Sunday, May 31, 2009

Pentecost Sunday

John 20:19-23

19 Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

When Jesus bestowed on the disciples the power to forgive sins, it was on Easter Sunday. This is important because of the connection of the Resurrection with spiritual life. Also he breathed this power on the Apostles. The only other time God breathed on anyone was when He breathed life into the first human being (Genesis 2:7). Jesus gives the disciples the authority to forgive, and not to forgive.

Reconciliation shines in a new light when I read this passage. Sin brings death, and reconciliation brings a new breath of life. God is so good to us! Come Holy Spirit.

Friday, May 29, 2009

The Name of Jesus

Once I read a small booklet on the power of the name of Jesus. Just saying His name, I believe, sends ripples of goodness through the universe, through eternity. But there are times when I need to call on Him, and I don't. I try to handle things myself, at my speed. Why do I do this? The only answer can be "self." When I see this "self" why don't I say "Come Holy Spirit?" This request will root out "self." So all I can figure is... ~ I'm still hanging on to "self."

Jesus may every tongue (including this one) sing your name!

Come Holy Spirit ~ Stay Holy Spirit ~ Dwell in us Holy Spirit


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Where Does the Time Go and What to Do?

It seems like May has flown away quicker than it arrived. My husband has needed the office, so I've been spending more time away from the computer.

In four short months I will be retired for a total of two years, and I still don't know what I'm doing. My parents are in their eighties, but both are for now in decent health. I do visit them often. My day consists of Mass, exercise and whatever pops up. Believe me when I say, I feel like a jack of all trades and master of none. I enjoy drawing, painting, writing and pottery, but I don't focus on any of the listed very well. I keep asking God what He wants me to do. I know there are many good things to do, but just because something is good doesn't necessarily mean it's God's will.

So I continue to move along with each day, hoping I'm doing what God wants me to do for that moment. But I sure would appreciate your prayers. God really knows, sometimes it takes a good hit in the head for me to get His messages! Peace, joy and blessings to all!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

If You Can't Say It With Love

Is gossip considered gossip if it is true?

I've heard that if you can't say something about someone with love, you shouldn't say it at all!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Mary Moments Carnival

Sarah at Just Another Day of Catholic Pondering is hosting Mary Moments Carnival May 25th. You can share your Mary moment and read those by others by clicking the link. What a wonderful way to honor our Mother.

My post starts with one of the earliest memories I have of Mary.

Our Lady, Our Mother, and the Trinity

The little statue sat on my dresser for as long as I could remember. Amidst the little girl trappings she stood. Later among the teen trappings she stood. And finally she was there among the young adult trappings. This statue was the one of Mary standing on the serpent. I believe it is of Our Lady of Grace. Somewhere along the way the figure disappeared. Much the way my Faith did. I didn't quit believing in God, but I wasn't interested in Church.

When God did call me back, He used an interesting route. As a child I always prayed, "Dear God..." I pretty much stuck with that even into my twenties. One day God, our Father, said, "I'd like you to meet my Son Jesus." Everything that fell in my lap was about Jesus. Then He said, "I'd like you to meet my Holy Spirit." The same thing happened again. Finally He said, "I'd like you to meet my Mother Mary along with Joseph and all the saints and angels." So there I stood realizing I had this enormous family, a great bunch of folks who love me!

The little statue has never reappeared, but I have a real Mother in Mary. My Dad told me she is not Deity, but she holds a unique spot. She is entwined with the Trinity, as the Daughter of the Father, the Mother of the Son and the Spouse of the Holy Spirit. And here is where she wants to direct us. She along with the rest of our huge family wants us all eternally coming together~ united to the Three in One.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday Snippet-Catholic Carnival

Thanks to RAnn of This That and the Other Thing for hosting Catholic Carnival. Click the link to read other Catholic posts and for information on how to join.

My post for this Sunday is one I posted this morning. It is a sweet moment of parents passing on their Faith!

Passing on the Faith

My mother is Protestant so when I was small going to Mass consisted of my Dad, two brothers and me. Mom was there for the special occasions, but for the most part it was the four of us. Being the baby and the only girl, I usually ended up next to my Father. People would laugh and say during the homily they would see my Dad and me both asleep. To this day when his eyes are closed at the homily my Dad says he is praying. We all get a good chuckle out of it.

This morning during Mass a young couple with a small child sat in front of us. The little girl looked to be about two years old. When Father was ready to read the Gospel, and we all made the small cross on our forehead, lips and chest, I saw the little one’s Dad make the crosses on her too. I thought that was so sweet. After Father started the homily, I noticed the little girl was making the crosses herself. Towards the end of Mass when we made the sign of the cross, she was doing her best to make it also. I saw her Dad smile at her Mom, and I smiled too. Sometimes our Lord sends us the nicest blessings. Today he sent the wonder of watching two parents pass their Faith to their little girl!

Note: Before the Gospel we make a small cross on our forehead as a remembrance to keep God’s Word in our thoughts. We make a small cross on our lips as a remembrance to keep God’s Word in our speech. We make a small cross on our chest as a remembrance to keep God’s Word in our hearts.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Am I crazy?

We live in an area that is rural in some respect, plus we have to hit a highway every time we come home. Driving down the road I always see dead dogs, cats, squirrels and other animals. It breaks my heart, and often I tell God I'm sorry his sweet little creatures end up this way. I wonder if my husband thinks I'm nuts when he hears me saying over and over, "I'm sorry God."

When I spot animals running the highway I always say a prayer too. We've caught plenty of animals in our neighborhood and usually returned them to their owners or found a home for them. But sometimes stopping on the highway isn't an option, so I shoot up a quick prayer.

One Sunday on the way to Mass there was another cat in the road. Once again, I was sad to see this cat "sleeping" as one friend calls it. But on the way back the cat was no longer there. I guess it was just knocked out when I first saw it. Anyway, on the side of the road was a vehicle with a carrier in it. The injured kitty was in some brush, and a lady was there to catch it. That's when it hit me~I may be crazy, but I'm not the only one! And guess what, I think I'm in some pretty good company.

Please spay and neuter your pets.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thinking Back

When I think back over the years of my life, I can see where my parents' prayers and others have wrapped me in God's love and protection. As a young girl, I remember stepping into the street right in front of a car. The driver slammed on the brakes, and the bumper was just inches from me. It scared me! I must have been daydreaming when I stepped into the street.

A friend of mine once told me how wonderful it must be for someone to think of you every day. The family she came from did not practice any faith. She knew my parents prayed for me daily. When I saw her admiration, suddenly I realized I took for granted what she found remarkable. This friend of mine eventually took her own life. When I think of her, it makes me sad to know she felt such despair. Because even though I've had times in my life where I was depressed or working through some trial, I've always felt I had somewhere to turn. Not only to family and friends, but most importantly to God. She has been gone now for almost nineteen years, and I still wish I would have been stronger in my faith. I wish I would've been more knowledgeable about suicide, and I will forever wonder if I could have been a better friend.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Now I lay me down to sleep!

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

Most people are aware of the above prayer in some form or another. I believe it is from the 18th century, and there is more to it. But the verse above is the verse my mother prayed with me when I was small. We followed the prayer with “God bless….” a list that included mostly family.

If you think about it, saying the word "die" for a small child’s prayer seems kind of strange. Like several children, I was afraid of my own shadow. A nightlight was always in my room. My mother had to stay with me in a single bed. She blames her bad shoulder on that! She would slip away once she thought I was asleep, but when I found myself alone, I would do a little sing-song calling for her. My brother would yell for me to shut up. It had to be creepy for him hearing a little girl’s voice in the night singing, “Mama” over and over. But the singing worked, and she would inevitably end up back in my bed. Did I mention I’m that last child my parents had? Wonder why? :)

Anyway, when I was a bit older, I gave up the nightlight because I was embarrassed by it. I still slept with stuffed animals usually pressing my sides and back. I was still afraid of the dark. But at that tender age I found comfort in a bible verse. That verse is Matthew 10:28. If you aren’t familiar with this passage, it reads of not fearing those who can kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul. Rather fear him who is able to destroy both body and soul in hell. Seemingly an odd verse for a young child to find comfort in, but I did.

Recently I’ve found myself ending my evening prayer with the childhood prayer above. As an adult, I now like to sleep in a dark and quiet room. But as I slip into the darkness of sleep, I find comfort in knowing the last thing I’ve asked our Lord is to keep me, and if it is my last moment to take my soul with Him. After all, I’m still my Father’s child.


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday Snippet - Surprise!

This post is from a journal entry of mine from 1992.

Every Sunday that I'm at my Dad's, I pick roses before I leave. Red and pink, some pink and yellow, plain yellow, orange and lavender. Today for some reason I thought there wouldn't be many roses-boy was I wrong-two dozen wrong to be exact! Now isn't that just like life with Christ? Sometimes when we don't expect too much-He showers us with roses!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Sunshine Before the Rain

It's a bit cloudy outside my window this morning. The sun peeks through every so often, and when it does~it is bright! We're expecting rain this afternoon. There is a front headed our way so there will definitely be a change of some type. So while everything is clear and we can see, we know we must prepare for the rain or the storm. It's a good thing when we can see the storms of life coming. Some get everything ready and others still don't prepare. But what about those storms that pop up out of nowhere? The ones where we're caught unprepared. Do we run for shelter or do we let the rain wash over us? People handle life's storms in different ways. I guess there isn't necessarily a "right" way, but I do believe there are good and bad ways.

Lord, let us see you, our light in the darkness. Amen.

Friday, May 15, 2009

God IS the Potter~We ARE the Clay!

Due to a move, I've been away from "playing in mud" ~ mud being clay. Recently, I've been making my way back to the enjoyment of getting lost in this creativity.

Most people are aware of a pottery wheel (which I don't have), but a lot aren't aware there are other ways to form clay. One of my favorites is slab work. You roll out the clay, cut out a design and build on it. If your clay is too dry it will crumble and fall to pieces. This can be remedied by adding water. You have to knead the clay to remove air pockets. There can be a good bit of preparation before you can proceed with your design. Isn't that the way we behave sometimes? We hold on to the wrong things and let go of the right things. God in His infinite wisdom continues to offer what we need and kneads away what we don't.

In ceramics a liquid form of clay is poured into a mold. This liquid sets for awhile, then the excess is poured out. The mold then pulls water away from the forming clay to harden the shape to the mold's design. Once again, when God seems not to hear or answer us, maybe He is molding us into the design He wills for us.

Finally the clay is fired to bisque and glazed. Through the fires of illness, loss, and trials we can become solid in our faith. This is only if we rest as clay in our Father's hands, allowing Him to mold and fashion us into His creation.

Lord help us to rest and trust in You!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

P.S. (From God) Tell Your Angel a Joke per twitter

Okay, the joke I told my angel.

A dog walked into a saloon and ordered a root beer. The bartender said, "I'll be with you in a minute." A good bit of time passed, and the dog asked for the root beer again. The bartender told him, he was busy, and he would get to him soon. More time passed, and the dog became irritated. He demanded his root beer. The bartender took a gun out from under the counter and shot the dog in the foot. The dog left. A year later on the same exact date, the dog stepped through the saloon doors. The bartender immediately recognized him and asked, "What do you want?!" The dog replied, "I'm looking for the man who shot my PAW!"

Child and the Rosary

This morning we had the pleasure of hearing a small four or five year old girl saying a decade of the rosary. She took her shoes off and knelt before the tabernacle for a few seconds. Next she wrapped her rosary around her barefoot. From there she walked over to her mother and wrapped her rosary around her mother's head. The whole time she was reciting the prayers. She twirled, picked up a piece of paper and waved it around. I had to wonder how this was going to end. I believe she glanced at her mother, who cued her to keep praying, but at the right moment she ended with the Glory Be. She also ended up kneeling back in front of the tabernacle. Her sweet small voice was strong, and I thought our Lord and Lady must have been smiling at this little one. This little one~appropriately named Mary!

Monday, May 11, 2009


Today I turned on the dishwasher then proceeded to turn on the washing machine. Only the water pressure has been very weak for some reason. There is so much construction and road work going on around here, I never know what to expect. Needless to say, I'm waiting to wash clothes. Please understand I realize many people in the world don't have decent drinking water, and I'm thankful we do! But the point here is the lack of water pressure frustrated and disappointed me somewhat. I thought this is how I feel when the waters of life ebb. I need that rush and flow to sustain, to refresh and to cleanse me. And I need the only One who can provide it!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

A Rose, Lizard and St. Francis

This morning, I started baking brownies for Mother's Day. My Dad actually requested brownies, so I guess I'll be baking brownies for Father's Day too! I wondered how to fill the 30 some odd minutes it takes for baking. Sunshine was the answer, and I headed outside to clip some roses.

Outside our garage door I have yellow miniature roses in a broken container. Also in the container is half of a St. Francis figure. My husband broke the bottom half, mowing or something. While happily clipping away, I spotted a green lizard on St. Francis' head. How appropriate, I thought. Slowly the lizard took on the brown color of St. Francis. This little creature didn't seem to mind me being so close.

Later it occurred to me. In the middle of all that was broken, rested awesome beauty. From the roses to the lizard, life rose up to greet the day. Our Lord gave Himself for us. He willingly allowed Himself to be broken. And His resurrection is a promise to us, that no matter how broken we are, we can have new life in Him!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Do You Think Technology Could Facilitate a Return to Modesty?

Technology seemingly moves with leaps and bounds, often times racing beyond people's common sense. Information at our fingertips can be a really good thing. Obviously there is the evil side, but I wonder if maybe one day there will be a backlash bringing along with it some much needed modesty?

Why could this happen? First of all, our youth are unfortunately the guinea pigs of what new technology can bring. Of course it's not confined to youth, but youth is the ground where "do now, think later" breeds. In the world of texting, camera phones, email and social networks, is anyone really safe. I mean do users' brains think pass-I'm sending this to a friend?

From employers to any interested party Googling someone is just a computer away. And now people are finding out that stripping, sexting and "forever captured" bad behavior is just a click away. Their actions can affect their hope for a job or a serious relationship. Maybe the thought of knowing at any moment a stranger can whip out a camera phone and forever change one's life, will translate into, I need to think about what I'm doing, where I'm doing it, and what I'm saying about it.

We can certainly hope!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Road Rage Day Two

Yesterday, I wrote about someone waving me on in traffic. Today it was a different story. Someone was following too close, and I made a right turn. Granted I didn't give a turn signal which was my fault, and evidently the driver behind me didn't like it. She honked her horn. The truth is, if I'd thrown on my brakes and she rear-ended me, it would be her fault. I think it's a car's length for every ten miles for following. So if the speed limit is 40 miles an hour, you should have four car lengths between you and the driver in front of you. But I thought about the difference in my experience yesterday and the one today. It was harder to pray for her, but I did because I know that is what God would've wanted me to do. And the truth is, praying felt a lot better than me honking or yelling back at her!

Monday, May 4, 2009

What do you do when someone lets you break in traffic?

This morning I had to yield to a steady stream of traffic. I was prepared for the long haul of waiting for a quick break, but a kind soul waved me on to my destination. She was actually smiling. I say that because I've had people with irritated looks on their faces wave me on. It's almost road rage during an act of kindness! Anyway, I waved my thank you back to this nice lady. But other times this happened to me, I felt like it wasn't enough to just wave. So now when someone waves me on~~~I say a prayer for them. And I hope they feel it for the rest of their day.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

A New Day

I can see the honeysuckle hugging a tree that's right outside the window. A few clouds keep the sunshine peeking and sneaking across the lawn. Spring is green and yelling for me to come and join~~~I'm on the way!