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Archive for March, 2012

Tonight at mass our Psalm was the most heart-rending one I know … it brings me to tears.  From Psalm 22:1:

My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?

We also read the passion from Mark’s gospel. I’ve always been interested in the way people view Jesus’ repeating those words as He hung on the cross:

And at three o’clock Jesus cried out in a loud voice, Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani? which is translated, My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? (Mark 15:34)

My friend Rachel thinks that He knew people listening would recognize those words from the well-known Psalm; that it would have pointed them back and helped them realize that He was fulfilling scripture.  I agree with that.

I’ve heard others say that when Jesus cried those words, our Father had, indeed, turned His face away from Jesus because Jesus had taken on the sin of all mankind and “a holy God can’t be in the presence of sin.”

I disagree with that one; if the Holy Spirit dwells within me, then He is certainly in the presence of sin.

Personally, what strikes me is that once again Jesus is showing He is completely human, experiencing all of the things we experience.

When I went through my own dark night of the soul, I also could not perceive God near me. He seemed so far away, as if He had turned His face from me … as if He had abandoned me.

I know He didn’t … maybe He has never been closer to me than during that time. But in the midst of that trial, it didn’t feel like it.

I know our Father was close to Jesus, grieving His pain. But in the moment, Jesus couldn’t perceive our Father.

Our Lord and Savior knows … really and personally and intimately He knows … what it’s like to be “us.”

To me, that is amazing.

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Holy Week

Leila posted this at Little Catholic Bubble today …

We are heading into Holy Week in a matter of days, guys! Oh, how the soul craves Holy Week. Growing up, I didn’t really partake in any of the Holy Week liturgies, and now I soak them up like a sponge. Or, like a thirsty man in the desert grabbing hold of a clear, cool glass of water. Pure, clear, simple, life-saving.

Amen, amen, amen! I completely understand her sentiment … I am also craving Holy Week and the Triduum. I long to hear the words Jesus spoken to me that He spoke to the disciples  in Luke 22:15 …

He said to them, ‘I have
eagerly desired to eat this Passover

with you

Somber … hopeful … waiting …

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The longer I walk with God, the more I understand how trials really are a blessing, meant to teach us and to turn us toward Him.

Last week we had a reading from John 12:

“I am troubled now. Yet what should I say?
‘Father, save me from this hour?’
But it was for this purpose that I came to this hour.
Father, glorify your name.”

Father, glorify your name.

I find myself breathing this prayer often now as I pray for myself and for my loved ones. I sometimes picture myself holding people in the palms of my hands, praying for them. But “I” am only doing what I’ve been led to do … holding precious people who have been given into my care only for a time. I don’t want to see my loved ones suffer; I want their comfort and joy.

But more than that, I want them to be saved … to leave this life and spend eternity in God’s presence.

If it takes suffering now to accomplish that, am I willing to trust God? Should I pray for their comfort if it robs them of opportunities to learn, opportunities to turn to Him?

I am troubled now, yet what should I say? I say I trust you, Father;  I know your plans for us are good even if we are unsure or feel lost and afraid. You know how dearly I love these people for whom I pray; and I know you love them far more, far better, far more deeply. So help me release them back into Your perfect care; help me to pray for them in ways that are pleasing to you. And most of all …

Father, glorify your name!

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My prayer this morning … I love praying it once for  myself, and then repeating it with changes to include the loved ones for whom I pray.

Soul of Christ, sanctify me
Body of Christ, save me
Blood of Christ, inebriate me
Water from Christ’s side, wash me
Passion of Christ, strengthen me
O good Jesus, hear me
Within Thy wounds hide me
 
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee
From the malicious enemy defend me
In the hour of my death call me
And bid me come unto Thee
That I may praise Thee
With Thy saints and
With Thy angels
Forever & ever
Amen.
 
 
 

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What do slavery, the holocaust and abortion have in common?

Please think about it … it’s very important.

  • All involve two groups of people: one with all the power, the other with no power.
  • Those with power attempt to define those without as sub-human; not “really” people.
  • Those with power had many reasons why it would create a “hardship” for them if their power over the others was taken away.

I keep hearing pro-choice celebrities saying, “Why are we talking about this again?!! I thought it was all settled! ‘They’ want to take us back to the dark ages!”

I sincerely believe that if we ever overturn Roe v Wade and outlaw this abomination, we will some day look back at it like we do the holocaust and slavery … “I can’t believe people stood by and thought it was ok!”

What do slavery, the holocaust and abortion have in common?

Please think about it … it’s very important. In fact, it’s truly a matter of life and death.

 

 

 

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Mid-way

Last night I was thinking about the fast I am committed to this Lent.

I had been doing very well, allowing it to turn my thoughts to prayer often throughout the day. But the last part of this week I’ve gotten sloppy and I know it. I was thinking I needed to re-commit myself.

This morning I read:

“… today [as we] mark the halfway point between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday, let us redouble our fasting and abstinence, prayer and almsgiving, and continue to seek a deeper understanding of our faith from Scripture and the testimony of the Church and Her Saints. But let us not mistake any of these things for the purpose of Lent, or become proud of our own efforts. Instead, let these all be tools to aide us in our question for true devotion, “to love God and serve Him alone.”

Half-way through Lent … already! Wow! That surprises me and inspires me.

I really do want to redouble my commitment. God isn’t half-ass in His giving to me … I don’t want to be half-ass in my giving to Him.

And more than that, I want to remember the reason why I do this. We live in a hurting world that desperately needs prayer and needs God. He has asked me to pray for others and I sincerely want to be His faithful servant, to do what He has asked and to do it well.

It’s such a small thing He asks of me, and then He gives me the strength and the guidance to accomplish it.

What an amazing God I serve!

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Driving to work this morning, I was thinking about how sad I feel for us all in this world. We can be so unkind to each other … hateful, accusing, robbing each other of peace and dignity.

It is sad for the victims, and equally sad for the offenders. Each sin we accept, each time we turn away from doing what is right, every instance that we wallow in evil … I believe our hearts are hardened a little bit more. 

Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.

God is kind and merciful; I pray He searches us and reveals Himself to each of us, softening our hearts and opening our eyes to Him …

… to Love. 

 

 

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