Sunday, December 10, 2017

He IS Present -- Even in the Mess

     It was the first Sunday of Advent. I was ahead of schedule with Christmas preparations this year, so why was I feeling so burdened?

     I prayed for guidance.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

No, No, Nervous Nellie!

     I’m not what you would call a “nervous Nelly.” In fact, most of the time, I am peace filled. I think it’s partly because of the disposition with which God blessed me, as well as my strong relationship with God and my dependence upon Him.

     That being said, there is an area in my life with which I struggle to hand over to God and find difficult not to want to FIX IT MYSELF!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Powers of Distortion

     “To see another human being as he really is means to lay ourselves open to his influence. Thus when fear or dislike moves us to avoid him, this reaction is already evident in our gaze; the eye characterizes him, stifling the good, heightening the bad. We discern his intentions, make swift comparisons, and leap to conclusions. All this proceeds involuntarily, if not unconsciously (in which case our powers of distortion, uncurbed by reason, so their worst). Seeing is a protective service to the will to live. The deeper our fear or distaste of a person, the more tightly we close our eyes to him, until finally, we are incapable of perception, or the profound German word for it, Wahrnehmen: reception of truth. Then we have become blind to that particular person. This mysterious process lies behind every enmity. Discussion, preaching, explanations are utterly useless. The eye simply ceases to register what is plainly to be seen. Before there can be any change, a fundamental shift must take place in the general attitude. The mind must turn to justice, the heart expand; then only can the eye really begin to discern. Little by little the sheen of the object on which it rests strengthen its visual power, and slowing it recovers the health of the truth."                
                                                                                                      The Lord, Romano Guardini

     Unfortunately, we all experience this blindness! We are either the perpetrator or the victim. We have felt stunned, as we described in lurid detail, the actions of those with whom we struggle, as our listeners are blinded to what we see as truth! While at other times, we are the ones taken aback, by the lens with which a friend perceives someone, whom we see in an entirely different light.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Hiding from God

     “And when He comes, He will convict the world in regard to sin. The Spirit of truth will guide you into all truth.”                                                                
                                                                                                        Jn 15: 8, 13

     I was struggling! I was trying to justify an action I had committed. I had justified it in the past, but this time, something within me kept picking at my conscience.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Become Broken Hearted

     “This Heart is a pierced Heart. Jesus stands before us with a pierced Heart. We have seen how knowledge of God has always cost; the human heart has to be broken open before it can receive God, and thus it was with Jesus. And the deepest mystery of all is that we learn that the Father’s own Heart is pierced.
     How can we enter into this pierced Heart? Only by becoming like it, living in love at whatever cost, paying the high price of loving. Too easily we assume that loving is a pleasurable experience. Most surely it is the only sweetness in life, but this must be understood correctly. True love is always bleeding in our mortal life. You cannot have love in this life without pain.
     Just think of our own way of carrying on. We get hurt, offended. . .what do we do? Shrink into ourselves, erect all sorts of barriers. Our heart has withdrawn from the one who hurts us in any way. We mustn’t be hurt, “I matter,” our poor ego cries. But that is not how Jesus loves. If we would be like Him, we must struggle to the death with all this, refuse to curl up, refuse to withdraw in the slightest. We must go on exposing ourselves, giving ourselves, pouring ourselves out.
     We say we want to love, we want to serve, we want to give ourselves, and at bottom we are saying we want selfish satisfaction. We want to feel we matter, are important, we want to feel fulfilled; in other words, we are using others, and the beautiful concept of love is being abused. Love is selfless. The way into the Heart of Jesus is not through intellectual insight, not through glowing emotion, but through learning to pay the cost of pure love. There is sacrifice involved in letting others be themselves.”                                                                                      Sr. Ruth Borrows, O.C.D.

     As I read Sr. Ruth’s words, a memory stirred in my heart.

     “Your mission is to be the Wounded Heart.”

      I sat there many years ago, trying my best to absorb Father’s words and internalize their meaning.

Monday, October 9, 2017

A Contrite Heart

     “Avoid the little faults. Ask Me to help you to see them more clearly, in their true light, like a window in sunshine. You will not dare repeat them; you will be on the watch not to repeat them; you will be on the watch not to hurt Me. And when you notice you have done wrong, you will ask Me to forgive you. My heart has seen everything and is ready to forget, because it listens to your words of distress and humility. Oh, the power of repentance! The sacrifice that pleases Me is a contrite heart.”                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                  Jesus to Gabrielle Bossis

     For months, I have been struggling with overcoming the imperfections, which God has been pointing out to me.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Gifts from the Beloved

     “My Child, please understand that the trials I send you are made to measure, exactly fitted to your power to bear them. They are favors that draw you nearer to your Beloved. Thank Me for a little trial as though it were a flower placed with tenderness on your heart by your FiancĂ©. Always humble yourself as if you had deserved to suffer. I am all innocence, yet I suffered everything imaginable. I will use everything for your sanctification. Do not be afraid of trials. They only help you go higher. They make you love Me more.”                                              
                                                                                               Our Lord to Gabrielle Bossis

     When I read these words of Jesus to Gabrielle, I realize how far I am from reaching holiness!

     I do not see trials as flowers placed upon my heart by my Beloved. They do not feel like they are measured to fit perfectly, but often, more than I think I can bear. They do not increase my love of God, but make me question His love. When trials strike, my heart is filled with fear. I don’t believe I deserve this particular suffering. It is not causing me to move higher, but is pulling me down instead!