In our hyper divided nation where people get so angry at their opponents or even people on the street or grocery line, the below daily reflection, really struck a chord with me. The human reaction to our enemies or opponents is to get even, or to destroy them in some way, but God’s way is to heal, and forgive, to bring our enemies into the fold. The apostles were not so different from us. When they wanted to pass through a Samaritan town, and the Samaritans refused to give the disciples entrance to pass through, one of Jesus’ disciples wanted to call down fire from heaven to smite the Samaritans. Jesus told them to hold off. Jesus had a different plan in mind for them.
The story made me thing of today’s culture. How often do we react this same way? I could easily see myself reacting the same way as the disciples did. How quickly we react with our human instincts to rebel, fight back, or try to “get even” with those who oppose us. Rather God calls us to pray for our enemies and treat them as we would a fellow Christian or family member. No one is lost in God’s eyes, even though from our perspective our enemies seem like a lost cause.
The scripture below comes to mind.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, says the LORD.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55: 8-9)
The below story CLEARLY demonstrates this and it gives me pause to consider how quickly we can all be to act with our human instincts rather than to operate by God’s grace and in the power of the Holy Spirit to be God’s hands and feet in this divided world.Continue reading
“Your souls will find rest.” —Matthew 11:29
Are you too busy? Are you overwhelmed with life’s demands? If so, God has a better way for you. In talking with a priest one day who had completely burned out at one point in his ministry told me something I will never forget regarding his ministry workload, he said, “The Lord is not a slave driver, the devil is.” He went on to explain, that the Lord called him to minister to his flock, but it was the devil who was whispering lies in his ear, and mentally using a whip to get him to work faster, and faster, to take on more and more than he could handle. One day the priest realized the Lord was not pushing him like this, it was the devil. And he stopped operating like that. He needed REST. And the Lord was calling him to Rest in Him. The below reflection from Presentation Ministry’s One Bread, One Body struck me as many of us try to serve the Lord, and meet all the demands of work and family, but it was a good reminder that we need to know the Lord is not a slave driver, the devil is.Continue reading
52 Masses: A Journey to Experience Catholicism Across America – On this segment of Faith in Action, co-hosts Jim Ganley and Brigid Ayer are joined by their guest, author Daniel Markham who shares his journey in attending mass in 50 states and Puerto Rico and District of Columbia and wrote a book about it. He shares his journey and his takeaways from attending Mass. For more details or to get a copy of the book the website is https://52masses.com/
What are you thirsting for? How can the Lord quench that thirst? Meditate on that. Do whatever he tells you.Continue reading
“The Lord God said: ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a suitable partner for him.’ ” —Genesis 2:18
The first spoken words in the Holy Bible from man are about the topic of marriage. Adam rejoices that he has been given his beloved wife Eve: “This one, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh” (Gn 2:23). The last time a human speaks in the Bible is likewise a word of rejoicing about a marriage: the Bride, that is, the Church, together with the Holy Spirit say, “Come!” (Rv 22:17) The bride rejoices that she and her spouse are united in marriage. The Scriptures between the beginning marriage and the ending marriage are all interconnected in the ardent love of God for mankind and the human longing for union with the Lord. The entire Bible is sandwiched between two shouts of married joy (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1602).Continue reading
Messy Family Project-Cana 90 Lenten Program – Alicia Hernon joins Jim Ganley and Brigid Ayer to talk about The Messy Family Project, and she offers tips on how you can improve your marriage & family life during the season of Lent with a program called Cana 90. The Messy Family Project webpage is www.messyfamilyproject.org
For the Cana 90 Lenten Couple program see https://messyfamilyproject.org/cana90
Below is a podcast produced by Catholic Radio Indy of an interview describing The Messy Family Project ministry and Cana 90 program.
Discipleship in the new millennium brings many opportunities and challenges. We have really awesome technology we can harness to share our experience of Jesus and the truth we have been given.
A question I hear a lot in my various roles is “Should I be using YouTube, or another video sharing platform?” As a longtime Catholic Christian who has worked in evangelization and as a professional communications consultant, I get questions about video use, particularly YouTube, all the time from those who want to up their discipleship efforts. In fact, I feel so strongly about using digital media (including video) to evangelize, I wrote a book on the topic called “Breaking New Ground: Discipleship Using New Media, Evangelization in the Third Millennium” In that work, I encourage followers of Jesus to use all that is at our technological fingertips to share our personal encounters with Christ, and advance what we have been given as it relates to Jesus and our Christian faith. Yet, I do not go into great detail about the how’s or why’s to use specific platforms. I’ll do that here with regard to YouTube. I get this question so often, especially the “How“, I created a 3-part video class on things to consider when starting a YouTube channel.Continue reading