Sometimes we have to crawl under…

I have been thinking a lot about the walls we all build around ourselves and our hearts.  We build walls for all kinds of reasons, for protection, to hide, to exclude others, but I think most of these reasons boil down to fear – we build walls because we are afraid.

It is interesting when you come up against someones wall, it usually appears to be quite strong, tall and unable to be breached, but I think most of these walls are not set on firm foundations. They are built quickly out of fear and as times passes openings appear at the bottom.  These openings are small and initially hidden, but are easily spotted by those near the ground. They are the perfect size for a sly serpent to crawl under and continue feeding the fears, or for a humble heart to crawl under and dispel the fears with the light of truth that shines forth from humble heart.

This is not new information, but oh how important it is – we should revisit it often and remember to humble ourselves.

Philippians 2:3-4
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of others.

Welcome them…

Welcome the awkward moments, the disapproving stares, the under the breath judgements and tongue clicks in humble silence for both our sweet Lord Jesus and our sweet Mother Mary. They endured these and much more throughout their lives.  We have only read some of the persecutions of our Lord, Jesus, and the others I don’t think we can even imagine them, they were so terrible.  We have read even less about what Mary endured, but imagine for a moment what Mary humbly endured at the discovery of her pregnancy out of wedlock.  We know how gently St. Joseph dealt with the news and we know of his change of heart after being visited by an angel of the Lord in his dream, but we don’t often think of how her neighbors treated her in this situation, but we can image because we see this situation often in our world today.

Welcome them, these difficult moments in life, and run to Mary, clinging to her leg, hiding in her skirt, kneeling at her feet and welcoming her loving comfort and encouragement and remember that Mary raised Jesus, comforting, guiding and encouraging Him in these moments and she will do the same for us.

Pray in these moments as Our Lady of Fatima recommends when you make a sacrifice or humbly and silently accept a persecution:
O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Peter 4:14
If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of Glory and of God rests on you.

Self Reflection

As we walk along the path of our life journey I think the surest way to know that we are headed in the right direction is to practice self reflection.   This is a practice of humility – when we are willing to see ourselves in His light of truth, the light continues to grow and extends beyond the boundaries of ourselves shining it’s light on our path ahead.

John 3:21
But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.

Laying low

In today’s modern world their are very few times if any during our lives when we are physically laying low on the ground.  I think skipping this chance to humble ourselves and physically lay prostrate on the ground deprives us of His Mercy and the many Graces that still pour forth with great fervor from the wounds of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  If the spring of Mercy and Grace is truly still flowing, wouldn’t the world be slowly filling up with Mercy and Grace from the ground up.

Let us lay low in the Mercy and Grace that continues to cover the ground at the feet of our Mother Mary hidden in the dark folds of her mantle letting her words permeate our souls and knowing that she remains always at the foot of her Son’s Cross, the source of the spring of His Mercy and Grace.

Psalm 119:25
I am laid low in the dust; preserve my life according to Your Word.

Double Doors

Can you see them?

Look up at just right angle and you will see high on the Hill of Calvary there is a set of double doors created just for us.  The lintel and center post is covered in the blood of our Passover Lamb, our sweet and precious Jesus.

His Cross holds these doors open for us… and through this opening He calls to us, beckoning for us to come, come in and see!

RUN my friends, run to His Cross, run through the doors while He holds them open for us!

John 14:6
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Isaiah 45:1-4
Thus says the LORD to His anointed,
To Cyrus, whose right hand I have held—
To subdue nations before him
And loose the armor of kings,
To open before him the double doors,
So that the gates will not be shut:
‘I will go before you
And make the crooked places straight;
I will break in pieces the gates of bronze
And cut the bars of iron.
I will give you the treasures of darkness
And hidden riches of secret places,
That you may know that I, the LORD,
Who call you by your name,
Am the God of Israel.
For Jacob My servant’s sake,
And Israel My elect,
I have even called you by your name;
I have named you, though you have not known Me…

Matthew 25:1-13
“Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. The five who were foolish didn’t take enough olive oil for their lamps,  but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

“At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and meet him!’ “All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. Then the five foolish ones asked the others, ‘Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.’“But the others replied, ‘We don’t have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.’ “But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came. Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, ‘Lord! Lord! Open the door for us!’ “But he called back, ‘Believe me, I don’t know you!’

“So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return.

Holy

This morning I woke up struggling with a conversation I had yesterday regarding my belief and thoughts on a topic that I had prayed, read and thought about for quite some time.  I woke up wondering if I was being closed minded, hard hearted, and proud.  In search of an answer I prayed, “Sweet Lord, please align both of us with Your Holy Will and please lead me to what You would like me to read this morning.”

After this prayer, I looked aimlessly through the books scattered around our house, and then finally decided to complete a few questions in my Bible study.  After looking for my bag, I remembered that I had left it in the car.  When I opened the door to retrieve it, I found page 16 from my disintegrating copy of The Joy of Full Surrender by Jean-Pierre de Caussade laying beside my bag and Chapter 8 jumped out at me.

It read…

Who is the Most Holy?

The will of God gives a supernatural and divine value to everything of the soul that is submitted to it.  All the duties God’s will imposes, all those contained in it, all the matters it touches, become holy and perfect, because the will of God is unlimited in power and makes everything it touches divine.

Thank You my Sweet Lord – I submit myself again to You and pray to continually submit myself every day, every hour, every minute, every second for the rest of my life.

Thy Kingdom Come, They Will Be Done

Know thyself…

I have been back in the gym for four years.  I have lovingly come to call my time spent there my worshipful workout.  Today as I was climbing my never ending imaginary mountain I realized that my workout has become even more, He has helped me turn this time into a time of self reflection, of self knowledge and confession as He so gently reminds me of my mistakes, failures and sprinkles in the few triumphs when I have truly let Him work through and in me.

Over the past few years I have climbed about 2500 miles on the elliptical at the gym, but the strides He has given me the grace to take down the path of knowing thyself are infinitely more meaningful.

Sweet Lord, as I dig deeper into knowing myself the demons within surround me… You alone are my refuge and I beg you to please let every sorrow filled tear that falls be full of pure and true contrition, and every joy filled tear that falls be full of pure and true praise and gratitude for You!

A sense of urgency

Some times when I am thinking of Him, reading about Him, listening to a song that fills my soul with Him… I feel a sense of urgency – a deep need to tell others of the great and overwhelming sorrow we will feel when we arrive at the foot of His throne and realize how little we did if anything and how much more we should have done to praise Him with every breath, every action, every thought during this short life of ours.

Then the moment usually passes and I slip back into the world, but NOT TODAY my friends.  Today is different… today I said a little prayer when this feeling came over me and I asked Him to give me the words to share.  Sweet Lord, I pray that these words are not from me, but from Your Sweet Holy Spirit.

Let our lives be nothing but the echo of God.

God’s Art

In the last few years I have begun to develop an appreciation and love for visual art.  I was walking through a museum a few years ago when a light bulb suddenly went off in my head as I realized what billions before me already knew… each painting represented a moment in the life of a soul.  That day I saw that some had shared a moment of their pain, others had shared a moment of their joy, some shared a moment of their fear, and at least one had shared a moment of deep understanding, a moment when that soul dove into the infinity of their present moment and then translated it onto a canvas.

I cried that day as I walked through the museum feeling humbled and amazed by so many souls laid bare before me.

Tonight as I was reading the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan, he wrote about God’s art throughout creation and interestingly enough I read about this a few weeks ago in Romans during a bible study.  Oh Lord please forgive my inability to quickly grasp what You are trying to tell me… tonight I think Your message finally broke through.

God has bared His soul before us… and oh how AMAZING it is!!!

What more is there to say other than – Thank You, thank You, thank You for the Grace to truly see Your Art, Your Heart, Your Soul!

AMAZED

My mind is a jumble of thoughts as I think of infinity buried in a point where everything on the inside is bigger than what is on the outside, and how difficult it is to wrap my earthly mind around this, as I look at the night sky and feel infinitesimally small, but then attempt to accept or believe or have faith that there is something or some place so much bigger buried and hidden from us in a point, in a second, in a planck length.

And then I am AMAZED to the point of tears with an aching joy in my heart knowing that somehow, mysteriously this is TRUE…