Our Spiritual Implant

A guest post from Sandra Ralph…

Recently while watching the local evening news I saw a remarkable story. A baby (I think nine months old) born deaf had received a cochlear implant and was hearing the sounds of her mother’s voice for the first time while sitting on her lap. The wonder and sweet smile that kept appearing on her little face was precious, and the mother was overcome with emotion.

Earlier that day I was reading from a Sonja Corbitt book–Unleashed: How to Receive Everything the Holy Spirit Wants to Give You–and she was relating the importance of learning to “hear” our heavenly parent’s voice and the blessings that flow from that. Surely that is God’s intention, but due to our broken world (and often broken bodies) we, too, need help in becoming able to hear clearly. But when we can–and do–the joy our Heavenly Father desires for us is made manifest. Praise be to God!

Lord of all creation…help me to hear your voice. Heighten my sense of your presence in times of gladness and times of sorrow or suffering. Implant your spirit deep within and be the instrument that enables me to hear you clearly.

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A Wee Bit of Verse

 

Passion, poetry all unbending

To our greater understanding

What has been dark is now made light

In the early dawn that follows night.

 

Eye can’t see nor ear has heard

All the wonders of The Word

God Incarnate, Christ the Lion

Laying down His life for Adam’s scion.

 

Truth be told it all seems new

Yet familiar echoes in all is true

Waiting for the breaking dawn

When all will gather on Heaven’s lawn.

 

Until that Day we wait our life

Mindling hope, love, joy, and strife;

Our Creator awaits us there

When He welcomes us to His chair.

 

Copyright Sabryna Noltie

Help for Troubled Times

I’ve shared this prayer before but it seems good to share it once again…

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always, though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.

Thomas Merton

Our Most Powerful Tool

Recently one family member shared some encouraging words to another one, who then passed them along to me. Here is what touched me deeply.

“Know that your dilemma is out of your control and that the only power you have over it is our most powerful tool…prayer…practice trust in Jesus and patience while He resolves the issue.”

I have felt out of control lately and I don’t like that feeling. Circumstances aren’t pleasant and I can only do so much–which, other than prayer, is really very little–to address the situation. It is one that time and the providence of God will resolve one way or another. Jesus will resolve the issue. It’s not up to me, although I have to practice trust and patience and, as Elisabeth Elliot would say, keep on “doing the next thing” that needs to be done…which includes a great deal of praying! I must cooperate with grace, exercising humility and swallowing my pride when things need to be done that I’m not keen on.

In the long run, as Julian of Norwich has said, “All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.”  

Rest in God: Easter Edition

Right now I have multiple friends and family–mine included–who are going through challenging circumstances, so I’m sharing this profound quote on this blessed Easter Sunday as part of my Easter prayers and wishes for you. True rest is sometimes elusive for me, even on days of rest–and celebration!–such as Easter Sunday. In that vein, I find comforting the following words from St. Edith Stein. I’m embracing her sentiments in hope that today and throughout the following ones I will be experiencing this Easter week as “a new life.” Maybe you will want to do the same…

“God is there in these moments of rest and can give us in a single instant exactly what we need. Then the rest of the day can take its course, under the same effort and strain, perhaps, but in peace. And when night comes, and you look back over the day and see how fragmentary everything has been, and how much you planned that has gone undone, and all the reasons you have to be embarrassed and ashamed: just take everything exactly as it is, put it in God’s hands and leave it with him. Then you will be able to rest in him–really rest–and start the next day as a new life.”

First Friday in Advent: A Prayer for this Season

Prepare a way for you, Lord?
I’ve got lots of work to do!

Help me prepare a way for you into my home, Lord:
help me find a place, a room, a corner, a chair
where you and I can meet each day to pray.
Perhaps I’ll put a candle there, with a Bible;
maybe a statue or a picture; a rosary or a prayer card:
something to mark the spot as the place I keep
to go each day to sit and rest, to take a deep breath,
to remember your presence and open my heart in prayer.

Help me prepare a way for you on my calendar,
an “appointment” each day;
even just ten minutes for you and me to get together,
to talk about the day, its ups and downs,
and get to know each other just a little better than yesterday.

Help me prepare a way for you to enter my thoughts, Lord.
When I’m trying to figure things out, nudge me
to ask for your guidance and counsel,
your Spirit and your wisdom,
when I’m making decisions and choices.
Help me prepare a way for you, Lord,
in my family and among my friends, at work and at school,
in my parish and in my neighborhood.
Help me prepare a way for you to come into the hearts
of those around me who are alone.

Help me prepare a way for you, Lord,
in the crazy rush of Christmas all around me.
Help me remember it’s your birthday
and that you should get some presents—from me.
Help me remember the poverty of your nativity:
make your way into my wallet and spend generously
on those whose needs are so much greater than my own.
Help me remember that of all the gifts I might receive,
none is greater than the love you have for me.

Help me prepare a way for you
to enter my life decisively, Lord.
In the quiet of my prayer, Lord,
help me clear the path you walk into my life, into my soul.

In the stillness of my prayer, Lord,
help me see you as you make your way towards me,
and show me that no matter the roadblocks I put up,
you’ll find a way to come, to enter,
and to fill me with your presence. Amen.

From Good Morning, Good God! by Fr. Austin Fleming, The Word Among Us Press, 2015, via

https://wau.org/resources/article/a_prayer_for_advent/

 

Too Much Tuesday: Simplicity in Spirituality

While rereading Dom Hubert Van Zeller’s outstanding Holiness for Housewives (and other working women), my primary Advent spiritual reading this year, I ran across the following words of wisdom I thought worth sharing. So often we make growing in our faith a complicated matter and are discouraged when we don’t seem to make much progress. Or, alternatively, we can become complacent and coast along in our spiritual practices and not really bear much fruit along the way.

I believe this holy Benedictine priest nailed it when he wrote this book as his way to holiness is, in Benedictine tradition, one of stability, obedience, and ongoing conversion–all the while balanced by moderation. I hope his words–summed up in his phrase “religion is yielding to Christ” are helpful to you as well during this time of waiting and preparing for our Lord and Savior’s birth.

“Training in spiritual things…can be done only by the combined activity of God and yourself. Concentrate on the service of the will…Obedience to God’s will is…is all that religion amounts to. Religion is God. Religion is recognizing God in His own setting. The setting is provided by Him, not by us…Religion is yielding to Christ.

The only thing that really matters in life is doing the will of God. Once you really appreciate this truth, and act accordingly to its implications, you save yourself a lot of unnecessary heart-searching [overthinking] and resentment.”

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