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Sunday, July 27, 2014

A Tangle of Threads

Wow, what a week it has been.  I have been up and I have been down.  Feeling a little discombobulated, yet sure that I am on the right path.  I pick up one thread and put it down only to pick up another and then return to the original choice.

I seemed to have trouble calming my mind to listen.  Then I read from the second Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians:

Brothers and sisters:
We hold this treasure in earthen vessels,
that the surpassing power may be of God and not from us.
We are afflicted in every way, but not constrained;
perplexed, but not driven to despair;
persecuted, but not abandoned;
struck down, but not destroyed;
always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus,
so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our body.

The message for me is there is always hope!  If I can truly carry the body of the dying Jesus in me then I will have the life of Jesus in me!  I will be as the people in the psalm, " Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing."

Rejoicing.  It is a word and an emotion that I fear we use little these days.  It is often difficult to see in our pain and sorrow that the God that loves us is there with us.  Our struggle is to use the pain and sorrow to be drawn closer to Him.  Joy and sorrow are both gifts, yes gifts that God gives us so that we may lay our head near His Heart and listen to the sound of Him in our Souls.

I have two bowls of yarn by my chair where not only do I create, but I hear God talk to me in the silence of my crocheting.

 One bowl is full to overflowing with bits and pieces of completed works.  Too small to be of much use, but you never know.  Even when living on our boat I was hard pressed to throw away any bit of rope or twine. 

The other bowl is piled with bigger left overs.  They seem to have more potential.  They are wound neatly enticing me to use them.  Yet, more often than not I find myself reaching into the small bowl of bits and pieces to mark my place, to consider a color combination.

I think that God is similar to those two bowls.  He helps us wind up the ends of threads, but He often picks from that small bowl of tiny bits to help us weave our lives into the creation that He wants us to be.

Help me to remember that even when perplexed,
I will not be driven to despair;
When persecuted,
I will not be abandoned;
If struck down,
I will not be destroyed;
Lord, I am only an empty vessel,
waiting to be filled...


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Duck! There's a Plank in My Eye!!

There were so many distractions at Mass this morning.  Stage whisper conversations that were about gambling, winning and losing, health, grandchildren, and some that were just like a hive a of bees buzzing around my head.

I was trying to keep focused on my prayers and use the distractions as an offering up to Our Lord.  I have noticed though that conversations that I am not involved in are Distractions!  Conversations that I am involved in are Important!

So there I was in my pew trying to keep my head down and my thoughts focused and then...Father read the gospel and gave his sermon.  Yikes! can he read minds?

The parables of the wheat field that the enemy sowed weeds in and the servants that wanted to pull the weeds out, but no the owner said leave them.  The owner said, "I will have the harvesters sort it out in the end and they will gather the weeds and burn them and we will have wheat for bread."

Father reminded me that I am not the Judge.  I am the seed.  My job is to grow into the finest wheat that I can be...God's job is to judge at the end.  He has that covered.  God does NOT need me to judge and think that I know which is wheat and which is weed. I need to stop trying to do God's job.  I might as well, I am not very good at it.

In case you are wondering Father was not just talking to me, I am sure that he was addressing the entire congregation.  Though I think he did try and catch my eye!

Lord, here I am
a small bit of wheat blowing in the wind.
I go this way and that,
concerned about things that you have covered.

Help me to see that I am the seed.
A seed that has one job.
A seed that is trying to grow into the finest wheat.


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A Reading

Friday 18 July will be seven months since Michael passed into Eternal Life!  I really can not believe it.  A part of my mind refuses to believe that he is gone, but my heart knows the truth.

Today I was asked to fill in for the Lecture this Friday.  So I sat down this morning to review the readings.  Here is what I read:

When Hezekiah was mortally ill, 
the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, came and said to him:
"Thus says the LORD: Put your house in order, 
for you are about to die; you shall not recover."
Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD:
Isaiah 38:1-2

The reading goes on and after praying the LORD grants Hezekiah fifteen more years to his life.  We are continually reminded that we do not know the hour when death will come for us.  It will come like a thief in the night.

How blessed we were that we had time to put our house in order before Michael died.  He worked hard at putting his house in order.  Not only his material house and matters of this world,  he worked doubly hard at putting his spiritual house in order.

Not all of us will have time to put our houses in order.  No, we must daily prepare to depart from this world and enter the next.  We must clean the cobwebs from our prayer books, dust off our sacramentals and attend the Holy Mass in full communion with Our Lord.  We must avail ourselves of the Sacraments, so that we may attain all the grace the God is ready to bestow on us for the asking.

Only you know the hour of my death.
My death in this life will only be a door that I  pass thru to enter Eternal Life with You.
Help me to put my house in order daily.
Help me to seek You out in the Sacraments.
Help me to offer myself up with You at Holy Mass.
May my Communions be a worthy offering to You.


Tuesday, July 8, 2014

I was a Happy Sinner!

There was a time when I was happy in my sinfulness.  I rolled around in it like pigs roll in mud.  Not only was I happy to be a sinner, I encouraged others to get down in that mud and roll around with me.

Yes, in the back of my mind I knew I needed to rise out of the pigpen and flee back to my Lord.  I thought that I had plenty of time.  I WAS WRONG!

Yes, even at the last second you can with sincerity ask for forgiveness and it will be granted to you.  He pays the workers in the vineyard no matter the time, they came to labor.  He rejoices for the prodigal sons and daughters and He rejoices for the lost sheep that is returned to the flock!

That is why I am going to lure her
and lead her out into the desert
and speak to her heart.

I am going to give her back her vineyards,
and make the Valley of Achor a gateway of hope.
There she will respond to me as she did when she was young,
as she did when she came out of the land of Egypt.
Hosea 2: 16-17

I needed to be lured to the desert.  God knew that I needed to be away and have time for silence so that I could hear Him.  He knows how easily I am distracted.  He knows how loud it can be in my head.  He calms me in the silence and there He tells me of his love.

Lord, I would walk in the desert all the days of my life,
If it is there that You want me.
You will be my water and my life.
It is Your voice that sings to me in the morning and the night.
Like a lover you call to me in the silence of my heart.