Monday, September 28, 2009
Sunday, September 27, 2009
What do you think about foul language?
Monday, September 21, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
As I’ve stated before, one blog posting can lead to another. Recently I posted on the Nativity of Mary. In that post, I remarked about Mary’s participation in the redemption of man in relation to Eve’s participation in the fall of man. (Gen 3:15) This post is about the Ark of the Covenant. Mary is known as the living Ark of the Covenant. When I first learned of this, I remember being delighted.
The earliest prototype in the Old Testament is the Ark of Noah. Then there is the Ark of the Covenant made of the finest Gold which contained the Ten Commandments, some of the manna that fell from heaven for the Israelites wandering the desert and the staff of Aaron. So what does this prototype have to do with Mary? Well let’s take a look! Remember God had the
When Mary arrived to visit her cousin,
And the final thought for this post is beautiful. The Holy of Holies was empty at the time of Christ and Mary. So the
Our Lady carried Our Lord, and in obedience to God, from her arms she handed him over for the Salvation of the world. Today and always, she points us towards her Son, her Savior and ours.
Friday, September 11, 2009
I immediately wondered if Sei-Lai came here to pursue a lifelong dream. I wonder what she would be doing today, and I wonder what her family is doing on this anniversary.
Sei-Lai's age today would be close to mine. From the little bit I read about her, I get the impression she had so much to contribute. She was probably coming into her own and ready to continue blazing a trail through life. And now I know Sei-Lai will always be a part of my life because of this memorial. If you are reading this, I hope you will remember her too.
Eight years ago I was working Base Operations in the Mississippi Air National Guard. One of our pilots came and told me a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. We all thought it was a fluke, a horrible accident. We ran to watch the replay on the television, only to see the second plane crash. We then realized this was more than a fluke. Sei-Lai, I didn't know you were there until today. I didn't know anyone in the towers. But I am saddened for your family, for all the families and friends. And though this tribute to you is not fancy or even worded well, I want you to know I will remember you. And I will now have a name that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Though I didn't know you in this life, maybe I will get to meet you in the life to come. I wish I knew more about you, but this I do know, I will not forget you, the others who perished or our military and others who have sacrificed so much since then. Rest in peace, Sei-Lai!
Please pray for the families of the victims. Please pray for peace throughout the world.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Before we can serve God in other fields we must till, plant, weed, prune and bear fruit in our own fields.
The will precedes the intellect.
Everyday I have little readings I do, and the first sentence is a paraphrase from one. The second comes from a CD set I was listening to earlier.
You know how you can read several pages or listen to thirty minutes of something, and out of it all you find a couple of nuggets of wisdom or teachings? When you go back to it later, what you see or hear can be something totally different. I’m trying to make a habit of writing down what strikes me that day, whether it comes from my pastor, family, friend, reading or a talking donkey. Okay I don’t expect to find a talking donkey or anything, but you never know. It can happen right?
The first sentence struck me because of what I am always asking God. What am I suppose to be doing? I never get a good feel for the answer. This sentence makes me think, “Maybe I’m not ready to do what God desires because I haven’t tended my own field.” Tending our own field requires a lifetime of cultivating, but we should bear some fruit at some point!
Then the second sentence struck me because there is the constant fight. My will wants to do one thing when my intellect knows I should do something else. My will either justifies the end or figures it’s not so bad after all. But no matter how small the infraction, it chips away at the rich soil my soul should be steeped in. How can I grow the tree to bear fruit, if I’m not enriching my soul? My friend Karinann’s blog post, Out With The Old, In With The New, touched on the same subject. At first I thought how discouraging this “trying” to become anew can be. Then it came to me. It is better to be questioning than to think everything is okay. I think when I’m rolling along that track saying and thinking, “I’m okay” is when I am in the greatest danger. So I pray God will help me to examine my actions or lack of action and continually tend my soul for His desire.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Today we celebrate the Nativity of Mary. When hearing the word “Nativity” we think of the birth of Jesus rather than Mary. I remember a time when I was worried about loving Mary. Was I giving her love due only to God? Our gentle Lord let me know there is a reason we cannot measure love. It is because love is infinite. There is more than enough to spread around.
There is this man I used to work with who told me God randomly picked Mary to be the Mother of Jesus. I’m sure he went on and on about it because he knew of my Catholicism. He basically said she was at the right place at the right time. Even then I found it humorous. I could picture God pointing His finger around saying, “maybe that one…no, I think that one.” I wasn’t able to dialogue with him way back when. But as time passed there is one thing I have learned about our Creator. He is ordered, He is a designer, and He would not leave the Mother of His Child to chance. Even humans (responsible ones) don’t randomly pick a person to form a family.
It was funny because as a youngster people told me Catholics, like me, had to pray to Mary to get to God. I didn’t quite understand it because I prayed to God every night. Did these people know something about Catholics I didn’t? Now I know they didn’t know much, if anything, about Catholics. Well as I grew in my faith God began to give me answers about Mary, sometimes from the questions of others. One such question came from another guy at work. He asked me, “Why did God make it so Jesus would come from Mary?” He clarified by asking, “Why did He come from a woman?” I can only guess he was wondering why God didn’t just show up. I thought of all the questions! I’d never heard that one, but I told him I’d try to find out. Shortly after that my dad handed me a book, and there was the answer. In the beginning woman (Eve) came from man (Adam), and through this man came sin. For our redemption God reversed this occurrence and Mary gave birth to Jesus. This time man came from woman, and through this God-Man, Jesus, comes salvation.
So here I began to see Mary’s role. When she said, “yes” to God, her place was fulfilled. She holds a unique position. She is the daughter of the Father, the spouse of the Holy Spirit, and the mother of the Son. She is not Deity, but she is intricately entwined with the Trinity. And from there she calls us to the Glory of God. She is forever pointing not to herself, but to Him! Where Eve participated in the fall of man, Mary participates in the redemption. Satan thought he’d won with the disobedience of Eve. Oh but he underestimated the obedience of Mary. But the serpent would soon learn this when God Himself said, “I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed…”
Friday, September 4, 2009
Jumping in my car, I detoured and entered the highway with about five minutes left to making it to the church. The stop light caught me. When it turned green, I was turning left and did not have a turn signal. I made it to the light before it turned yellow, and I noticed oncoming traffic was very far away. I sailed into the church parking lot. I thanked God for clearing the path for me. He does that so many times in life. He wants to us to have a clear path. We throw the obstacles in most of the time. And when the obstacles aren't of our doing, He still offers us His help to continue on our way. Sometimes He gives us a red light telling us to stop and wait! Other times He gives us a yellow light telling us we can move ahead but with caution and being prepared to stop and wait again.
The added bonus to making it to this Communion service, was I entered the hall to find my son and his wife waiting for me. They are trying to attend Mass before going to work. I didn't know they would be there today, but they assumed I would be there. Of course, God knew all of this already. Isn't He a wonderful Papa? He loves us so much! I love Him too and wish to love Him even more!
Please remember my son and his wife in your prayers. They are becoming on fire for their faith. Please pray they continue a lifetime of loving and serving God. Also I ask you to pray for my other son and his girlfriend. She became Catholic but neither are practicing. I'm praying the Holy Spirit will ignite their hearts. God bless you, and I'm praying for all of you too!