NOVENA DAY 1
JULIE, WOMAN OF TRUST IN THE GOODNESS OF GOD
Take a moment to centre yourself and go into that sacred space deep within
"Be still for the presence of the Lord, the Holy One is here"
JULIE’S VOICE ON TRUST
God has never failed those who trust in his goodness….
I go quietly day by day. I wait for the good God.
I look at him, I follow him.
Slowly pray the psalm
and let it take you into that quiet place
where you can rest in God’s presence and goodness.
When I think of your love, my God
I am at a loss for words.
Your love gave me life
and renews it with every breath I breathe.
Your love, freely given, makes no demands on me
but only asks that I may love you in return.
No matter how often I change, your love never varies.
When I stray from you, your love calls me back
and has pity on me.
Every creature, every flower, every tree will die
as I too will die.
But your love reaches beyond the limits of time to eternity
when you will love me still
and where I will praise and thank you for
your unchanging love.
Adapted from Psalm 102
Julie was born the sixth of seven children in a quiet village called Cuvilly. From childhood Julie had a great love of God and her closeness to God was so recognized that she was able to make her first communion at the early age of 9. At 14 she made a vow of celibacy. Julie loved to teach and from the age of 7 would teach the catechism to her companions and friends.
The family were well known in the village and ran a successful drapery business but disaster struck when Julie was a young girl. Robbers broke into her father’s shop and in one night the family business was destroyed. Believing that God never failed those who trusted in him and being of a practical bent Julie took what remained of her father’s stock and travelled to a near-by town to sell what she could. But it was a stone through the window of the family home and a bullet aimed at her father which so traumatized Julie when she was in her early twenties that led to her paralysis. For 22 years she was unable to walk without help and at times suffered from violent convulsions.
During this time Julie received holy communion daily, spent four to five hours a day in prayer and contemplation and continued to teach and prepare the village children for first communion whenever she was able.
Take some time to ponder the story of Julie. Are there any parallels with your own life? When did you first hear the call of God in your life? How have you coped with the misfortunes and setbacks in life? Can you look back and see that they might have been a gift, preparing you for some task? How do you cope with inaction and the down times in your life? What sustains you?