Archive for September, 2016

Who are the Good People???

Posted: September 12, 2016 in World On The Edge

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WHO ARE THE GOOD PEOPLE?

They are the unselfish—-until they are selfish.

They are the humble—until they are haughty.

They are the forgiving–until they condemn.

They are the merciful–until they are hard-hearted.

They are the tireless–until they are slothful.

They are the protectors–until they are abusing.

They are the generous–until they are greedy.

They are the safe keepers–until they are thieves.

They are the life bearers–until they kill.

The key here, is knowing that to be selfish, haughty, condemning, hard-hearted, slothful, abusing, greedy, a thief, or a killer, is contrary to God’s intention for each of us. And His intention for us is that we become saints.

Don’t forget that even the saints were once sinners, like us. So, becoming a saint, is certainly not out of the question for any of us.

We are all called to be great saints. Don’t miss the opportunity.–Mother Angelica

How do we seize the opportunity? By individually using the free will God gave us, to change what we know has gone awry in our life. And by remembering that the only person who can change you and I for the better–is you and I.

Jesus is giving you such an opportunity to be holy, holier than all the saints that have ever been, because the world is in such need of shining lives, beacons to see by.–Mother Angelica

 

Serving Others???

Posted: September 8, 2016 in World On The Edge

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2 Cor 9:6-11

Brothers and sisters, consider this:
whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly,
and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion,
for God loves a cheerful giver.
Moreover, God is able to make every grace abundant for you,
so that in all things, always having all you need,
you may have an abundance for every good work.
As it is written:

He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor;
his righteousness endures forever.

The one who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food
will supply and multiply your seed
and increase the harvest of your righteousness.

You are being enriched in every way for all generosity,
which through us produces thanksgiving to God.

What’s in an Image???

Posted: September 7, 2016 in World On The Edge

jesus-hugging-girlOne of the first things I was taught about my faith, was that human beings were made in the image and likeness of God. I was a young child and had seen many paintings and pictures of Jesus, and since I was also taught that Jesus is God, I thought, then, that God looked just like us, only a lot more powerful.

Later, when I learned that God is also spirit, I remember being disappointed. I wanted someone I could feel, talk to, cry with. Someone like my father, my mother, my grandparents. They were not spirits. They were real.

And then came lessons about The Holy Trinity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. I puzzled over this mystery of our Faith. In my young mind, I reasoned that any father could be a son, and any son could be a father, and the spirit could be the thoughts I had about any one of them. And all that served me for a while, because I was a child. I did not really understand that my Catholic Faith was actually that–faith.

True faith is where one steps out in total trust. Though there may be times in which we don’t feel God near us, we step out regardless because of Faith.

In the realm of faith, we don’t need to understand the specifics of God because no one can truly understand Him. He is the first cause of being itself; the eternal, ultimate entity, as far above us in power and intellect and reasoning as we are above a grasshopper. Yet, what a grasshopper needs is provided for it through the balances in nature. Certainly God provides for us, His children.

Gradually, we use our memory, intellect, and will, to determine our image of God, and then through it, express our Faith, Hope, and Love with those same God-Given human faculties. We put on the ‘mind of Christ.’

For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he should instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ–1 Cor. 2:16

Then putting on the Mind of Christ:

We are not asked to develop a kind of spiritual amnesia—a blocking—out of everything painful. We are asked however to trust Him so our sins can be swallowed up in the ocean of His mercy. We are asked to develop a spirit of compassion so we can look at any person or incident in our past through His merciful Eyes. We are asked to transform our memory through the power of His grace, to sweep it clean of all cobwebs, dirt and superfluities that keep that faculty so cluttered up there is no room for God. –Mother Angelica

And finally, we come to the purpose of our Faith, and what God is really all about–Love.

There is a terrible hunger for love. We all experience that in our lives – the pain, the loneliness. We must have the courage to recognize it. The poor you may have right in your own family. Find them. Love them.–Mother Theresa

All taking us back to our childhood and what we wanted God to be: Someone we can feel, talk to, cry with. Someone real.

What Does He See in Us???

Posted: September 6, 2016 in World On The Edge
Photo by dylanbonnerxti, 2008, MorgeFile.com

Photo by dylanbonnerxti, 2008, MorgueFile.com

We all have people in our lives who’ve put us down, made us feel bad about ourselves, even made us feel worthless.

And we also have people in our lives who do exactly the opposite, build us up, make us feel we are worth a lot, make us feel loved.

No one loves us more than God loves us. He is madly in love with us, and we should never forget that.

God never bullies us though. He never makes us His puppet. He does not make us love Him back. We choose to do that, or not.

But always, in the eyes of God, we are His children. His beloved.

When we are maligned by others, God is there to comfort us.

When we are hurt by others, physically or mentally, we can turn to God, not only for solace, but for instruction through His word.

When we put ourselves on the wrong path, and hurt other people, we can be certain that if we ask Him, he will forgive us–and expect us to do something about our behavior.

Comfort, loving instruction, forgiveness and mercy. How can we NOT run to Him?

Aren’t these the qualities we’d like to see in the earthly eyes of those who love us?

And aren’t they the same qualities the ones who love us would like to see in our eyes, too?

In Trouble???

Posted: September 5, 2016 in World On The Edge

1969230_613498932056057_348736089_nWhat do we usually do when we’re in trouble? What do we do when we literally feel as if we’re drowning?

Thankfully, these emotions do not come daily, but there are periods in our lives when we go through great stress, or trauma. What do we do? Obsess? Cry? Make fast, and often wrong decisions?

We look around for someone to help us out, but we see the sand being pulled from under our feet until we’re left with only a hole that doesn’t seem it will ever be filled again.

When we’re in these sort of situations, we wonder if we can survive.

The truth is we can. But not alone. This is when most of us turn to God.

God is found in suffering for many of us–not that we desire it, not that we want it at all. But if we look deeper we will find Him. We will call out to Him. He will help us.

He will definitely help us. In the way we want? Maybe not, maybe in a way much better than we ever thought about.

God will help us. Trust in that.

eyes of childHow many times a day do you use you cell phone to take pictures? If you’re a new mother or father, it’s many. And as our children grow we take many more of those precious moments that won’t be repeated. We constantly keep our cell phones or cameras charged up so that we don’t miss anything.

I wonder if we realize that at the same time, our children are taking pictures of us. They’re taking pictures with their own eyes, pictures that will be remembered, re-charged, and most definitely repeated. In many ways, we’re playing the lead character in our child’s mental movie, or the subject of his personal painting about how to react to life, love, pain, or joy. And eventually, our children will show their pictures to the world in a myriad of positive, or negative. ways. (more…)

What Would You Do For Love????

Posted: September 1, 2016 in World On The Edge

cactus heart
When is the last time we asked ourselves this question: What is the purpose of life?

Maybe we’ve never asked it—-although we wouldn’t begin a task or a trip, consider a movie or read a book, without asking what those things were about.

Our life is the most personal and important thing we possess. Shouldn’t we wonder about why we have it? Why are we, each one of us individually, here on Earth? There has to be some reason for our being here, some meaning to our existence.

Maybe you’ll say it just happened; some fluke of nature that caused a very particular ME.

Except, in itself, nature is orderly. Things that happen in nature are purposeful. A bee flies to a flower to pollinate it and to make honey. Trees produce oxygen so that animals can breathe. The Earth has an ozone layer to protect it from UV light. Even hurricanes have a purpose, the same purpose as winter storms, they vent off heat from the lower levels of the atmosphere. Each segment of nature is programed to accomplish a purpose.

As human beings, we have a purpose, too. I would suggest that our purpose is to love, in the fullest sense of the word.

Matthew 22:36-40:
“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

The wrinkle is, though our purpose is ‘intended,’ we do have a choice in whether we carry it out. We can choose to love, or not.

Those of you who’ve read my novel, A Hunger in the Heart, know it’s about a hunger for love. Each main character strives for love. Often, they don’t put a label on it, but nonetheless the urge to have it is within them, pricking at their hearts.A Hunger in the HeartIt doesn’t matter if you haven’t read the novel. You know the characters. Maybe you even live, or have lived, with people like them.

You may have been the child of an alcoholic mother whose attention you desperately needed, but didn’t get. Or you may be that mother, a woman who at her core, wants to love, but uses an addiction to get through great sorrow and disappointment in her life.

You may know the father who loves enough to fight in a war that forever changes him and the lives of those around him. Or a family patriarch who uses his position to manipulate the ones in his care.

You may have been unfortunate enough to see and experience evil in a person so shallow that he would defame goodness itself just to satisfy his own desires.

Or you may know the personification of integrity in a man who has suffered, but still loves; or in a girl whose presence alone communicates hope.

Yes, our purpose in life is to love. And love can be prickly as a cactus. It can hurt. It is painful to be vulnerable, to allow ourselves to suffer for another. After all, we might be crucified for it.

But the bee on a flower might be swatted to death. The tree producing oxygen might be cut down. The ozone layer and the hurricane might be impeded by climate conditions. No matter, their purpose remains; it is not changed.

So even if we live in a world that is often unloving, even if we must go through suffering to love another; our purpose as human beings is not changed. It remains. The reason we are here, the reason we exist, is to love.

Greater love than this no man hath, that a man lay down his life for his friends. –John 15:13

Are there times when you’ve chosen to suffer for the love of another?