Lenten Temptation 3

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Why does God allow us to be tempted? Precisely because we grow so much when we are. We grow in faith. We grow in fortitude. We grow in humility. We learn to trust less in ourselves and more on God. Our prayer deepens. We turn more fervently to the Sacraments. Slowly, surely, we become more mature spiritually as God’s grace engages our freedom.

Lenten Fulfillment Reply

Lent is a time to stop the frantic pursuit of things and kneel down, worshiping Jesus, allowing him to be God and Lord of our life.

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Our fallen nature wants to make a golden calf out of many things, especially ourselves, yet paradoxically worshiping this calf never brings deep and lasting completion. The empty ache within is still there. By kneeling, adoring, praising, and worshiping Jesus we tear down the calf we’ve built and allow him to fill us. It’s by losing our life in Him that we find it.

Lenten Simplicity 4

Lent is a privileged time to simplify our lives.

Taken this morning in the sacristy of the Sisters of Life.

Taken this morning in the sacristy of the Sisters of Life.

There is so much coming at us daily, both good and bad, much like the dragnet that is cast into the sea and pulls in fish of all  kinds. What is good needs to be cherished; what is bad needs to be set aside. Fasting and Lenten sacrifices purify us so we can live more fully what is good, noble, just, pure, and worthy of praise.

Advent Tip: Reach Out 1

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The world is smaller. We travel great distances easily; social media connects us; we know immediately everything that is going on. Yet, paradoxically, many people feel more lonely than ever.

Mary, after the Annunciation, teaches us a valuable lesson. She traveled through the hill county to bring the good news to Elizabeth, not an easy journey for anyone, especially a young pregnant girl. The joy and light of Christ needs to be shared.

It might be a good idea to stop and ask ourselves, More…

Advent Tip: Finding God’s Will 3

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Perhaps it’s the winter storm of ice and snow that’s turned my thoughts to the insightful and inspiring story of Fr Walter Ciszek, SJ. He wrote, “With God in Russia” and “He Leadeth Me”, documenting his spiritual journey during his 23 years in solitary confinement and in the labor camps of communist Russia after World War II. It was his utter reliance on God’s will that enabled him to endure.

His insight is brief and profoundly life changing: Don’t look for God’s will as something “out there” for you to obtain; rather, see the circumstances, people, everyday events, as it is presented today, as God’s will.

He writes, More…

Advent Tip: Your Soul is the Manger 8

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There are many profound reasons why the newborn Jesus was laid in a manger, or better said, a feeding trough. It shows that right from the first moment of his life he is the bread of life, giving himself to us as food. Even the name Bethlehem means, “house of bread”. It also shows that Jesus has embraced poverty and so he identifies with all the poor of the world. It also shows that he is not afraid of humbling himself in order to dwell in an imperfect place. More…

Advent Tip: Life Itself is an Advent 2

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We all have an inner discontent that we feel, an inner thirst, an expectation of fullness that we haven’t yet achieved, a yearning and a longing for something. Remarkably, no matter how much we have or experience, no matter how good, never fully satisfies our thirst. We shouldn’t be afraid of this inner angst; rather, it’s good to recognize and embrace it, and recall that life itself has an advent dimension to it. Part of life is a longing for God to act. We are made for God and so we yearn for him. But we need to More…

Advent Tip: Who Is My John the Baptist? 4

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John the Baptist is a prominent figure during the Advent season. We see him announcing the coming of the Messiah along the banks of the Jordan, washing people in baptism, and not holding back any words in calling people to conversion.

I believe God sends John the Baptists into our lives. People, places, circumstances, events, moments that remind us: Jesus is here, Jesus is coming, Jesus lives. More…

Advent Tip: We’re Expecting More Than Christmas 1

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If we’ve been living Advent with interest, we’ve probably prepared the nativity scene (minus the Christ child), prepared Advent candles, listened attentively to the readings and beautiful liturgical prayers at Mass, and perhaps taken a little extra time for spiritual reading and retreat, in order to prepare ourselves to celebrate Christ’s birth at Christmas.

Today’s second Advent tip is simply to More…

Advent Tip: Learn from Mary 7

The time leading up to Christmas is often packed with things to do, people to see, gifts to be wrapped, cards to send, travels to be planned, and parties to attend. This is all well and good and even important. It can even be helpful, if we live it properly. More…