them up to Jesus and continue to live each day in the presence of our Lord.

Follow Peggy // @peggatron0419