Jesus Live In Us Today!

Jesus Live In Us Today!

by John Connelly

We live in a world that is broken and bleeding.

A battle is taking place that effects us all.

An ancient warfare is raging all around us.

People are being lied to over and over.

The culture of death surrounds us.

But we should never despair.

God is unfolding his plan.

A Great Renewal is about to dawn.

The renewal of Christianity in our time.

I think this Great Renewal begins by asking ourselves a simple question.

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It is a question that comes straight from the Bible.

From the Heart of God to you and me…

 “Do you not realize that Jesus Christ is IN YOU?” (1 Corinthians 13:5)

 I really believe this is the question for our time.

We need to let this probing question really soak into our inmost being.

Why?

Because the fundamental problem we face is a lack of true revelation

about Jesus living in you and me.

We know it intellectually in our heads.

But have we truly grasped that JESUS IN US is the most revolutionary

force in the entire world?

If we truly awaken to this one simple truth the Church and the world

will be changed forever.

 What is Christianity? It is Jesus Christ is actually living in you and me.

Jesus the King of Kings is in you and me.

Jesus The Lord of all life is in you and me.

Jesus the all powerful, ever loving, unique Savior

of all humanity is living in us now.

Listen to the words of St John Eudes who sought to

live this revolutionary vision…

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“Jesus belongs to you…All THAT IS HIS IS YOURS: His Spirit, His Heart, His Body and Soul, and all his faculties. You must make use of these as your own,to serve, praise, love, and glorify God.” (St John Eudes)

Imagine if every Christian really lived this profound vision of life.

We would go through life with a deep sense of our royal dignity as sons and daughters

of God. We would shine the light of Jesus to all people, in all situations. Prayer would

arise within us and flood the earth.

Imagine if all Christians began to love

God and each other without limits.

If we we quit arguing and allowed Jesus to transform us entirely.

Is this not what Jesus had in mind when he said…

 “Live in me and I in you.” John 15:5

 Yes, a new wind is blowing in our today.

A call to return to the essence of Christianity.

A call to humbly and simply live the life of Jesus in our world today.

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 It is quite stunning that Pope Francis has named himself after the great re-builder

of the Church- St Francis of Assisi.

Everywhere St Francis went renewal broke out.

People converted to Christ.

Faith, hope, and love began to spread like wildfire.

His impact on Christianity and the Church cannot be overstated.

Imagine St Francis kneeling in the ruins of an ancient church.

It’s walls have crumbled. It’s days of glory are forgotten.

He is praying before a painted image of the cross.

Suddenly, he hears Jesus. The voice of the Good Shepherd

speaks to his inmost being….

“Rebuild My Church.”

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Today Jesus is speaking to us again. We too are in a time of epic

rebuilding. The Church needs renewal. It needs to rebuilt with the

living stones of people leading holy lives.

 God longs to work a Great Renewal in our world.

St Francis knew that the path of true renewal only

comes when we live the life of Jesus.

His goal was simple and profound. He said his call was…

 “To follow in the footsteps and teachings of Jesus.”

 Well a new Francis is at hand and he too is calling us all

from theory into practice. Pope Francis seeks to reunite Christians

and call us all rebuild the entire Church by living the life of

Jesus today…

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 “Our daily problems and worries can wrap us up in ourselves, in sadness and bitterness… and that is where death is. That is not the place to look for the One who is alive! Let the risen Jesus enter your life, welcome him as a friend, with trust: he is life! If up till now you have kept him at a distance, step forward. He will receive you with open arms. If you have been indifferent, take a risk: you won’t be disappointed. If following him seems difficult, don’t be afraid, trust him, be confident that he is close to you, he is with you and he will give you the peace you are looking for and the strength to live as he would have you do.” (Pope Francis)

 Jesus is calling.

He is calling for a Great Renewal of all of Christianity.

Every single one of us is called to deeper experience

of Jesus and his limitless love.

We are called from theory into practice.

We are called to let Jesus truly live in us this day and

everyday.

 So let us meditate on the great question of our time…

Do you not realize that Jesus Christ is IN YOU ? ” (2 Cor 13:5)

 And let us pray this prayer together until JESUS IN US becomes our

daily experience…

 JESUS LIVE IN US TODAY!

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The Secret of Prayer (Part One)

by John Connelly

Today I am praying in my room.
It is a gift. A gift more valuable than
all the treasures this world has to offer.
Prayer has led me to the Kingdom of God.
A kingdom infinitely vast and wide.
A kingdom of truth, communion, and love.

I am deeply aware that God is love.
God is all I am really longing for.
God is the answer.
God is the reason.
God is the One I seek and find.
I am also aware that my prayer reaches
beyond all boundaries. It encompasses
all the world because it is united with the
Heart of Jesus.

My friend. My brother, my sister.
Have you found true prayer?
Is prayer at the center of your life?
Have you truly found the inner rest that Jesus
speaks of…?
Come to me all you who labor and are
burdened and I will GIVE YOU REST.
  (Mt. 11:28)

Prayer is a quest. It is the Great Adventure.
It is freedom and rest in the infinite love of God.
Prayer can transform everything. Prayer changes the
world by changing us.

So let us journey together. Let us walk beyond the superficial and go to the living well that never
runs dry.

It was in my early twenties when I first found God in prayer.
It began in a small cabin in the mountains of northern California.
I read a book that unfolded St. Paul’s call to us
in Holy Scripture... “Pray without ceasing.” (1 Thes.5:17)
The book intrigued and challenged me.
I realize now that God was calling me to a deep
life of prayer.

So I took the challenge. I prayed without ceasing.
I called on the Holy Name of Jesus over and over.
I was ignorant and blind- but I was sincere.
Jesus revealed himself to me.
Heaven was now an open door.
The old became new.
I prayed and prayed and prayed again.
My one quest was to “pray without ceasing.”

The words of St. John Chrysostom became
real in my own experience…

“He who finds the door of the heart…finds paradise.”

(St. John Chrysostom was an extraordinary preacher
and teacher who understood the profound need we
all have for a deep life of ceaseless prayer.)

Let me say this loud and clear.
This Door of the Heart can be found!
-It is the heart of Jesus living in you and me.
-It is a taste of paradise.
-It is the fruit of ceaseless prayer.
-It is the fulfillment of the words of Jesus…
“The Kingdom of God in in your midst.”

So what is the secret?
How can you and I experience God deeply in our busy and confusing lives?

Let us begin by praying together and asking the Holy Spirit to guide us on the path…
Heavenly King, Consoler Spirit, Spirit of truth,
present everywhere and filling all things, treasure
of all good and source of all life, come and dwell
in us, cleanse us and save us, you who are All-Good.

-(quoted from the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 2671)

The first thing we must do is realize that our call
is to ceaseless prayer. In a certain sense it is
‘all or nothing.’  God wants all of us. And learning
the way of deep prayer is a quest that must engage
our entire life.
The Saints of old called this “contemplative prayer.”
(It is not to be mistaken for the superficial techniques
that many are teaching and promulgating today.)
Real contemplative prayer is a single-hearted quest
for God. It is rooted in intimate communion with Jesus.

One does not undertake contemplative prayer only when one has the time: one makes the time for the Lord, with the firm determination not to give up,
no matter what trials and dryness one may encounter.

(quoted from the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 2710)

In all the years I have been praying it is not always easy. But I have never given up.  And I would not trade contemplative prayer for anything. It leads me beyond the delusions of this present world into
the reality of the Kingdom of God.

Now let me show you something very simple.
Something that can lead you to the depths of God.
It is rooted in the bible and rooted in the experience
of praying Christians since the early Church.
Perhaps you already know this truth but you need to
‘relearn’ it in your daily experience.

The simplest, most powerful prayer is the Holy Name
of Jesus Christ.

This is why the Bible says…
“All who call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
  (Acts 2:21)

The Catechism of the Catholic Church gives us
a concise understanding of this life-transforming truth.
This is a summary of what many great saints have
taught and practiced throughout the ages…

The name “Jesus” contains all: God and man and the whole
economy of creation and salvation. To pray “Jesus” is to
invoke him and call him within us. His name is the only one that
contains the presence it signifies. Jesus is the Risen One,
and whoever invokes the name of Jesus is welcoming the
Son of God who loved him and gave himself up for him.”

(quoted from the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 2666)

Let the truth contained in these few words soak into your
inmost being. They are good news for all who want to
experience Jesus and grow in a life of prayer.

The name Jesus actually contains the living presence
of God.  Think about that.
When we pray his holy name without ceasing it
leads us to His Heart. It transforms us from within.
It transforms our life and our world.

This type of prayer is often called “the Jesus prayer.”
It is the heritage of all of Christianity.
The name of Jesus is prayed by Christians
from all backgrounds. All those who seek will find.

This morning I simply prayed…
“Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on us all.”
I prayed it over and over until I found
the Door of the Heart. When the door opened there
was Jesus. The Ever-Present One. My God and my
All. The One who gives rest to my soul.

So what are we waiting for?
Ceaseless prayer is available to all.
It connects us to the Living God.
It is the secret of ongoing renewal, deep rest
in God, and the true freedom we long for.
But we must be determined to persevere for
the rest of our lives!

The invocation of the holy name of Jesus is the simplest
way of praying always.

(quoted from the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 2668)

So my challenge to you is this…
Pray without ceasing.
Pray the Holy Name of Jesus
with every breath.
Enter the Door of Christ’s Heart in you…
and be transformed.
And when you fail…begin again with
childlike faith, hope, and love.

I offer this writing with a prayer for each of you…

May the living flame of authentic prayer
renew all our lives.

I will right more on prayer in future blogs.

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Cover The Earth In Prayer!

Cover the Earth in Prayer!
by John Connelly

The Church and the world are facing a serious crisis.
It is a crisis of faith. A crisis of morality. A crisis that
is now affecting every facet of life on planet earth

We must not underestimate the disturbing scenarios that threaten our future, or the powerful new instruments that the “culture of death” has at its disposal.—POPE BENEDICT

The issue today is who is in control.
Are we the ones in control or is the Spirit of God
in control of us? Christianity is meant to be the Spirit of Jesus Christ living in you and me.
We are not the source of all that is  truly good.
It is the Holy Spirit who produces good fruit in us.
It is the Spirit who animates creation. It is the Spirit
who gives life and breath to all.

The simple fact is that it is crazy to think we can ignore
God. It is a kind of madness to think that we can control our lives.
All of us are one accident or mishap away from death.
We are in fact powerless without God.
Human beings are a mess when we ignore the Loving
Creator of all.
Look around. The pain and misery are evident
everywhere we look.

So the Church must choose. You and I must choose.
And ultimately every single human being must choose.
We must choose who will ultimately be in control of
our lives. We are all called to let go and let the Spirit
of Jesus take control. We are called to choose the
Way of Heaven over the ways of this corrupt culture.

Recently I was praying. Waiting. Listening.
Suddenly a clear thought came to mind…

“Cover the earth in prayer.

Then I saw in my minds eye –
People praying all over the world.
Praying fervently.
Praying with a profound dedication that
was beautiful to behold.
It was as though we Christians finally woke up and
saw the serious times we are now living.

I saw us literally covering the earth in prayer.
It was as though I could see and sense the infinite power
of prayer. Almost like God is just waiting for us to
to truly comprehend the life-transforming, world-renewing
potential of prayer.

The next day I felt inspired to pray this well known prayer…

“Come Holy Spirit. Renew the face of the earth.”

I prayed it over and over. I could see in my heart
people and nations from various parts of the
world.  I knew that my prayer – when humbly
united with the Holy Spirit was making a real difference.

Let me say this ever so clearly…
When you and I consciously unite with the Holy Spirit
in prayer- God can and will use us to transform our broken world.

The Holy Spirit is infinite love.
Infinite power.
Infinite Mercy and Grace.

The Holy Spirit is not limited by time or distance.
The Spirit is the wellspring of prayer, the source of prayer,
the living water that flows through us into the desert of this
world. This is why Jesus said….

“Out of your heart will flow rivers of living water.”-John 7:37

“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.”        -Acts 1:8

Apart from the Holy Spirit- Christianity is a lifeless shell, a pale shadow,
a sad imitation of the real thing.
This is why the early Church Father’s wrote in the Nicene Creed…

“We believe in the Holy Spirit- the Lord and giver of life…”

The Spirit gives us life. Today. Here and now. Supernatural life.
Supernatural prayer.

This is why St. Paul said…

“The Spirit helps us in our weakness for we do not know how
to pray as we should.
” -Romans 8:28

The Holy Spirit is the only one who can empower our prayer.
Our prayer is limp and lifeless without the Spirit.
The Spirit wants to overshadow us as he overshadowed the Virgin Mary.
He wants to teach us all to say- like she did in scripture…

“Let it be done in me according to your Word.”
-Luke 1:8

Now is the time for us to cultivate our relationship with the
Spirit of Jesus. In the Catholic Catechism it says,,,

“Every time we begin to pray to Jesus it is the Holy Spirit
who draws us on the way of prayer…That is why the Church
invites us to call upon the Holy Spirit every day, especially
at the beginning and end of every important action.”  (# 2670)

It goes on tho make the following wonderful observation…

“The Holy Spirit, who’s anointing permeates our whole being,
is the interior Master of Christian prayer.” (#2672)

Think about it. The Master of prayer lives in us. The One who
can lead us into the depths of prayer. The One who is
all-seeing, all creative and all-powerful in prayer.
The One who reveals the limitless love of Jesus and teaches
us to call God…“Our Father.”

It is time to cover the earth in prayer.
To cover our lives, our families, and our communities
in prayer.
It is time to pray again and again…
From coast to coast.
Sea to shining sea.
Stretching out our prayer to cover
every nation and people.

So let us begin again and again.
Find a place to pray.
Commit to spend time in prayer each day.
Make ourselves available to the Spirit of Jesus.
Let Him lead the way. Give our prayer life over to the Spirit.
We are merely instruments but God will use those
who humble themselves and recognize they are
powerless without him.

We can start with the simple and ancient prayer…
“Come Holy Spirit.”
We pray this to remind ourselves that the Spirit of
Jesus is in us now. With us each moment.
We repeat it. Over and over. From our heart to the
Heart of Jesus.
We let the Spirit use us as we let go again and again.
All true prayer is life-transforming when it is empowered by the Spirit. True prayer really does change the world.

Prayer is a school. The Holy Spirit is our teacher.

Yes, I know it is true.
The Holy Spirit is stirring in people all over the world.
I know it by faith. With every fiber of my being.
IT IS TIME TO COVER THE EARTH IN PRAYER.

“Come Holy Spirit.
Renew the face of the earth.”

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Hitting the Target

by John Connelly

Our life is meant to be like an arrow.
An arrow aimed straight at the Eternal Target.
A arrow flying toward the Heart of God.
An arrow with one mission and one call:
to hit the target and live forever in the loving
Presence of God.

There is a tendency in all of us to miss the real point of life.  The word sin in the Bible is a Greek archery term that means to “miss the mark”.

St. Paul describes well our common heritage…
“We have all sinned and fall short of the
glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
All to often we fail. All too often we stumble.
All to often we fall short of loving God and others without limits. The “arrow” of our life hits the wrong target.

The result of our sin is always the same.  It is
quite predictable. Sin leads to pain.
It leads to a deep sense that something is missing. It leads us to a profound inability to experience unselfish love and pass it on to others. The consequences of hitting the wrong target are everywhere:

-People wandering in delusion.

-A generation increasingly brainwashed by the
‘false enlightenment’ of the mass media.

-People fighting, dividing, and looking out for
themselves.

-Corporate and political corruption flooding every corner of our world.

You know the score. We are not hitting the target on planet earth today. We are wandering. We are sheep who have gone astray.

Even many in the Church
have strayed in the cultural wilderness that surrounds us.

The disease of sin spreads. It is a spiritual cancer
killing the souls of people all around us.  We do not
have look very far do we?  The darkness stalks
humanity at every intersection of life.

This is why the question Jesus asks is deeply relevant
to us all…
“What does it profit a man if he gains the whole
world and loses his soul.”

The ultimate loss is to lose our soul. Our real
life. Our humanity. Our Eternal Destiny with God.

Look around. Look within. It is happening
everywhere.  The loss of peoples souls.
No amount of pleasure. No amount of money
and power is worth this ultimate loss.  There
are no excuses in the end.
Heaven is not a myth. And heaven is for
those who choose to live for God on earth today.

We need Jesus now. You, me, and every person
on this shaking planet.  We need the True King to rule over us in love. We need to humble ourselves and shoot the arrow of our life right at The Target : GOD.

So let us look at our life.  Let us examine
where we are in our relationship with Jesus.
Did I live my life with Jesus today?
Did I unite my thoughts, words, and actions with Him?

Am I aimed at the Great Target of my Existence?
Am I living a repentant lifestyle?
Repentance is a daily examination of our lives in the light
of truth. It is an essential daily practice.
It is re-aiming our lives toward our real destiny and calling.
God calls us to be honest and open with him at all times.
Let us re-point the arrow of our heart at the Living Target
that stands before us now and always.

Jesus is the goal for all of us. To be his disciple today is a revolutionary act. It is a radical decision to stand out from the herd. To walk a different path. To reject the lies of this culture of death and walk in communion with God.
“Costly grace is the treasure hidden in the field;
for the sake of it a man will gladly go and sell all that he has…
It is the kingly rule of Christ…at which the disciple leaves
his nets and follows him.
Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought
again and again, the gift which must be asked for,
the door at which a man must knock
.” -Dietrich Bonhoeffer, martyr

The illusion is that we are independent and self-sustaining.
The illusion is that God is ‘out there’.
He is in fact present here and now.

The truth is that Jesus is among us.
He is with us in the experience of this moment.
All we need to do is peacefully turn to Him.
All we need to do is offer every breath as a prayer.
All we need to do is let Jesus love us here and
now and love him in return.

A simple prayer I often pray is…
“Jesus live this moment in me.”
Jesus is with us in all our trials, joys, sorrows and blessings. I know this sounds simple. But the simple things are not always easy. Especially when the world, our old fallen nature, and the devil tempt us to seek our own independent illusions.

This is a serious hour in human history.
We must all choose Jesus daily.
There is no other option.
The world is stumbling toward disaster.
Ignoring God now is the most foolish path imaginable.

So here we are. Right now. And the real target
is before us:  The Heart of Jesus Christ.
Let us take aim.
Let us be an arrow flying toward
our ultimate destiny- cutting through the lies of
modern culture.
Let us use all our time, talents, and treasures to
point everyone to God.
Let us pray that our families, friends, and all the world will
“Hit the Target.

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Reading the Cross

Reading the Cross

by John Connelly

Imagine the Cross of Jesus before you now.
Imagine you are standing there
looking at Jesus crucified.
The Lord of heaven and earth
dieing the death of a criminal.
Bleeding. Bruised. Broken.
Suffering pain beyond our comprehension.

Look long and prayerfully.
Look at Jesus on the Cross.

Now think of that same Cross as
a book.. A book that will reveal to all who
study it the greatest secrets of what it truly
means to be human. The greatest mysteries
of life and death. The depths of the Heart of God.

The Cross is the ‘Great Book‘ of
salvation. A Christian should never
forget it, ignore it, or neglect it.  It should always be a part of our life and thoughts.
We should ‘read’ this ‘book’ again and again.
The scriptures point us over and over
to the Cross- because it is central to all of history.
The Cross is the Great Liberation of all humanity.

In the song I Have Decided to Follow Jesus we sing….

“The Cross before me,
the world behind me,
no turning back…”

We need the Cross before us because
it reveals the purpose of our lives. It reveals…

“Love without limits.” (St Maximilian Kolbe)

The Cross teaches us that our entire life
is to be a Great Surrender to loving God
and all humanity without limits.

Christianity without the Cross is a vain,
superficial, facsimile of the real thing.
All too many of us ignore the Wisdom of the Cross.
Only by humbling ourselves can we be exalted.
Only by letting go to the selfless life of Jesus in us-
do we find our true selves..

The Cross is there to instruct us, guide us,
and give us consolation.

How do we deal with human relationships?
Look at the Cross and let Jesus teach us.

How do we deal with pain, suffering, and
all the great difficulties of life?
Look at the Cross and hear Jesus speak.

The Cross literally “crosses” every barrier
of time and space. It is always present
to us. Anywhere, anytime, a soul calls out
for the Mercy of Jesus-it is present.
Present to deliver from sin.
Present to bring healing and restoration.
Present to teach us that God loves us radically
and completely.

Yes, Jesus died on the Cross over
two-thousand years ago.  But the saving grace
of the Cross is near to every soul.
His Cleansing Blood flows freely from the
Cross to all who humble themselves and cry out for Mercy. Mercy is the River this world  needs to enter today. Mercy is the Cross of Jesus Christ. The undeserved pardon and renewal that come to all who ask.

The more I meditate on the Cross of Jesus
the more silent and dumbfounded I become.
I literally stand in “awe “.
When the “Book of the Cross” opens before me
I see  into the Living Heart of Jesus.
I see that He is Love, Compassion, and Mercy.
Then somehow I am drawn into this Infinite Heart.
The Kingdom of God opens before me vast and
wide. Then I understand.
The Cross is the the Gateway.
The Cross is the Bridge.
The Cross is the Open Door to the Kingdom of God.

The Cross leads us to the Eternal Easter.
A life of communion with the Risen Jesus
here and now.
As Jesus followed the road of the Cross
so must we. As Jesus is Risen so must
we rise to a deeper life of freedom and love.
The Cross and the the Resurrection are
inseparable partners.
Christ has died.
Christ is risen.
Christ will come again.

This is the mystery of Christian life.

St Faustina wrote this in her famous diary…
“When I meditate upon the Passion of Jesus,
I get a clear understanding of many things
I could not comprehend before.”

When the “Book of the Cross” is read frequently
our understanding becomes clearer and clearer.

Perhaps this is why St Paul wrote about his call to…
” Know nothing but Jesus and him crucified.” (l Cor 2:2)

These are words that should cause us to pause and reflect.

Maybe, we the Church, need to let this sink in a little
deeper…

 “To know nothing but Jesus and him crucified.”

Can we ever really exhaust the meaning of those words?
Personally, I think we could all meditate and write about
the Cross for a thousand years and we would not even be
close to plumbing it’s depths.

You see all our human plans for salvation will come to
nothing. The Cross mocks the so called  ‘wisdom’
of the proud.  The Cross only speaks to the the humble.
It will only save those who see in it the Mercy and Love
they have always needed.

I want to cry it out from every rooftop…
“We all need the Mercy of Jesus. We all need the Cross!”
So let us contemplate the Cross.
Let Jesus and His Teachings open up this
profound reality before our eyes.

Then one day the Eternal Easter Morning will
break forth before us, and we shall fully
comprehend…

The Everlasting Glory of the Cross.
May you and I “ Read the Cross”  Today.

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He Will Come Again

He Will Come Again

by John Connelly

Imagine if Jesus were coming back in one week.
Imagine if we knew it with total certainty.

What if we knew that He was coming in all his glory
to judge the living and the dead?
If we knew that we, and everyone we know, would give
an account to the King of kings?

What would change?
How would we react?

(No, I do not think the Lord is returning next week.
But I want to explore the idea of his return as a
way of examining our lives.)

If we had only one week left…
I think we would become very, very focused.
I think we would start to see that, much of what
we do, is unnecessary.
Our priorities would change.
I think our relationship with God and others
would be seen in a new and intense light.
Little things would not bother us so much
because we would know our time is short.
I think our prayer life would become more important
than television, internet, and the million distractions
our society creates.
I think our daily interactions with others would
become more real, more generous, more life-giving.

Yes, if Jesus were coming in a week, we would probably think
twice about the state of our thoughts, words, and actions.
We would probably realize the truth, that life is short,
in a new and startling way.

The trouble is that we too often put off the important things in life.
We tell ourselves… “I still have lots of time.”
But the truth is- we do not know. Time flies. It really does.
We do not know when our lives will end.
It could happen in one minute, one year, or in twenty years.
But Jesus said very clearly that we should “watch.”
He said that we do not know the day or the hour of his coming
but we should always be prepared.

In the Eastern Orthodox Church there were monks who
used to build their own coffins by hand.
Then they would put it outside the door of their room.
They would see their hand-built coffins when they came and went –
day after day – a stark reminder that this could be the day
when they die. Each day could be the day when they would give
an account for the life they had lived.
Imagine if we all did the same.
It would be one way to remind us to live each day
to the full. (Though our neighbors and friends might
think we’ve gone off the deep-end.)

Catholics speak of “meditating on the last things” –
and this is  a really good help, in getting in touch with reality.
The thought of death and judgment, is actually a great way
to see what is really important.
Is God really the first priority in our lives?
Do we put prayer ahead of entertainment?
Are we allowing our lives to make a real impact
on those we love?
Are we ready to meet Jesus, to see the truth of our lives,
to face the reality that every one of us must face?

Today I am meditating on three simple words:
“I – Love – You”
I am praying these words.
Allowing Jesus to speak them to my heart.
Allowing my life to speak them back to him.
Allowing the great “I love you” of God to
reach out to all in our lost and broken world.

I know I am not always the instrument of
God’s love I aspire to be.

A man who lived up the road from my family killed
himself yesterday. He told his wife he was just
going outside… but then he shot himself.
He was depressed and could no longer face
the pain of his existence.

I did not know him well but I can picture his face
in my mind.  Is there something I could
have said or done?
How many people do you and I meet on any given day?
Do we allow the Lord to speak his love and say
“I love you” to others – by the way we live?
This poor, battered, suicidal man, is a stark reminder to me.
A reminder of the oft quoted words of Henry David Thoreau…
“Most men lead lives of quiet desperation” –
a reminder that I need to make my life count.
This is not a dress rehearsal.

All around the desperation grows.
This world needs Jesus.
This world needs – LOVE – and – MERCY WITHOUT END.

O Lord, let your Divine Mercy cover the earth,
and renew the hearts of all who are broken, lost, and afraid.

Today I am living  the one life I have been given.
How is it impacting my family, my friends,
my co-workers, and all I meet on my daily path?
I think if we knew Jesus was coming
we’d be a little more bold. A little more outspoken about the Greatest News in Human History…

God loves us passionately.
He has a purpose for us all.
Jesus died on the Cross to forgive our sins
and give us a New Beginning.
His Passion and Cross shout out
“I love you” to the human race.
The Risen Jesus loves every man, women, and child
and he calls us each by name.
This Gospel message is the good news that
never dies or grows old.
Why are we so shy with the truth?

St. Francis used to greet everyone with
the cry… “God’s peace be with you.”
His life shouted the love of God.
He was a living flame reaching out to his generation
with the revolutionary love of Christ.
Everywhere he went, hearts began to burn with Divine Fire.

Untold thousands began to live the gospel in a new and dynamic way.

“We have been called to heal wounds,
to unite what has fallen apart,
and bring home those who have lost their way.”– St Francis

I think we all know that it’s time.
Time for you and I to prepare the way for Jesus.
Time for us to let the great
“I love you” of Jesus penetrate us,
renew us, and change the world.

Because the fact is.
He Will Come Again.
He will come on that Great Day
when all will stand before him in awe.
And he comes to meet us each day on this
wonderful, sometimes difficult, but always surprising journey of life.

So let us renew our life in prayer.
Let us reach out to someone today.
Let our lives say –

“I love you” –
now and forevermore.

For we know…He Will Come Again.

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Why In The World?

by John Connelly

Why in the world is everything so messed up?

Why are there wars, violence and divisions between people?
Why do billions love the dark propaganda
being spread by many in the mainstream media and Hollywood?
Why is our society addicted to food that is genetically modified,
filled with toxic chemicals, and generally unhealthy?
Why are so many people dying of cancer?
Why do we tolerate it when some politicians tell lies consistently?
Why do we allow the destruction of our air, land, and water?
Why do banks keep growing richer while entire nations
are threatened by unfathomable mountains of debt?
Why do governments talk about justice for the poor when the numbers
of poor and hungry people keep growing?
Why is humanity so divided?
Why are so many people unhappy?
WHY?

‘Why?’ is an important word.
‘Why?’ is a serious inquiry as to how things became the way they are.
‘Why?’ is asking for real and substantial answers.
Today we really do need to ask ‘WHY’ much of our world
seems to be falling apart.

We are facing a profound crisis in human history.
It is a spiritual crisis manifested in our economy, political
system, families and Churches.
The signs are everywhere for those who have eyes to see.
It seems that only by asking ‘WHY’ can we effectively understand
how to respond.

There is more here than meets the naked eye.
Something is going on behind the veil of our daily existence.
The Spiritual Realm is very, very, active.

Human beings are being manipulated.
Many are like sheep being led to the slaughter.
Humanity is being set up.
Billions are being enslaved.
A Great Drama is unfolding right before our eyes.
And you and I are here now on the Stage of Life.
Why?
What is the real part we are destined to play?

Something is stirring within us.
Deep inside we know there is more to our lives
than just making a living.
We know something is profoundly wrong.
But it is so easy to just turn on the TV.
It is so easy to vegetate before a computer screen.
It is so easy to ignore the gnawing sense within us that
our world is not changing for the better.
Why?

The answer lies rooted in the fact that
there is a Dark Force in this world that is continually
working behind the scenes of human history.
I mean Personal Evil.  Evil that personally means to
cause grave harm to you, me, and every person on the planet.

I am sure that many of you reading this believe the Devil exists.
Lucifer. The Evil One. Satan.
But do we really see how Evil works in our lives and our world?
We ignore evil at our own risk.
You’ve probably heard this often used quote…
“All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men
to do nothing.”

Evil works through IDEAS.
Ideas that come into our minds and spread like a virus.
Ideas that infect our choices and behavior.
Ideas that eat away our freedoms and turn us into foolish puppets working for a Dark Agenda.

All wars begin as ideas.
Atheism is an idea.
Abortion began as an idea.
Communism, Socialism, and Capitalism are
all ideas.

The Mass media specializes in spreading ideas.
Ideas about love and relationships.
Ideas about the purpose of humanity.
Ideas that promote materialism, fear, and
moral corruption.

Look around you as you go through your day.
You are being bombarded by ideas.
Our world is literally flooded with ideas.
Why?

Every single idea has A SOURCE.
Ideas are planted into the human mind and heart.
Then they can become the beliefs and behaviors that
ultimately guide our destiny.

An idea is a seed. A seed that will grow in us if it is nurtured.
And there are deadly seeds, and life-giving seeds,
being planted and nurtured
all over the world.

Ideas can come from God.
Ideas can come from the Evil One.

Hitler’s ideas came from the Evil One. They were ‘whispered’
into his mind and they spread like a cancer throughout
the fabric of his life. Then he spread these cancerous ideas
to others and unleashed hell on earth.
A world war with millions killed.
His legacy was…
War,Concentration camps,
Eugenics, Propaganda and Lies.
And the same kinds of lies that seduced Hitler continue to seduce
many of the elite leaders in our time.
Then they spread these ideas through the mass media.
Even now ideas with incredible destructive power
are seducing billions of people.

We live in a broken world that is being overrun by
ideas that are inspired by a Cunning Adversary.
People are both knowingly and unknowingly cooperating
in a master plan to turn the world away from God and away
from authentic love.
The Devil and his minions are master manipulators.
Make no mistake. The corruption in our
world is by design. Sin is a spiritual cancer
poisoning humanity.

Jesus called the Devil…
A thief. A liar. A murderer.

He is not merely a myth or a personification of man’s
sinful impulses. He is real.  A fallen angel. A dark
lord who commands his legions with one objective:
To destroy humanity.

This Dark Spiritual Being
steals our freedom, poisoning us with lies, and
tries to murder all that is good in the human race.

St Peter called the Devil…
“A roaring lion seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)

He is ruthless. And every terrible thing happening in our
world begins with a seductive idea. An idea that enters
a person, spreads, and then causes behavior that  brings
harm to humanity. The devils agenda is ultimately to
murder the most valuable thing we possess.
Our immortal soul.
The devil destroys humanity while trying to convince
us he does not exist.

What we are witnessing in this world is a profound, epic, spiritual battle.  In the words of scripture…

“We fight not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world
and against the forces of evil in the spiritual realm.” (Ephesians 6:12)

We need to really observe how these words are lived in our daily experience. The Bible is telling us that we are fighting against…
“forces of evil in the spiritual realm.”

These words describe the hidden spiritual battle that is waged in the heart and mind of every man, women, and child.
We are all fighting continually against subtle thoughts that are
being sowed into our lives. We call them temptations. Temptations
to resent others, seek money over God’s will, to waste our
time, treasure and talents on anything less than loving God and
giving glory to him.

So WHY did I write this blog?

Because the battle is intensifying.
Because you and I need to examine the ideas that
are governing our lives.
We need to see the lies that are multiplying in our world and
seducing billions of people.

We need to see clearly that JESUS has the ONLY IDEAS
truly worth living and dying for.
His IDEA is that the truth shall set us free.
His IDEA is that life, liberty, and compassion will prevail.
His IDEA is to overthrow the Tyranny of Evil
with the Power of Authentic Love and Mercy.

We need to look closely at our lives and reject the seductive
ideas that are leading humanity into the darkness.
Many great saints called this process… ‘Watchfulness’.
The practice is simple but challenging…

We learn to watch the thoughts coming into our minds.
We observe closely how the Enemies of our Soul produce
ideas, images, feelings and fantasies to tempt us.
It is a continual battle, as I am sure you have noticed.
So we  pray. We peacefully call on Jesus in our hearts
with every breath we take. We trust Him to win the battle
in us.

We Watch and Pray. Over and over. When we fail – we begin again.
This is Watchfulness.

The orthodox saint Hesychius of Jerusalem says it like this…

“A heavenly state will be born in our mind if we do not neglect
ceaseless prayer and continual watchfulness…we should always
be calling upon Jesus Christ our Lord; with a burning heart…”

If we practice watchfulness in prayer then we will say to the Lord
with St Augustine…

“I have tasted You, now I hunger and thirst for more.”

Let us all taste the goodness of the Lord.
Let us allow the mind and heart
of Jesus to influence deeply
the way we think, speak, and act.
We all need to read and pray scripture daily.
Renew our minds. Think God’s thoughts. (Romans 12:2)
Plant the seeds of truth and spread
God’s Ideas far and wide.
You and I are called to take continual refuge
in the Heart and Spirit of Jesus today.

We are, in short, called to Watch and Pray without ceasing.

WHY?

Because this is Our Time.
This moment in history is Our Destiny.
God’s Revolution is spreading and you and I
are called to participate fully.
The battle is at hand.

Come Lord Jesus.
With every breath!

If this message has inspired you-Pass the Word.
We must use whatever means we have to wake the Church and humanity from slumber. Pray for me and I for you.
John

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The Practice of Letting Go

by John Connelly

A number of years ago, a simple saying became popular
all over the world:
“Let Go and Let God.”
There is, in these few words, a great spiritual blessing
for all who take the time to truly understand them.
They point us all to the very heart of our existence.
They point us to authentic freedom.

So what does it mean to ‘Let Go’?
Is it really essential?
How do we do it?

‘Letting Go’ is at the very heart of Christianity.
Jesus calls you and me to let go and surrender everything to Him moment by moment.

Letting Go… is admitting that we are really not in control.

Letting God… is choosing to trust that He is in control.

Think about this for a minute.
Do you and I control our heartbeat?

Every beat of our heart is governed by a small electrical
impulse. Where does this electrical impulse come from?
It is totally beyond our control.
This ‘spark of life’ comes from a source that is beyond us.
If our heart stops for any reason we are dead in a few minutes.
We live one heartbeat at a time purely by the grace and mercy of God.
We are, whether we realize it or not, utterly dependent on God.

The idea that we are in control is a foolish illusion.
We cannot control our heartbeat and we cannot ultimately
control the events of our life.

We should let these words of Jesus soak
deeply into the very center of our existence…

“Without me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

Today the world is in turmoil because human beings want
to live independently from God. Many live in this ‘Grand Illusion.’
Many imagine they are not accountable to God and his
law of truth which governs the universe.
This is a deadly delusion.
It distorts our view of reality.
It makes us like a blind man wandering toward a cliff.
We are not independent at all.
We are one-hundred-percent dependent on God.
Every breath and every heart-beat is a pure gift.

The idea that we are independent is the source of
all wars, hatred, division, fear, loneliness and isolation in our world.
This feeling of independence is called pride. It is at the heart
of every sin and disorder in this passing world.
Pride is the deadliest of the seven deadly sins.

It is a subtle form of insanity – a divorce from what is
real and true.

St. Augustine wrote this prayer to God…
“How would anything have endured if You had not
willed it? “
All things exist right now by the will of God.
Pride utterly distorts this profound, life-giving truth.

The TRUTH is…
“In Him we live and move and have our being.” (Acts 17:28)

The LIE which modern culture preaches continually is…
“Our life is our own and we do as we please.”

When we let go, it is an act of humility. A decision to admit who
we really are. We are the dependent ones. We are created beings
who were designed to live only by the grace of God.
Everything we suffer in this life is meant to wake us to this fact.
Every trial is an opportunity to practice letting go to Jesus the
Lord of all.
Death spares no one. Ultimate realities cannot be avoided forever.
There is simply no life and no existence apart from God.

The writer Andrew Murray says in his classic book Humility…

“True humility comes when, in the light of God, we have
seen ourselves to be nothing, have consented to part with,
and cast away, SELF, and let God be all.”

This might sound radical in an age of self-promotion,
self-delusion, self-righteousness and self-will.
But I am simply describing REALITY.
God is our life. God is present right now holding
us in existence. Without God we are indeed nothing.
Christian life is letting go of our “self”, our ego, our
independence, and letting Jesus live His life of love
in us.

St. John of the Cross called this path of letting go
the way of “Nada”. (Nada is the the Spanish word
for “Nothing”)
This great spiritual writer taught that
we cannot ultimately hold onto anything except God.
He said that God is “All”.
All that we truly need.
All that can bring us true happiness and fulfillment.
Every relationship and every experience are opportunities
to let go. Nothing is permanent. Nothing lasts… except God.
God is the source of all good things in our life.
This path of total ‘letting go’ actually opens us to the
ever-present grace and blessing that surround us.

When we stop clinging to our
attachments we experience a growing sense of freedom within us.
Spiritual life is letting go to the the Spirit of Jesus here and now.
It is letting his love flow from within. All that does not flow from the
love of God is in the final analysis… worthless.
As St Paul reminds us…
“Without love I am nothing.” (1Cor 13)

In other words… our entire destiny is to let go to God and
his limitless love. Everything else is “Nothing”.
It has no real and lasting value. Like the old saying goes…
“You can’t take it with you.”

Imagine if we all truly learned to let go and let
God take control.
Imagine politicians and corporate leaders letting go.
Imagine our Churches and our families letting go.
What would happen if the people and nations of this world truly let go to the Spirit of Jesus? I think we all know the answer. Everything would change.
It would be a spiritual revolution.
We would see through the Grand Illusion of independence
from God.
Amazing Grace would flood into the world.

So how do we put this into practice? How do we let go
and let God take control today?

We need to meditate deeply on this idea of letting go.
It needs to become a habit of life – our choice whenever
we find ourselves filled with anxiety. Whenever we are
clinging to our attachments.

We can begin by praying peacefully a short prayer like…

“Come Lord Jesus
with every breath
I Let Go.”

The important thing is not only the words of the prayer
but the inner attitude they convey.
God sees your desire and intention.
‘Letting Go’ to the living Spirit of Jesus is at the heart
of all true prayer and spiritual life.

– Let Go to the attitude of child-like
trust that is at the heart of true faith.

– Let Go to the Spirit of Jesus acting in us and through us.

– Let Go and surrender our sins, shortcomings, attachments,
anxieties, and fears to the Lord of All.

-Let Go and rest in God’s Divine Love and let Him who is our true life
take control of everything now.

Yes, it takes a lifetime of practice to
“Let Go and Let God.”

But this is the lesson we must all learn and practice
again and again and again.

It is the meaning of our existence.

Here is a great video on Letting Go…

At this crossroads in history may we all learn to let go to the all-consuming love of God.

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Mercy Without Limits

by John Connelly

Imagine your name is Humanity.
You are standing at the edge of a great cliff.
Before you is a vast, limitless ocean called…MERCY.

You look behind you and all you see is chaos.
A civilization that is collapsing in a earthquake of
selfishness and immorality.
Violence. War.  Fear. Devastation. Turmoil. Propaganda.
You see a vast army of evil that is seducing
your fellow human beings. An army that is now trying to seduce
you and all you love.
There are in fact only two pathways ahead:
1. Be drawn into the growing Army of Evil.
2. Leap into the Divine Mercy of Jesus Christ.

What choice will humanity make? Will it take the ‘leap of faith’ or
join in with the army of evil that is destroying civilization?
This is the real choice everyone is facing.
All over the world, people are choosing good or evil, at this very moment.
It is not just about politics, bailouts, or another human plan
to bring order into the madness of our world.
It is about choosing good or evil.
Our only real hope now is the Mercy of God.


Today, as I was praying, I was once again overwhelmed
by a cry within me for Mercy.  It was as though the
Spirit of Jesus simply replaced my prayer with an
overwhelming sense of our profound need for Divine Mercy here
and now.
Over and over my heart just kept crying out for Mercy on
the human race.  I  sensed deeply the Lord calling me
to cry for “mercy without limits” on the whole world.
Then it became clear, I needed to write this blog entry today.

Nothing seems off limits anymore.
In the past few weeks I have read articles about…

– Genetic Engineering of so called “modified” human beings.

– Vast numbers of innocent men, women, and children
being killed as ‘collateral damage’ in mindless wars.

– Rampant pedophilia rings destroying the lives of innocent
children. (The latest being the scandals in the Boy Scouts and at Penn State
University.)

– A new round of ‘Bailouts’ coming to the very people who have
destroyed the economies of many of the greatest nations
in the world.

– Basic human rights being trampled on by various governments
all over the world.

The army of evil is all too real and it is growing.

When we ignore evil, and cave into it’s ever increasing
demands, we end up with hell on earth.
Because Evil is personal; it has an agenda for you, me,
our families, our children and every person on earth.
Evil is utterly destructive. It has no compassion or mercy.
Evil seduces men and women with diabolic lies and it’s goal is the
total enslavement of the human race.
People may not believe in the devil or evil as a personal
force, but the evidence is everywhere.
Jesus taught that the devil is a thief, a liar, and a murderer.
It seems pretty obvious, he was not talking about a vague
myth that has no relevance in our daily lives.
We only need to look at the devastation in our world.
It is as though satanic nuclear missiles filled with darkness and
lies are been detonated daily in our world.

The other day I saw a brief interview with a very popular
young singer. She is a mega-star and idolized by millions
of youth. Her parents were strong Christians and were involved
in missionary work.

A young girl called into the show and asked this young
pop-star’s advice on how to become successful as a singer.

Her answer? “Sell your soul to the devil.”
The matter of fact tone in her voice chilled me to the bone.
This beautiful young women was advising youth all over the
world, to sell their soul to the devil in order to be ‘successful’.
Lord have mercy on her soul and on all who listened to that interview.
The stakes are as high as they can be.
The Devil plays for keeps.

Mercy is God’s Idea.
It is the only sane response to all that we are facing.
Mercy is the ultimate defeat of evil. Mercy is Jesus dying on the
Cross to save and renew all humanity.
Jesus is the true doorway to unlimited
Forgiveness, Compassion, and Love.
Jesus Crucified and Risen is our salvation and peace.
When his Sacred Heart was pierced and opened
to us on the Cross the Ocean of God’s mercy was
poured out for us all.
The Heart of Jesus  is the boat that carries us into
the Ocean of Mercy.

Jesus told a story in the gospel about two men:

One man was a Pharisee. He prayed and proclaimed
how grateful he was to not be like ‘other people.’
He prayed. He fasted. He was the very picture of
a good religious person. Churches are filled with
people like this.

He made the fatal mistake of thinking he had it all together.
His heart was closed to Mercy because Mercy means
genuine transformation and change.

The other man was a tax collector. At that time,
a tax collector was considered to be the scum of the
earth. A traitor and a thief.
This man  threw himself
down on his knees and cried out…
“God have mercy on me a sinner.”

Jesus said the Tax Collector entered into heaven and
the Pharisee did not. Why?
The Pharisee was proud and arrogant.
The tax collector humbled himself before God.
He humbled himself and Mercy transformed him.


Humility is the key to Mercy.
Mercy cannot be earned.
It is not deserved.
It is not something we produce.
It is the free gift of God we must receive and rely upon every day.
Mercy comes when we trust in Jesus and his
undeserved grace and love that transform us within.
It comes when we humble ourselves, confess our sins,
and admit our ongoing, overwhelming, daily need
for the living God.
The heart-felt cry for Mercy is the cry Jesus will always
hear.

The Mercy of Jesus is present now. It is available to all.
But in order to enter this reality we must all choose it daily.
Mercy is free but we must choose to get in the boat, and set
sail in the vast ocean before us.
The wind is blowing today and the boat is always ready.
We must choose to ask Jesus for a New Heart of Mercy without limits.
We must choose to be an instrument of Divine Compassion, Forgiveness,
and Mercy to others.

Saint Faustina lived in Poland during the rise of Nazi Germany.
A literal army of evil was growing all around her, and the Christians
of her time. She was a prophetic visionary, who foresaw the
terrible predicament we are in today.
Jesus spoke to her of the world and it’s overwhelming
need for Mercy. He said:

“I protect, as a mother does a child, the souls that promote
devotion to My Mercy during their lifetime; and in the hour of
their death, I will not be their judge, but their Savior…
Speak to the whole world of My Mercy and love… It is a
sign of the approaching last days, after which the day of justice
will come. While there is still time, let them take refuge
in the fount of My Mercy.”

This morning I felt the need for the Message of Mercy to go
out to all the world. The hour of Justice will come.
Evil will not ultimately prevail or win this battle.
Jesus, the King of Mercy, will Reign.
Mercy is a Divine Fire that can change
hearts and minds. Mercy alone can save us from the rising
tide of Evil. It is the everlasting, ever-present, Spirit of Jesus
working in you and me.

Let us choose to be ambassadors of Mercy.
Let us pass this message on and on and on.
Let us take the leap of faith and sail into the Ocean of Mercy
that stands before us all today.

Come Lord Jesus
We take refuge in Your Heart.
We receive Your Love and Mercy
without limits.
With every breath we take…
Have Mercy on us all.

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Prepare!

by John Connelly

It is an interesting thing to be a writer in these times we are living.
Often when praying a very clear message comes to mind and it soon becomes
a blog posting.
Today the word was… PREPARE.
A word worth some time and meditation.
An intriguing word. A biblical word. A word that means…
– to get ready
– to be attentive and take appropriate action
– to make sure our priorities are clear and in order.

When God tells people to prepare it is the call to
spiritual awakening, repentance, and renewal.
It is a call to put our lives into God’s Divine Order and
be extremely ready for what he is going to unfold in our lives.
I believe God is calling all of us to be prepared today in a
special way.

Fr Walter Cizjek was a man who experienced directly the dark
side of humanity.
He was tortured by the communists in the Soviet Union
and went on to become an inspired writer…

” We go along, taking for granted that tomorrow will be very
much like today, comfortable in the world we have created for
ourselves… and giving little thought to God.
Somehow then, God must contrive to break through those
routines and remind us once again that we are ultimately
dependent on him… Then it is perhaps, that he must allow our
whole world to be turned upside down in order to remind us
it is not our permanent abode or final destiny, to bring us to
our senses and restore our sense of values, to turn our thoughts
once more to him.”  (Fr Walter Cizjek: He Leadeth Me.)

In this posting we will look at this call to prepare. In order to cover
various dimensions of this call I will use the word PREPARE
as an acronym…

Pray
Repent
Eliminate
Plan
Awaken
Relate
Enter In

Pray: this is the first priority in our preparation.

“You go to pray: to become a bonfire, a living flame, giving
heart and light.” St Jose Marie Escriva

Prayer must cover every aspect of our lives. It is the invitation
that allows God to act in us and among us. It is the call to surrender,
love, and worship God moment by moment.
The last prayer in the Bible is a prayer of preparation…
“Come Lord Jesus.”
This is the inspired prayer that invites Jesus to
act here and now while looking ahead to his coming in glory.
If we put prayer first in our lives it will purify our path and allow
God to lead us step by step.

Repent: the call to an ongoing transformation of our hearts and minds.


Jesus calls all of us to daily repentance. To be honest with God,
ourselves and others. We need to confess our sins and shortcomings,
and reconcile with God and our fellow human beings.
Jesus offers us all his own heart and mind each day.
But this New Heart and Mind require a choice.
A choice to follow Jesus and practice his way of love, forgiveness
and mercy.
A choice to surrender to the Spirit of Jesus living in us.

Eliminate: the things in our lives that are not necessary.

Look around. How much of what we have do we really need?
When we simplify our lives we become more free to focus on what
is truly important.

Excess things steal our time.
Here is a great question to ask…
Do I really NEED this?
Think how much time is wasted on things we don’t really need.
We are programmed to think we need our T.V’s, Computers,
Sophisticated Toys and never-ending Possessions.
But when we look at all this stuff in the light of eternity we can see
how easy it is to fritter our lives away on things that do not matter.
Here is a great video and song by Michael Card to help us reflect on the
the need for ongoing simplification and letting go. It is called
“The Things We Leave Behind…”

Jesus calls each of us to use our time, talent, and treasure
for His Kingdom. All else is ultimately a distraction. And we
all know modern life is filled with distractions.
Lets eliminate what is not necessary so we can experience
more and more the interior freedom of Jesus.

Plan: We should plan for difficulties with our eyes on eternity.

Imagine if tomorrow you woke up and your electricity was out.
So you drive into town and go to your bank machine.
It doesn’t work.
Then you hear on your car radio that some terrible disaster
has taken place.
People are panicking.
Grocery stores are being emptied.
The world you know is coming off the rails.
What do you do?
How would you respond in a scenario like this?
If society were to collapse would we be part of the solution or
part of the problem?
All through history societies rise and fall.
When we think it cannot happen here, it is simply willful ignorance.
And we all know ignorance is no excuse.

When disaster strikes it is too late to plan for it.
Planning is using our talents and treasure to be ready
for whatever comes.
We need to plan mentally by observing what is happening in our world
and calmly thinking through our preparations for hard times.
Why? Because we want to help as many people as possible.
And if we have a family, it is simply irresponsible not to plan for
the future with a prayerful heart and mind.

Is it not possible that you and I will face difficult days?
Even the secular pundits are beginning to say some
pretty astounding things. Here is a quote from the
head of the Bank of England from this past week. He
is speaking about the situation now unfolding…

“This is the most serious financial crisis we’ve seen, at least since the 1930s,
if not ever. “ Sir Mervyn King

Are you aware of the fact that some of the top economic experts in our
world are predicting a catastrophic financial collapse in the near future?
These are serious times. The turmoil is growing all over the world.
Perhaps things will turn around for the better… and perhaps not.

The point is not to panic but to prepare. Be ready. Have a plan.
A plan for food.
A plan for shelter and warmth. A plan in the event that a worst case scenario
becomes reality.
A plan to help as many as we can in spiritual and physical need.
A plan to follow Jesus no matter the cost or the consequences.

Get a notebook. Pray for guidance. Make a list. Take action day by day.
Be calm. peaceful, and prudent.
Let God guide you step by step.
Personally, I think Pope Benedict’s words about the
“troubling signs” of the breakdown of civilization are a realistic
analysis. The “troubling signs” are everywhere.

What we know is this. When difficulties come –
Unprepared People tend to
PANIC and the Prepared People TAKE ACTION.

Jesus did not hesitate to prepare us with straight talk about
what is to come. (Take Matthew 24 for instance.)

Awaken: ourselves and others to the call of Jesus.

We have a moral and spiritual duty to give people the truth
in a respectful way. People need to know that…
“All who call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Acts 2:21)

They need to know that the choices we make have eternal consequences.
Now is the time to get our lives right with God.

We cannot simply hide our light under a bushel…
“The Church exists to evangelize.” (Pope Paul Vl)

This is a time of spiritual awakening. People sense something is not
right. All over the world we see signs of panic, radical change, and even
revolution. But the truth is Jesus alone is the ultimate answer.
He alone can bring peace to this troubled world.

Relate: deeply with those God has placed in our lives.

:

This is no time to leave things unfinished and unsaid. When Steve Jobs
the founder of Apple Computers died last week he confessed to
his children his failures as a father. All his wealth, power,
and prestige could not save him from cancer. In the end he wanted a deeper
relationship with his family. Death is the great reminder of what
was really important all along…

” Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me.…” Steve Jobs

Relationships are essential. People are essential. Community
is the very nature of God. God is a family of persons.
The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one.
All of us long to relate deeply
with God and others. We were designed for intimate, loving,
relationships. If we feel alone then we need to reach out.
We need to cultivate love in our friendships, families, and Churches.
It is not easy, but it is worth it. Community is our spiritual “DNA.”
This is why scripture says…
“Those who believed were one heart…” (Acts 4:32)

May our lives continually say “I love you” to those people God places
in our lives.

Enter In: to God’s Will no matter what comes.

We Christians believe in the power of the Cross.
We believe in the power of trust and surrender.
No matter what happens the love and mercy of Jesus will
see us through. God’s Will prevails in those who trust Him.
The Cross is a sign that suffering and difficulty are a doorway and
not the end of the story. Those who trust in the Lord will
rise again. Death cannot conquer our faith in Jesus.
He is the faithful one who will never leave us or forsake us.
Even if we are facing one of the great trials of human history
we can never overstate the Mercy of God.
The important thing to remember is to surrender and rely
on Jesus in all that lies ahead: The Good. The Bad. The Ugly.

St John of the Cross said…
“Whenever something disagreeable or displeasing happens to you,
remember Christ crucified and be silent.”

If we face difficult days let us go forward and Enter In
with invincible faith, revolutionary hope, and limitless love.

Let us P.R.E.P.A.R.E.

Come Lord Jesus.
Prepare us.
We choose to trust in you
with every breath we take.

Amen.

Posted in Compassion, God's Fight, Love, Preparations, Spirituality, The World | 2 Comments