Welcome to the first volume of Inspired Interior. This project has been on my heart for some time now, and I'm so happy to finally be able to share it with all of you.
The mission of this newsletter is to inspire the interior life through the beauty of interior design.
What Is The Interior Life?
This idea of an interior life is found throughout Catholic theology, from the Annunciation, when Mary "contemplated all these things in her heart," to the works of the great spiritual writers like Thomas a Kempis' The Imitation of Christ and St. Josemaría Escrivá's The Way.
St. John Paul the Great spoke often about the interior life. Referencing this passage from the Gospel of John, chapter 15: 4-5, ("Remain in Me, and I in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit of itself but must remain in the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; the one who remains in Me, and I in him bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.)
"It is prayer which roots us in this truth. It constantly reminds us of the primacy of Christ and, in union with him, the primacy of the interior life and of holiness."
Essentially, the interior life is a life which seeks God in everything, a life lived closely with God, constantly reminded of his presence inside of us. To live a rich interior life requires an understanding that we are never far from God, and in fact, we need only to turn inwards to be with him, because as St. Elizabeth of the Trinity wrote “we possess our heaven within us.”
It is only through an interior life, remaining connected to him, that our exterior lives can bear fruit.
Living this rich interior life does sound ideal, but how do we put it into practice? We live such hectic lives today, it can seem impossible to carve out enough time to devote to prayer, much less remain in constant communion with him, as Jesus asks.
Here lies the value of filling our homes with things that direct our attention to God - heavenly touchstones, as I like to call them.
Catholic churches have used visual beauty throughout the centuries to deepen the prayer lives of the faithful, and our homes are the domestic churches. Intentionally incorporating Catholic decor into the interior design of our homes can, in the midst of our daily activities, call our attention back to the interior life, allow us to pause and reconnect to the "vine" - that apart from, we can do nothing.
My hope for this newsletter is that it would help you to do just that.
This vision board is a sophisticated yet relaxed feel that would work for a living room or bedroom, using clean neutrals, warm wood tones, accents of brass and subtle moments of color
newsletter subscribers receive exclusive access to shop the spotlight products at 20% off on the First Friday of the month
by Prayerful Catholic
Everyday Prayers is a visual collection of prayers and insights from the Catholic treasury. This beautiful book from Prayerful Catholic was designed to elevate your daily prayer experience by deepening contemplation on the mysteries and promises of traditional Catholic prayers. As beautiful as it is functional!
by Tina Heinen Collection
Two Hearts Small Intaglio Gallery Frame Set
(left and right frames)
SET of two 11x14 antique gold gallery frames featuring the Immaculate Heart of Mary (S) and Sacred Heart of Jesus (S) intaglios, green inset
Archangels Intaglio Trio Gallery Frame
11x14 antique gold finished frame, displaying the "Archangel Intaglio Trio" - St. Gabriel, St. Michael, and St. Raphael, green inset
get the look
mass readings and a short reflection for this upcoming Sunday to prepare our hearts for the weekend ahead
Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time
Let me now sing of my friend, my friend's song concerning his vineyard. My friend had a vineyard on a fertile hillside; he spaded it, cleared it of stones, and planted the choicest vines; within it he built a watchtower, and hewed out a wine press. Then he looked for the crop of grapes, but what it yielded was wild grapes.
Now, inhabitants of Jerusalem and people of Judah, judge between me and my vineyard: What more was there to do for my vineyard that I had not done? Why, when I looked for the crop of grapes, did it bring forth wild grapes? Now, I will let you know what I mean to do with my vineyard: take away its hedge, give it to grazing, break through its wall, let it be trampled! Yes, I will make it a ruin: it shall not be pruned or hoed, but overgrown with thorns and briers; I will command the clouds not to send rain upon it. The vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the people of Judah are his cherished plant; he looked for judgment, but see, bloodshed! for justice, but hark, the outcry!
R. (Is 5:7a) The vineyard of the Lord is the house of Israel.
A vine from Egypt you transplanted;
you drove away the nations and planted it.
It put forth its foliage to the Sea,
its shoots as far as the River.
Why have you broken down its walls,
so that every passer-by plucks its fruit,
The boar from the forest lays it waste,
and the beasts of the field feed upon it?
Once again, O LORD of hosts,
look down from heaven, and see;
take care of this vine,
and protect what your right hand has planted,
the son of man whom you yourself made strong.
Then we will no more withdraw from you;
give us new life, and we will call upon your name.
O LORD, God of hosts, restore us;
if your face shine upon us, then we shall be saved.
Brothers and sisters: Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I have chosen you from the world, says the Lord,
to go and bear fruit that will remain.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus said to the chief priests and the elders of the people: "Hear another parable. There was a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a hedge around it, dug a wine press in it, and built a tower. Then he leased it to tenants and went on a journey. When vintage time drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to obtain his produce. But the tenants seized the servants and one they beat, another they killed, and a third they stoned. Again he sent other servants, more numerous than the first ones, but they treated them in the same way. Finally, he sent his son to them, thinking, They will respect my son.' But when the tenants saw the son, they said to one another, 'This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and acquire his inheritance.' They seized him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him.
What will the owner of the vineyard do to those tenants when he comes?" They answered him, "He will put those wretched men to a wretched death and lease his vineyard to other tenants who will give him the produce at the proper times." Jesus said to them, "Did you never read in the Scriptures:
The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone;
by the Lord has this been done,
and it is wonderful in our eyes?
Therefore, I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that will produce its fruit."
"Brothers and sisters: Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus." (Phil 4:6)
If you read from the beginning of Philippians (which I highly recommend, the whole book is just four chapters), you'll realize the circumstances in which Paul wrote these words - PRISON. He wrote these words to his followers back in Philippi FROM PRISON.
HOW? How was he able to speak with such hope and encouragement from a place that would seem anything but hopeful?
Paul, being one of Jesus' disciples, had a real personal relationship with him while he walked the earth, that continued long after he ascended.
Paul’s personal relationship with Jesus allowed him to trust him.
Paul’s trust in Jesus allowed him to pray, with thanksgiving, because he was confident that he would hear and answer him. That regardless of how his circumstances appeared to be, God was taking care of him. He was able to have this supernatural peace and joy that is evident all over his letter to the Philippians, because he encountered the Son of God, and his life had never been the same since.
Friends, the same Jesus, whose relationship with Paul gave him this indescribable peace and joy amidst life’s cruelest circumstances, is the same Jesus who wants a relationship with you today.
It's an open invitation.
But you cannot have a relationship with someone whom you do not spend time with.
Carve out some time this weekend to spend with him. Open a Bible. Read the stories of Jesus and learn just how good his is. He wants to be an active participant in your life, and through that participation, bless you with peace that surpasses all understanding to guard your heart from the worries and anxieties of the world.