Posts Tagged With: faith

Finding Peace

How do we balance this crazy world we live in? With the faith that we have in the Lord!

A Picture of Peace Lily Indoor plant

A Picture of Peace Lily (credit: Wikipedia)

When little children are killed randomly and violently?
When good people tragically and unexpectedly die?
When loved ones battle illness, depression and loneliness?
When a soldier fighting for freedom doesn’t come home?

Faith. It’s the only thing that holds me up. St. Paul tells us “The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that

surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

These words and many scripture passages help me keep in balance. It is the only thing that can. When our nation mourns the tragic loss of children in Newtown, Connecticut, we seek answers. There are no answers, there can only be questions. But we also

must realize our questions may not be answered.

I have heard news reporters say “it’s gonna take a long time to heal our wounds.” And it should. We lost children filled with potential, dreams, hopes and love. We should never heal. This nation has a hole in its hearts, for every child lost, for every soldier lost, for every parent lost, for every lost soul. We need to gather and hold each other through it. We need to soften the raw edges of the hole, but it can never be filled with anything but the love of Christ.

The preciousness of life was cracked once again.
The school did everything right procedurally and still great sadness entered the world.
May we find peace in Christ, who is Peace. Because the peace of God surpasses all understanding and will guard our nation’s heart.

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Pride and Humility

Pride – one of the seven deadly sins.

But wait – I am so full of pride as I watch my children become wonderful, productive, gracious members of society. Both college graduates and filled with optimistic views of the world.
So is it wrong to be proud, since pride is a deadly sin?
Being proud of others can help you to have humility in yourself so I know in my heart it’s not a deadly sin to be proud of others.
What’s more important is our actions to the things we are proud of. Do I move throughout the day talking aimlessly about how wonderful my children are? NO! Do I burst into a room to announce a new achievement they have done? NO!
Do I share good news humbly with those that know and love my children, YES!
Humility is a virtue – it’s the virtue opposite of pride.

I am humbled that the Lord has blessed me with two amazing children. I am proud of who they have become.
I am humbled with all that my family has been given and am proud of how we treat others in Christ.
I am humbled by His grace flowing through all we do and am proud to be a witness of the Good News.

So what are the Seven Deadly Sins and their opposing Heavenly Virtue?
Pride                     Humility
Lust                       Chastity
Gluttony              Temperance
Greed                    Charity
Sloth                     Diligence
Wrath                   Forgiveness
Envy                     Kindness

Take your temperature…where do you lean in your daily walk?

Do you live in an area that is over-indulgent and vain about “keeping up with the neighbors”? Do your children have iPads and cell phones in grade school? Is that what is expected and the norm? Is there really a need? Are we just adding to the stress levels children already feel with their groups of friends – the right clothes to wear…the right technology at hand…the right activity programs…the right group of friends. WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT?

Children can become who God wants them to be if we break down the societal barriers and free ourselves to BE ourselves!
Our children will not remember that Mom was always dressed to the “T”s or we always had the best of everything on our street – they WILL REMEMBER that their parents were in love and treated others with respect and gave freely to those in need and they spent time with them and they will feel LOVE.

Life is not about looking good (by who’s standard) or being the most involved in the neighborhood. It’s about being humble, showing kindness, being charitable, leading a pure life, resisting the temptation of the love of money, forgiving others and LOVING ALL!

Let’s go reach back into our FAITH and balance our life with the Heavenly Virtues – lead by example – LOVE!

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The Greatest Birthday

‘Glory to God in the highest
And on earth peace good will toward men’

Born unto a virgin was God’s only begotten Son
Emmanuel (God with us) is the title of The One
Mary’s father was of Judah, the linage of a king
Mary’s mother was a Levite, from Aaron’s priestly string
The world beheld a brilliant star a shining in the east
The sign of Christ, The King of Kings, Lord of Lords, and High Priest

‘Glory to God in the highest
And on earth peace good will toward men’

Shepherds in the field keeping watch over their flock at night
The angel of the Lord appeared and gave them such a fright
‘Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy’
For unto you is born this day, a Saviour, Christ the Roi
The Babe is wrapped in swaddling clothes, a lying in the hay
Heavenly host gave praise to God on the greatest birthday

‘Glory to God in the highest
And on earth peace good will toward men’

(Luke 1: 5-36,2: 6-14,3: 23-38)

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Emptiness

There is a jagged hole in my heart that over the years,
the waves of goodness from family and friends will
hopefully soften those edges.
But there will always be a hole in my heart. William Petit

William Petit’s wife and two daughters were tragically and brutally murdered in their Cheshire, Connecticut home. The loss of a family is something no one should ever endure. As I watched an interview with William Petit I was heart-broken.
How does a small community recover from such a horrific crime?
How do you express what you are feeling when you read about the murders?
How does a father move forward without his daughters and his wife?
How do you fill the emptiness in your heart?

A loss that great never leaves you. Sometimes it appears that life resumes and moves on, but under the surface, in your heart…there is always a hole. The quote above has sat heavy with me since I heard it.

People often can’t formulate words to bring comfort. They may say, time heals all wounds. But when this father said these words, it showed the depth of the pain and the emptiness that will forever exist. It may eventually be less hurtful when remembering your loved ones, but it still hurts. The goodness from family and friends will help, but not remove the hole.

We learn to deal with the emptiness, we remain steadfast in the faith that we will one day be together again. This season, many of our family and friends may be celebrating an empty holiday, missing a piece of this heart.

I remember the first Christmas without my father. He passed away in April and as I was trimming the tree I broke down. I felt the emptiness, I recognized the hole. But my father was in Florida for years and years of Christmases, so this reaction was unexpected. I usually did not see him for the holidays, but I knew that year everything would be different. I especially lift up my cousin’s son, Michael Olivieri who I wrote about in June. Mikey was killed in Iraq and the hole is forever present in the hearts of our family.

In life we grieve for lost loved ones, we have joy with each new life, and if we are really fortunate, when it is time for us to reflect on our own lives we will have experienced more joy than grief.

Family, friends and prayers will help to get you through the emptiness.
For those who are experiencing a loss this past year, reach out to those around you and embrace their generosity and love.
For those you know that experienced a loss, reach out and lift them up in prayer and community, they need you know more than you know.

May the love of the holidays and friends fill your emptiness with waves of goodness.

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Happy Thanksgiving 2011!!

I am blessed with my children and my husband.
I am blessed with health in my family.
I am blessed with the love of dear friends.
I am blessed with a home for warmth and neighbors who care.
I am blessed with people who have touched my life this past year, in small ways that they will never completely understand, but have altered my outlook, my focus or my future.
I am blessed with amazing young children that I am able to work with as we share faith together.
I am blessed with the ability to laugh and to make others laugh.
I am blessed with sight, to see all the beauty that was created for us all to soak in and bask in its glory.
I am blessed with a faith that allows me to be in relationship with Our Lord Jesus, who above all is my guide, my friend, my teacher and my father.

I AM BLESSED – HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

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