It is not just the title of my blog anymore…

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NYC - FiDi: Trinity Church - Evangelist Statue...

NYC – FiDi: Trinity Church – Evangelist Statues of St. Luke and St. John (Photo credit: wallyg)

 

I have strayed from my format lately…Since this is my blog, and I came up with the format, I can do that…Today, I was moved by the verse that follows:

 

Children, let us love not in word or speech but in deed and truth.  (1 John 3:18)

 

To me, it is a reminder that what I named my blog has to be lived out in my life…Actions, not just words!

Prayer:  Lord, let me love like you do and never let go of my heart, so that when it is broken, I know it breaks for your purposes.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit…Amen

 

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If I don’t want to fall into sin, I must not hate my brother…

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Corcovado jesus

Image by @Doug88888 via Flickr

Gift:  Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.

Reading:  Whoever says he is in the light, yet hates his brother, is still in the darkness.Whoever loves his brother remains in the light, and there is nothing in him to cause a fall.Whoever hates his brother is in darkness; he walks in darkness and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes.  (1 John 2:9-11)

Observation:  As soon as I read the 9th verse this morning on the daily readings that come to my phone, I knew that God was speaking to me with these words.  I have often wondered why I have fallen into the same sin as if I did not see it coming again, and I think that God is revealing to me this morning the reason this happens.  I sat here this morning trying to think of someone who I harbor resentment towards or even hate, because of something that they did to me in the past, and I couldn’t come up with anyone.  However, as I reflected further on these verses, I realized that God was talking about the people who are closest to me.  Let me explain, I love my family but it may be hard for them to know that at times.  Too often, I expect them to like the things that I like and be like me, rather than loving them for who they are.

Personification:  Love  If I want to be able to walk in the light, I must be willing to love the way that Jesus loves, unconditionally.  It is natural for me to have expectations of my wife and children, but I cannot let those expectations be the driving force behind my love for them.  I hope that God will give me the grace necessary to carry this out fully in my life today and the rest of my life.

Prayer:  Lord, guide my steps today to live out the words of the scripture and stay out of the darkness that has blinded me for so long.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

Do you want to know God and have his Spirit living in you?

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Four Horsemen of Apocalypse, by Viktor Vasnets...

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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:  4 This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us of his Spirit.  We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us. God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him. In this is love brought to perfection among us, that we have confidence on the day of judgment because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love.  (1 John 4:13,16-18)

Observation:  My title of my journal this morning may sound a little sarcastic to someone who reads my journal often.  I mean, if you are reading this, the assumption is that you are reaching out to find God and of course you would want his Spirit living in you.  The second reading for today’s Mass is so important to our faith, because of the fact that all Christians want to know God and somehow be sure that we are following His will for us.  The footnote for the 13th verse leads us to the 16th through the 18th verses, even though the actual reading for today ends with the 16th verse.  It is important because we must love one another, but we must not allow fear to overcome that love.  As the 18th verse says, there is no fear in love and God’s love is perfect and it will drive out fear.

Personification:  Kindness  It will be my focus today to display the fruit of kindness that comes from the holy Spirit that is dwelling in me.  I know that God loved me enough to send his Son to die for me on the cross, and hopefully I am able to love my brothers and sister’s in Christ with the same sacrificial love.  It should be easy to show kindness, in light of the fact that God is love.

Prayer: 

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit…Amen!

Have you ever wondered why the saints seem so sinless?

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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:  We know that no one begotten by God sins; but the one begotten by God he protects, and the evil one cannot touch him.  (1 John 5:18)

He must increase; I must decrease.  (John 3:30)

Observation:  It is clear to me this morning after reading the first reading from the Mass readings for today that God does not see our sinfulness, and if we can see our way to look past it ourselves with God’s eyes, we shall realize the potential that God knows we are capable of.  When I look at the lives of the saints, like Mother Theresa and Saint Andre Bessette, I see sinless creatures whose ability to allow miracles to be worked through them, in the face of such adversity, is only outweighed by their humility.  Which brings me to the verse from the gospel reading for today that tells us the words of John the Baptist that I believe if we are all planning on being saints, we should live by, just like the saints in the past did.

Personification:  Gentleness  In displaying the fruit of gentleness today, I would hope that God’s grace will allow me to show it with all humility.  In the face of all of my past sins, it would be great to see my life with God’s eyes and not my own, so that I can act with all humility in the face of all the miracles that God is working in my life.

Prayer:  Lord, continue to work miracles in my life and in the life of those around me to bring about a greater realization of your Kingdom here on earth, right now.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.







 

Remaining in him…

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Baptism of Christ. Jesus is baptized in the Jo...
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Gift:  Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.

Reading:  4 This is how we know that we remain in him and he in us, that he has given us of his Spirit.  (1 John 4:13)

Observation:  It is not only in our acknowledgement of Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior, but also in the understanding of the fact that we are one with his Spirit.  This has happened because of the gift God gave us in his Son who died for us, not for anything that we did to deserve it.  As the previous verse to this one says, love is brought to perfection by our loving each other, not because of anything they did to deserve it, rather just because they are…

Personification:  Gentleness  It would have been too easy to focus on the fruit of love again today, so I chose to focus on the fruit of gentleness.  This fruit will be displayed by a genuine concern for the other people who I come in contact with today, regardless of my own inhibitions or fears that are still part of my personality, because I have not yet completely let go of my will.

Prayer:  Lord, help me to surrender more fully to your will for me in this life, so I can more easily display the gentleness and patience that you show me every day.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.

For the love of others…

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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:  3 Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.  (1 John 4:7)

Observation:  This morning, I am getting the feeling that I have focused too much lately on how my actions will affect others, I guess that is whyGod chose to focus my attention on this verse.  It is God’s will for me to love everyone, not to judge or wonder about the salvation of anyone.  As it says in the footnote for this verse, God loved us so much that he offered up his son to die for our sins, I guess I should see that he has our salvation handled and I just need to focus on loving more effectively.

Personification:  Love  It probably is not a surprise that I would choose to focus on the fruit of love today, but I hope that I can really display it today in a true sense to everyone that I come in contact with today.  Maybe, if I accomplish this, by the grace of God, I will begin to change into the person that God is willing me to be.

Prayer:  Lord, please allow me to see that it is your will for me to crave you alone and not allow anything to take my focus away from what you would expect me to be doing.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.






 

Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand. (Matthew 4:17b)

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"The certain mark by which a Christian co...

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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:  We belong to God, and anyone who knows God listens to us, while anyone who does not belong to God refuses to hear us. This is how we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of deceit.  (1 John 4:6)

Observation:  As I was reading this morning, I realized that if we continue to share the Good News to everyone we meet, we will know the deceitful ones by those who refuse to hear us.  I would like to say that I don’t plan on finding anyone like that in our church, but the truth is I think a few people in the church would unfortunately refuse to hear it, because they have subscribed to the philosophies of this world.

Personification:  Faithfulness  I am hearing the call to display the fruit of faithfulness by continuing to share the good news, no matter what the audience looks like, if for no other reason than to see who refuses to hear it.

Prayer:  Lord, give me the fortitude and courage to share the good news with anyone I meet and the wisdom to understand the reaction of the faithful ones who hear it.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit.  Amen.