A lady in the north of Ireland said that every time she got down before God to pray, five cases of Irish Whiskey came up before her mind. She had taken them wrongfully one time when she was a housekeeper, and had not been able to pray since. She was advised to make restitution by her pastor, Father Hearn.
"But the person is dead," she said.
"Are not some of the heirs living?"
"Yes, a son."
"Then go to that son and pay him back."
People who have had health issues or near-death experiences generally have a greater appreciation for each day being a gift from God. The rest of us usually take for granted that we will be around tomorrow. But when you start to look at each day as a gift, you realize all the little miracles that happen daily and you begin to see God’s active presence in your life. You grow in gratitude, each day, for all that we have been given.
A pastor friend wrote to me about an article in a campus publication where a young nurse writes of her pilgrimage of learning to see in a patient the image of God beneath a very “distressing disguise.”
Eileen was one of her first patients, a person who was totally helpless. “A cerebral aneurysm (broken blood vessels in the brain) had left her with no conscious control over her body,” the nurse writes. As near as the doctors could tell Eileen was totally unconscious, unable to feel pain and unaware of anything going on around her.READ MORE
God wants us to be happy! Instead of looking at the Ten Commandments as being restrictive and telling us what we can’t do, look at them as guides for living a joy-filled and peaceful life. Most of our problems arise when we put our own needs first or we spend most of our time trying to acquire more stuff. Instead, try putting God first in all things. We were made for God. Open your heart and let Him in!
When Rosina Hernandez was in college, she once attended a rock concert at which one young man was brutally beaten by another. No one made an attempt to stop the beating. The next day she was struck dumb to learn that the youth had died as a result of the pounding. Yet neither she nor anyone else had raised a hand to help him. She could never forget the incident or her responsibility as an inactive bystander.READ MORE
Most people who live a grateful and generous lifestyle don’t go around bragging about it. But through their words and actions, others do take notice. They notice because of the joy and peace that results and others desire this in their own life. Know that the way you live your life may be the only interaction others may have with our Catholic faith.
Desolation. What does this mean?
Desolation has been defined as follows: “Darkness of soul, disturbance in it, movement to things low and earthly, the unquiet of different agitations and temptations, moving to want of confidence, without hope, without love, when one finds oneself all lazy, tepid, sad and as if separated from his Creator and Lord” (Saint Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises, 317).READ MORE
“May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting encouragement and good hope through his grace, encourage your hearts and strengthen them in every good deed and word.” 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
There are two important lessons here. First, we are called to be generous with our encouragement and hope with others. As God shows us mercy, we must be merciful to others. Second, joy is contagious! The joy we receive from doing good works not only strengthens us, it encourages others as well. Share the joy of living your faith whenever you can.
How will I get through this? Will I ever feel God's love again? Have you hit a roadblock in your relationship with the Lord? Prayer, once filled with insight and consolation, now feels like you are talking into a void. Events in your life that you could have walked away from at one time now settle in the pit of your stomach like dead weight. When all roads seem impassable where do you turn? John of the Cross offers you his wise counsel as a roadmap through rough terrain. He beckons you to follow your ascent to God through darkness.