Monday, March 30, 2009

Never Promised you a Rose Garden

If I ask to be delivered from trial rather than for
deliverance out of it, to the praise of His glory; if I forget
that the way of the Cross leads to the Cross and not to a bank
of flowers; if I regulate my life on these lines, or even
unconsciously my thinking, so that I am surprised when the way
is rough and think it strange,
"Think it not strange, Count it all joy,"
then I know nothing of Calvary love.
Amy Carmichael

If we seek, and accept, the thorns for ourselves, me thinks He will make us as flowers to others, and sadly, me thinks it also works the other way 'round

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Day for Everybody for Everday

"All we give is given to us to give"
Dorothy Day

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sick of Myself

As I listened to this song this morning, it's lyrics made me think of the truth of my inherent need to venture forth out of my selfish state into the reality of community.
For truly, it is only when I am outside of myself that I can love as God would have me

"Hell is a state of mind—ye never said a truer word. And every state of mind, left to itself, every shutting up of the creature within the dungeon of its own mind—is, in the end, Hell. But Heaven is not a state of mind. Heaven is reality itself. All that is fully real is Heavenly. For all that can be shaken will be shaken and only the unshakable remains.
C. .S Lewis - The Great Divorce

So often, as I look up at the outside crucifix at my church, I am at once "sick of myself" but it also "keeps my hope alive", for unlike most of the world, I do not hope in myself.

"You don't know how you move me
Deconstruct me
And consume me
I'm all used up
I'm out of luck
I am starstruck
By something in your eyes
that is keeping my hope alive

But I'm sick of myself
when I look at you
Something is beautiful and true
In a world that's ugly and a lie
Its hard to even want to try"

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Happy are the Half-empty

I recently joked with someone that the glass isn't always half full, sometimes it's completely empty and ya need a refill (O:

On my little Rosary walk this evening, as I perused my new hood, I realized that I was actually speaking prophesy (small"p" prophesy, but me thinks prophetic none the less), in that the realization that if someone always sees the glass half-full they will most likely never stop to think of the One who poured out the liquid in the first place, which is why He often has ta put a little whole in our stagnant cup to get us to fix the leak, and than ask for a fresh refill (which He so wishes to give).

I have always been a glass half empty kind of guy (actually, me thinks that is actually the nature of the male human provider mentality, but that diatribe is for another post, or after I have half emptied a few amber ales at the pub), and it is this very 1/2 emptiness that God's grace has given me eyes to see, that would eventually lead me to my Brother Jesus, and the Living Water He so gracefully died to give me....and you.

"Blessed are the poor in spirit:
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven

Monday, March 16, 2009

Cherry Blossom Pie : remix

Older post (from 07), just thought I'd inspire folks to get down to DC.

These are all from last year, but thought you non-DC folks would enjoy seeing one of the more beautiful aspects of our City . . .oh, and sorry, no actual pie . . .mmmmm pie (O:
The kids below are my wonderful niece and nephew


Thursday, March 12, 2009

oldie but a goodie

Tonight, in a face-to-face confession, I confessed to the priest that I was guilty of the sin of pride.

"When I look in the mirror, I think I'm handsome."

The priest gently consoled me,

"My son, you are in no spiritual danger.
That is not a sin . . . That is a mistake."(O:

My Twain of thought

"The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist

is that a taxidermist leaves the skin"
Mark Twain

Lest any of my recent posts have anyone pondering whether I am starting to lean towards the left (O:

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Simple Truth

"We do not need a truth to serve us,

we need a Truth that we can serve"

Jacques Maritain


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Battle Between Good and Medieval

"If... you are ever tempted to think that we modern Western
Europeans cannot really be so very bad because we are,
comparatively speaking, humane--if, in other words, you think
God might be content with us on that ground--ask yourself
whether you think God ought to have been content with the
cruelty of past ages because they excelled in courage or
chastity. You will see at once that this is an impossibility.
From considering how the cruelty of our ancestors looks to us,
you may get some inkling of how our softness, worldliness, and
timidity would have looked to them, and hence how both must
look to God".
C. S. Lewis - The Problem of Pain

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Shot Thru the Heart

My new favorite disc is Thrice frontman Dustin Kensrue's 2007 solo release "Please Come Home"(the title is in reference to the Father's longing for the prodigal son). Thrice often had spiritual concepts swirling about in their lyrics, and while Kensrue is still aloof in his lyrical proclomation of faith, only a Christian could write, and fully understand, the lines of this love song to his spouse (words every spouse should know and live by, if they are truly His bride).

"Time to lay down my life,
Honey, I'd do it gladly for you"

Labour Movement in F#

"He that hath seen Christ has seen the Father, and Christ
not only died, but conquered death and rose again.
God the Father is suffering, striving, crucified, but unconquerable.
We see His triumph now in Nature's glory, and we hear Him
calling to us to join Him in the task of conquering the evils
which arise from the necessities of creation. He calls us to
combat floods and famine and pestilence and disease. He hates
them, and wills with us to overcome them, and they shall be
overcome. The Doctor, the Pioneer, the Scientist, are workers
with God like the Priest.
All good work is God's work, and all
good workers do God's will.
They are laboring to make a world
G. A. Studdert Kennedy

To my heart, to my pride

"God spoke to Balaam through his ass
and He has been speaking through asses ever since
So if God should choose to speak through you
don't think too highly of yourself"
Rich Mullins

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Better and Better Off


I found this today while reading "The Life You Save May Be Your Own: An American Pilgrimage", a book about 20th Century Catholic writers ; Flannery O'Connor, Thomas Merton, Walker Percy, and Dorothy Day. This quote, from Day's partner Peter Maurin, with it's simple unfiltered Christian truth, overwhelmed me with joy and purpose.

"The world would be better off if people tried to become better.

And people would become better

if they stopped trying to become better off.

For when everybody tries to become better off

nobody is better off.

But when everybody tries to become better,

everybody is better off.

Everybody would be rich if nobody tried to become richer.

And nobody would be poor if everybody tried to be the poorest.

And everybody would be what he ought to be

if everybody tried to be

what he wants the other fellow to be."

"For what shall it profit a man,
if he shall gain the whole world,
and lose his own soul?"
Mark 8:36

Friday, March 6, 2009

Similar . . .and similar Reason

While I generally am not one to be materialistic, I do confess to prefer only Levi's jeans, as well as really, really . . . Really like my new Philips Ipod remote. Other than these small populistic indiscretions, it is rather rare to see me sporting anything with a "name" or "label", as I have always felt a bit "branded" when doing so.

Moving into a part of my beloved Bawlmer that is made up primarily with 25-35 year old young professionals, I started noticing almost immediately a trend towards the wearing of black North Face jackets (counting 23 one evening at a grocery). My hobby of pondering on the herd mentality lead me to notice the similarity in both the North Face logo, and the Obama "O".
Both have curved stripes which seem to give the feeling of movement, or "change", and both seem to have a price tag that the average American can't afford.

My more academic Mass'keteers could no doubt give more input into the psychological reasoning behind our inherent need to be given a brand, our own desire to be part of a One where we are truly more our self; and how this desire or need can lead us to the counterfeit of a political party (for those unpolitical) or designer ski wear (for those who don't ski). For me it seems that it is just easier for folks to pick the shiniest, the most trendy, than it is to actually consider all the abundant choices upon choices upon choices that seem to continually pop up (I am starting to realize that devil is not only the father of "Choice", but also of too many choices).
Why think, when you can just buy the jacket shell, or support empty shell, that all your friends do?

Discuss amongst yourselves