Thanks be to God…He calls sinners to be saints!

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English: Christian Petersen's Head of Christ i...

English: Christian Petersen’s Head of Christ in Saint Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church, Ames, Iowa (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Gift:  Wisdom- With the gift of wisdom, we see God at work in our lives and in the world. For the wise person, the wonders of nature, historical events, and the ups and downs of our lives take on deeper meaning. The matters of judgment about the truth, and being able to see the image of God.

 

Reading:  Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.  (Matthew 25:13)

 

Observation:  After reading my journal yesterday, you may have gotten the impression that I was done with sin in my life, and I may have even hoped that it was true when I wrote it yesterday.  However, the truth is, even though I know that I will have to make an account for all of my unwillingness to follow God at times, I still willingly choose to make the same mistakes.  The good news is that even though I did not choose to “stay awake” in the past, I can choose to lean on His grace that is never-ending, and prepare for the imminent return of Jesus by receiving the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist.

 

Personification:  Patience I am choosing to focus on the fruit of patience again today, because I need to remind myself that even though God is patient with me and my conversion, I must also be patient with myself.  I almost changed the title of my blog today, because of something that I read on Cardinal Dolan’s blog that was written by Saint Thomas Aquinas.  However. I thought that since God is calling me to be a saint, even in my broken “sinful” present state, maybe someone will remember what I wrote as the title for my blog, and find it helpful someday.  http://blog.archny.org/

 

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner…Saint Thomas Aquinas, pray that I can embody the holiness that springs forth from your words, agere sequitur esse, “Actions flow from being!”…Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us…I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit…Amen!

 

 

 

“The clean of hand and pure of heart, who has not given his soul to useless things…” (Psalm 24:4ab)

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Christogram with Jesus Prayer in Romanian: Lor...

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Gift:  Fortitude (Courage) – With the gift of courage, we overcome our fear and are willing to take risk as a follower of Jesus. A person with courage is willing to stand up for what is right in the sight of God, even if it means accepting rejection, verbal abuse, or even physical harm and death.

Reading:  Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed* we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope based on him makes himself pure, as he is pure.  (1 John 3:2-3)

Observation:  I don’t know if today’s Psalm that was picked for the Responsorial was meant to go together with the second reading, but it sure did for me today.  As I struggle with living in this world, I must remember that doing things for the sake of doing them, is useless.  If I am to stay pure, I must only be involved in activities that have the purpose of building up his kingdom.  It is true that I will not always choose the best course of action in my life, because of my sinful nature, but I can control what activities that I involve myself in, and only choose the ones that I know will serve his higher purpose for my life.  I do not know yet what that purpose is, but I know that it will look a lot like Jesus when I find it, as the second reading says.

Personification:  Gentleness  I hope that I can display more gentleness in my life today, not only with others, but also with myself.  I need to remember that I did not learn to sin in a day, so I will not learn how to turn from sin in a day.  It has taken me a long time to get to a point in my life where I feel like I can rely on God’s power to save me from sin, and it will take a little while longer to rid my life of all of my old sinful habits.  I hope it won’t be that long, because I want to be rid of my old self and let God make me a new creation.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

Sorry, if yesterday’s post sounded judgmental…

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Groom, Texas

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Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

Reading:   Therefore, you are without excuse, every one of you who passes judgment.* For by the standard by which you judge another you condemn yourself, since you, the judge, do the very same things.  (Romans 2:1)

Observation:  It was not my intention to pass judgment on anyone with yesterdays post.  I hope it was not taken that way.  The reading was leading me to post that video and I know that the music would speak directly to someone that I tagged with it, but I did not mean to accuse him of any wrong doing.  At least, not anymore than I would accuse myself of, especially in the light of today’s reading from the continuation of the letter to the Romans.  I am, by no means, free from sin, and therefore not qualified to judge anyone, and I hope no one took my post from yesterday as an indictment against anyone.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  Amen!

 

What do you call him?

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Church of the Primacy of St. Peter on the Sea ...

Church of the Primacy of St. Peter

Gift: Fear of the Lord (Wonder and Awe) – With the gift of wonder and awe (fear of the lord), we are aware of the glory and majesty of God. A person with wonder and awe knows that God is the perfection of all we desire: perfect knowledge, perfect goodness, perfect power, and perfect love.

Reading:  Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Messiah of God.”*  (Luke 9:20)

Observation:  I started to journal on this verse over three days ago.  I put it off because I was going to lunch with the group of guys that meet on Fridays to talk about how the Word of God is working in their lives.  The lunch was pretty much the same, except I brought David with me.  However, I knew Jesus was there with us at lunch, but I did not call on him.  I think we prayed, but I cannot remember the prayer.  The point is, if I really know him as Messiah or Savior, shouldn’t I call on him as the one who saves more often?

Personification: Faithfulness  In order to display the fruit of faithfulness in my life, I must not only be seeking him, but willing to call him what he should be to me.  To display faithfulness, I must be willing to give up my selfishness and give God the glory for saving me by sending his Son, Jesus the Christ.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner…I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit.  Amen!

Paul doesn’t say ask for forgiveness today, he says put your sin to death!

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Gift:  Counsel (Right Judgment) – With the gift of right judgment, we know the difference between right and wrong, and we choose to do what is right. A person with right judgment avoids sin and lives out the values taught by Jesus.

Reading;  Put to death, then, the parts of you that are earthly:c immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and the greed that is idolatry.* Because of these the wrath of God* is coming [upon the disobedient].d By these you too once conducted yourselves, when you lived in that way. But now you must put them all away:* anger, fury, malice, slander, and obscene language out of your mouths.eStop lying to one another, since you have taken off the old self with its practicesf *and have put on the new self, which is being renewed, for knowledge, in the image of its creator.g  (Colossians 3:5-10)

Observation:  It was ironic how when I read this first reading this morning, I immediately knew it was about me but then thought about how many others should really hear this message.  It’s true that I would rather be fully convinced of the rest of the world’s need for a savior, while I am not hearing the message myself.  Paul does not say, we are forgiven for our sins here, because he already said it earlier in this letter.  However, he does say that we must put all of these sins to death.  I know it will take the grace of God to help me put away my sinfulness, even right in this present moment, but I know that Jesus already conquered my sin and paid for it on the cross, so I don’t want to add to his pain at the sight of my unrepentant heart. 

Personification:  Joy  The opposite of an unrepentant heart is joy.  That is probably not theologically or even by the dictionary definition correct.  I feel that if I continue to live with an unrepentant heart, it will lead to sadness. which is the opposite of joy.  Therefore, I will display the fruit of joy today for all to see, so that the grace of God will flow through me to keep me from relying on my own understanding.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

Don’t worry…

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I went to Saint Mary Catholic Church for Mass this morning…Father Maro was presiding…It was great, and his homily was perfect for me…He talked about how we should see Jesus saying in the gospel reading for today’s Mass that not only should we not worry, but we should keep working hard.  I know that God will surely see me through whatever temporary difficulty I may be having!

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner. Amen.

You are a slave, but the son can set you free…

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Photograph taken by me on 28 July 2006 Lima 10...

Freedom is waiting...For you?

Gift:  Counsel (Right Judgment) – With the gift of right judgment, we know the difference between right and wrong, and we choose to do what is right. A person with right judgment avoids sin and lives out the values taught by Jesus.

Reading:  5 If our God, whom we serve, can save us from the white-hot furnace and from your hands, O king, may he save us!  (Daniel 3:17)

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16 How can you say, ‘You will become free’?”  Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave of sinA slave does not remain in a household forever, but a son 17 always remains.  So if a son frees you, then you will truly be free.  (John 8:33b-36)

Observation:  I believe that the first reading from the book of Daniel is meant to show us that God has the power to save us from anything.  It is not meant to be a means for our boasting about his ability to save us in any particular situation.  Rather, it is meant to be a reminder, along with Jesus’ words in the gospel reading for today’s Mass, that whatever sin that we struggle with, if we have faith in God to heal and protect us, that is exactly what Jesus, his son was sent to do.  He was sent to show us that with his help we can live in this world apart from sin.

Personification:  Self-Control  It is only in our recognition of our sinfulness or at least our tendency to fall into sin, that we can be saved from it.  For me, it is hard to see myself apart from my sin, because of the fact that I have spent most of my life in sin.  However, Jesus is saying in the gospel today that he can defeat our sin and bring us out of this slavery.  I will try to remember to acknowledge my slavery and realize that it is only by the grace of God that my redeemer has freed me.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

The Word of God will not return void…

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『只缺機會』南寮收容所0315,哈士奇、混梗、瑪爾濟斯、米格魯、雪那瑞、博美、米克斯成幼犬、...

Blushing from shame...

Gift:  Fortitude (Courage) – With the gift of courage, we overcome our fear and are willing to take risk as a follower of Jesus. A person with courage is willing to stand up for what is right in the sight of God, even if it means accepting rejection, verbal abuse, or even physical harm and death.

Reading:  So shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; It shall not return to me void, but shall do my will, achieving the end for which I sent it.  (Isaiah 55:11)

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Look to God that you may be radiant with joy and your faces may not blush for shame.  (Psalm 34:6)

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your kingdom come, 7 your will be done, on earth as in heaven.  (Matthew 6:10)

Observation:  From Isaiah to the Psalms and on through the gospel of Matthew, the three verses that I chose today from the readings are ones of hope for the immediate future.  As I am constantly reminded from reading the Word of God and in my dreams, I must stay focused on God’s Word and not the word of man.  I am hearing today that if it is my hope that God’s kingdom comes and that His will is done in my life, I must keep looking at Him and not at the world.

Personification:  Joy  I will choose to focus on the fruit of joy today.  Not only because of the verse from the responsorial Psalm today, but also because it is truly my hope that if others see the joy in my face they will begin to see the hope that comes from the Good News of Jesus Christ.  Jesus said that he is the way and the truth and the life, and I hope my life can be patterned after his.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  Please help me to be radiant with joy so that I do not ever have to blush from shame.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

I’m going to assume he will be hungry…How about you?

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Michelangelo's Last Judgment

Michelangelo's Last Judgment

Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

Reading:  2 The next day as they were leaving Bethany he was hungry.  Seeing from a distance a fig tree in leaf, he went over to see if he could find anything on it. When he reached it he found nothing but leaves; it was not the time for figs.  And he said to it in reply, “May no one ever eat of your fruit again!” And his disciples heard it.  (Mark 11:12-14)

Observation:  There are many different ways to describe the return of Jesus.  A few that come to mind for me are:  The Last Judgment, The Second Coming and the Parousia or Rapture.  I am sure all of these give people the same feeling that I get when I here them; a sense of finality.  I guess that is the reason I felt prompted by the holy Spirit to journal about the fact that I don’t want to assume that Jesus upon his return will not expect fruit to be on my tree, regardless of the season in my life.

Application:  Self-Control  I will work today to display the fruit of self-control in my life.  It is not about the interaction that I have with other people that shows my ability to have self-control, rather my ability or inability to follow the will of God in my life that shows self-control or my lack of self-control.  It will be my focus today to continue to follow the will of God in my life and always act in accordance with the holy Spirit.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  Thank you for all you have done for me and the grace that I have recieved as a free gift from you.  Amen.

The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in love. (Psalm 145:8)

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Sower - Rooted

Sower - Rooted

Gift:  Counsel (Right Judgment) – With the gift of right judgment, we know the difference between right and wrong, and we choose to do what is right. A person with right judgment avoids sin and lives out the values taught by Jesus.

Reading:   Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 8 From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, 9 and the violent are taking it by force.  (Matthew 11:11-12)

Observation:  The kingdom of heaven suffers violence, because we are allowing it.  If I would have only heard these words of Jesus speaking to me from the beginning, I could have acted differently sooner.  Is it our sinfulness that allows us to dismiss these words as talking about those that will be found worthy of spending eternity in heaven.  Our own negative self-image does not allow us to see that Jesus is not talking about some future place of residence in heaven, rather he is speaking of now.  Therefore, let us take note of the fact that we are called to be greater than John the Baptist in our proclaiming the good news, if it is good news that we are hearing.  (Sarcasm) 

Personification:  Kindness  I thank God today and everyday that he is slow to anger.  I am hoping that I can start to display this same patience to others and this will allow me to act with the fruit of kindness toward everyone that I come in contact with today.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.