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 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,...
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!