Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Off Again

I am off to Combermere again, going to spend Christmas up there. Should be a great experience! I hope and pray you all will find the path you are looking for, trust in Jesus he will take you and lead you to His Father's heart if you let him.

I will miss hearing from you all, thank you for your loving words and prayers. Know that I hold you close to my heart and always remember you in my prayers...I love you all and care deeply about you. Will try to check in the emails and reply back as often as I can, but as you know internet access if highly limited so be patient. :0)

Don't know how long my stay will be this time, like last time I will trust in the Holy Spirit and the folks up there and we will see..LOL, who ever knows anyway?

Peace and love to you all and stay warm (to those of you who live in colder climates) and Merry Christmas! Happy New Year! May God bless you throughout your days!

Love, L

Thursday, November 26, 2009

God is love and His graces always astound me.

Jesus is love and His tenderness uplifts me, as the inner voice after Communion that day reminded a couple weeks ago, Jesus is "my Master, my Savior and my Brother..." Oh my God let me lay down on the cross and lovingly out stretch these hands and place my feet all for love. Love for my Father the Almighty One, for You, for the Holy Spirit! Let me lay down out of love for my brothers and sisters. Let me lay down in love for my blessed Mother Mary... let me do only that which is Thy will dear Holy One for I renounce all that is me and place once again all my trust and love in You for all eternity. I humbly ask You through your beloved Son, Jesus,and Mary, the mother You gave to us all.
Been trying to find a way to describe what these past few months in Canada have been for me in a way all of y'all can understand.. OK in a way even I can understand in normal worldly talk. "Restoration" is a word used at Madonna House using "Rest" and "ora"=prayer and "action"=work to heal the sinner into a state more to that which God intended. These past few months have been very restoring and healing to my being. Once again, especially since coming back home I realize that once again in my life I am enjoying being around people and re-learning the fine art and love of talking and sharing with others face to face. The old desire for isolation is not all encompassing, but being replaced with a balance of both. The need to be surrounded by my brothers and sisters and sharing in their lives and to have quiet time for deeper prayer and silence. This is a healing and more normal balance I have not experienced in over a decade plus.

One cannot be isolated from people unless one truly knows first that one needs to be around people to truly know how glorious God is. This time living in Combermere,thanks be to God, is teaching me I think, how to live again with people and how wonderful people are again. Something so hungered for within my being that I dared to not give it voice to my conscious mind or access often to my heart for the pain of the loneliness was so great within. Yes, there are still some obstacles God has left like my low hearing but as exhausting as it gets sometimes the people are great about accommodating me when I ask for it. I know one thing that went through my thoughts during the time of testing ?, suffering? whatever up there I did crave silence just because I do get tired of always struggling to hear what people are saying. It gets exhausting to always read lips and body language to follow conversations I admit but that is my own personal cross to bear and I will deal with it. But Oh it is so worth the burden, the sacrifice, to laugh and be among others so loving of God!

Surprisingly while there the battles with temptations where few, mainly while on the trip home did I suddenly get slammed with thoughts, etc. that where bothersome. Thanks be to God they faded once home and once I just started praying to our Mother for help. She is an awesome Mother to have, I am so glad Fr P recommended the consecration to Jesus through Mary and that I followed his advice, it just is right and proper to do so. Plus when I prayed about doing the consecration the Holy Spirit again made it obvious it is what He wanted me to do. LOL, gotta love a God who is so kind as to make it simple at times to know what He wants of you! Yeah for the idiot version for fool's who get easily confused!

You dear Jesus, you have called me so loudly through the Holy Spirit through your Mother's loving heart. Please give me the heart of your Mother so I may love you completely, so I may serve your Father without hesitation. Dear Jesus you have not wavered in your calling of me, it is I who wavers, questioning and not trusting completely like I should. You make the path obvious, you make the way clear yet I hesitate using excuses petty and man made to say maybe I am hearing you wrong. But in you all things are possible, nothing is impossible for you for you have the power to move mountains and to save the wretch like me. So again I will pray you give me the grace of faith of a mustard seed. Please let me trust completely in you and do only your loving will for the rest of my days here on earth and forever in the eternal home of your Father if it be your will. Please have mercy on me and hear the prayers of your blessed Mother so my only thought, desire and love is doing Thy will and never my own.

It is so clear within my heart...why do I insist on questioning the obvious?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

2 am Ramble...... also Will I die for Him?

(Another Unproofread ramble for your bored surfing pleasure..Pardon the errors!)

What does it mean to live a holy life? To truly live for God?

Hidden from all not wishing to seek any fame for self, to only crave that which pleases the Almighty is my deepest desire.

O what is the reason if not in loving and serving the One who created the life? In thanking the One who first created love? Nothing is worthwhile if not done through love..love of the Holy Trinity, love of the Blessed Mother, love of our self and our brother and sisters all created by our Lord God.

O my God how often I fail you, how often I do not have you as my main thought and focus of the day, yet You who are so merciful and so loving still deign to come to me, to comfort me. My glorious God I could thank you for all eternity for just one second of my life and it would not be enough to rightly glorify Your wondrous grace.

In my misery I call out to You and You always answer, not in how I desire but You wisely answer in what You know I need. How many times my soul ached for my Lord's comfort and it was answered for Your love divine and mysterious is always so much wiser then my petty heart could ever imagine. How humbled am I knowing my sins before me, yet You will forgive even them my Father, My Brother. How humbled am I knowing in my own little way that You are the only thing that matters most, how glad am I to live for You Almighty Holy One...

How happy am I and thankful that You chose to touch me and call me to Your loving ways... for just that moment when my life was forever saved I will always strive to become a saint for the love of You.
....... .........

11:30PM Ramble (Just doesn't have that same ring to it does it?)

Had a wonderful dinner with my favorite and longest friend. I truly enjoy her company and love her dearly. Being with her is like wearing a comfortable old pair of jeans where everything is just and right, no pretenses, no bullshit..just "Hey" and "How are ya doing?" as we catch up on the ever moving evolution of our lives over the last...LOL, waaaayyy too many years! :0)

Coming back home I was drawn to distracting things, the earlier writing was done very early morning Wednesday and now is Wed PM. Sorta allowing myself a brief bit of time to not think but to just let the day simmer unconsciously through the brain and heart I guess. Hey I actually played computer Solitaire-That says enough right there! LOL! Guess I haven't been allowing myself much deep thinking time, with being icky and everything else. Is it that I don't want to give voice to what is in my heart... my deep desires for this life? If it that I fear disappointment, failure or worse rejection? It is partially that I am not completely trusting in Jesus and Mary because I am having a selfish desire for what I want, but then again can't one has a personal dream that would be their ideal while realizing that it is just that? It is so much easier for me to openly say what I don't want then to admit to what I do want...but I know that is my own weakness and scars from the past coming forward. Scars that must be faced, dealt with and rid off.. well until they decide to be thrust back into the forefront again for whatever reason. I give the old emotional and mental scars to Mary with hope and certainty that she will do what she deems best with them for the good of God and for my growth in love with Jesus. Trust, hope, and surrender...all for love of the Divine.

But surrender in the world is a bit precarious...then again no one said love and living for God would be easy.. yes, Job, I know, I just need to glance around my room and there is the crucifix clear, and sharp in His reminding me of sacrifice and love, trust and surrender to the Father's will. That delicate balance between being fully aware of the stain of sins past carried on my soul, and feeling the presence of God within my soul.

God has given me an interesting month to say the least, these past few weeks have encompassed many extremes and not the easiest ones either. Although in a way I guess I am glad, I am not a child and I have lived a hard enough life to know that reality is not simple and a fun party ride. These tough times from physical to emotional have been good tests for me. They forced me to trust in my blessed Mother Mary and to give her everything for her Son and for God. To trust in Mary to ask for whatever lessons I need, to root out the things that displease our God, to trust that She and Jesus are always there even if I am not "feeling" them.

For over a month now the words to the hymn sung at MH has been going through my head "Christ before me, Christ beside me..Christ above me Christ behind me...Christ within me..." yes the words are badly paraphrased but you get the gist of it. For a good while now I have been praying and working on trying to see Christ in all I see and within myself, and to love the God within us all without question. As the time went on I can say it is easier to see the presence of God in us all, it at the same time became harder to see within myself even though intellectually I knew Jesus is here. During Mass and within the areas of holy ground it was easier, especially after the gracious gift of Communion when Jesus was truly present in the Holy Eucharist, then for a brief while all was right and sometimes Jesus would grace me with many special gifts of understanding and reassurances. Humbly and softly in awe I thank God for this loving mercy.

Yes being back here...here...sigh...a place where I am so loved by my family unconditionally, a place where life should bring me much comfort(it does in some ways) and much joy (it does in some ways)...here at my "home" surrounded by my "stuff"...here in this world. Here. What are the thoughts lingering just below the surface? That I wish to articulate yet seem to fear articulating them for I am realizing the price. Here...

"Will you die for me?"

A question that has followed me in many incarnations for a long time now. When I heard it interiorly at church a couple weeks ago it took me by surprise but not at first when without hesitating I mentally said "Yes, with Thy graces to support me, yes." After going through those many days of feeling alone even though I knew I was not since I was surrounded by caring people who would do almost anything to help me if I just asked. I knew that period was meant to be experienced on many different levels now. The most basic, human level was to deal with my own issues of white walled past of depression, abandonment, and past pains and injuries. LOL, simple and so hilariously obvious if it wasn't so reminding of the pains of the past at the time I was facing it all again. But there was a beauty in all the mental and emotional anguish of that time around the beginning of the month and end of October. Yes, I said beauty and meant it. Hang on I'll tall ya...

Beauty of the suffering, so sublime yet so interiorly profound at times. Physical suffering to me is one thing but mental, emotional is quite another... both I can 'deal with' but the level with which I was allowed to use this time to meditate and to unite it with Christ's and Mary's suffering was precious. How Mary suffered so much without even a scratch being placed upon her tender skin. How Jesus suffered, we all know how He suffered for love of us. "Will you die for me?" Yes for everyone must die but it is in the living we die for Him. Physical dying is basically easy for we have little choice in the time, way in which we are meant to go and hopefully by that time we might be ready for it. It is in the living death of self that is so very hard. "I live, now not I, but Christ who lives within me."

Easy to say, easy to desire, easy in somethings to do... but not so easy to maintain , live and to continually commit to forever. Yet, it is the only way of life that makes any sense. During those couple weeks of emotional darkness and confusion I was loudly reminded how little worldly things mattered like possessions, pride, even more basic things we take for granted like our friends, food, sanity, and even basic dreams, and hopes. There truly is only one path and only one goal for us all if we so desire it and that is God. This world is meant o be challenging and sacrificial, we are not good people even when we try to do our best..LOL, especially in this age! We have all sinned greatly by the time we even reach adulthood unless blessed or very isolated by our parents. Something most parents do not have the luxury, money, or ability to do given the massive influx of media in all arenas of life in North America, even then unless God graces it so, we are too sullied by sins due our fallen nature. God is kind to give sacrificial suffering, for us to have offerings to unite with His beloved Sons suffering or to give to Him as penance for the sins of the world and our own sins.

Divine Mercy, yes, Divine Mercy.. the reason it is so simple is because we have become such simple, lost people and we are so weak and confused we need a devotion from Jesus so easy we can't forget its basic message. Mercy gave me suffering, mercy saved from from suffering. Mercy opens me to His love, and mercy gives me hope. Mercy is His love raw and beautiful... mercy and love keeps my faith from wavering and my faith that God will always hear our pleas and will always reach out to us. For God loves us little children even with the filth covering us that He will help us and give us no more then we can handle and has our homes waiting with Him when we can finally unite completely with His Divine Love and thank Him, serve Him, and glorify Him and love Him forever and ever.

Will I die for Him? Oh with His grace I sure hope I can and will everyday of my life in this world...with Mother Mary's guidance I sure hope I will in love for all that is God's glory. I know we all have this available for us, no one of us is more special then the other to God, we are all His children loved equally by Him. All we have to do is trust, love and be willing to take that little step towards Him and to ask God for His help through his beloved Son Jesus and through the intercession of Mary.... how can we not make it to sainthood if we all just dare to turn our backs on the worldly things and embrace Divine love and pray for its unity with us. If we just dare to strive for sobornost... O dear Mary pray for us.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It is late Monday night and the first day I felt almost healthy, didn't realize how sick I was until I started to feel better. Was either a mild form of the flu or one ass kicking allergy slam. Either way thank you God for pharmaceuticals! Ironic though I sleep better on the bed at MH then I do on mine here at home. LOL, although here I do have to share it with a lovelorn cat.

Being home forces me to be more cognizant of my prayer life, of making my day one of prayer in addition to taking time to have more focused prayer. Also being home has shown me starkly how easily little things distract from prayer and draw one away from God and misdirect the heart. A good meal is a wonderful creature comfort, but I need to remind myself that it is a wonderful gift from God that makes it possible to eat this fine meal and all the people who make it possible are to be thanked and prayed for also. The meal is made special not for the food but for the time I got to spend with my brother, ok the lobster was really yummy. The things that ruled my time before now seem so trivial or almost distasteful even if they were mildly benign, they can be used as tools but not as the sole source of bemusement. All this and more confirms what I had previously thought and prayed about that my time in Canada is for a purpose of training and learning and listening to whatever God desires of me.

Here at home a mirror is being held before me showing many of my weaknesses in the world, that my spiritual growth is still toddling along in its infancy. Nothing really appeals me anymore that use to, I enjoy them but not in the same way. Everything is now being framed within a context of God, and how absent He is in many created things that so many derive pleasure from. One bright spot is the man from class is now officially in RCIA and is even praying and trying to expose his children to the Catholic faith. He thanked me for my help before I left and how he still uses the cds I burned for him of many great EWTN shows and good Catholic speakers. As he said he is finally feeling like he is "coming home". God is kind to let me know I helped another in their journey.

More later as I am still getting the sweats and chills, yeah for Nyquil which is kicking in! I'll expound on some of the earlier themes brought up hopefully tomorrow evening.

Friday, November 20, 2009

This has been an interesting visit home so far... before coming home I had imagined I would be chasing after the things I missed most when at Madonna House living in the dorm. Not so I have discovered, instead I am finding rather a lack of desire for these things previously thought to be creature comforts. Yes, I do admit I enjoy eating more meat not floating in stew and it is nice to listen to music whenever, but besides the initial joy in these things I am finding myself rather indifferent towards them. A nice special treat rather then a "must have" or "want to have". TV is a complete waste of time, I have tried to watch many things and all seem to be either silly wastes of time or else sadly vile in how they convolute the good in this world. No wonder our world seems so lost and confused, but that was no new revelation about the media in the USA.

It has been nice and warm here for the first week, 70s during the day, and the leaves are still falling and the grass green, some roses still blooming and hardy flowers bright and hope filled. So as I look around me at my home and loving family I feel love for them but also within me I feel a detachment from them. There is no longer that fear(?), or dread of leaving them if God so desires... At times I wonder at what the Lord wishes for me to do to serve Him, how He desires me to serve His will, but I have no clue. So instead I just continue praying hopefully to Him that He makes it easy for me to hear, see and follow His will. That I may be like a leaf on His living waters going where ever He desires and allowing me the good grace to never go contrary to His will. LOL, a good challenge knowing myself at times!

It has been 7 days

Glory be to God!!!

It has been 7 days since I have returned to living in the world and what an experience . All I can say is the heaviness of life among people is so overwhelming at times and yet, so blessed. Rarely is it halfway, either I met people who are so open about their love of our Lord or I see the dark and empty lost souls who wander and wonder about the hollowness of life. So interesting how much I miss and crave the life in Combermere, the Mass Lauds and Vespers, people the work, heck even dishes= ahhhh.. altho I guess it shouldn't surprise me so much. So many have commented on how happy I look and how I am "glowing". NOT a term I have ever heard in relation to me. All I can say is that our Lord and our Mother are all to thank for the transformation of this poor soul... what a wonder it is to know how our good Lord loves us and will reach out to touch and help us if we just make that tiny step towards loving and trusting in Him.
I purposefully have taken time and not written anything since being home, mainly because my emotions and mind have been all over the place and yet while I am home, I feel not quite at home. My heart yearns for the daily Mass and gathering for prayers, for that taste of life I have been living the past few months. The last couple weeks before coming home have not been easy ones even in the relative safety of Madonna House, but in my opinion (which can be very wrong I admit for I don't know crap most times, LOL)it was a testing period perhaps? since I made the Consecration to Jesus through Mary many things have been going on in my being. Now how to articulate to y'all? That my friends is the challenge! LOL! Yes, how to explain without sounding totally crazy. So to make it easier for me to try and put down, I am going to jump around since as y'all know I don't go back and edit once written outside of spell check(I heard that!). Sorta work backwards and sideways in time since that is the easiest for me right now to try and make a cohesive narrative in my own lil mind.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

draft- too tired to write more

It was the Sunday after my Consecration and the week had been a hard one Oh and blisters that hurt like all get out, ouchers! (whole nother storyline there). It all stemmed from a sentence heard out of context during a spiritual reading after lunch where the line "Jesus can't be on the psychotropic ward". In context the statement was benign and was meant as caring for another that was in a weak state in the book, but it triggered a long meditation within me that lasted for many days. My mind wandered over to how Jesus was definitely on the psych wards, and how he was at his weakest and most vulnerable there in our brothers and sisters. How the extreme loneliness and emotional pain was all united with Jesus' agony from the garden and his 3 years of ministry.

Searching on the backwards, yearning on the white walled halls like Jesus looking for that one person who hears His word. Who loves Him for Him, who will lovingly listen as He speaks... that aching desire for the one who will love Him for who He is. Darkened wards filled with the abandoned by those who do not wish to make that leap of faith and hope to stand by the person lost within the whitewall wards. Abandonment, rejection, time stands still within the psychwards. The patients tending to be more aware then most normal people of the misery and pain of the human condition because they have the time and emotional sensitivity to witness it more fully, and have experienced the world's cruelty due their conditions that drove them to the psychwards. And no one will stay awake with them that is not paid to stay with them. Loneliness so profound and deep a knife scrapping bone would be more merciful to one locked within the echoing walls. Yes, Christ cries on the psychotropic wards, His heart aching for the people there and the rare mercies shown by the loving few.

This meditation would not leave my heart or mind and instead grew as I begged Mary to never let me abandon our Lord in His darkest hour of the Garden, to please in some tiny way let me show Him I love Him, I wish to somehow ease His suffering as He took on our sins that dark, cold night alone as His closest friends slept as He prayed, to never let me ever stray or abandon Him again. So I guess my prayer was answered as for the next week I felt a level of abandonment, loneliness, sadness and rejection like I hadn't felt before. Different tho from those dark days of depression I suffered in the past- that was the part that at first puzzled me for the suffering was there but the despair was not for I knew that Jesus and Mary were there with me even if I could not actually "feel" them. None of this derived from the people around me who were as always loving and kind and warm and who saw something was going on inside me.

What a grace for instead of allowing these feelings to get me down I was allowed to unite them and understand more organically the isolation and sorrow our Lord felt. During this time my prayers were much deeper and stronger as only suffering can bring about in us fickle humans usually. Looking at the people around me I could feel more easily the emotions they held just below the surface and it became almost painful to meet another's eyes for either their emotions would come into me and I felt that a violation of acceptable trust among people in community living. Or there are some who I just could not meet their eyes for I knew they would probably know that something was going on in me and how would I explain it when everything was so raw feeling, yet unlike anything I had felt before? Even at such a quiet place filled with so many loving people with a common goal of loving God as much and as best as possible the feelings were too much to bear, I wondered how am I going to manage if this keeps up when I leave blessed ground and focused, loving people? LOL, never fear our Lord is way ahead of silly thoughts running through my tiny head!

Consolation, reprieve call it what ya will, but thanks to God and the wonderful people around me there were beautiful islands of relief through laughter or quiet gentleness. The guys would make me laugh, even during Mass where one Mass it was all I could do to not laugh out loud. My body decided it was tired and in too much pain and lack of sleep which brought out my slightly bitchy side, gulp, hey I am human. LOL! So I got some change up in work assignments, which helped make things easier to bear. The biggest was during Mass especially right after Communion and having Jesus there close and tender, how to tell this without seeming crazy or something? It all came to an end after the Mass when I heard a blunt statement "Will you die for me?"

"Will you die for me?"

Now that is something that one does not hear interiorly at Mass too often, well not me anyway.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Combermere up in Canada-land

Combermere up in Canada-land... these past 3 and a half months living with the Madonna House people immersed in their spiritual way of life has had a profound effect upon me. Not just on my spiritual self but on my whole person. Restoration, it is a place that heals the whole person in many ways through loving our gracious God and through entrusting ourselves to blessed Mary's guidance. How to explain this way of living to you who have never been there? How to tell a story that still unfolds its chapters in ways subtle yet profound within my being? Grace of our Holy Father, our Savior Jesus and our Advocate the Holy Spirit all with the intercession of Mary is the only way to explain all of this... that our great and glorious God takes each one of us and works miracles within our hearts every moment of everyday if we just open our hearts and allow Him.

Today I actually slept late, didn't have to get up at 6:45amish and am still sitting around in the pjs enjoying the warmer weather and an icy cold Dr Pepper, but my heart was missing the morning lauds so I prayed them thanks to the online site that has them. Interesting how one can feel the difference of the world around them. How at the MH training center the people are all directed with the same goal, serving and loving God. Here in the world you can feel the lack of direction the lost souls wandering, wondering, searching yet not seeing. How sad... how very sad. Is this how Jesus and the disciples felt as they preached through the crowds, walked through the towns and cities some 2000 years ago? The emotional flurry of such anger, sadness, despair, confusion that encompasses so many around me out here in the world is almost too painful to bear. I just want to reach out and say there is a way out of your misery there is a true love out here you can reach for and who will love you back... alas, so few will listen and I have no talent for that yet as I am still learning so much.

Around so many good, holy, striving men and women at MH in Combermere who have spent decades living a simple life of prayer, work, service to our God makes me humble. I am but a wee child among grown ups in the spiritual life, the joy on their faces even when exhausted is always present. The love they give to everyone always there among this group of eclectic, totally unique people. The personalities so diverse but all with one thing in common, their love of Christ our Lord and the Christ within everyone they meet. So you learn by immersion into the way of spiritual life at Madonna House, working, praying, laughing, resting together. Since being there I consecrated myself to Jesus through Mary according to St Louis DeMontfort. A 33 day period of prayer leading to a public declaration that from that day forward all of me is Mary's to be entrusted in her blessed hands and heart to give to Jesus. More on that later, but it has opened a gateway to where I feel even more graces are being given me to use for the love of God.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

1 Week-so much happens in One week anymore ROFL!

Ya know... it has been an amazing few months.

In these past few months I have learned more about the Holy Spirit in action then a lifetime of book learning. Slowly I am learning to give thanks and credit to God in the Holy Spirit where it is due. LOL, in the not too distant past, last week-lol, I would ascribe certain things to coincidence, happenstance, maybe subtle manipulation... but how wrong I have been!

As my mind, heart, eyes and most importantly my trust in the Holy Spirit has thankfully grown- mainly because I am learning to get out of the way and shut up- I am blown away with how events have unfolded.

For a good long while I had been praying for help/guidance/anything to help me in my spiritual life. Was feeling lost and not able to find anything in books, ewtn, through praying that seemed to give a spark, to give ease...I prayed for what? Over a year? Seems so long ago yet really hasn't been. And I prayed feeling like I had for most of my life, always the outsider/observer watching the others taking part in life. When I was saved back home to my Church to my Lord I thought it'd be different I would find others who had the same passion and joy. I did but still I was the outsider for their lives were so dramatically different with families, etc..

Yearning to always go deeper, to find ways to be closer to God, never finding others who were quite on that same page in a relate-able way. Until a complex series of events took place and I ended up at Madonna House next to my brother's office for their Easter Open House. All these lil jigsaw puzzle pieces starting to form a picture being shifted around by the Holy Spirit. Asked the one MH worker that has been there from the beginning of my journey over at that house with the blue door what in the world made y'all call me over to help out? LOL, now I should have known that was a silly question! They had prayed on it and hey my name is what they got. Plus they noticed that something in my eyes when I walked in there which is what I felt.. a certain "rightness" to the place.

Rightness...yeah, that is a good word for it. Wasn't like I was suddenly changed or anything like that. LOL, still was the anxiety ridden, chain smoking wreck! But there was God in those walls and in these women that my heart had been looking for. Didn't have a clue what MH was all about at the time, and I didn't care I just thanked God for leading me there and started an transforming journey that is far from over. They have the Holy Eucharist in their chapel and Jesus in the house is great! At the beginning I tried to find a way to describe the subtle difference His presence was like over there, until talking one day she said "like Nazareth"- Duh.. yeah! That's it!

My prayer life started to be easier and that thirst for Jesus, for God, for the Holy Spirit returned and this time was starting to be met. Many great graces started a-workin on me. LOL, not saying it was all angelic chorus singing and warm fuzzies.. the graces were what I needed and God saw to that quit -lol-directly. I would not trade one second of it no matter how hard some of it was for even one nano-second! As I pray the Magnificat now my head will just shake sometimes as I am so humbled by the love our God has shown me in so many ways that still my mind reels when I try to think back too far or deeply. LOL, so I don't unless necessary!

These moments that build and build onward, forward.. each one rebuilding and transforming me into a person God wants, through the Holy Spirit finally able to get through better to me as my heart is slowly opened and my self is slowly getting out of the way... slowly learning how to die and rise with Jesus everyday. Every little step another glorious gift from Abba through Jesus through the Holy Spirit, with Mary always there praying and searching for what next her child needs to grow closer to her Son... Precious Mary always here looking over me, holding me, protecting me, guiding and protecting me. Talk about a humbling, humbling gift.. to think of the billions of people in the world, the easily billions of billions that live better lives, made fewer mistakes, who sinned FAR fewer times and yet our God, our Father reaches and finds someone like me and personally takes me under His loving care and =wow.. for one so unworthy He makes me worthy, gives me the tools and lessons.. all I have to do is use them, trust Him and never ever turn away. How can one when brought so tenderly this far???

The Holy Spirit moves in jigsaw puzzle ways with me again, was cleaning out things at home and doing all this home stuff, got a passport (in only 1 week even tho the state website said I had at least 2-3 more weeks to wait). Had a distant thought of going to Combermere, well, again Holy Spirit time moves fast, fast, fast lately )which I personally like- too much time wasted give me fast forward as M- described it(I like that term-LOL and the "scruff of the neck" phrase LOL. Great descriptors!) So went to Poustinia on Wednesday last week, Holy Spirit, Jesus in the Chapel rather made it clear that it was time to go up to Canada. ROFL, so here it is,umm, exactly one week since my poustinia and I leave Sat am for Combermere! Yea-ha!!

Canada, ya sat? What the heck are ya going to Canada fer to that weird town/place thingy? TO GROW closer to our God! With hope I go to learn to walk the Way, the narrow path... because when you are sitting and praying and over and over through the Bible passages and that interior conversation you enter through deep prayer you are told 'go. Go. It is time." Well Momma didn't raise no fool.. Jesus speaks you don't question you just do and are thankful that He speaks to your heart. Then everything feel into place. All I had to do to get ready for what hopefully will turn into a long visit (God willing-pray for me!) was finish the work I started a few weeks ago.

Yesterday when over helpin make sauerkraut we did Eucharistic Adoration and my dear Jesus again gave that glorious sign where he shows himself within the Eucharist as a light pencil sketch type image... again I am so blessed and humbled how He reaches out and gives me(!) assurances when He doesn't even have to! Not that I was overly concerned even, for this journey has some concerns but from the get go the peace I felt and feel inside it that it feels "right". (That word again) It feels "right" and as long as the Holy Spirit graces me with these wonders all is right... even if the road is painful or hard it does not matter for all that matters is loving and serving my God, Triune and Holy. That is it.. can't turn back, don't want to ever turn back to where my life was at anytime ever.

How I wish everybody in this world would just open their hearts and love God, love Jesus, listen to the Holy Spirit pass over them just waiting for their yes. What a world it would be! If we could just get the Catholics to see what a wondrous earth and life we could have if we all united completely with God! Complete union with the Trinity, with our fellow brothers and sisters.. all together like we were envisioned from the beginning our perfected Nazareth through the loving sacrifice of our Master and Brother Jesus to our Father, Abba, in unity with the Holy Spirit guiding us the body of Christ on earth... looked after by our Mother Mary... our Guardian Angels jobs would be so much easier... what a song of joy would there be in Heaven as the humans finally accepted the gifts available to us all if we just take that first step towards God with humility and faith.

That's it then.. it is time to walk away from this world for a time and focus on a much different path.. and I am for the first time feeling at home and not an observer. Thanks be to our God, all praise and glory are His forever and ever. Amen! Amen!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

What prayer goes thru His heart at that moment?
The depth of divine suffering lovingly reaching Heavenward, out of time, beyond our grasp. To know, to understand, to join, to be out of time united completely...on the other side hopefully one day to give thanks, praise humbly bent in loving supplication to the glory of His holy love.

quote from one of my journal entries in my sketchbook sometime around 1995?
"The artist should be like the eyes of God, seeing all. Good and evil. Beautiful and ugly. For it all has purpose and balance that is an essence(of showing life with and without God). We must communicate this to the people. To see, to learn, to enjoy, to think, to pray."

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Today is ST Anne's Memorial

St Anne and St Joachim

Today is ST Anne's Memorial, how wonderful to think of Jesus growing up playing and hearing stories and laughter from His grandparents! Dear St Anne, please pray for us, ask your Blessed Daughter Mary and your Divine grandson Jesus to please grace us with the tender love and joy you felt when with Him. Dear St Anne please pray for us sinners that we may be brought ever closer and united to Jesus so we may love Him as you love Him while we walk this exile until we enter into His Home where we may love Him perfectly forever. Amen.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Dreamed last Monday(?) about 2 dead sparrows- one fell out of the sky in front of me, and was dying fast and then was dead. The other sparrow in a different background and scene was lying on the ground already several days dead. Was one of those odd dreams so I filed it in the mental hold bin.

Last Tuesday I hit a baby sparrow with my car as it flew in front of me. I remember how happy it looked zooming down in a swoop across the street until I realized too late the pending collision course and could not stop. In the rearview mirror I saw its wings doing a frantic flapping on the street until I could turn around and go back. The few seconds that took and I checked on it it had already died. Gently I lifted it up and moved it to the side of the road just on the off chance it was just unconscious and saw its Mom watching from the wire across the street. Feeling terrible I apologized to both and said a prayer for God to bless, and protect His creatures and if they must suffer to make it fast.

Today after Mass I walked a short walk and on the way back to MH on the sidewalk laid a dead sparrow of several days. Immediately making me think of the dream. Todays Sunday reading in Maronite Church was about the sparrows being precious to God yet not even close to what we are to God. I thought of these 2 delicate creatures that I witnessed this week. Still am thinking about it as I am getting ready to do some chores.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Father of Truth Prayer in Honor of St Charbel's Feast Day and 40 Days

Today the Roman Rite Church celebrates St Charbel's feast Day! A Maronite hermit priest known for his great holiness and extreme fastings. His love for the Most sacred Mystery of the Holy Eucharist was legendary throughout Lebanon and is a great example for all today, especially priest. He had a great devotion to our Blessed Mother. He was ordained a priest on 23July 1859, died Christmas Eve 1898. Canonized 9Oct1977 by Pope Paul VI. Known for countless miracles his body has exuded a fragrant perfumed oil since his death and relics are precious.

Father of Truth Prayer

Father of truth, behold your Son, a sacrifice pleasing to You. Accept this offering of Him who died for me; behold His blood shed on Golgotha for my salvation. It pleads for me. For His sake, accept my offering. Many are my sins, but greater is Your mercy. When placed on a scale, Your mercy prevails over the weight of the mountains known only to You. Consider the sin and consider the atonement; the atonement is greater and exceeds the sin. Your beloved Son sustained the nail and the lance because of my sins, so in His sufferings You are satisfied and I live.

Hunh.. here is a wild lil coincidence, if you believe in coincidences.. I don't- but for some odd reason after praying counted the number of days since 15Jun when I started work that week at MH the week that ended with the Friars until todays date.. exactly 40 days. I know, pretty cool.. oh and btw, I can go to Canada next month just gotta decide on best day to go, found out today!.., I am glad in a very calm way. interesting... and yet so right. Wild.. very, very humbling and.. ahh speechless for what I am feeling inside this evening. A rarity so enjoy it! ROFL!

"Without the burden of afflictions it is impossible to reach the height of grace. The gifts of grace increase as the struggles increase."
St. Rose of Lima

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Bible passages as I received them over the course of the poustinia:

2 Corinthians
Chapter 6

1 2 Working together, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain.2For he says: "In an acceptable time 3 I heard you, and on the day of salvation I helped you." Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.3 We cause no one to stumble 4 in anything, in order that no fault may be found with our ministry;4 on the contrary, in everything we commend ourselves as ministers of God, through much endurance, in afflictions, hardships, constraints,5 beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, vigils, fasts;6 by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, in a holy spirit, in unfeigned love,7in truthful speech, in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness at the right and at the left;8through glory and dishonor, insult and praise. We are treated as deceivers and yet are truthful;9as unrecognized and yet acknowledged; as dying and behold we live; as chastised and yet not put to death;10as sorrowful yet always rejoicing; as poor yet enriching many; as having nothing and yet possessing all things.11 We have spoken frankly to you, Corinthians; our heart is open wide.12You are not constrained by us; you are constrained by your own affections.13 As recompense in kind (I speak as to my children), be open yourselves.

14 Do not be yoked with those who are different, with unbelievers. For what partnership do righteousness and lawlessness have? Or what fellowship does light have with darkness?15 What accord has Christ with Beliar? Or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?16 What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said: "I will live with them and move among them, 12 and I will be their God and they shall be my people.17 Therefore, come forth from them and be separate," says the Lord, "and touch nothing unclean; then I will receive you18 and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty."

Chapter 20

But Mary stayed outside the tomb weeping. And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb12 and saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet where the body of Jesus had been.13 And they said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "They have taken my Lord, and I don't know where they laid him."14 When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there, but did not know it was Jesus.15 Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?" She thought it was the gardener and said to him, "Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him."16 Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabbouni," which means Teacher.17Jesus said to her, "Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, 'I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'"
Mary of Magdala went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and what he told her

Chapter 13

1 Before the feast of Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to pass from this world to the Father. He loved his own in the world and he loved them to the end.2 The devil had already induced 4 Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot, to hand him over. So, during supper,3 fully aware that the Father had put everything into his power and that he had come from God and was returning to God,4 he rose from supper and took off his outer garments. He took a towel and tied it around his waist.5 Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet and dry them with the towel around his waist.6 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, "Master, are you going to wash my feet?"7Jesus answered and said to him, "What I am doing, you do not understand now, but you will understand later."8Peter said to him, "You will never wash my feet." Jesus answered him, "Unless I wash you, you will have no inheritance with me."9 Simon Peter said to him, "Master, then not only my feet, but my hands and head as well."10 Jesus said to him, "Whoever has bathed 6 has no need except to have his feet washed, for he is clean all over; so you are clean, but not all."11 For he knew who would betray him; for this reason, he said, "Not all of you are clean."12 So when he had washed their feet (and) put his garments back on and reclined at table again, he said to them, "Do you realize what I have done for you?
13 You call me 'teacher' and 'master,' and rightly so, for indeed I am.14 If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another's feet.15 I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do.16 Amen, amen, I say to you, no slave is greater than his master nor any messenger greater than the one who sent him.
If you understand this, blessed are you if you do it.18 I am not speaking of all of you. I know those whom I have chosen. But so that the scripture might be fulfilled, 'The one who ate my food has raised his heel against me.'19 From now on I am telling you before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe that I AM.
Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me."21 When he had said this, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified, "Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me."22 The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.23One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, 8 was reclining at Jesus' side.24 So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant.25 He leaned back against Jesus' chest and said to him, "Master, who is it?"26 Jesus answered, "It is the one to whom I hand the morsel 9 after I have dipped it." So he dipped the morsel and (took it and) handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot.27 After he took the morsel, Satan entered him. So Jesus said to him, "What you are going to do, do quickly."
(Now) none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him.29 Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him, "Buy what we need for the feast," or to give something to the poor.30 So he took the morsel and left at once. And it was night.
When he had left, Jesus said, "Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.32 (If God is glorified in him,) God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him at once.33 My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, 'Where I go you cannot come,' so now I say it to you.34 I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.35 This is how all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another."

Chapter 17

"I revealed your name 5 to those whom you gave me out of the world. They belonged to you, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word.7 Now they know that everything you gave me is from you,8 because the words you gave to me I have given to them, and they accepted them and truly understood that I came from you, and they have believed that you sent me.9 I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for the ones you have given me, because they are yours,10 and everything of mine is yours and everything of yours is mine, and I have been glorified in them.11 And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are.12 When I was with them I protected them in your name that you gave me, and I guarded them, and none of them was lost except the son of destruction, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled.
But now I am coming to you. I speak this in the world so that they may share my joy completely.14 I gave them your word, and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.
I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one.16 They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world.17 Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth.18 As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world.19 And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.20 "I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word,21 so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me.22 And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one,23 I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me.
Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am 7 they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world.25 Righteous Father, the world also does not know you, but I know you, and they know that you sent me.26 I made known to them your name and I will make it known, 8 that the love with which you loved me may be in them and I in them."


How many times have I gone to the Bible and prayed for guidance? Or a piece of Scripture hoping the Holy Spirit might lead me to and opened the pages and never when done in as much faith as I can muster have the passage not spoken to me at times more deeply then I ever thought possible. Suddenly seen with new eyes and understanding, and comfort or wisdom. I like that our Lord is not all comfy but always comforts when He is being strict.

These are the passages I got when doing my poustinia over last night and early morning. The Corinthians one made me chuckle out loud in the silence of the room, for I got it at home on Monday evening. Next was the Mary Magdalen passage at the tomb and it was her Feast Day Wednesday.

The other made me shake my head and crack a grin at the amazing nature of God's hand is the washing of the feet which tied into a video I watched/borrowed last week from Madonna House and the title was...drum roll please- Madonna House The People of the Towel and Water. yes based on said passage. After the past month you can understand my amazed chuckle.
The amazing thing was for each passage the Bible started closed and had no bookmarks or heavy creases in the spine, etc. So Wednesday was Gospel According to the Apostle John night.

More later on, got some answers and direction to my prayers tho! But as I said, will write more later after I get some dinner- no wonder I am hungry, its almost 10pm!

Monday, July 20, 2009


So after the 2am wake up where all was not happy, joy,joy... Went out and tracked a priest, well, waited until Mass. Just inside every sinew, cell, and aim was- GET TO CONFESSION LINDA! Told ya this is a crazy time, if I hadn't been nuts before I would be afraid I was going nuts. It is different this is directed and not out of control other then for what needs to be a bit careening. ROFLMAO- the one good thing about my background I guess! Differentiating between sane and insane crazies.

Talk about the crazies out today, every single one I saw was on that knife's edge in the eyes and tension department not gonna be a fun day in the mental health and outreach fields today. Mother Mary look over them all and pray for them all. Very brittle looking the 4 I saw.

Thunder, lightening pouring down rain this am when left eh house(7am, told ya I was totally unsettled). Until Mass at 830 came out rain lifted cloudy but not Boomdrench, then read Psalm 139. Ahhhh... God is merciful, Jesus is the true healer... all I had to do was ask. Next time don't wait 3 months dumkoff.

Chapter 139

1 For the leader. A psalm of David. O LORD, you have probed me, you know me:
2 you know when I sit and stand; you understand my thoughts from afar.
My travels and my rest you mark; with all my ways you are familiar.
Even before a word is on my tongue, LORD, you know it all.
Behind and before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is beyond me, far too lofty for me to reach.
Where can I hide from your spirit? From your presence, where can I flee?
If I ascend to the heavens, you are there; if I lie down in Sheol, you are there too.
3 If I fly with the wings of dawn and alight beyond the sea,
Even there your hand will guide me, your right hand hold me fast.
4 If I say, "Surely darkness shall hide me, and night shall be my light" --
Darkness is not dark for you, and night shines as the day. Darkness and light are but one.
You formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother's womb.
I praise you, so wonderfully you made me; wonderful are your works! My very self you knew;
5 my bones were not hidden from you, When I was being made in secret, fashioned as in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes foresaw my actions; in your book all are written down; my days were shaped, before one came to be.
How precious to me are your designs, O God; how vast the sum of them!
Were I to count, they would outnumber the sands; to finish, I would need eternity.
If only you would destroy the wicked, O God, and the bloodthirsty would depart from me!
Deceitfully they invoke your name; your foes swear faithless oaths.
Do I not hate, LORD, those who hate you? Those who rise against you, do I not loathe?
With fierce hatred I hate them, enemies I count as my own.
Probe me, God, know my heart; try me, know my concerns.
6 See if my way is crooked, then lead me in the ancient paths.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Wow, just realized it has only been a month since the Friars came through and just 3 weeks since my first formal poustnia. LOL, when the Holy Spirit moves He moves! No wonder I feel a bit dazed at times!

Friday Morning Walk Under Darkened Clouds Above

Jesus in the Garden, painting featured in Pope Benedict's 2007 Station's of the Cross.

Today was a dark and cloudy day and my mood reflected it.

Walking and praying along the river's edge storm clouds building in the early morning, the quiet beauty of cloud filtered light accentuating God's creation all around. Quiet falls into two categories the good quiet and the bad quiet. The good quiet is that of peaceful prayer time or gentle calm inside. The bad is the quiet of either a low hearing day, which it is today or the quiet of isolation and loneliness which also was today. My personal cross that torments my being and rips into my heart.

Walking my mind cried out to my Lord,"Where are you today? I feel so small and alone, my hope is dark and all I see is isolation" Walking I prayed the simple prayers of trust and love, reminding me that even if I cannot feel Him, God is with me always. "O God come to my aid. O Lord, make haste to hear me..." on I went trying to push aside my cloudy mood and focusing on the meanings of the words. Jesus felt so alone and hurt when the people of his hometown laughed at Him and wanted to stone him.

"Father of Truth, behold your Son, a sacrifice pleasing to You...Your beloved Son sustained the nail and the lance because of my sins, so in His sufferings You are satisfied and I live."
So in Jesus' sufferings, I live. Oh how again my heart ached for again I can see the pain I caused to the savior of my soul and life. Forgive me dear God, forgive me dear Jesus wash me clean forget my past and save me from the evil one.

This week has been one of odd temptations. Not of the usual kind but dark flashes of mental and emotional scenarios playing a narrative in my mind. Dealing most with my weakest areas but never based on fact or past experience, I would shake my head and make it stop and if it didn't I would pray for help or offer it up depending on the subject matter. Then they would stop. So subtle the temptations, so seemingly innocent if not paying attention. But all had violence, and non-Christ like themes. Forgive me dear Lord for in the past when lost I use to say it does not matter what you think as long as you do not act. Another rationalization of grave error from my past.

"In honor of St Charbel's vow of poverty, Hail Mary full of grace..."

Dear Lord today let me remember all those who are feeling this same way, especially those with no hope inside. Use me to serve you, use my to spread your love. Take away all of me that is displeasing to the Father, as you said in the Garden "let Thy will be done". Never mine dear Lord, never mine take all that is "me" and strip it away like your clothes on that dark morning of your Passion. Let me serve and love you in some way to ease the hurt you felt when preaching the way to your loving Father the town's people would laugh at you and drive you from the town. For when you took on human form so humble and small you also took on our frail emotions. You felt the humiliation as you stood beaten and your Mother saw your beaten, whipped naked body. You felt the sadness inside you as your very people ran away too scared to stand beside you. Did your Father console you as you stood laughed at, as they chose a murderer over you? Did you stand there alone, enduring all of the mental torture with the physical as a man does, relying on that inner knowledge that God is with you? Did you so humble yourself for love of the Father and for us that you endured even the emotional slashing to your innocent, divine heart crying out to the Father for mercy on us slaying you? Yes you did.. for love. For love.

"In honor of St Charbel's vow of chastity... Hail Mary full of grace..."

Dear Jesus I try to understand why such hate exist among my fellow Christians towards gay people. I understand why, but if they would just follow your example and go to their gay brethren with love and not hate so many would not leave the Church or be so full of despair. Dear God I have met so many on line who are trying so hard to live good, righteous lives giving their lives to you with vows of celibate chastity, yet they are so persecuted and so hated that they hide in your Father's house. Please have mercy on them. Let them not feel alone, not be filled with despair for doing what is right for the love of you. I pray that the quiet members of your church will one day see the marvelous witness these faithful men and women are and one day will welcome them as family and give them support and love. Help me to reach out with the love you give me and comfort those who need warmth and support, or correction. Help those on the edge realize what a grace it is to give your life this way for God, and protect them from temptation.

"In honor of St Charbel's vow of obedience, Hail Mary full of grace the Lord is with thee.."

Obedience like love is an act of the will and an act of the heart. So easy to say, so hard to do. How many times have I failed to understand the depths of obeying my God? The more I learn, the more my heart is opened- the more I see the flaws within my self. O so willing I will obey my heart cries in love's glorious rapture. How weak my flesh is to the little things never noticed before. Break me dear Jesus as you were broken. Bless me with Thy love, re shape me from the clay so I may never offend in the least way you, your Father or the Holy Spirit. Teach me how to reform my life in total service to your will. To serve you by loving all your creation and by always putting your will first in loving my neighbor as your servant. Give me the grace to lay on the cross beside you out of love for the Father, out of love for You. Help me to be your joy filled slave even when times are dark and you feel so far away. Let me always remember you are here beside me and inside me, divine love residing deep in my heart. Break me down so you can raise me up.

Walking I prayed in drizzling rain. Like tiny drops of water blessing my pain.

I give this to you dear Mary, my Mother as an offering to Jesus for those I have failed to pray for lately. As penance for my selfishness these past few weeks. I know the sun will return and many lessons will be learned from this loneliness invading my being.

And you know what, it did fade and the sun did return... not great beaming blast but a day spent in prayer as pain often brings, a redoubled effort as chores were done. I walked awhile so my Jesus could show me a way to unite my human weakness with His garden path(again I am so slow to learn but He so patient). To remind me where I came from and how far I have come thanks only to the love of the Father, the love of my Lord and the love of the Spirit that whispers inside me. Use me in service to Thy will so I might show others the glory of You.

Eucharistic Adoration tonight! Yeah, always a great way to end a long day!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Reflections and A 4 A.M. Book

What wonder is our Lord! He reaches down to someone like me and touches my heart and soul, inspires my mind to loftier heights, me a nobody in this world of ours, someone easily invisible in a crowd. He reaches all the way down, down with His Holy Spirit, with His Son's loving heart to teach me and to love me. He reaches down so low to my hiding place and sees me covering my face with shame, and ever so gently moves my hands. Tells me He loves me for He made me. My repentant pleas heard, my sins forgiven, my desire is only to love Him and all that is of Him, my Lord my God. My Lord, My God live within me for they love me, they know all of me yet still they fill my heart with their divine presence. They have the Holy Spirit beside me guiding me and giving the gifts of Divine Love. How blessed am I to have a God so merciful and kind? So humbled I am that He lifts me up to see His light. Me- me... how preciously humbling.

So many lessons, so many trails, so many pains I have endured over these past few months, few years. But Oh! So much joy and love! Never a painful lesson taught, or sorrow endured without also God's loving consolation. Never a fear faced, or pruning cut made without Jesus' loving hand reaching to comfort me. No confusion too great, no discouragement too long before the Holy Spirit comes to comfort me. How humbled am I, how very humble I've been made to see without veil or darkness the immense love our Mysterious God has for everyone of us if we would just ask, obey, and reach for Him with true love no matter how far down we buried it in our hearts.

Our Father, God Almighty ask no more from us then He asked of Jesus His only begotten Son. Love, He wants our love pure and simple like that of a child. Love unwavering and unquestioning, it has been so long since I have felt love inside my heart. My pride, my fears, my life sealed off the warmth that I knew once lived there. So long since I had loved another in that deep intimate way, so long since I had a friendship that I did not have to shut off parts of my heart for fear.. fear they would misconstrue my filial love for something it wasn't. Sealed from the pain when all I thought were my friends suddenly abandoned me in my darkest hours. Love pure, warm, joyous has touched me again. It makes me smile and laugh and gaze at the world with wonder at God's mercy and compassion for his wandering child. Love He has shown someone so insignificant and injured like me. Our God is a loving God, his Son a gentle peace giving Master and brother, his Divine Spirit the power and deliverer of the Divine Love. All we have to do is ask and lovingly bow down.
Woke up the other morning at 4 am, before my eyes I saw a book and a weird word as it's title. My morning addled brain struggled to read and comprehend the title of the book written on a dark background with a picture of pine trees a blue sky and what looked like an odd cabin in the foreground. Then I heard it as my southern brain wrapped around the word "Sobornost". LOL, needless to say that got me awake with a big "Whhaaatt? Sobornost? OK Linda, why are we seeing a book with a funny Russian word before our mind's eye clear enough to read at 4 am?" Ahhhh- it's one of those Madonna House books, has to be the art style looks familiar and it is the only place were I have seen Russian titled books around. Alright y if this is you working Holy Spirit let's see if we can find it on-line so I don;t go by there in the am and seem like a total crazy. Sure enough there it was,a book about the Holy Trinity and a generic description that didn't tell much to a caffeine deprived, half asleep night person. So trundled back to sleep wondering until the later more humane hours to wake up, move and think.

Long story short I don't know what it is about that house with the blue door and the nice people living inside but it has had a weird effect on me. The Holy Spirit has somehow given me a gift to end up going there and using it as a boot camp for my soul. LOL, except for the physical aspect I think basic training was a bit easier! Like I mentioned elsewhere when there my mind moves in a different way, the built-in flippant side of me shuts down, and not one visit almost has not revealed something about my self, my behavior, or given me an example of living a life focused on God realized. Went told my story in the morning and sure 'nuff there is a book there by that name and off to home I went to read it later after spending the day with Mom.

Took me over 5 and a half hours to make it through the first 46 pages. Not that it was a difficult read but there was so much to contemplate on and so many things that congealed things from previous contemplations I had had. So many simple yet profound concepts explained in a different way or just worthy of further contemplation. I'll write more later on the actual book and subject matter but I see how Catherine Dogherty built Madonna House on the principal of Sobornost and prayed to achieve it within the MH community and then to spread it eventually through the Catholic, Orthodox and Christian communities and onward.Thus uniting all in an ideal hopeand prayer to God. A truly beautiful unity between people and the Holy Trinity reflecting and infused with the Holy Trinity's perfect divine unity between God, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. That is probably not a very good summation at all and much of it is my own opinion and grasp of how I see all this at this hour and day, so bound to change as time passes.

To describe this sobornost??? Some things exist in the intellect, others the visual, others the emotional... this falls within the realm of God it speaks to the heart and soul. Like golden threaded gossamer the clarity is seen in shifting rays of light only. Felt like a breeze blows over your skin, a whispered touch to the soul's truth. So simple, so very very simple that the understanding is grasped but the mind's desire to hold it is feeble for it reigns not in the mind's domain but the heart's. Love, once again it all boils down to God's love for us, our love for God, and our call to love all in loving subservience to the whisper of the Holy Spirit. It is about the Trinity's ever growing example of love lived within ourselves and with our neighbor and with God always the center and focus. A life like Nazareth and the perfect love and unity the Holy Family shared and how that love shared and spilled over to incorporate all who fell within that loving circle willing to fully partake. It is a vision of how the soul hungers for a more perfect way of living here on earth during our exile and hope for Heaven.

See simple concept so hard to describe in such finite words limited and constraining of something of God's realm with its infinite depths and levels.

OK more on this later on... somehow.. better yet get the book from the Madonna House bookstore yourself and read with an open heart "Sobornost" by Catherine de Hueck Doherty. More people should read this book and not just Catholics but all Christians at the very least.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday Night Ramble to Self

So another Thursday has passed, this one a rough mix of emotions. The sadness from Sunshine's death hit more in the evening once the silence of the day descended and there wasn't a furry face meowing for attention. This morning too quiet with no a.m. food begging parade. Walked slowly through the park today just taking in the sights and the moment.

I missed my Maronite Divine Liturgy the past week plus got to go the past 2 days-yeah! (Father was out of town and had another priest, Roman Rite, fill in. Funny watching all the parishioners trying to remember what to do and say when. Fill in was great Homilist tho!) Was going to Roman Rite weekday Mass which is just as wonderful and sacred just was the shorter working people's Mass,lol, speed Mass I call 'em. Just something about the pace, the prayers and more active role the lay people take in the Maronite Liturgy especially during the weekdays. The main Sunday Divine Liturgy is actually the one I avoid preferring the more quiet Saturday night service. The intimacy more tangible, more silent for prayer and becoming lost within the ritual, readings, intentions, and humbling glory of being in the real presence of our Lord Jesus.

Nothing feeds my soul more then eyes closed and listening in either Rite...must be due the fine line between hearing world and non-hearing world I lived in so often in my first 30 some years. Silence and sound mixed throughout Mass is transcendental for me... a contemplative cocktail of God's wonder to my being. Rhythm of prayers, responses spoken in unison, the chains of the incensor (sp?)in its rhythmic swinging, singing voices harmonizing in such beauty, the deep burden and offering of the priest as he kneels and asks for mercy and all join singing the Kyrie Eleison. Soft humbling, yearning and joyous. No matter the Rite the silence and sounds unite our love for the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit- it never gets trite or old instead my love for it all just grows.
Love is beauty... from the welcoming caress of a mother's hand on her new baby's head, to the gentle farewell caress on the dying person's cheek and forehead. The eyes reaching out with pure love.

No where however horrific can escape the beauty of love. The sister picking maggots from a lepers sores, what beauty! What love! The gentle eyes of a stranger warmly smiling to the homeless crazy man fighting invisible enemies giving him a reprieve from society's judgments. What simple loving mercy! A tortured prisoner languishing in a cell remembering the sounds of his children's laughter, letting the love fill him and lifting his world from hell to a momentary Eden of love's hope. What strength is love!

Love's grace in darkness, love's glory in light.

God's most simple gift and most profound treasure... His Divine Love. How did we wretched humans ever deign such a wondrous gift? Through Christ's Passion...For Jesus' love for us lost children did He humbly mingled with the vileness of our fallen nature knowing we will make Him suffer and die. His love is what gave us merit. His Love gave us hope. Everyday He is crucified anew by our actions and thoughts, everyday He lovingly forgives the repentant heart. Love.

In Corinthians reading today "the things that no eye has seen and no ear has heard, things beyond the mind of man, all that God has prepared for those who love him. These are the very things that God has revealed to us through the Spirit." God's love touches us and opens the senses, heart and mind. Only with love can we be transformed... simplistic I know but still true.

Love makes the blind man see and the deaf man hear... removes the cloth that covers our hearts so He might fill it with the grace of His love. There is no real, lasting beauty in this world without God's grace. An atheist might see the natural beauty of the tree, an artist the beauty of the tree's lines but only with love of the Divine Master can a man see the true grace filled beauty and prayer each tree gives for the glory of God's creation. Only then can we feel the God within the tree.

LOL, didn't say it was some grand insightful ramble, just a mental floss note to myself so I can re-read later. Been a long exhausting 2 days, and I am tired. Good night moon.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


A unusual day, my cat Sunshine died early this morning. It was a mercy for she did not have to suffer long from kidney failure. She was about 15-17 years old, not sure exactly I got her right after I convinced my ex to move out, times are fuzzy from that period. Sunshine had a special knack for showing and giving love. Maybe because she was abandoned as a kitten? She then shuffled from my ex's apt to her Mom's and when they didn't want to deal with her I got her. What a blessing that was looking back.

As I dug her grave, sweating and not thinking much, just letting the thoughts flow where they might I remembered how when I was so depressed my very bones ached she would come up and just be there with me. Not wanting any special petting or food... just there looking at me with tender eyes so full of raw innocent love, like she was willing to make me feel the care within her heart. Like she was telling me that she would never leave me as all the others in my life faded away.

Sunshine made my Grandmother love her despite my Grandmother claiming she didn't like cats. LOL, I remember eating dinner one night, nice take out from Habor's Landing featuring G'ma's fav broiled scallops.. then pop G'ma would toss part of a scallop on the floor near Sunshine like I wouldn't notice! When G'ma was in her final hours Sunshine delicately jumped up on the bed and nudged G'ma's hand and lightly did a single cheek rub on Grandma's face like she was saying good bye. Sunshine never before dared to jump on Grandma's bed or lap save that one time.

Yeah, I am going to miss this special cat who would hug my hand as I fell asleep and then would go off to the foot of the bed after about 15 minutes. That's it the last of my cats except Monroe who is more my parents cat since she has lived with them the last 13 years. We have our miracle kitty Chance, but he is more David's cat he showed up 6 months after John died and took an immediate shine to David especially after surviving anti-freeze poisoning. Hence the nick Miracle kitty given him by the vet's office and the VT School of vet medicine. They had never seen a cat survive as sick as he was... Chance was gentle and never dared think he was alpha to her.

Sleep well Sunshine, maybe our paths will cross again on the other side?

Friday, July 3, 2009

The trees, rocks, and river of my youth transformed into a shadow of itself but still it's essence remains.

every nuanced gradient of shade in the bark some accentuating the craggy deep cuts of roughened growth as the tree stretched hungrily for the sun and river... decades and decades of yearning and being.

The rocks tossed by floods, rolls and smoothed by the never ceasing river,, all friends joined to serve, protect and welcome me as I sat inches from the eddying water...

In my youth here is where I sat and learned the secret sacredness of the world. Of God's great glory, His perfect piece of art for all to wonder and praise His majesty.

Here by the river I learned in the silent roar of rushing river the Creator's brush,
The Great One's gentle power over all things.

Down by the river all time stopped and the heart expanded in the praise of the unknown Master Artist.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

From Spitting Nails To Wishing Nails

Short lil'in one ear and out the other venting baby rant.... quitting smoking- hard!

So this am I had the bright idea in the shower that quitting smoking is like the Gospel passage where a man sins seven or seventy or a million seventy times a day.. so like smoking you fail several times a day and some are easier then others.. yada-yada. Nuff said there

All is fine for me but get me around my family, who are salt of the earth, the most wonderful, kind, loving, give ya anything ya need people, who ALL smoke!!! Did not plan on joining them for lunch but had Mom's office papers and Mass let out early enough thought I could get them to her at my bro's office. Ended up going to lunch with them... like I said I loving best family in the world but by the time we got back to my brother's office afterwards I could have fought a battalion or just curl up alone and hide.... SMOKE SMOKE all around smoke that bitchy gene was kicking in and a head ache from hell was joining in just fer kicks. Then went to post office to drop off passport application and the gal said you have to call for an appointment...grrrrrrrr... ya know how much I love fed govt BS..la-la-laa.. ok I call the number and a voicemail informs me to leave my number and WAIT for them to call me back... WT*?? So now I am home waiting for the USPS trolls to call me back so I can drop off my passport app....la-la-la-la,...
Please pardon the rant sometimes ya just have to articulate the frustrations to be rid of them.

!!!!!!!----OK Life is back in synch again-Thanks be to God! St Andrews had their once a month Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament(Eucharistic Adoration) so went there for the whole thing 5pm-7pm...AHHHHHH Our God is an AWESOME GOD!

Such a humble state hidden and vunerable yet so strong, immediate, unintimidating! Oh what a glorious 2 hours in the church of my youth! Jesus reminded me of the loving times spent there as a child. My mind's eye captivated once again in the evening sunlight by the stained glass windows, the ornate decorations, the beauty of this church with such humble beginnings. this 'castle on the hill' my protestant friends would call it.

Ahh-- images of my grandparents in their Sunday best sitting near the front.. happenstance( we know what I think about that- it rarely is coincidence) I was sitting 4 pews back on Mary's side where they would sit most Sundays for who knows how many decades. My Grandmother's pure strong soprano voice singing gloriously in my ear, my grandfather's coat a faint hint of pipe tobacco... With eyes of a child I could see again the people from the back of the church as the sun beamed through the rose window and we would find our seats before Mass. the choir bursting in song for the season and everybody raising as the priest and alter boys entered bearing the crucifix before them. Faint hints of incense drifted in my childhood memories transporting me to the wonderment I felt as a toddler, young child, young teen.

Oh how I gazed up at the giant crucifix above the alter Sunday after Sunday telling Jesus my young thoughts, mystified at times at why this gentle man would not just come down from there and play. LOL, so when very little I would sneak my crucifix out to the backyard where we had our 'hole to China" with roads and caves cut in and play with Him there because Jesus needed to have fun too I reasoned in my stubborn little mind. As He and I would battle the devil and always win, or marvel at the sky and wonders in the backyard adventures.

Love, love, love! All around me images and smells, thoughts and songs of love! From my family to the mass, to my first communion to confirmation, confession in the dark safe boxes, to my wondering why I ever drifted away. LOVE! I was shown love through those 2 hours of simple things and complex mysteries! LOVE! How Jesus heard the pleas of His Mother praying to Him on my behalf and sending the Holy Spirit to save me that dark night. The mystery of the Holy body, Blood Soul and divinity of Jesus in that most sacred humble Sacrament of bread and wine transubstantiated into His real present self. How He was there listening to every person praying there listening to their heartfelt prayers, hopes, fears, dreams, needs as if no other existed in the world. How at that moment somewhere in the world His precious Body was being broken by a priest for our salvation our little way of joining into His great sacrifice for us.

Love! To reminding me how one week ago He told me that nothing mattered except Him, Jesus. No one else mattered except for Him, Jesus.. To let the fears of the past go and to follow Him completely. Then he reminded me of the dream I had Thursday night that made it clear that all could and should be left behind including my family for they will be fine and if I stayed with them over Him I would be following the wrong path and I knew it. Then I asked Him to please make it easy to know the path since I have a bit of a problem differentiating subtly of His and that of my own desires. Oh how wonderful to talk with Jesus this way! He showed me an image of Him as a baby small, vulnerable depending on His human parents completely to care for Him and how I need to be like that child and depend completely on Him and to trust Him with all things. It may not happen on my time scale but He will lead and make the path when He wills it... and so it shall be!

Also used the smoking as a way to show that I and all men will fall as He did during the Crucifixion. He fell with us so we can see that we fall and we ask for forgiveness and help from God and then we get right back up and continue carrying our cross with Him. Onward up the hill to Calvary, upward struggling, suffering, seeing the love of the women and Blessed Mary knowing that even in extreme suffering there will always be love with us reaching out to wipe our face, offer us water, and to give us complete gentle caring love... just as Jesus went through so shall we... the good, the ugly, the tortuous.. all for the glory of God!

Glory be to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit! As it was in the beginning, is now and shall ever be. Amen! Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

June-What A Month It Has Been

June, what a month-what a month it has been.

Impossible to put into words all learnt this month by the grace of God. It has swung from sick and painful to healthy and gentle, anguished to peace filled, sorrow to joy.

A month so full of seemingly contradictory sights, sounds, smells, thoughts, emotions. So long, so much learned, so much seen of others and my own self... so long a month that now in the closing hours of the day on the thirtieth my mind is inept to find words. Years worth of life fitted within these past short 30 days. So long a month I would gladly walk through again without hesitation for I was never alone.

Interesting, growing, insightful, struggling, yet I learned so much through all these seemingly tiny lessons intermixed throughout. Lessons given by others, by happenstance(I don't believe in coincidence though, so what word to use?). Humbling lessons that I am so thankful to be enlightened to... never much fun to learn one's own fault's, arrogance, flippancy and its effects on others and self.

For every dark time, shamed time, struggle I am thankful. Layer by layer I want to be pared down. Simplified to only one singular focus however it unfolds on the path before me... for I am trying to walk in trust of the one greater then us all. Trying to relearn what true loves means again in a real life sense and that nothing matters but the now and the openness to all it contains.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Love this Song! "Beautiful Brokenness" by Sue Peters

Wish I had a media player on this blog! In the song description Sue said at Mass one day as she watched the priest break Jesus in the Holy Eucharist her heart prayed "break me like you are broken". Thus the Spirit moved her and this song was written. It is a wonderful prayer, the Spirit lead me to stumble upon it and now I offer it everyday. Thanks Sue for listening and answering the call to create.

"Beautiful Brokenness"

Beautiful Brokenness, lead me to holiness.
Take my pride so I can see the gift of true humility,Beautiful Brokenness.

Beautiful brokenness, lead me to holiness.
Take my will so I can see the gift of faith is all I need, Beautiful Brokenness.

Take me, bless me, break me, consecrate me.
Take me, bless me, break me, consecrate me, Lord, in your beautiful brokenness.

Beautiful Brokenness, lead me to holiness.
Take my heart, take all of me, make me pure, make me clean Beautiful Brokenness.

Take me, bless me, break me, consecrate me, Lord.

As you are broken, break me today.
As you are broken, break me today.
As you are broken, break me today.
As you are broken, break me today.

Take me! Bless me! Break me! Consecrate me!
Take me. Bless me. Break me. Consecrate me, Lord, in your beautiful brokenness.
in your beautiful brokenness

Beautiful Brokenness,
lead me to holiness

Lyrics transcribed by me, so any mess ups are my fault and please notify me so I can correct them.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Rambling- just skip it boring yakking for my own mental flossing

Mass this morning at Madonna House was the highlight of my day. To see the people gathered in this humble place from such diverse walks of life is humbling. Poor, rich, smart, burnt out, loving parents, grandparents all joined in one common purpose- to glorify God and to share with the priest the Divine Liturgy. Such beautiful people, how I wish I could just be invisible and watch, listen to the flow of struggling, loving humanity touched by Jesus around those rooms. All that my heart could think throughout was "Lord, it is good for us to be here" in big bold letters like above the altar at St Elias Church. Yes, it is good for us to be here.

I was glad to be there, the MH people have been so giving to me despite my many problems. I don't know why but when there it was like when I would talk to another special person in my return to the fullness of my faith's journey. Don't know to describe it.. it is like I cannot put on the public face like I use to before. My mind shuts down at the weirdest times, my thoughts reflect the confusion I feel inside about my own spiritual journey and how lost I felt this past year trying to struggle on my own with no guidance.

For once in my life I freely admit the mess my sinfulness and idiot ways have gotten me into-I am a shadow of that former self! Once I was smart, clever the center of the party, able to converse with all societal levels and my company enjoyed, sought after. LOL, now I can barely hold my end of a boring social chit chat. All I want to follow and live the path Jesus gave and to most importantly love Jesus completely with no regard to my own self. Before I had a Mensa level IQ, now I can barely finish a book in a few weeks. LOL, God has humbled me with a 2 by 4 several times over!

Interesting. I just thank the Holy Spirit for leading me there. I do admit one guilt and that is it makes me hunger for more. To jump in completely over my head to leave all behind to go wherever the Holy Spirit leads me in service and love of the Almighty God, the Triune God that formed me. I pray that God would take the clay of me, crumble me up and reshape me into a new L-. A L- that is me yet is nothing of the old me other then a memory. Sigh, it fires up anew this calling that I have felt since that Nov 1 st night. But at my age and with my history.. but especially me age. Waited to make sure it wasn't exuberance, but that just made me even older since even then I was sure it wasn't me but God calling. What have I to give this world in the world? I am a nobody, a nothing. Not married and never will be... no children and never will have any... no vocation of the world, and no calling to any even at this age... never really had one. Would marvel at those around me that seemed so sure and drawn to something specific that they seemed to love as their job for life.

If it was up to my own selfish desires I would run to a cloistered community and spend the rest of my days in community praying, that is my one desire with nothing else coming close. But due my sins, my failings, more selfishness unless God calls in a miracle, all that too has passed. Would love to at least go and work up in Canada and experience life in a community gathered in common purpose and love for Christ. I'll think about that after my tests on Tuesday, then I can see what God has in store for me.

Please pray for me they find what is wrong, but not anything too wrong. I have had no dreams warning me of anything serious, good... but there is so much I would like to plan yet I cannot because I am waiting for Tuesday. Pray for my spiritual health the physical is nothing, but my weakness in faith is humbling and I am ashamed of my failures. I felt the Spirit calling me to continue my fasting after Thursday for an old friend that needs the prayers so I did gladly. No one knew about the fast save P& M anyway do made it easier to continue since I rarely eat with anybody. But I failed because I did slip and smoke and that was one of my sacrifices to Jesus. Especially today I smoked over 7 cigs! I am sorry, you bore thorns and nails, abandonment and the whip for me and I could not even keep this simple thing true for you. Was being around my family that all smoke and the routines.. I am weak when left to my own devices. Jesus I need your strength to raise me up away from my self.

None of this self aggrandizing behavior matters! Ahhh just take me and do what you desire and I will serve gladly dear Jesus, make it hard for I deserve it all! Physical pain, emotional pain, mental pain any and all I will gladly carry for you just please, please let me be made a little bit worthy so when I die I might be able to join you dear Jesus and Mary. Please just let me serve, if I must grovel before you I will and I will be thankful for it. You told me this week by the river in that inner voice to worry about no one except for you Jesus. Because you knew I was afraid that others would start to say I had lost it if they saw such writing as this... I am trusting you Jesus, I am trusting you for I have no other to trust save you.. Nothing else matters but you. If it means they want to try and dope me up then I will trust in Jesus that maybe out there somewhere He will send an advocate spurred by the Holy Spirit or by Mary running to wrap her arms around me... Hope..hope.. trust.. I trust in you my love.. I trust in you dear Jesus.. anything, everything you ask with your grace I will jump in both feet over my head.. trusting and hoping in You.