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AFRAIDNOT

Do not be afraid. Just have faith. Mark 5:36

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Offer It Up May 31st

MEMORIAL DAY


Romans 12:9-16

Let love be sincere; hate what is evil, hold on to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor. Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer.

Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality. Bless those who persecute you, bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.

Have the same regard for one another; do not be haughty but associate with the lowly; do not be wise in your own estimation.

This is the real deal, the truth with no play-acting when it comes to this: our faith is in the love we have for God. His Love for us is always there. It is up to us to move closer to Him. That is what makes our choices in life our free will. Through our actions and thoughts, we can find ourselves more in His light or straining to make things out in the darkness.

We get on a roll and think we have a pretty good set up going and then we start leaking a bit of oil—(thinking more highly of ourselves)— and then a tire goes flat—(we ignored the oil leak)— and then it goes off the car completely—(we thought we could make it on three good tires)— and then we find ourselves in the ditch maybe again, maybe for the first time. Whatever the case, whatever our thoughts, God was there, keeping us from greater harm each time. The choices we made or make, though in perseverance, may not match with those we make in prayerful perseverance. There’s a difference. That is why prayer is so important in our daily lives.

Our service on this earth is nothing compared to what He has for us in eternity. I have to believe that is why Scripture keeps insisting that we serve others while serving Him. And in so doing, with prayer, we keep that fire burning with the endurance produces character and that character which produces hope. And we know through scripture that Hope, and God’s Love, does not disappoint.

Romans 5:1-5

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith to this grace in which we stand, and we boast in hope of the glory of God.

Not only that, but we even boast of our afflictions, knowing that affliction produces endurance, and endurance, proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.


Offer It Up May 30th

Trinity Sunday


In the name of The Father, and of The Son,

and of The Holy Spirit. Amen.


"Let us not then be ashamed to confess the Crucified. Be the Cross our seal made with boldness by our fingers on our brow and in everything; over the bread we eat, and the cups we drink; in our comings in, and goings out; before our sleep, when we lie down and when we awake; when we are in the way and when we are still. Great is that preservative; it is without price, for the poor's sake; without toil, for the sick, since also its grace is from God. It is the Sign of the faithful, and the dread of evils; for He has triumphed over them in it, having made a show of them openly; for when they see the Cross, they are reminded of the Crucified; they are afraid of Him, Who hath bruised the heads of the dragon. Despise not the Seal, because of the freeness of the Gift; but for this rather honor thy Benefactor."
St. Cyril of Jerusalem


Offer It Up May 29th


Jude 17, 20b-25

Beloved, remember the words spoken beforehand by the Apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Build yourselves up in your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit. Keep yourselves in the love of God and wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. On those who waver, have mercy; save others by snatching them out of the fire; on others have mercy with fear, abhorring even the outer garment stained by the flesh.

To the one who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you unblemished and exultant, in the presence of his glory, to the only God, our savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord be glory, majesty, power, and authority from ages past, now, and for ages to come. Amen.

What is more important than our faith and prayer? What do we do on a daily basis to remind ourselves that we are living our lives ‘in the presence of His glory’? Even before we roll out of bed, we get a chance to say thanks for another day that He gave us.

Let’s face it: we take a back seat often enough and our best efforts are left unused when we should be taking, or using more, control and giving all we have for His glory. We are human and we have a tendency to rationalize our actions-they do it so it’s okay for us to do it. We justify our behavior by the actions of others. We respond or react without any thought or consideration to another’s intention or reason behind their action. We want justice because they deserve it. What’s wrong with that picture?

You’ve got it figured out already. It is not about our judgment. Someone greater than us has that covered. It is about us doing what we can to bring ourselves around to living a life that will continue to lead others to Him.

Build yourselves up in the most holyfaith; pray in the Holy Spirit’.

As for those that have that propensity to bring us down or get under our skin or make our anatomies itch, they are okay too. We keep doing what we are doing by our example, not doing what they are doing by theirs. As they pick up on following our lead, sooner than later, not only will our faith and love for God will be deeper and greater but so will theirs.

2 Peter 3:13-15a

What we await are new heavens and a new earth where, according to his promise, the justice of God will reside. So, beloved, while waiting for this, make every effort to be found without stain or defilement, and at peace in his sight. Consider that our Lord’s patience is directed toward salvation.


Offer It Up May 28th


1 Peter 4:7-13

Beloved:

The end of all things is at hand. Therefore be serious and sober-minded so that you will be able to pray.

Above all, let your love for one another be intense, because love covers a multitude of sins. Be hospitable to one another without complaining. As each one has received a gift, use it to serve one another as good stewards of God’s varied grace.

Whoever preaches, let it be with the words of God; whoever serves, let it be with the strength that God supplies, so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Beloved, do not be surprised that a trial by fire is occurring among you, as if something strange were happening to you. But rejoice to the extent that you share in the sufferings of Christ, so that when his glory is revealed you may also rejoice exultantly.

Ever met anyone that can’t understand why their life seems to be nothing but a string of woe is me’s and ain’t it awfuls? You may even know some people like this-a life full of rain clouds and misery. You happen to pass them somewhere on the street, say hello and the next thing out of their mouth is ‘Well, that’s easy for you to say! You should be living what I have to go through!’ You offer an apology of some sort but they dismiss you before you can even get that in as they go on to say that it’s someone else’s fault that they are in the plight they are suffering… their boss, their spouse, their children, their family—anyone they can point a finger at so that they are not to blame. Before you know it, (and if you can listen long enough), you start squirming a bit as even you might start feeling some of the heat for their condition.

As Peter wrote in today’s reading, they shouldn’t be surprised, nor should we of course, that these trials are happening. Every day we get an opportunity, a new chance at salvation, to experience what God has given us to live and choose to do in His way. Rejoice in tribulations? Why not? They could be worse and will often get that way. Let us be thankful we are here to share in the glory and grace He has planned for us.

We were not brought here for ourselves but for others. It is those then we live for. And with the gifts we have to use and to share, we are also sharing in His glory and His suffering. So the next time it happens that you feel that way or someone else invites you to their pity party, remember how great it is to share in that suffering with our Lord Jesus Christ as He shares that burden with you.

Ain’t it awful? Yeah, it might be, but ain’t it great to be in His grace?


Offer It Up May 27th


Mark 10:46-52

As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say,
“Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.”
And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me.”
Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”
So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage; get up, Jesus is calling you.” He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus. Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?”
The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.”
Jesus told him, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.”
Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.

Up to now, what has been the biggest challenge, the hardest road, the most difficult time you’ve come into in your life? Are you still there in it? Is it a cross that seems to be picked up from time to time? Or are there a few of those things that have crept around for awhile that have entwined themselves into your daily living and have become so much a way of life that you hardly recognize them as crosses anymore?

Bartimeus had his cross of blindness. He had his cross of begging just to live. He had his cross of those telling him to be silent, to leave them alone. If it were to be told, there were probably others he had as well. So what did he do with his crosses? Did he abandon them to continue his life of darkness and poverty? Did he sit there and remain silent, even when he was admonished to do so? Not hardly.

He put his belief in the man he had heard about that was changing people’s lives. He knew that this Jesus of Nazareth could make a difference for him. How? It had to be his faith in something, in someone greater than what he had ever heard of before. He knew that Jesus was going to bring him from his darkness to the seeing the light of the world around him. When those around him had little faith, he had more than enough for them all. When Jesus asked him what he wanted, his faith was his answer for his sight.

When our crosses bring us down, we forget that our crosses are His crosses. We may not choose to recognize them as such but He knows they are. And when we get to that point when and where we know we can't do it on our own, we realize that's what we've been doing all along. When those around us have their faith questioned, when our faith is brought into doubt, Jesus will be there for us just as He was for Bartimaeus, calling for us. When He does ask, “What do you want Me to do for you?’ may we all do as Bartimaeus did—jump for joy even—and follow him as He leads us back on our journey home.


Offer It Up May 26th


1 Peter 1:18-21

Beloved:

Realize that you were ransomed from your futile conduct, handed on by your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold but with the precious Blood of Christ as of a spotless unblemished Lamb.

He was known before the foundation of the world but revealed in the final time for you, who through him believe in God who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

Ransomed from our trite and sinful behavior.

Not with things of this world but with the Blood of the Lamb, the faultless Lamb known before the foundation of the world.

And all because of us.

And what do we do with it? We have to get ourselves turned around and inside out about ourselves and others and things, forgetting Who got us here in the first place. It’s as if we think we had everything to do with where we are and what we have. Well, we do have free will that is our gift yet to believe that we ‘did it all by ourselves’ is a bit presumptuous. It’s really quite arrogant.

There are plans for us all to follow and gifts for us all to use. Each day we must pray for the openness to see how God wants us to use those gifts to better honor and glorify Him. With each day we have, that is our opportunity to be ‘born anew… through the living and abiding word of God.’

1 Peter 1:22-25

Since you have purified yourselves by obedience to the truth for sincere brotherly love, love one another intensely from a pure heart. You have been born anew, not from perishable but from imperishable seed, through the living and abiding word of God, for:“All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of the field; the grass withers, and the flower wilts; but the word of the Lord remains forever.” This is the word that has been proclaimed to you.


Offer It Up May 25th


1 Peter 1:13-16

Therefore, gird up the loins of your mind, live soberly, and set your hopes completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Like obedient children, do not act in compliance with the desires of your former ignorance but, as he who called you is holy, be holy yourselves in every aspect of your conduct, for it is written, "Be holy because I am holy."

How does Ordinary Time begin? With fire and tongues and wind... not your standard, run of the mill ordinary would you say?
And then you look at the readings, the Gospels-what is so ordinary about them? Acts, Corinthians, Romans, Peter-John, Mark-what do you do but stand aside and let the Holy Spirit fill you and let this Ordinary time become more than extraordinary in the way you live.

Opening up to the Holy Spirit

Jesus spoke of the Holy Spirit not merely as a comforter but as a breeze, blowing mysteriously. If we but put up our sails, the Holy Spirit will do a good deal of the work for us, help us to be open to the human condition and be creative in solutions to the myriad problems that are the stuff of many of our lives today - bad marriages, ungrateful children, loss of jobs, millennial ennui, sizeable moral flaws. For this we need to be open to the moment, ready to alter plans if we sense a need for immediate change. Religion becomes natural and organic, without any of the glad-handing, fixed-smile religiosity that often goes no deeper. It is desire, not guilt that is the prime motivator.Unknown


Offer It Up May 24th


1 Peter 1:3-9

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who in his great mercy gave us a new birth to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you who by the power of God are safeguarded through faith, to a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the final time.

In this you rejoice, although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Although you have not seen him you love him; even though you do not see him now yet you believe in him,

you rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, as you attain the goal of faith, the salvation of your souls.

There are a lot of things we, (this would be the singular we as in ‘I’), take for granted and count on them being there, even though we don’t seem them working or quite understand how or why they do… they just do. Cell phones, computers, cars—people with intelligence and skills well beyond my pay grade know how to put things in place to make them work. All we/I do is turn them on and use them, getting something in return, for what little I know about how to use them.

In Peter’s letter, he talks about our salvation and that we don’t see God the Father as we go through our lives but we know He is there and are thankful for all that He has given us. His faithfulness that is so strong, it ‘is imperishable, undefiled and unfading’. Even though we may run into some issues from time to time, some ‘dropped calls’ to use some cell phone vernacular, we know that with Him, our goal is attainable.

God’s Love is not to be taken for granted. But it happens. Even though we may find that we take ourselves and each other for granted, the good news is that He doesn’t. If you are unclear on that concept, you can find some clarity in the Good News.


Offer It Up May 23rd

Pentecost Sunday


Romans 8:12-17

Consequently, brothers, we are not debtors to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh, you will die, but if by the spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.

For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, "Abba, Father!"

The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

For where we are today, we all put ourselves on the paths we are walking. Sure, we didn’t get to pick our parents or where we went to grade school but for most of what we have today and where we are, it’s pretty much been our call. Who we call as friends, who we hold dear as family, where we put our efforts forth at work or at volunteering or even looking for employment—those are all our choices. A lot of times the results are favorable yet there are those ‘other’ times when we would like to have a do-over if it were possible.

Saint Thérèse of Lisieux had this to say: The road on which you are walking is a royal road, it is not a beaten track, but a path traced out by Jesus Himself.” If it was traced by Him, we could and should say that He probably knows that path pretty well. Way better than we do. Way better than worldly advice too.

At times the path may be narrow, with obstacles and darkness along the way but that doesn’t mean you are doing it alone. Nor does it mean He loves us any less. On the contrary; He wants us to recognize even more how much He can do for us in times of need as well as when times are good. He wants what is good and just for us. Don’t you think we should want the same?


Offer It Up May 22nd


John 21:22

Jesus said to him, "What if I want him to remain until I come? 12 What concern is it of yours? You follow me."

Jesus comes straight to the point in today's scripture. When the Apostles are diving in for some juicy gossip and ratting out, Jesus says simply--what business is this of yours? Why are you asking this? It is up to you to follow me.

And this should be the attitude we strike as we serve Him in the world today. There are any number of things we could be scandalized by. We can choose any number of people to be offended by. We can spend our time asking who is betraying Jesus now. We can make accusations; we can call out those who we feel are not living the gospel life.

To what purpose? To spread scandal and rumor? To make ourselves feel better? No, the better part is to serve God, and to serve as His disciples, and to treat those whom we suspect of not loving enough with so much love that it is like "heaping hot coals upon their heads." Let our love be the conviction that brings everyone back to true love and repentance. Let our lavish care and devotion show everyone the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

That is our call, that is our challenge--not to point the accusing finger, but to serve others so that whoever thinks to betray Jesus, thinks first of the love he or she has experienced because of Him.

Juan de la Cruzthe journey


Offer It Up May 21st


John 21:15-19

After Jesus had revealed himself to his disciples and eaten breakfast with them, He said to Simon Peter,

“Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?”

Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”

Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.”

He then said to Simon Peter a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?”

Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”

He said to him, “Tend my sheep.”

He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?”

Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him,

“Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.”

Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. Amen, amen, I say to you, when you were younger, you used to dress yourself and go where you wanted; but when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.”

He said this signifying by what kind of death he would glorify God. And when he had said this, he said to him, “Follow me.”

“Do you love me?”

Each day we have as gift from God gives us an opportunity to begin it with a prayer of thanks and praise, and to say ‘Yes, I do love You, Lord.’

As Peter was asked three times, we are asked in a number of ways to respond to the love God shares with us. From serving others to looking beyond our own trials and pains, we must put our faith and trust in the Love He has for us and allow our love for Him to grow. Peter found it easy to get dispirited before when he denied Jesus three times and when given this chance, he did not let it pass to let Him know how much he meant that he loved Him.

As with Peter, things weren’t going his way when he did deny Jesus. As with us, we do much of the same thing, at least I do anyway, when we get our own mad on or temper tantrum shaking out and putting the rest of the world at odds against us. We’re not going the wrong way on a one-way street, everyone else is. Eventually, we either crash or realize the error of our ways and turn around or at least pull over till we can.

There was Peter, turning around as he responded and affirming his love for Jesus.

There was Jesus, reaching out and affirming His love and forgiveness of Peter. He does the same for us as we come to love and tend His sheep as He did.


Offer It Up May 20th


Acts 22:30; 23:6-11

Wishing to determine the truth about why Paul was being accused by the Jews, the commander freed him and ordered the chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin to convene. Then he brought Paul down and made him stand before them.

Paul was aware that some were Sadducees and some Pharisees, so he called out before the Sanhedrin, “My brothers, I am a Pharisee, the son of Pharisees; I am on trial for hope in the resurrection of the dead.” When he said this, a dispute broke out between the Pharisees and Sadducees, and the group became divided.

For the Sadducees say that there is no resurrection or angels or spirits, while the Pharisees acknowledge all three.

A great uproar occurred, and some scribes belonging to the Pharisee party stood up and sharply argued, “We find nothing wrong with this man. Suppose a spirit or an angel has spoken to him?”

The dispute was so serious that the commander, afraid that Paul would be torn to pieces by them, ordered his troops to go down and rescue Paul from their midst and take him into the compound.

The following night the Lord stood by him and said, “Take courage. For just as you have borne witness to my cause in Jerusalem, so you must also bear witness in Rome.”

Did you get that bit in the first verse about the commander wanting to ‘determine the truth’, freeing Paul to have him speak to the Sanhedrin? The Sanhedrin—a council, an assembly of such judge and jury that would determine Paul’s fate. The Sanhedrin—councils, assemblies of such judges and juries that ultimately led to Jesus’ crucifixion. A tough crowd to bring the message of salvation to if there ever was one. It turns out, things went south in a hurry and the commander felt that Paul was not going to make it out of this trial with all of his faculties intact. So he got him out of there.

Maybe the commander, like Pilate, didn’t want Paul’s blood on his hands. Maybe the commander was like Herod and was seeking more of the Truth. Could either of these, both or something else entirely. Whatever he was thinking was enough to save Paul’s skin for another day. And being far from the maddening crowd, Paul was assured that what he was doing was what he was supposed to be doing. Even if it meant putting his life on the line, he was ready to do so all for the hope in the Resurrection of the dead—our salvation.

It happens that uproars and disputes are a part of our journey as we continue to do Paul’s work, the mission of Jesus Christ. We can also feel as if we are about to be torn to shreds as was our predecessor, maybe even suffering as Jesus did. As part of that commitment of our faith, we know we will face those trials often. And as Paul, we will keep our focus on what is important: to finish our journey, bearing witness to His Gospel.

Acts 20:24

Yet I consider life of no importance to me, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to bear witness to the gospel of God's grace.


Offer It Up May 19th


Matthew 8: 23-27

He got into a boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a violent storm came up on the sea, so that the boat was being swamped by waves; but he was asleep. They came and woke him, saying, "Lord, save us! We are perishing!" He said to them, "Why are you terrified, O you of little faith?" Then he got up, rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was great calm. The men were amazed and said, "What sort of man is this, whom even the winds and the sea obey?"

How many times does that happen to you? To us? Something tragic or painful happens—from a family or friend perspective or even from another angle—and we act is if this is the first time it is has ever happened? Or we are the only ones it has ever happened to? No, I am not in any way discounting the pain or sorrow or grief from injury or death, yet our minds often go on standby and the world seems to be a hazy sea of humanity. Nothing distinct in it. Nothing distinct out of it. If we were in a boat at sea, there would be nothing to see but the fog all around us on the water.

But we forget one important factor, as did the disciples. We forget we are not alone in our boat. We forget that this, as bad or as tragic or as grief-filled we may be, is not so much about us and what we do but more so about others and who we are.

Scripture has several references to Jesus and storms at sea. I am not learned enough yet to grasp them all, becoming just barely a little bit clear on the concept now. With what little I do understand, it appears He wants us to see just that—He is in our boat and He can calm the storms all the time. It is up to us to put our faith where our beliefs are and let Him do as He says He can do.

Matthew 8:26-27

Then he got up, rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was great calm. Themen were amazed and said, "What sort of man is this, whom even the winds and the sea obey?"


Offer It Up May 18th

Happy Birthday Anna Marie!


John 16:29-33

The disciples said to Jesus,

“Now you are talking plainly, and not in any figure of speech. Now we realize that you know everything and that you do not need to have anyone question you. Because of this we believe that you came from God.”

Jesus answered them, “Do you believe now? Behold, the hour is coming and has arrived when each of you will be scattered to his own home and you will leave me alone. But I am not alone, because the Father is with me.

I have told you this so that you might have peace in me.

In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world.”

This is one of those good news, bad news situations. The disciples have finally come to realize the truth about Jesus – He truly is the Son of God! No more questioning or doubting.No more figures of speech. Whew! They are at rest and at peace with the truth.

There was, however, the need for more truth. The bad news first: the time is coming when the disciples will be scattered and separated from each other for a while and Jesus will be left alone to deal with God’s plan for Him. The good news: Jesus is not really going to be all alone because God, the Father, will be right beside Him. It’s as if Jesus is saying that bad things are going to happen, but maintain your peace or draw peace from me now in preparation for that time.

More truth – the bad news first: being in the world means trouble is never far behind.Now the good news: Jesus has already conquered the world and its troubles. All we have to do is take courage in that knowledge and truth about Him.

Peace and courage. Somehow, when you say them together, it fits. I don’t know about you, but I find it hard to be courageous when I feel conflicted about something. It is not until I’ve resolved the conflict from within myself and settled on the right path that I find peace with my trouble in the world. Once I do that, I also find courage to act accordingly. And the only way I know to resolve the conflict and find the right path is through prayer. lgboyd

Pray until you almost cease to pray, because trust has become so rock-like, and then pray on because it has become so much a habit that you cannot resist it.

God Calling


Offer It Up May 17th


Acts 19:1-7

While Apollos was in Corinth, Paul traveled through the interior of the country and down to Ephesus where he found some disciples.

He said to them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?”

They answered him, “We have never even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.”

He said, “How were you baptized?”

They replied, “With the baptism of John.”

Paul then said, “John baptized with a baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, in Jesus.”

When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. Altogether there were about twelve men.

Like the apostles, we 21st century Christians are expectantly waiting for the Holy Spirit. The Church's liturgical year brings us each year to Pentecost where we can prepare to receive the life giving Spirit of God. Oh yes, we received the Spirit at baptism, we were anointed in the Spirit at Confirmation, but somehow many of us just don't respond to God's life-giving Grace as did the apostles.

We have inherited their mission, and we also are given all the graces we need to fulfill that mission. It seems we have to follow a pattern of renewal to be constantly opening ourselves to the Spirit. The gifts of the Spirit I have no doubt are poured out in abundance, but somehow we are too often like unappreciative, even ungrateful receivers of God's plentiful gifts. Is it that we become so self-absorbed that we hoard the gifts of the Spirit thinking that they are given solely for our own life?

"Go make disciples of all nations"

"Love one another as I have loved you"

"Take up your cross and follow me"

On and on, Jesus' commands and revelation exhort us to use the Gifts given to us to proclaim the Good News and encourage those whose lives touch ours to live as disciples. We stand at the moment looking heavenward. Jesus has left us to the task he has called us to take on and accomplish. Love. Mercy. Forgiveness.

Will we live so as to make these a reality. We are to make the virtues of Faith, Hope and Love signs of our life in the Spirit. Our lives should produce the fruit of the Spirit in abundance, love, joy, peace, patience, goodness and kindness, trust, self-control, chastity. The Cardinal virtues shining in our lived-out actions, Prudence, Justice, Fortitude, and Temperance are the powers we need to develop to lead us to holiness of life.

AMDG: Ad Majorem Dei GloriamTo the greater Glory of God.
All of our life is intended to give glory to God. Alleluia

Deacon


Offer It Up May 16th


1 Corinthians 1:9

God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

One Minute for A Lifetime
Every man can tell you how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends. Marcus Tullius Cicero

When was the last time you took a friend to a movie, that for an instant relieved them of burdens they carried?
When was the last time you made them see another side, and they realized that things weren't so bad after all?
When was the last time you inspired them to do better and to feel better?
When was the last time you told a joke that made your friends eyes water from the laughter?
When was the last time you did one of those things for a friend?

It is a difficult job. It's hard enough to do those things for ourselves and those under our own roof, harder still for friends. It's even more difficult to do these things each day.

Suppose you could do that...
Each day...
For a friend?
Would you?

"With all that I have to do, how can I do that every day for friends?" you ask.

Every man can tell you how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends.

Start counting... you've got something far more valuable than goats and sheep.

A minute for a lifetime? ...for a friend

Submitted by Ren V.


Offer It Up May 15th


1 Corinthians 9:22-23

To the weak I became weak, to win over the weak. I have become all things to all, to save at least some. All this I do for the sake of the gospel, so that I too may have a share in it.

How often do we submit ourselves to be lower than the status we carry? The sort of lowering where we are weak, as in weak, ‘to win over the weak’? Or do we even get it much consideration?

There are those times we do find ourselves so locked into our journeys that our discipline prevents us from putting ourselves in a position to help others. Our internal controls, from years of being developed from our culture and education and environment, keep us from stepping out of our comfort zone. And if we did that, we might have to do something we’ve never done before and, egads, find out that we don’t see it as that bad a deal after all.

‘Nope, can’t go there… never have been to the mission to serve them people and not gonna start now.’

‘Prison ministry? Are you kidding? They need to serve their time for what they did!’

‘I can’t get into visiting old people… they’re just waiting for their time to go.’

‘Kids these day! No wonder so many are in alternative education. That’s where they need and deserve to be.’

Those are some of the more obvious examples of what we can do to put ourselves out there, beyond our c.z.’s, for the sake of spreading the Gospel. As we do, it will come back to us so that we may also have our share in it as well.

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize?

Run so as to win. Every athlete exercises discipline in every way.

They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one.

Thus I do not run aimlessly; I do not fight as if I were shadowboxing. No, I drive my body and train it, for fear that, after having preached to others, I myself should be disqualified.


Offer It Up May 14th


John 15:9-17

Jesus said to his disciples:

“As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love.

If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.

“I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete.

This is my commandment: love one another as I love you.

No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.

You are my friends if you do what I command you.

I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing.

I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father.

It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you.

This I command you: love one another.”

As the apostles passed on to others the message and mission of Jesus Christ, so must we do the same. Our words are a useful tool to use as our witness but the proof of our faith is in who we are, living and loving as we have been commanded to do.


Today before you think of saying an unkind word – pray for someone who can't speak.

Before you complain about the taste of your food – pray for someone who has

nothing to eat.

Before you complain about your husband or wife – pray for someone who's crying out

to God for a companion.

Today before you complain about life – pray for someone who may have gone too

early to heaven.

Before you complain about your children – pray for someone who desires children but

they're barren.

Before you argue about your dirty house, someone didn't clean or sweep – pray for

the people who are living in the streets.

Before whining about the distance you drive – pray for someone who walks the same

distance.

And when you are tired and complain about your job – pray for the unemployed, the

disabled and those who wished they had your job.

But before you think of pointing the finger or condemning another – remember that

not one of us are without sin and we all answer to one Maker.

And when depressing thoughts seem to get you down – put a smile on your face and

thank God you're alive and still around.

Life is our gift.
Live it.
Enjoy it.
Celebrate it.
Fulfill it.

Adapted, unknown


Offer It Up May 13th


John 16:16-20

Jesus said to his disciples:
“A little while and you will no longer see me, and again a little while later and you will see me.”

So some of his disciples said to one another, “What does this mean that he is saying to us, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?”
So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ of which he speaks? We do not know what he means.”
Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Are you discussing with one another what I said,
‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me’? Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.”

Exactly, what does He mean when He says that? What is this ‘little while’?

Now we see Him-now we don’t? And then we will see Him yet again?

With all that was going on in their lives, a little more clarity would have been a great help. Yet He knew all along what they were talking about, as He always had done and still does with us today.

Maybe it’s because we lose sight of Him when we lose our way on our journey. Maybe it’s because we fail to recognize Him in the lives of those around us. Maybe it’s that we choose to see our own goodness in the things we want of the world and not what He wants for us in the goodness of eternal life with Him.

Yes, we will mourn our losses as the world might rejoice for things of the earth. And yes we will grieve as our hearts give up what we once found as joy for those earthly things. Pains and sorrows, trials and troubles may weaken our spirit and that other voice may say to give it all up, driving us to divorce ourselves of our relationship with Him. Yet we will find our spiritual happiness when we choose to see and follow Him in all we do, just as He has chosen us to be with Him in His eternal kingdom.

Romans 8:38-39

Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.


Offer It Up May 12th


John 16:12-15

Jesus said to his disciples:

“I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth,He will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming.

He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.

Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.”

“You can’t handle the truth!”

For an extra ten points, Bob, name the actor who snarled the above line!

Time’s up!

As we might all remember from the movie, ‘A Few Good Men’, Mr. Jack Nicholson snapped it back at Tom Cruise as Nicholson was being questioned on the witness stand, right before he went on his diatribe that spoke of freedom, honor, loyalty—defending the country and rights for us all.

As much as the disciples were told by Jesus, with all they already had and all He had planned for them, they were still looking for more. And here He goes and says what He says, ‘Yes, there is more to know but you can’t handle it now.’ It seems as if He was saying they couldn’t handle the truth, the Truth of the Holy Spirit, and what needed to be shared at that time. But when He does, you will learn so much more! They were to stay open to what Jesus had for them as the Holy Spirit was to share it with them, what the Holy Spirit has, not what the world has.

We should be no different in our own handling of the Truth. We may not hear what we need to hear in our prayers for we may not be able to handle it now. We may not be ready to have the best God has for just yet as He prepares our way for us. It isn’t that He is not hearing our prayers or that the answer is ‘no’; it may just be ‘not now’. So we continue to pray for the guidance and grace to live as He has shown us to live, not for the truths of this world but in the Truth of the Holy Spirit.

Because the Truth is what we want, right?

John 14:5-7

"Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?"

Jesus said to him, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him."


Offer It Up May 11th

Happy Birthday Rita, Angie and Joe!


Pressing towards the Goal

Philippians 3:12-16

Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Beloved, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on towards the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us then who are mature be of the same mind; and if you think differently about anything, this too God will reveal to you. Only let us hold fast to what we have attained.

There are occasions throughout our journeys where our options are not so clearly defined. Where the fork in the road may give us a couple of options of pressing on and letting go--that part is easy enough. Yet there are those time we find ourselves pondering a third route-giving up.

Some could argue that the similarities are small between letting go and giving up or quitting. Maybe so. Superficially, they would probably win that point. However, it is below the surface and in the heart and soul of the one who chooses to quit, when they grab all their toys and go home, that is where the pain lies. So for some, there is a difference. Maybe as there should be.

Letting go is knowing when the time is right. Giving up is not caring if it is.

Letting go is putting the past behind. Giving up is keeping it as part of the present.

Letting go is growing from our experiences. Giving up is staying put.

Letting go is realizing that it’s not about me. Giving up is to say it’s all about me.

Letting go is being aware of other gifts that you have to share. Giving up is saying I can’t or won’t do any others.

Letting go is acknowledging our mistakes and seeking forgiveness. Giving up blames and shames.

Letting go gives us a time to be silent. Giving up keeps the ranting going.

Letting go brings about kindness. Giving up perpetuates animosity.

We can also choose to move ahead and press on toward our goal.

Pressing on is—

…believing in what you know and care for

…taking and learning from the past only what we need

…moving ahead with knowledge and confidence

…what can I/we do to make this what it needs to be?

…who can benefit most from what I/we do here?

…being accountable and responsible to ourselves and others

…quietly and humbly assuming the role of servant

We all have our choices and crossroads. None are encountered without God’s grace and mercy as we go to Him in prayer for His guidance. Whether or not we choose to let go or press on, putting forth our best efforts is one way of giving thanks for His faithfulness in us.

Philippians 4:5-8

Your kindness should be known to all. The Lord is near.

Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.

Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.


Birthday Notes: A triple dose of b-days today!

A great, dear and spirit-filled friend, an awesome and strong and faith-filled nephew and a beautiful and vibrant and grace-filled niece all celebrate God's gift of their birth today. Our lives are all the better and more fulfilled for their having been here with us for all of their collective years... (one of them has been around more than the other two) but it doesn't matter so much the years of their life-what matters is the life they have shared in the years. They have all shared much and given much.

Happy Birthday Rita.

Happy Birthday Joe.

Happy Birthday Angie.

God has blessed us with your gift of life-thank you for sharing it with us.


Offer It Up May 10th


John 14:25-29

I have told you this while I am with you.

The Advocate, the Holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name--He will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.

You heard me tell you, 'I am going away and I will come back to you.' If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe.

Do life and the world around you have their hold on you today or is it the other way around? Are you walking out the door wondering who or what will be the next issue or concern to reach its tentacles out and pull you into its pit? Has it been some time since you’ve had a string of positive events run together—maybe even two in a row—or even a while since you’ve had a positive approach to the way you are living?

Are you stopping long enough yet to ask yourself ‘What is going on and who’s in charge of my life?’ If the questions are giving you some cause to pause, it could be time to slow down and reevaluate your position. It may not be the world that has all the issues, as the world does have them; it may be that the issues are yours and how you look at the way the world is around you.

It can be pretty much presumed that of all the tough luck stories to come around, ours are not the first or the last to happen. Nor are we the first or only ones to have to deal with or work with people that we find hard to communicate or work with. These types of things have been happening for some time now. If you need a reminder or refresher, there are plenty of examples in Scripture where bad things happened to good people all the time. There are even good things that happened to some not so good folks too. We are inclined to live our lives by how we choose to respond to those actions. Our choice could be then, how much of that peace do we want Him to leave us? And then, the Peace we have in our lives will be filled accordingly.


Offer It Up May 9th

Happy Mothers' Day!

Happy Birthday Becky and Joe!


Luke 1:46-55

And Mary said: "My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior.

For he has looked upon his handmaid's lowliness; behold, from now on will all ages call me blessed. The Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is his name.

His mercy is from age to age to those who fear him.

He has shown might with his arm, dispersed the arrogant of mind and heart.

He has thrown down the rulers from their thrones but lifted up the lowly.

The hungry he has filled with good things; the rich he has sent away empty.

He has helped Israel his servant, remembering his mercy, according to his promise to our fathers, to Abraham and to his descendants forever."

A Newborn's Conversation with God

A baby asked God, "They tell me you are sending me to earth tomorrow,
but how am I going to live there being so small and helpless?"

God said, "Your angel will be waiting for you and will take care of you."

The child further inquired, "But tell me, here in heaven I don't have
to do anything but sing and smile to be happy."

God said, "Your angel will sing for you and will also smile for you.
And you will feel your angel's love and be very happy."

Again the small child asked, "And how am I going to be able to understand
when people talk to me if I don't know the language?"

God said, "Your angel will tell you the most beautiful and sweet words
you will ever hear, and with much patience and care, your angel will
teach you how to speak."

"And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?"

God said, "Your angel will place your hands together and will teach
you how to pray."

"Who will protect me?"

God said, "Your angel will defend you even if it means risking its life."

"But I will always be sad because I will not see you anymore."

God said, "Your angel will always talk to you about Me and will teach
you the way to come back to Me, even though I will always be next to you."

At that moment there was much peace in Heaven, but voices from Earth
could be heard and the child hurriedly asked, "God, if I am to leave
now, please tell me my angel's name."

God said, you will simply call her, "Mom."

Happy Mothers' Day 2010

Submitted by Reno V.


Offer It Up May 8th

Happy Birthday Mary!


Proverbs 23:12

Apply your heart to instruction, and your ears to words of knowledge.

We get blown around a bit by the winds and gusts of life. And we get washed away by the rains and deluges that we find ourselves in. Often, we pick ourselves up from the mud or briars that we’ve ‘somehow’ managed to find ourselves in or it could be we may have made the choice to venture that way, thinking we could handle the span that we faced with a single, simple leap… well, not this time anyway. Whether it’s the wind, rain, mud or briars, we don’t accomplish much by staying in them. Well, we might have ourselves a pity party of sorts, albeit a party of one.

Wherever it is we find ourselves and however it is we got there, it is going to require some effort on our part to do something about our condition. We can do some blame-storming and sit around point fingers at who was supposed to turn off the wind machines. We could send out global emails, claiming that if you don’t send this to twelve other people in your mailing list, we will be forever doomed to wallow in the briar patch. How much those accomplish for our own good is like the proverbial drop in the ocean bucket. The fact is, we have to do something to help ourselves.

God gives us that direction, that help, when we are more focused on Him than on our earthly conditions. I heard a priest say recently after a comment from a parishioner, “The Holy Spirit has it all under control, Father.” And the pastor replied, “All well and good, Jerr, but He also wants us to get off our butts as we follow His guidance and do something with Him.” Point taken. The winds and rains and mud holes are a part of what we experience on our journey. How we come out of them on the other side is a testament to our trust and faith in God.


Offer It Up May 7th


1 Timothy 4:8-9

Train yourself for devotion, for, while physical training is of limited value, devotion is valuable in every respect, since it holds a promise of life both for the present and for the future.

This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance.

You may have seen the prose below before. If so, it may be worth repeating in relation to the verses from Timothy. As we are all disciples, as we train, so shall we serve.

Be a disciple!
Care more
than others think necessary.
Trust more
than others think wise.
Serve more
than others think practical.
Expect more
than others think possible.
Anonymous


Offer It Up May 6th


John 15:9-11

Jesus said to his disciples:

“As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love.

If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.

“I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete.”

What’s this ‘might’ Jesus is talking about? And didn’t He say ‘if’ in there somewhere too? Isn’t His love supposed to be unconditional? Isn’t true that no matter what we do, He still loves us?

The ‘might’ is our choice, our free will, as we opt to live as He has shown us to live. Along with the ‘if’, provided we follow Him, keep His commandments, and give of ourselves as He gave of himself, then our joy, our lives still might be complete. Might. Be. Complete. We still choose to live in His grace or not.

We don’t earn His Love. You may have heard it said that there is nothing we can do to make God any bigger or better. So on we go, preparing a life that He will help us make bigger and better in Him. It is His gift of grace to us as there is nothing we can do to earn it. We must continue to live in His way, being contrite for the sins we commit, following His will for us, and trust that His plan is better than what we have in this world. With that active trust, our joy will be complete in our eternity with Him.


Offer It Up May 5th

Happy Birthday David!


John 15:1-8

Jesus said to his disciples:

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower. He takes away every branch in me that does not bear fruit, and everyone that does he prunes so that it bears more fruit.

You are already pruned because of the word that I spoke to you. Remain in me, as I remain in you. Just as a branch cannot bear fruit on its own unless it remains on the vine, so neither can you unless you remain in me.

I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me and I in him will bear much fruit, because without me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me will be thrown out like a branch and wither; people will gather them and throw them into a fire and they will be burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask for whatever you want and it will be done for you.

By this is my Father glorified, that you bear much fruit and become my disciples.”

He said it and they believed it.

He did it and they followed Him.

For hundreds of years, it has been written as He said it to them and described as they followed Him. As He spoke in this parable, it doesn’t get much clearer.

We must remain in Him and for Him so that our lives will be eternally with Him till that day we are a part of His heavenly kingdom. Being the true vine, and with God being the vine grower, I would think we take to heart when He says ‘He takes away every branch that does not bear fruit’. There would not be one of us that would care for that option of being ‘gathered and thrown into a fire’. So why is it that we put ourselves through such agony when we cut ourselves away from the vine?

It’s pretty clear that the message is not so much about us. It is about bearing fruit for others; as one branch grows, another may grow from it, to bear even more fruit. And yes, there will be pruning—some pain—along the way. The Grower knows how we should best grow, even if the way we want looks pretty decent at the time. But as we stay on the vine and grow in our faith and trust, along His mercy and grace through His forgiveness and compassion, we find that we are sharing in His Love for us. He will tend to His branches and show them the way; the way that they should grow so that the fruit they bear will be for His glory.


Speaking of bearing fruit, a friend of ours is celebrating a birthday today--his own-- but as humble and giving as he is, you would never know it. He has certainly given his life over to the 'Master Grower'. David puts others before himself and God before all others. Happy Birthday to one of God's most loving and generous stewards, our friend David.


Offer It Up May 4th


Yesterday was the Feast day of Saints Philip and James, the Apostles. We just don't celebrate our feast days as we did in the past. Perhaps we are too busy or preoccupied. I wonder sometimes if we simply don't get it, huh? Philip and James didn't seem to get it either.

Remember Philip…"Lord, just show us the Father and that will be enough."

And Jesus plainly asked Philip, ‘Don't you get it. You've been with me all this time and don't you know the Father and I are one?’


Do we really believe God wants us doing some of the things we do? Do you ever wonder what would God do without me? Wow! God has given us the earth and all its wonders and we are so busy sometimes trying to do what we imagine is His will we miss the wonder of life.


This past Sunday we were reminded again...Love one another! Can we love one another if we fail to know that God is love? If we immerse ourselves in LOVE can we then learn to love beyond our imagining?


I see before me God, nailed to a cross, bloodied, beaten to death. I see this same Jesus rising from the tomb to glory and to life forever. He beckons me to come and share in this life. In the now of this day see in the wonder of creation, see in all of human life and activity the wonder of my Father, the love being poured out for all humanity.

Let that love transform your heart that your heart infected by love may be the catalyst to transform another and another until the Kingdom reaches its fullness.

Let us pray. Our Father...

Deacon


Offer It Up May 3rd


1 Corinthians 15:1-4

Now I am reminding you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you indeed received and in which you also stand. Through it you are also being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain.

For I handed on to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures; that he was buried; that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures

We see our reflections in a number of places, from the early morning ‘Who is that looking back at me?’ bathroom ones to the passing-by-the-store-window-I-need-a-haircut ones to the quick glance in any available reflective piece to see if there is any food particle stuck in our teeth. (We might even catch a bit of one in the monitor of our computers for those of us who are pretty much slaves to technology.) To be sure, many of us are always ‘looking back’ at ourselves to see how we appear to those looking at us. We certainly would not want to be out of place, out of sync or out of style, would we?

Think back to any of the last conversations you’ve had recently. Friend or family. Business or casual. Think of how you presented yourself in any one of those particular exchanges. What was the person to whom you were speaking seeing in you? What were you reflecting to them? What were you seeing in them—more importantly: what of yourself were you reflecting in them?

Being a disciple, an apostle—the Greek word for apostolos means ‘one who is sent for’—also means for us to be a reflection of what Jesus is in our lives. Not just when we are praying. Not just when we are at church or at our bible study or scripture sharing or at some weekend renewal or retreat. All the time. Doesn’t mean we won’t fall or fail but failing shouldn’t keep us from getting back up either. Being a disciple is for all of us, as it was those Jesus chose, the ordinary fishermen, businessmen, carpenters, men and women alike. He chose them and they, with free will, chose to follow Him. Our choice is no different today.


Offer It Up May 2nd


Revelations 21:3

I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, God's dwelling is with the human race. He will dwell with them and they will be his people and God himself will always be with them as their God.

When things of life are not what some expect or, more precisely, feel entitled to, there are some that say that life isn’t fair; that the rain shower is a precursor to darker clouds as it is always darkest before the storm. Others hold to a worn tenet that on certain days—say Mondays—that no matter what happens, the worst is bound to occur. With belief systems such as these, it would be no small wonder then that their lives would be filled with negativity, doubt, fear and anxiety… and little faith.

There exists a different approach to life’s issues and concerns and the problems we encounter. With the majesty and gift of His grace, we are a part of world where He exists with us and in us and for us. As we walk, so does He. As we speak, so are His words, ours. As we love, so does His Love become ours and we become more like His Love. That approach is our faith and hope and trust in the love of God, surrendering to His will for us everyday.

We are living in this world to prepare ourselves for an Eternity in His Heavenly Kingdom. As we do, let’s not forget that we are not doing it alone. Think about it: do we really think we had all that much to do with our success? After all, it is His plan for us, not ours for Him.

Matthew 6:10

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven


Offer It Up May 1st


John 14:7-14

Jesus said to his disciples:

“If you know me, then you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

Philip said to Jesus,

“Master, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you for so long a time and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?

The words that I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who dwells in me is doing his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else, believe because of the works themselves. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes in me will do the works that I do, and will do greater ones than these, because I am going to the Father.

And whatever you ask in my name, I will do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything of me in my name, I will do it.”

Another show me sort of fellow, that Philip. As if what Jesus had done for him and the others was not enough, there was the business of ‘showing us the Father’ and then it will all be good.

From there, Jesus took what seems to me a tone that sounded a bit on the ‘what, are you kidding me?’ bend.

“Show us the Father? You can barely handle what you’ve been given thus far and you want me to show you the Father? Bring me another disciple.”

It probably wasn’t anywhere near that caustic of an exchange yet sometimes in our lives, we bring our own challenges upon ourselves as we question our Savior’s efforts to put us on the path He has for us. We want to see what is out there ahead of us. He wants us to trust him. We want to know the final score. He wants us to know that there is little that matters other than what He gives us.

All that we ask for, we should ask in His name. We ask for His will, it will be His way. We pray for His guidance, we will be shown His Light. We seek His forgiveness, He holds us in us mercy and grace. Our Father is ready to show us the things we want to know and see—all in the time He has prepared for us. We just have to believe in His name and get to work, right?