Tuesday, December 29, 2009

God Speaks To Us

While reading a Catholic Devotional based on Mass Readings I came across a lesson that shared the need for us to be open to the many ways God speaks to us. It may be a thought that comes to our mind to pray for someone, or do an act of kindness, it can be a hymn or words of praise running through our minds, it can be a dream with a message much like God gave to St. Joseph. It can be the promptings of our conscience, or guidance from Scripture readings, or the advice of trusted spiritual leaders. All these can be the Voice of God.
We need to give God the freedom to speak in whatever way He chooses, we need to be open to the possibility of hearing from Him. We need to believe that He is always speaking. And we need to pray to recognize His Voice.

The Angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. ~ Matthew 2:13

"I always begin my prayer in silence, for it is in the silence of the heart that God speaks. God is the Friend of silence - we need to listen to God because it's not what we say but what He says to us and through us that matters." ~ Mother Teresa

Monday, December 28, 2009

God's Greatest Gift

God out of His Love for us gave us His Greatest Gift, and Christmas is the celebration of that Great Gift. God wants to be with us, His Love for us is so strong that His Gift on Christmas laid the foundation for us to have a forever relationship with Him.

That fact, that great and wonderful and abiding love God has for us, is overwhelming and humbling.

For God so Loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. ~ John 3:16

"God's Gift puts man's best dreams to shame." ~ Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Monday, December 21, 2009

God's Treasures

One of our parish priests recently spoke to us about God's Treasures and he said that we are among God's treasured possessions, and then he asked, "Should not God then be our Prime Desire? Should not God be our Most Treasured? Indeed He should!"

I have many treasured possessions, and I don't think it's bad to hold material things dear, but it can be a bad thing when those possessions become the main focus of our lives.
A prayer blog I visited recently asked:
What do you possess that keeps you from Heaven?
What are you striving to possess that keeps you from Heaven?

I am trying to get my priorities straight, but it really is a long, hard road for me to travel. So many 'things' and possessions block the way because I let so many things block the way. And just when I think I've made some great strides my 'old self' comes roaring right back. One step forward and then five steps back. So I continue to pray for help with this inner struggle.

But I do find encouragement along the way:
For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago. ~ Ephesians 2:10

"It's easy for an insightful person who understands the things of the spirit to free themselves from material things." ~ Meister Eckhart, Selected Writings

And this next quote is my dearest hope and desire:

"I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I wish to be, I am not what I hope to be; but, by the Grace of God, I am not what I was." ~ John Newton (Author of 'Amazing Grace')

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Quiet Presence

I think that God has been a Quiet Presence in my life. And I think I have been a very loud and very aggressive presence in my life.
I think it's time those roles were reversed.
I think there is a lot to be said for quiet. To me quiet means stillness and calm.

I found a nice blog maintained by Irish Jesuits in Dublin called Sacred Space. They have Bible readings each day and a prayer a day.
This was today's prayer:

Dear Jesus, as I call on You today I realize that I often come asking for favors.
Today I'd like to be in Your Presence,
May my heart respond to Your Love. Amen.

And another prayer blog I found had a challenge:

Take five minutes in a quiet place, think only of Jesus, listen to Him to hear the Voice of the Father. What would your life be like if you could do this all the time? How would it change you? Your relationships? Your walk with the Living God of the Bible?

You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. ~ Jeremiah 29:13

"The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely, or unhappy, is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature, and God." ~ Anne Frank

Friday, December 11, 2009


Advent is exciting. I've always felt comforted by the fact that God loved us so much that He would send His Son to save us, but it's more than just a comfort, it's exciting to think of God Who Is so Great caring so much about that which is so little. God Cared enough for us to want a relationship with us, He wanted to bring us back to Him. God Created a plan specifically to draw us back to Him. Jesus Is God's Love for us Personified. The purpose of Jesus was to restore our relationship with God. Jesus Is God drawing us to Himself. It's a Gift almost too great to fully grasp.

From eternity to eternity I am God. No one can snatch anyone out of My Hand. No one can undo what I have done. ~ Isaiah 43:13

"We have been in God's thought from all eternity, and in His creative love, His attention never leaves us." ~ Michael Quoist

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Quiet, Joyful, Hopeful

I've always thought of Advent as a mixture of a quiet, joyful, and hopeful time. It is at the close of the year, a time for quiet reflection on the past year, and it's also a time of hope for all that the New Year might bring, and it's joyful as it ushers in the celebration of Christ' birth and the knowledge that God's Love is constant. God does not want us to be separated from Him. The damage that was done to our relationship with Him has been repaired by Him. Christmas is His Gift to us, the Gift that is our Salvation, the Gift that Fulfilled His Promise to us.

This is love, not that we loved God, but that He Loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. ~ 1 John 4:10

"Grace is love that cares and stoops and rescues." ~ John R. W. Stott

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Advent ~ A Blessed Opportunity

Advent is the chance to review our lives and change our ways to make sure that there is nothing that can interfere with our relationship with our Savior. As we decorate our homes we can also decorate our souls with the knowledge of the Reason for the season and we can make sure that His presence in our lives is not rejected. We can make sure to live our lives in happy anticipation of His arrival everyday.

But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.
~ Luke 21:25-28, 34-36

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
And ransom captive Israel
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall Come to thee O Israel

~ Translated from Latin by
John Mason Neale

Monday, November 23, 2009

Reminding Myself To Be Thankful For The Simple Things In Life

This Thanksgiving I am reminded of the most simple things in life that really are such special Blessings. And along with that I am trying to simplify my life.
I've worked in a classroom of Kindergarten children a few years back, and the joy they found in tackling the simplest of tasks, or the excitement that was generated from the simple things found out in the schoolyard (a rock, a puddle, bugs, etc.) was so contagious, and now I see that same joy and excitement in my grandchildren as they discover this wonderful world God made.
And the blind faith these children have in God and in those they love is always inspiring.
I'm trying to capture that spirit of simple joy and blind faith.

And Jesus called a little child to Him, and set him in the midst of them.
And said, "Verily I say unto you, except ye be converted and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of Heaven." ~ Matthew 18:2-3

I love the simple prayers of children and one of my most favorites is one my children were taught in their early years at school and that they recited before eating:

God Is Great
God Is Good
Let us thank Him for our food. Amen.

And one I've been saying lately to Jayden each morning as he leaves for school is:

May the Lord watch between me and thee while we are absent one from another.

(I can't credit the authors because I haven't been able to find them in my search. If anyone knows I'd appreciate you leaving the name in your comment!)

A Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving to all!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Saddened, Confused, Burdened

Whenever I hear of these senseless, violent acts of hatred I feel very much saddened, confused, and burdened.
My mind, my heart, and my prayers are with the victims of Fort Hood, Texas and their families.
There have been too many senseless, violent acts of hatred in this world. And I've had enough of senseless violent acts of hatred to last me a lifetime. Unfortunately, I doubt I've witnessed my last.
It's an unsafe world we live in, and it makes me sad for our children and our grandchildren.

In Peace I will lie down and sleep, for You alone, O Lord, will keep me safe. ~ Psalm 4:8

"God Incarnate is the end of fear; and the heart that realizes that He is in the midst, that takes heed to the assurance of His Loving Presence, will be quiet in the midst of alarm." ~ F.B. Meyer

Friday, October 30, 2009

Abandon Desperate Pleas

A family member emailed us today saying that he felt abandoned by everyone and everything. He said he has no family, no friends, no neighbors, no priests, no one and nothing that he can turn to. He wrote to say that he can find no hope, no faith, and no charity. He is angry and hurt over many situations that are out of his control.
I don't know if I did the right thing but I wrote back to him and said:
Back off. Abandon desperate pleas and give total control to God and be at peace.

In his email he told us he didn't want anyone to preach to him. I told him that I thought he had two choices and only two choices. One was to continue to stagnate in the pit he was in, and the other was to reach out to the Only One Who can lift him up out of that pit.
I told him that wasn't preaching, it was fact.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths. ~ Proverbs 3: 5-6

"No God. No peace.
Know God. Know Peace." ~ Anonymous

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Let Go And Let God

I've always liked that saying, and I try to remind myself of it during times of frustration.
I'm facing quite a few frustrating situations right now, and I'm trying to back off, I'm trying to let go and give all control over to God.

As for God, His way is perfect. The word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him. ~ 2 Samuel 22:31

"The most glorious promises of God are generally fulfilled in such a wondrous manner that He steps forth to save us at a time when there is the least appearance of it." ~ Karl Heinrich Von Bogatzky

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Grateful Prayers

I always remember to pray when I am soliciting a request of the Lord, but I am sometimes neglectful in saying the many prayers of thanksgiving to God that I ought to be saying.
Recently I was so uplifted by the advice, quotes, and prayers of others, and I am so grateful to God for the gift of these good women.

How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you? ~ 1 Thessalonians 3:9

"Choosing to be positive and having a grateful attitude is going to determine how you're going to live your life." ~ Joel Osteen

Friday, October 9, 2009

Pleaful Prayers

I came across a blog the other night that was full of so many heart-wrenching, pleaful prayers. So many people in need, so many devastated hearts.
This is just a sample:

"...I'm far away from God..."

"...I am exhausted..."

"...Please pray for my son..."

"...please pray for my daughter..."

"...please pray for my baby..."

"...in a coma..."



"...I've been accused..."

"...can you pray for me?"

"...Dear Lord, he doesn't want me anymore..."

"...walls are crushing down on me and there is nowhere to turn..."

It was a collection of sadness, and despair, and desperation.

God Is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. ~ Psalm 46:1

I read on another blog that we should pray for those whom the Lord puts on our hearts. I like the idea of that, of not only praying for those who request our prayers, but to pray for anyone who might pop into our head throughout our day. Or anyone who might touch our hearts as we read about their trials. I hope to make their pleaful prayers my own.

"If we truly love people, we will desire for them for more than it is within our power to give them, and this will lead us to prayer." ~ Richard Foster

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


I think it's obvious that freedom is very important to God. From the very beginning He gave man the freedom to choose.

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yolk of slavery. ~ Galatians 5:1

"If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." ~ Jesus Christ
(John 8:36)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Accentuate The Positive

I remember reading awhile back that in this particular Bible verse St. Paul was actually speaking to the early Christian Church specifically about a rift that was brewing, he was in jail at the time and trying to guide his followers to stay on the straight and narrow according to his teachings.
But I think all the words chosen fit for the Bible are actually God's Words Speaking to all mankind and not just specifically for a certain situation in a certain time-frame.

I think in this verse God is telling us to turn away from reflecting on the negative, choose a positive outlook, and look for the good in people and situations.
There is nothing good about negative thoughts or actions. Accentuate the positive.

Whatever is true,
whatever is honorable,
whatever is just,
whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely,
whatever is commendable,
if there is any excellence,
if there is anything worthy of praise,
think about these things. ~ Philippians 4:8

"Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy." ~ Anne Frank

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Peaceful Prayer

I will try first to rid myself of all uneasiness and unrest, then ask the Lord in quiet confidence, with my heart at ease.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. ~ Philippians 4:6

"God wishes to be seen, and He wishes to be sought, and He wishes to be expected, and He wishes to be trusted." ~ Julian of Norwich

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

God Has A Plan For Us

It's difficult for me to remember sometimes that God has a plan for us. In times of trial and turmoil I get so anxious, and it's hard for me to find spiritual peace. I have to learn to trust more. I have to learn that I am not in control, nor should I want to be.

For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago. ~ Ephesians 2:10

"There are always uncertainties ahead, but there is always one certainty - God's Will Is Good." ~ Vernon Paterson

Sunday, September 27, 2009


This is something my husband and I have been discussing lately. We are always thankful for our Blessings, but it also seems we are frequently looking to acquire/do/expect/work for more. We've been talking about trying to simplify our lives, enjoy the here and now, and live a life satisfied with the status quo.

I have learned in whatever state I am to be content. ~ Philippians 4:11

"Happiness consists not in having much,
but in being content with little." ~ Marguerite Gardiner

Friday, September 25, 2009

Guiding Steps

I find it encouraging that God wants us to be this confident in His Guidance.

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "this is the way, walk in it." ~ Isaiah 30:21

"Doubt is pain too lonely to know that Faith is his twin brother." ~ Kahlil Gibran

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Caretaker Of My Soul

I believe that if I plant the seeds the Caretaker will help me do the nurturing.

He that goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him. ~ Psalm 126:6

I love the certainty in this verse. I know that in this life there is much sorrow, but that doesn't have to be a roadblock to spiritual growth (in fact many times when trials arise, that is when we develop a deeper relationship with God, for all the trappings of life fall by the wayside, and it's just you and God). If we keep Faith throughout the trials we can be confident of the reward.

"We have been in God's Thought from all eternity, and in His Creative Love, His attention never leaves us." ~ Michael Quoist