Finding that balance that only God can give me is finding time for prayer. Why pray? Pray puts me before the divine light of God, and it is only in him with the Holy Spirit moving in me that I can find healing from my own depraved desires and obsessions. Without Jesus as my role model, and the spirit of his guidance, I would have long ago been sucked into the darkness that seduces my soul.
I can understand the trials many saints have gone through especially when their words can touch the core of my being. In An Introduction To The Devout Life – St. Francis de Sales, (p. 61) writes:
“Prayer brings our mind into the brightness of divine light, and exposes our will to the warmth of divine love. Nothing else can so purge our mind from its ignorance, and our will from its depraved affections. It is a blessed fountain which, as it flows, revives our good desires and causes them to bring forth fruit, washes away the stains of infirmity from our soul, and calms the passions of our hearts.”
I know my “Happy” Holy Week makes me sound like an oxymoron, especially as we focus on Christ’s journey to the cross, and in light of what our Lord went through at the hands of not only the principality that washed their hands and handed him over to the Pharisee, Sadducee and mob, but it is also a time to meditate on the passion – the horrendous pain and sacrifices he made for us – it was not at all “happy.” I like to focus and look at the love of our Father, and his divine mercy for each of us so that through the blood of his son, Jesus, we may be renewed and saved from our sin.
So happy it is as we celebrate and thank our Holy Father for sending us his son. A love of a father who wanted to see his children set free from the chains of sin. Rejoice in Christ, for only one drop of his blood is enough for the salvation of all humanity. Thank you for this gift, which we cannot repaid except through our own devotion and obedience to the divine will of God.
This week, let us focus on the last week of Jesus’ life on earth, as he journeyed towards the cross, the pain and the suffering, as well as his obedience to the Father, and his ultimate sacrifice for each of us.
Meditation for Monday
Gospel Jn 12:1-11
Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for him there, and Martha served, while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with him. Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. Then Judas the Iscariot, one of his disciples, and the one who would betray him, said, “Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?” He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief and held the money bag and used to steal the contributions. So Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Let her keep this for the day of my burial. You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.”
The large crowd of the Jews found out that he was there and came, not only because of him, but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. And the chief priests plotted to kill Lazarus too, because many of the Jews were turning away and believing in Jesus because of him.
Reading the Bible and meditating on God’s word has helped me establish a deeper relationship with him. Reading and rereading a Bible verse over a period of a few days and visualizing it within my minds eye (placing myself in the scene/words), allows me to pray and meditate over a word or phrase which pops out at me. Sitting in silent prayer allows the Holy Spirit to pour forth graces of understanding and insight.
For many coming to know Jesus, the Bible is a source of not only comfort, but a foundation in our faith journey. It helps us stand strong in our faith, so that life’s curve balls don’t strike us down. From my own personal experience, knowing specific Bible verses has helped me overcome doubt, spiritual attacks, and depression. Specific Bible verses have saved me from myself.
I have compiled Bible verses for those on their faith journey. My hope is that these verses will help each of us establish a deeper relationship in our daily walk with God.
christ the center
2 Corinthians 5:17 (RSVCE)
17 Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come.
Galatians 2:20 (NIV)
20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
OBEDIENCE TO CHRIST
Romans 12:1 (RSVCE)
12 I appeal to you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
John 14:21 (RSVCE)
21 He who has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me; and he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.”
Joshua 1:8 (RSVCE)
8 This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success.
2 Timothy 3:16 (RSVCE)
6 All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
John 15:7 (RSVCE)
7 If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.
Philippians 4:6-7 (RSVCE)
6 Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus
1 John 1:3 (RSVCE)
3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you may have fellowship with us; and our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.
Hebrews 10:24-25 (NIV)
24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Planting seeds/working for God
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
1 Corinthians 15:58
58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
There will definitely be times in our lives when a certain doubtfulness or uncertainty sets in. I found that memorizing the following Bible verses have helped me immensely. They offer a source of truth that lights my way. Often, I would choose one and pray with it. Here are a six Bible verses which has grounded me with God’s assurance:
11 And this is the testimony: God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. 1 John 5:11-12
24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete. John 6:24
13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted,[e] he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV – I like the use of the word temptation used in this translation)
9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
34 I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35
I have linked Vatican and Catholic News sources on the Consecration of Ukraine and Russia. I am also linking information by Father Chris, MIC and Father Goring to give readers insights into the importance of the upcoming March 25, 2022 – Consecration of Ukraine and Russia.
I won’t be able explain in this short post the importance of this. I have discussed in earlier posting about our Immaculate Mothers’ apparitions, especially to the children in Fatima and her dire warnings of war and the human suffering. In our Holy mothers message to the children in Fatima, she specifically requested for the Consecration of Russia, which was done in the past – but without bishops participation.
Below I have embedded two videos that will help with understanding the significance of March 25th:
Father Goring on his YouTube channel often discusses the many apparitions of our Immaculate Mother. The most recent is today:
Today’s (March 18, 2020) homily by Father Chris – please take the time to watch:
Now more than ever, there is a need for all Christians regardless of creed or denomination to discern. To discern that which comes from our Heavenly Father, and that which comes from the evil one. In our world of misinformation, and false narratives, it is often hard to distinguish what is the truth of God, and what is of the world.
Knowing the difference is detrimental to our journey into eternal life. Truth in our world is no long black and white, but shades of gray (a fusion of half truths mixed with lies) and walking those lines can be like riding a rollercoaster, where the plunge can take you down, and without realizing you have fallen into Satan’s grasp.
Ralph Martin of Renewal Ministries has a new pamphlet coming out, and I encourage my readers to get it.
Renewal Ministries is dedicated to fostering renewal and evangelization in the Catholic Church by helping people know the personal love of God in Jesus and grow in holiness.
As a fired up Catholic, I love to share the love of Jesus, and I love tuning into this ministry for the very fact that it is reaching out into our community to spread that love and light. I love to lead others to Jesus through introducing informative and in-depth programs that help us see beyond all the din in our lives. In the series below, Ralph & Peter talk about fixing our eyes on the Lord in challenging times, allowing us to bear fruit, flourish spiritually, and see the glory of Jesus:
God Bless all who are walking in Jesus. Let us pray for the salvation of all💖
Milo Yiannopoulos an “investigative reporter, reformed sodomite, free-speech martyr, hair icon & to the annoyance of many, a happy person.”
I first came across Milo Yiannopoulos’ work a few years ago and thought his writings were both provocative and insightful, especially in his critical response to leftist ideology.
Although his straight talk can be offensive at times, he is always true to his views which are surprisingly always an accurate study of society and our cancel culture. His poignant testimony about his gay lifestyle and conversion is touching. He also talks about God’s love for him, and his conversion from a homosexual lifestyle back to God.
He gives an insight into the importance of parenting, and how their failure as parents can lead their own children into a homosexual lifestyle.
I would like to share with you Milos’ talk about his return to the roots of his Catholic Faith, and his views on homosexuality and parenting – Repost From Lifesitenews:
Through no fault of his own, Milo’s first-ever appearance at the convention did not proceed according to plan. A weather-induced flight delay in New York put him behind schedule, and upon landing in Cleveland he rode in the back of a squad car to make it to the hotel ballroom as quickly as he could.
Speaking with no notes after leaving his luggage behind, Milo gave an impromptu account of his turning away from homosexuality and the challenges he’s now facing.
The conservative provocateur specifically raised his struggles with anhedonia, defined as the inability to feel pleasure, and implied that it is much more difficult to deal with than celibacy.
“When I was unknowingly choosing to live that [homosexual] life, I was condemned to loneliness, addictions, and a variety of other things,” Milo said in reference to the “endless pursuit of dopamine and pleasure” which colored that life.
“I have permanently fried the reward circuits in my brain … Once you fry those circuits, they don’t come back without decades of recalibration,” he added.
Milo also articulated his new twofold mission after returning to the Catholic faith: to establish a Florida-based clinic to help gay men leave the homosexual lifestyle, and to protect the lives of the unborn.
“I’ve never changed on the gay thing, but I guess I’ve stopped being a hypocrite,” he said. “Without Christ, I am fairly sure that I would be dead.”
I don’t know where I am going. I am leaving that all to You. I only know that your plans for me is unchanging.
It was me who flittered in and out – seeking you now and then. I treated you like a revolving door, but your arms were always stretched – waiting for me?
Well, not I’ve stopped running. I give my all to You – Your Divine Will. My Almighty God, help me make use of the gifts you have given me.
Since the beginning of time, and before I was born, you had plans for me. You have blessed me with your amazing grace with mercy unbound. Yeah, I have ignored you! I have walked away from You! I was searching – for what? – I don’t even recall. It was just to fill an empty hole – so basically anything goes – well that sure didn’t last long – as I found myself searching for more.
Well, here I am JESUS, I’m all broken up. What’s left of me, is all that I can give. Who would have thought You patched me all up, and delivered me from me – the dark cloud that covered me for most of my life – gone!
Like a breeze, Your divine breathe shoo it away, and now I can walk freely in the embrace of your love. I am now a better me in my own existence walking with God.
8 All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing. 9 What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun. 10 Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us. 11 There is no remembrance of former things,[a] nor will there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after.
The Vanity of Wisdom
12 I the Preacher have been king over Israel in Jerusalem. 13 And I applied my heart[f] to seek and to search out by wisdom all that is done under heaven. It is an unhappy business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. 14 I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity[g] and a striving after wind.
15 What is crooked cannot be made straight, and what is lacking cannot be counted.
16 I said in my heart, “I have acquired great wisdom, surpassing all who were over Jerusalem before me, and my heart has had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.” 17 And I applied my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly. I perceived that this also is but a striving after wind.
18 For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.