Saturday, October 11, 2014

Learning God within Me



I said in one of my past posts, that I do not know myself because God lives in me now and I do not know God that well. I have been praying to the Holy Spirit about the discovery process. One of the revelations that came to me was that I should stop asking for God’s will and start accepting His will being played out through me.

In prayer in the morning I always relive my actions from the day before. I reviewed them to see how I could have done things differently, how much good God did (with my cooperation) and always to find lessons or corrections that God wishes to reveal to me (what part of myself do I still need to get to God).

As you know from reading this blog my trust level in God is at an all-time high and I’m trying to get used to it. In this effort it appears to me that I may have been too pushy in wanting friendships, or deepening existing friendships. I have a good friend that was pushed by a church lady when he was a small boy. From that point on he rejected the church. Last week I actually apologize to some of my existing friends for wanting a deeper friendship at a faster pace than they were ready for or perhaps wished for. Their response was quite the opposite of what I expected. They said that they did not see it that way. Whether they were being polite or not, I may never to know. I failed to look at things from their perspective (as much as I can understand them).

In this reflection I also discovered that I love people so much, and respect their free will so much, that I just want God’s will for them, whether I am in their life or not. Furthermore, I don’t even care how much I am in their life as long as it’s God’s will.

Isn’t that how God sees all of us? He says to us: “Here I am. I am your best friend. I will answer any question you have. I will help you anyway I can (because it’s God provided it in your best interest). All you have to do is ask me.” Then God it waits patiently. He loves us so much that He respects our free will. He may prod us.

I have to do the same thing with people. I admit I’ve had to learn this lesson many, many times over the course of my life. My love for people drives me. Because God lives in me, I am discovering that He loves them, and me, enough to wait for us to say yes to Him. I am now accepting God living in me. That means that people will see Christ in me and the Holy Spirit will guide my actions to them. It also means that I will get used to being patient because of my love and acceptance of who each individual person is. I must let all of my pushiness go. The Holy Spirit and God can prod each one of us according to God’s will.

God living in me will show Himself to each individual I encounter as He sees fit. Then we wait. It is a proposition to each individual I meet.
“Here I am. I am your best friend. I will answer any question you have. I will help you anyway I can (because I am not God) provided it does not go against God. All you have to do is ask me.”
Then I give it to God and offer any pain as a prayer for them and for more me to trust in God more.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

November is Near



I am working this weekend so here is an article from March 2012.



-- Catholic Post

Full text of Bishop Jenky's homily at men's march and Mass

Editor's note: Following is the full text of the homily of Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, at the Mass during the April 14 "A Call to Catholic Men of Faith" in Peoria. A podcast audio version of the homily is available at
The Bishop's Podcasts.
For a story on the annual march and Mass click here.
For several photos from the event, visit The Catholic Post's site on Facebook.
------
There is only one basic reason why Christianity exists and that is the fact that Jesus Christ truly rose from the grave.
The disciples never expected the resurrection. The unanimous testimony of all four Gospels is that the terrible death of Jesus on the cross entirely dashed all their hopes about Jesus and about his message. He was dead, and that was the end of it. They looked for nothing more, and they expected nothing more. 

So as much as they had loved him, in their eyes Jesus was a failed messiah. His dying seemed to entirely rob both his teaching and even his miracles of any lasting significance.
And they were clearly terrified that his awful fate, at the hands of the Sanhedrin and the Romans, could easily become their awful fate. So they hid, trembling with terror, behind shuttered windows and locked doors.

When the Risen Christ suddenly appeared in their midst, their reaction was shocked incredulity. They simply could not believe their own eyes. 

Reality only very slowly began to penetrate their consciousness when Jesus offers proof of his resurrection. He shows them the wounds on his hands, his feet, and his side. Jesus even allowed them to touch him. He breaks bread with them and eats with them. And only then could they admit to themselves what had seemed absolutely impossible – the one who had truly died had truly risen! The Crucified now stood before them as their Risen, glorious, triumphant Lord.

His rising from the grave was every bit as real as his dying on the cross. The resurrection was the manifest proof of the invincible power of Almighty God. The inescapable fact of the resurrection confirmed every word Jesus had ever spoken and every work Jesus had ever done.
The Gospel was the truth. Jesus was the Christ, the promised Messiah of Israel. Jesus was the Savior of the world. Jesus was the very Son of God.

There is no other explanation for Christianity. It should have died out and entirely disappeared when Christ died and was buried, except for the fact that Christ was truly risen, and that during the 40 days before his Ascension, he interacted with his Apostles and disciples, and on one occasion even with hundreds of his followers.

Today’s appointed Gospel reading for this Saturday in the Octave of Easter is taken from the 16th Chapter of Mark. It concludes with a command from the lips of Jesus, given to his disciples, given to the whole Church, given to you and me assembled here today: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.”

We heard in today’s Second Reading from the Acts of the Apostles that the same Sanhedrin that had condemned Jesus was amazed at the boldness of Peter and John. Perceiving them to be uneducated, ordinary men, they recognized them as companions of Jesus. They warned them never again to teach, or speak to anyone, in the name of Jesus. 

But the elders and the scribes might as well have tried to turn back the tide, or hold back an avalanche. Peter and John had seen the Risen Christ with their own eyes. Peter and John were filled with the Holy Spirit. They asked whether it is right “in the sight of God for us to obey you rather than God. It is impossible for us not to speak about what we have seen and heard.”
And Peter and John and all the Apostles, starting first in Jerusalem in Judea and Galilee and then to the very ends of the earth, announced the Resurrection and the Good News to everyone they encountered.

According to the clear testimony of the Scriptures, these Apostles had once been rather ordinary men – like you and me. Their faith hadn’t always been strong. They made mistakes. They committed sins. They were often afraid and confused.
But meeting the Risen Lord had changed everything about these first disciples, and knowing the Risen Lord should also change everything about us.
You know, it has never been easy to be a Christian and it’s not supposed to be easy! The world, the flesh, and the devil will always love their own, and will always hate us. As Jesus once predicted, they hated me, they will certainly hate you. 

But our Faith, when it is fully lived, is a fighting faith and a fearless faith. Grounded in the power of the resurrection, there is nothing in this world, and nothing in hell, that can ultimately defeat God’s one, true, holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.
For 2,000 years the enemies of Christ have certainly tried their best. But think about it. The Church survived and even flourished during centuries of terrible persecution, during the days of the Roman Empire.

The Church survived barbarian invasions. The Church survived wave after wave of Jihads. The Church survived the age of revolution. The Church survived Nazism and Communism.
And in the power of the resurrection, the Church will survive the hatred of Hollywood, the malice of the media, and the mendacious wickedness of the abortion industry.
The Church will survive the entrenched corruption and sheer incompetence of our Illinois state government, and even the calculated disdain of the President of the United States, his appointed bureaucrats in HHS, and of the current majority of the federal Senate.

May God have mercy on the souls of those politicians who pretend to be Catholic in church, but in their public lives, rather like Judas Iscariot, betray Jesus Christ by how they vote and how they willingly cooperate with intrinsic evil.

As Christians we must love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us, but as Christians we must also stand up for what we believe and always be ready to fight for the Faith. The days in which we live now require heroic Catholicism, not casual Catholicism. We can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead be Catholics by conviction. 

In our own families, in our parishes, where we live and where we work – like that very first apostolic generation – we must be bold witnesses to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. We must be a fearless army of Catholic men, ready to give everything we have for the Lord, who gave everything for our salvation.

Remember that in past history other governments have tried to force Christians to huddle and hide only within the confines of their churches like the first disciples locked up in the Upper Room.
In the late 19th century, Bismarck waged his “Kulturkampf,” a Culture War, against the Roman Catholic Church, closing down every Catholic school and hospital, convent and monastery in Imperial Germany.
Clemenceau, nicknamed “the priest eater,” tried the same thing in France in the first decade of the 20th Century.

Hitler and Stalin, at their better moments, would just barely tolerate some churches remaining open, but would not tolerate any competition with the state in education, social services, and health care.
In clear violation of our First Amendment rights, Barack Obama – with his radical, pro abortion and extreme secularist agenda, now seems intent on following a similar path.
Now things have come to such a pass in America that this is a battle that we could lose, but before the awesome judgement seat of Almighty God this is not a war where any believing Catholic may remain neutral.

This fall, every practicing Catholic must vote, and must vote their Catholic consciences, or by the following fall our Catholic schools, our Catholic hospitals, our Catholic Newman Centers, all our public ministries -- only excepting our church buildings – could easily be shut down. Because no Catholic institution, under any circumstance, can ever cooperate with the intrinsic evil of killing innocent human life in the womb. 

No Catholic ministry – and yes, Mr. President, for Catholics our schools and hospitals are ministries – can remain faithful to the Lordship of the Risen Christ and to his glorious Gospel of Life if they are forced to pay for abortions.

Now remember what was the life-changing experience that utterly transformed those fearful and quaking disciples into fearless, heroic apostles. They encountered the Risen Christ. They reverenced his sacred wounds. They ate and drank with him. 

Is that not what we do here together, this morning at this annual men’s march Mass?
This is the Saturday of the Octave of Easter, a solemnity so great and central to our Catholic faith that Easter Day is celebrated for eight full days, and the Easter season is joyously observed as the Great 50 Days of Easter. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, Christ – risen from the grave – is in our midst. His Holy Word teaches us the truth. His Sacred Body and Blood becomes our food and drink.
The Risen Christ is our Eternal Lord; the Head of his Body, the Church; our High Priest; our Teacher; our Captain in the well-fought fight.

We have nothing to fear, but we have a world to win for him. We have nothing to fear, for we have an eternal destiny in heaven. We have nothing to fear, though the earth may quake, kingdoms may rise and fall, demons may rage, but St. Michael the Archangel, and all the hosts of heaven, fight on our behalf.

No matter what happens in this passing moment, at the end of time and history, our God is God and Jesus is Lord, forever and ever.
Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus imperat!
Christ wins! Christ reigns! Christ commands!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Who Am I?



Thank you for all your prayers. The unusually intense attacks are over. I am also in a place that I have never been before. Before these attacks I was getting closer to God than I have ever been. I’m a very different person today, although most people around me may not even notice.

I have been praying for God to totally possess me. If you have read some of my past posts, you know that part of that process was for me to allow myself to be happy and accept the good things that were happening to me. Another big component was the total trust in God that I have long sought for.

Just before these attacks, a lot of these changes in me were close to completion. Then with a very large amount of help from God, I eliminated three sinful habits. This opened the door of my heart to receive God even more. I cannot even begin to describe how much I love God right now.

I do not know what’s going to happen next with anyone or anything in my life. I do not even know what my next actions may be, because I just don’t plan that much anymore. Yes, I still have the ‘to do’ list and my desk is full of work related things to do. I also have a sense, or reality, that God is in complete control and I trust Him.

I am in great pain and joy at the same time. It is a funny thing, that even when you lose unhealthy parts of yourself it is painful. I do not know who I am anymore. I cry out of joy from my love of God, my “YES” to God, and my loss of identity. The total trust I have for Him is what keeps me going. One morning in prayer, I asked Christ: “Who am I?” It came to me, that I do not know because God lives in me now and I am incapable of knowing God. It is true that I know enough about God to participate in His love for others. I just don’t know how, when, and all of the other questions that go with trying to understand something that is so much greater, so much more loving,…

I am also scared. I get the impression, from prayer, that I have to rediscover myself. In any and all events, people, work related tasks, friends, and anything else in my life; if God’s will (Providence) is done I win. My will, my total fulfillment, my cause and my full potential are God’s will. It is that total trust and surrender to Him that makes me aware of the Holy Spirit burning inside me.

So I just have to get used to this. It is hard for me to describe all the different emotions that I’m going through. Nobody ever said this was going to be easy. I do not know what’s going to happen next. I do know that it will be another expression of God’s love.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Spiritual Warfare Prayers

This is what I have used in past battles and it is working again. I have a little booklet. This is the online version. Please pray for me.


The Catholic Warrior

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Spiritual Battle



As most of you know by now, I’m a deep thinker. If you read my last post, you know that I am feeling very joyful. This past week I have been under Spiritual attack.

The devil does not like anyone to trust in God enough to move towards Him. This past week all my weaknesses about everything in my life surfaced. The devil knows your weaknesses and he will take advantage of them. At the time I wrote my last post I had complete trust in God’s agenda about everything in my life. This past week I have lost sleep, lost appetite, worried about everything and everyone in my life, and endured temptations of all sorts.

Why does God allow this? He allows it to see how we handle it. Many times in my spiritual growth and in my life, when bad things happen, I would resort to sin. This time was different. Three or four nights last week I could not sleep. I over thought, was tempted, and visualized worst-case scenarios in my in my work, with my friends, and with everything else in my life. I also got on my knees and prayed, hugged my pillow and prayed, visualized Christ in my heart, and visualized me in His heart. I did not submit to the temptations.

If you choose God in times like these, you get the lessons next. I prayed for God's perspective. He delivered. My behavior will be modified based on these new insights. When God teaches it is humbling. God is so beyond our perception, that I am overjoyed at being humbled.

My agenda for people, for my work, for my friends, for everything is back to being God’s will. I am not smart enough to know God’s will, so I do not know what is going to happen with anyone or anything (such as my job, the number of sales I get or lose) in my life. I don’t even know what’s going to happen in the next hour. Keep in mind that I am the guy with the “to do list.”

Last week it also occurred to me, that there have been many instances where people have come to me, for advice or other forms of help and I did not have a clue as to what God wanted me to do for them. I just let God take over. A lot of these times were before I came back to the Church. It was as if God was showing me that He was working in me all of this time. I was aware of some of it because of one of my past occupations that remains a hobby to this day. He showed me how much He has helped others through me.

So now I’m in a place where my only desire for myself and everyone else is God’s will.

AND:
I wrote this in the morning. I have been fighting the devil all day. When I was in adoration and Mass this evening, I was at peace. I must be doing something really good to have this much attention. My love for God is increasing and I am offering this up as a prayer for the conversion of souls.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Zone



This morning in prayer I was reflecting back on last week’s events in my life. I recounted the people in the interactions. I recounted my behavior and how God’s takeover of my behavior played out. I was left with three strong feelings, disgust, awe of God and the hunger for more God.

My feelings of disgust was (and is) caused by those times where I sinned. It wasn’t a lot of times because God is, at my request, taking over all my behavior. When I sinned, I am not fulfilling my true potential. Even more painful is that I was not fulfilling Providence, which is the same thing. It is painful because I am betraying my cause, God’s will,and God Himself.

My feelings of awe of God are caused by the wonderful people and what He is doing through me for them, what I am learning from them, the beauty I see in them and the total trust I have for God with all events in my life.

A few more people have specifically come into my life asking questions and seeking healing and variety of ways. The Holy Spirit’s within me is helping these people on so many different levels that I am dumbfounded. I am absolutely overjoyed. I am zoning in God’s will, as an athlete zones when everything comes together and the result is greater than he can imagine.

God is also allowing me to learn from all of these new people, and others, many different things, including some of my own misconceptions. I believe this is because God is helping me love people for who they are, not who I want them to be. When you love someone, it is easy to try to push change on them because you think that change is for their benefit. God does not work that way. It’s the free will thing. He lays out His proposition and offers it as a better way for all of us. It is an offer only. We have to say yes. Loving people for who they are has pushed aside my arrogant ambitions for them and let me see all kinds of beautiful things in them. This is causing me joy beyond words.

All of this is reaffirming my quest and my request to God, to change me and caused me to trust Him more. I am absolutely hungry for more interaction with the people that are new in my life to ask more of me and for God to send other people into my life. God’s and my love wait for them. I share, to a small, small degree, the pain and hope that God must have as He waits for any and all of us to ask Him for something.