Life consists of just two parts. The first part on earth is quite brief, but most important, for it determines what the next part will be like, the part that's eternal. You can say that what we sow in this brief life will determine what we reap in our next life eternal. In case you don't know yet, how we should sow to reap the best possible outcome has already been laid out clearly and completely by our heavenly Father thru his Son Jesus.
Thursday, March 31, 2022
As the first Saturday of April is coming up in two days, if you love the Blessed Mother, I'd recommend that you look into the 5 First Saturdays Devotion if you haven't done it yet. Here's just one of the sites online for you to learn about it. Trust in Mary and she will remove all barriers between you and her Divine Son. She is our most loving mother.
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Today's entrance antiphon, Psalms 69.14: I pray, O Lord, for a time of your favor. In your great mercy, answer me, O God, with your salvation that never fails. I am thinking about that salvation of God that never fails. I can quote many sayings from Scriptures, but the gist is that if you believe in Christ as your Savior and follow him faithfully, you are saved for sure! You have to be an utter fool to pass such a golden, once-in-all-eternity free offer.
Tuesday, March 29, 2022
The Ukrainian soldiers have been celebrating their victories over their Russian counterparts in defending their country against the invasion. For us humans, that's the natural thing to do. But as Christians, we should thank God first for not letting the enemy prevail. Russia has suffered great losses so far. As I understand, many Russian soldiers were not for fighting this war, but had no choice and got killed. God loves all of us and wants us to love even our enemies. So praying for them, those who are still alive and those who have died, is what we should do. We are to follow God's ways and thoughts in all things and not do what we feel like doing.
In today's Gospel reading from John 5, Jesus cured a man who had been ill for 38 years. Later when Jesus found him, he said to him, "Look, you are well; do not sin anymore, so that nothing worse may happen to you." Once Jesus has cured us or done us a favor, we are obliged not to offend him anymore. Otherwise, something worse may happen to us. Actually, the Lord has already died to save us from sin. For this alone, we should not sin anymore. If we don't listen to him here, surely things are going to get worse.
The disciples of Christ receive many joys from the Lord. Off the top of my head, I can mention the joy of union with him; the joy of salvation; the joy of being forgiven by him; the joy of meditating upon his suffering for our sake; the joy of knowing that we are loved by and precious to him; the joy of knowing that we are headed for heaven to be with him forever; the joy of having our soul being healed by him; the joy of feeling pure and clean; the joy of serving, glorifying, and adoring him; the joy of hearing him speaking to our heart; the joy of receiving answers to our prayers; the joy of being set free from sin by him . . . .
Monday, March 28, 2022
After receiving Holy Communion, I enjoyed communing with the Lord, sharing my deepest innermost thoughts and feelings with him. Again, you can do this only with God, not possible with anyone else. Another great privilege of knowing the Lord personally thru the Holy Eucharist.
I was greatly moved at Mass when I realized that Christ can take away my sins. This is significant, in fact momentous! It's something only the Lord can do. When he does that to you, the effect is tremendous: You are now made clean and fit for heaven! Think about it. If you don't get your sins removed, they will sink you in the end.
In today's Gospel reading from John 4, a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum went to Jesus in Galilee and ask him to come down to heal his son, who was near death. Jesus said to him, "You may go; your son will live." The man believed what Jesus said to him and left. He found out later that the fever left his boy just at the time Jesus had said to him, "Your son will live." It show that if we truly trust in what God tells us, we really don't have to worry about anything. This is what the Lord wants us to realize and how we should live.
Sunday, March 27, 2022
Communion experience. Uniting yourself with the love of God is about the most beautiful thing in the whole universe, and this is what you experience when you receive the Holy Eucharist. You let the love of God totally fill your mind, your heart, and your soul. It is thru this Most Blessed Sacrament that you achieve this most intimate union with the Lord.
In today's Gospel reading from Luke 15, we heard the parable of the lost son read. For me, this is Jesus' most beautiful parable. It shows how incredibly our Father loves us. If we tell him we are sorry for what we've done, he is overjoyed and all our faults are forgotten and forgiven! It's almost as if he is at our mercy, which shouldn't be! Then when we become his good children, all he has is ours. How most generous he is! This is holy "spoiling"! So to those of you who have not returned to the Father yet, you don't know how much you are missing that could be all yours! I truly feel sorry for you.
Blessed and wise are those who never complain about anything that come to them. They have submitted themselves completely to God, knowing that complaining comes from the Devil to rob them of peace. Praise God always and complain not about anything.
The war in Ukraine has already caused thousands of deaths. The news media report daily how the Russian soldiers got neutralized; look, they all got blown up by drones, anti-tank rockets, or mines. Such news is tragic, but how one dies does not reflect where the soul goes after death. The souls of many Christian martyrs went straight to heaven, whereas anyone who lives comfortably and dies naturally could still end up in hell. All we know is that God is all-knowing and just. We can help by praying for all those who have died and gone to purgatory; better yet, pray that all who are living will turn to God before they die.
Saturday, March 26, 2022
Reject Christ and what will ultimately happen to you will be a lot worse than you can imagine. I want everyone to realize this to avoid being shocked later. On the other hand, follow Christ faithfully and what will ultimately happen to you will be way beyond what you can possibly expect. I wouldn't think about it now so that my joy may be greater when I experience it.
You may not believe in God, but you see evil all around you. You feel it in your heart and soul too when you do something bad. If evil is real and you can feel it, logically and intuitively God has to be real too (even if we do not consider Christ, our overwhelming evidence).
In the world, we learn how to get along with others in order to achieve success. Dale Carnegie's book How to Make Friends and Influence People is a classic. I read it when I was young and found the advice given to be wise, sensible, and most helpful. In today's reading from Psalm 51, verse 19 reads "My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit; a heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn." This is it—to get along with God, approach him with a contrite and humbled heart. Here we have the secret of getting God to accept us.
Thursday, March 24, 2022
In the current Ukraine war, many thousands of lives have already been lost in one month. Perhaps Russia has suffered the largest loss of its armed forces so far. I feel sad that all the deaths occurred because one man, Putin, decided to invade Ukraine. I started thinking about God's justice. Say you have two individuals, A & B. Let say that A killed B, but finally repented of his sin, so God forgave and saved him. B was not a bad person, but when he died, he was in a state of mortal sin, so he wasn't saved. To us, it seems unfair because it appears that the killer got away, but his victim didn't. We can learn two important things here. (1) Repentance is absolutely essential to salvation. (2) Each of us is responsible for his own soul. How someone else's soul ends up is all up to God, none of our business.
We so often harden our hearts, not even willing to listen to our Lord and Savior. Guess who has the softest heart of all? It's the Lord who has the most merciful Sacred Heart! It seems so unfair to have billions of hardened hearts turning against one most loving soft heart. Pray to the Sacred Heart of Jesus to soften and melt your hearts to experience a transformation. All you prodigal children need to return to your heavenly Father or remain lost forever!
In today's Gospel reading from Luke 11, Jesus drove out a demon from a mute man, and some people said that it's by the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that he drove out demons. Jesus said to them, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house. And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?" I believe we've all heard the saying "United we stand, divided we fall"—it's practically common sense. I started thinking that if we want to remain strong in Christ the Lord, our faith must not be divided in any way. That is, we must single-mindedly trust in him. A strong faith gets results.
From today's Reading I from Jeremiah 7, we heard that the people no longer obeyed nor paid heed to the Lord. They walked in the hardness of their evil hearts and turned their backs to him. It's a nation that would not listen to the voice of its God. Today, the peoples on earth are doing no better. With the ongoing war in Ukraine, abortion continuing worldwide, most governments and the Church corrupt to the core, mass media spreading fake news, and shocking evil deeds being performed by so many people every minute, I no longer pay much attention to all these things. The world will reap what it sows. My only resort is to go deep into the Lord and pray even harder, for only he can do great things for us. If everyone would trust and follow Christ, we'll have peace within us and throughout the world. This shows that I am doing the right thing.
Wednesday, March 23, 2022
When you love God, he knows exactly how you can serve him best. Since we are all different, we are called to serve him in different ways. If others seem to do greater works, let yourselves be inspired by them, but do not imitate them. Let the Lord alone be your guide.
Tuesday, March 22, 2022
We find joy and consolation in the Lord. But in whom can he fine joy and consolation? The answer is us! A father always finds great joy and consolation in his beloved children when they trust and obey him, and we can do precisely that to our heavenly Father! This would make the whole heaven rejoice too! And knowing that the Father is pleased with us, our joy and consolation further increase. The Father in heaven and his beloved children on earth rejoicing in each other—what a glorious event!
The Lord can increase in us only if we decrease ourselves. If we don't decrease at all, then there won't be any room for him. If we decrease to nothing, he then fill us to the fullest and we are set free. This is the ideal state for our soul to enjoy peace and freedom in him.
Monday, March 21, 2022
I recently read the book The Amazing Secret of Purgatory, an interview with Maria Simma by Sr. Emmanuel. Maria Simma probably knew more about purgatory than anyone else. I learned so much that I am getting the book Get Us Out of Here by Nicky Eltz, a more complete and better-known interview with Maria. This Fr. Goring video of a week ago on purgatory is worth watching. You'll learn something definitely beneficial to know.
I watched today's Fr. Mark Goring video titled St. Joseph Was Deep. There is one line he said that struck me: "Every moment carries the weight of eternity." It is true that how we live every moment on earth affects our eternity. If we live every moment wrong, then when we face the Lord, we'll have nothing worthwhile to show and realize that we have wasted our entire lifetime. On the other hand, if we live every moment right, we know that at the end we'll have no problem whatsoever getting into heaven. Yes, how we live every moment determines our eternity.
I believe the reason so many of our generation have abandoned God is because materialism has gotten hold of them. The advances in science and technology have made people believe that they are gods. They are now so enthralled by their own inventions, feeling like they're living in a magic world. They are due for a rude awakening.
Sunday, March 20, 2022
If we submit ourselves to Christ now, acknowledging him to be the Lord, we'll have nothing to fear at judgment time. If we don't, we'll have problems for sure later. Later could be 50 years later, 20 years later, 10 years later, next year, next month, next day, or next hour. This is something we all need to realize, for we all will have to answer to the one Lord.
Knowing about Jesus is not the same as knowing Jesus. Anyone can know all about Jesus and still not be a Christian. An Arab tour guide I once met in Holy Land comes to my mind. Preaching about Jesus is not the same as preaching Jesus either. How do you tell one from the other? In general, the former does not draw you any closer to Christ, while the latter does. Bible study classes are similar. I once attended a class that treated Christ like an academic subject, easily putting me to sleep; and another one lead by a wise priest focusing mainly upon the Lord, and I felt spiritually uplifted.
In today's first reading from Exodus 3, Moses, tending the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, came to Mount Horeb. There an angel of the LORD appeared to Moses in fire out of a bush. Moses was surprised to see that the bush, though on fire, was not consumed. He decided to go over to look at this remarkable sight. The LORD called out to him from the bush, "Moses! Moses! Come no nearer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground. I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." My thoughts are that since God is most holy and ever present, we really should live as if we were standing on holy ground. The Lord sees us and knows exactly what we are up to at all times, so let his holiness purify us, inspire us, and renew us. There is no better influence than that.
Saturday, March 19, 2022
God created all of us—that's why we call him "Our Father." Being our creator and Father, he is closer to me than anyone else! Only he knows me and understands me perfectly. Above all, he loves all of us with an everlasting love! Without him, there would be no me. So he is dearer to me more than my own soul. If you don't know him yet, you are neglecting your own soul.
Friday, March 18, 2022
Sometimes we wish that we can convert a lot of people for Christ—a nice thought, but maybe unrealistic. When Jesus saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and a poor widow putting in two small coins, he said to his disciples, "This poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood." (See Luke 21:1-4 or Mark 12:41-44.) So quality counts, not quantity. Following St. Thérèse's Little way, we can become saints if we do everything with great love for God. This should be within our reach. I may not be called to openly convert a lot of souls, but I can always do every little thing in secret to please the Lord. The little thing can be a thought, a smile, a gesture, or a simple act such as cleaning up the mess someone has created. This is the way for all of us to become great saints and we should rejoice about it.
The peace God gives us is unique and beyond our understanding. We experience this peace only after we have reconciled and surrendered ourselves to him, abandoned ourselves in him, or attained union with him. This is how he has made us! No one else in the world can give us this peace. If you experience it, you've been chosen for heaven.
This morning at Mass, the Lord made me see that the healing power of the Holy Eucharist can reach beyond the heart all the way to the soul! How good it is to let the Most Blessed Sacrament make your soul whole again! When your soul is healed, your entire being is healed. And no one can do this to you except the Lord our creator and Savior.
Thursday, March 17, 2022
How should we relate ourselves to the heavenly Father? Of course, we must love and obey him. Since we are finite and prone to sin, we must remain most humble before him, But we are most precious to him too! In fact, he absolutely desires that we become saints and go straight to heaven after we die. So we must not undervalue ourselves. Instead, we should focus upon his love, his wishes, his mercy and power, and not upon our weaknesses and imperfection. If he thinks we are good enough, then we are good enough. He can surely make us live up to his expectations.
I just finished reading the book Maryam of Bethlehem. She lived from 1846 to 1878. Her parents were half Lebanese and half Syrian. They settled in a tiny village in Galilee, not too far from Nazareth, when the little Arab was born. She entered the Carmelites and received the habit in 1867. Pope John Paul II beatified her in 1983. You can find out more about her here. I'll just share something about her humility. She was always content, finding delicious whatever share Jesus gave her. She welcomed everything that happened to her as coming from the hand of God. She said that humility doesn't get upset about anything and is content with everything. Thus she never complained and was always happy. She's a great example for us to follow.
From today's reading from Psalm 1, we have "The LORD watches over the way of the just, but the way of the wicked vanishes." Yes, the wicked seem to prevail over the world right now, but if they do not change their way, they will be totally driven away by the Lord in the end. They are to be pitied.
Compared to eternity, our life on earth doesn't even last as long as the blink of an eye. But if we follow Christ the whole time on earth, our reward will be rich beyond words. Here's a case in which we sow for a short while and reap eternal life!
Wednesday, March 16, 2022
On earth, we face problems, whether caused by sin or not, all our lives. We get to enjoy life a bit only when we temporarily forget all the problems. So the earth can never be our paradise. But nevertheless, we can live a joyful life on earth. Get to know the God of Christ most intimately and you'll have your private joy in him at all times. This is a foretaste of heaven and you now know you are on your way to paradise.
Christ has to be the most under-appreciated person among us. He's all pure, selfless love, and has sacrificed himself to save us. How do we repay him? Not very well or none, I'd say. This is being grossly unfair to the only one who deserves all our love. Only because his mercy is infinite, many of us will be saved.
Tuesday, March 15, 2022
Normally, I do not want to get into politics, but this news is so shocking that the world needs to know. The pro-abortion House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, still openly claims that she is a Catholic! Washington D. C. is so corrupt that we "deserve" God's chastisement right now. I believe that the Warning as has been prophesied will happen after 2023, based upon what I have personally learned so far. Anyway, surrendering ourselves to God and praying without ceasing can change things for the better. That God will ultimately triumph is unquestionable. (This video may not last long onYouTube.)
From today's first reading from Isaiah 1, we heard "Come now, let us set things right, says the LORD. Though your sins be like scarlet, they may become white as snow; though they be crimson red, they may become white as wool. If you are willing, and obey, you shall eat the good things of the land; but if you refuse and resist, the sword shall consume you." The message is clear as a bell. God can take away all our sins. If we obey him, we will live. But if we don't, we will die.
Monday, March 14, 2022
How joyful it was for the followers of Jesus to see him again after he's risen! They couldn't help telling everyone "We have seen the Lord!" For those of us who have not seen Jesus but have received him in the Most Blessed Sacrament, we can surely proclaim "We've received the Lord!" with equal joy, if not greater!
In today's Gospel reading from Luke 6, Jesus said to his disciples, “Stop judging and you will not be judged. Stop condemning and you will not be condemned. Forgive and you will be forgiven. Give and gifts will be given to you; a good measure, packed together, shaken down, and overflowing, will be poured into your lap. For the measure with which you measure will in return be measured out to you.” Out of love, the Lord tells us exactly how we can expect to be treated by him. At the same time, he is humble enough to let us choose how we wish to be treated, as Fr. Stephen pointed out in his homily this morning.
We have all experienced the healing of our body, but we need to experience the healing of the soul! I experience that every time I receive Christ in the Holy Eucharist. This is healing at the spiritual level, way beyond the physical one. Physical healing makes you more fit for living in this world. It's spiritual healing that prepares you for living the everlasting life that's to come!
Sunday, March 13, 2022
There are a lot of lonely people around, especially if they live alone. But they might basically feel lonely even if they live with other people. To cure loneliness, get to know Christ dearly. Once you know that he is with you, you'll never feel lonely again, whether you are alone or not.
In an earlier Fr. Mark Goring's video titled What Near Death Experience People Say is Most Important, he said that some people who died and came back described that God's love is like our human love in its purest form and infinitely greater. Perhaps it'd be more correct to say that our love is rather like God's love except that our love is less pure and is finite. This is not surprising, since we are made in God's image. So let the Lord purify and increase our love, and we should do OK.
I've been watching some Ocean Conservation Namibia videos showing how its members rescue seals entangled in loops of fishing lines or pieces of fishing nets. Sometimes they even find fishing hooks piercing the face or the mouth of the seal. The injury often causes deep cuts around the seal's body. Of course, each seal has to be caught with a net or by hand first. This is the unpleasant part of the ordeal for the seal. Once the entanglement is cut and removed, you could sense the seal feeling relieved. The lead me to the following thoughts.
The Lord's words work in a similar way. They can cut you to the heart when you hear them. But like surgical instruments removing cancers and tumors, they restore the health of your soul. Deep down you now feel liberated and grateful. When love wounds you, it heals you.
If we remain in the Lord, then Satan cannot do a thing and we are completely safe. But if we do not have the Lord, we become Satan's easy targets and are led into sin. Should Satan be of concern to us? That depends upon us. Personally, I'd rather remain in the Lord and forget all about Satan.
Saturday, March 12, 2022
In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 5, Jesus told his disciples to love their enemy and pray for those who persecute them that they might be children of the heavenly Father. He commanded them to be perfect as the heavenly Father is perfect. This is a key teaching. The Father loves us all equally and we are to be like him, loving everyone, friend or foe. Each of us shall answer to God the Father alone and has no business of judging anyone. Our only business is to love, obey, and serve the Father. Let's be clear about our role.
Friday, March 11, 2022
If we were truly aware of our sinful state and need for salvation, we would be prostrating ourselves before the Lord God, repenting of our sins, and begging earnestly for his mercy. If Christ were truly No. 1 in our life, we would be thinking and talking about him most of time instead of all the other things of the world.
In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 5, Jesus said to his disciples, "I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother is liable to judgment." Why do we get angry? Many things can make us lose our cool, but I can see that we get angry basically because we lack humility. Being angry with someone is liable to judgment, precisely because it manifests the presence of our ego and pride.
Today's Psalm response from Psalm 130: "If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?" If the Lord judges us to be guilty, we are guilty indeed. But his mercy is infinite. He made it clear to Ezekiel in the first reading today that he does not derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked man, but rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way that he may live. He is on our side and for us. He only wishes to save us, not condemn us. By choosing to commit iniquity, we choose death ourselves. God's way is totally fair. We must not let our pride and the world blind us so that we no longer see the truth!
Thursday, March 10, 2022
Right after I blogged my last post God ANSWERS Our Calls, I just turned to the readings for today's Mass and found the response to Psalm 138 to be its verse 3a: "Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me." This is a confirmation from the Lord. How perfect God's timing is! He fills me with more joy!
On January 21, 2021, I first posted Fr. Jim Blount's video Three Days of Darkness. Then a moment ago I just posted his video on the Flame of Love Unity Prayer. I explored more of his videos and found this inspirational talk by him. It's 40 minutes long, but I think you'll enjoy every minute of it. It's inspiring because it shows that we could trust God with every little thing and should trust him with all things. Yes, God is absolutely relevant to us. No trust and you experience no wonders. Full trust and you experience all the wonders! It's that simple. (The talks ends at 40:56.)
Yesterday I discovered the Flame of Love Movement of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (https://flameoflove.us/). The movement was started by Our Lady thru Elizabeth Kindelmann, a laywoman from Budapest, Hungary, who died in 1985. It has now spread worldwide. I found a Fr. Jim Blount video explaining how the Flame of Love Unity Prayer has the power of blinding Satan. Now I see that we can pray it to keep Satan out of any situation. You'll find the words of this powerful Prayer below the video. (The talk ends at 8:07.)
Wednesday, March 9, 2022
Sin is always oppressive. It weighs heavily on the heart, making us lose our peace. You cannot sin and feel free at the same time. On the other hand, serving God as a Christian is an obligation, but it's always uplifting and never oppressive. In fact, when you let the Lord take over your life, you experience the greatest freedom. This is how the Lord has made us. From this, we should be smart enough to learn the right way to live, the way God has intended for us.
The world needs to return to God. The messages and signs are loud and clear, but many people of the world have already been ensnared by the Devil. Here are Mother Mary's urgent words given to Blessed Elena Aiello for us to hear. [Elena Aiello (1895-1961) was an Italian nun who founded the Minim Sisters of the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. She was also a mystic, stigmatic, and victim soul.]
It's unavoidable that we'll all be judged by God one day. We can choose to face him now or put it off until our time arrives. To me, facing him now to get it out of the way is the only wise, realistic choice. For you get yourself ready now and know that you'll be welcomed by God the Father when you face him in person next.
Tuesday, March 8, 2022
In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 7, Jesus taught his disciples to say the Lord's Prayer. I believe the most difficult part of that prayer for us to say is the part "Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us." But follow him we must, for the Lord added: "If you do not forgive men their transgressions, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions." So, never judge and always forgive.
Fr. Goring's new video reinforces that point.
Monday, March 7, 2022
Communion experience. Receiving Christ in the Holy Eucharist is no ordinary meeting. You have the creator of heaven and earth entering you to be united with you! It's more than just touching the Lord physically; it's spiritual union! You now belong to your most beloved Lord and are not the same old person anymore.
God has made us so that being holy feels great. God is attractive and most beautiful not only because he is love, but also because he is most holy. Love holiness and you'll love God. Only the Devil can't stand holiness. If you don't want to get close to God, you have been influenced by the Devil. Once you are holy in the Lord, you are shielded from all evil and set for eternity.
Before we believe in God, we need to realize that we are sinners who need salvation. After we believe in God, we need to realize that we are imperfect and must become holier. This second realization is essential if we are not satisfied with being merely lukewarm. Why not make attaining union with God your goal, for God deserves the very best from us?
Sunday, March 6, 2022
In these trying times (and during Lent), we can increase our prayers in this way. Do all necessary things, no matter how small, mundane, or uninteresting they might be, for Christ joyfully with love. Offered up this way, they make great prayers. Do extra if you can. For example, call someone whom you haven't seen or talked to for some time to find out how he or she is doing. There are always good things you can find and do. They make good prayers too. When you increase your prayers like this, you joy increases too.
We petition the Lord for all kinds of favors. It seems that we should submit ourselves totally to him before petitioning for anything, or at least initiate both at the same time. Once we earn the Lord's trust, we'll more likely receive what we ask for.
Saturday, March 5, 2022
The most important and proper reason should be that God loves us and is most merciful to us. Realizing that he can free us from sin and get us into heaven is also a good reason, but secondary. That we want Satan to lose the spiritual war he wages against God even sooner and worse is also valid. Loving and serving God, our Father and creator, is our duty.
When I obey the Lord, I become one with him, and all my will is now his as well. It follows that in his infinite space I am free to do whatever I wish. Another way of looking at it: When you obey the Lord, sin no longer has any power over you and you are set free!
Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me." (Matthew 18:24) So if we don't deny ourselves, we cannot be following him. Again, it comes down so clearly to "us vs. the Lord." Now you understand why we don't have peace in the world and our hearts. Now you see why there must be heaven and hell and that eternal life is real.
Friday, March 4, 2022
At Mass at the small chapel at Mount St. Joseph Seminary this morning, feeling the holy presence of the Lord in the tabernacle right in front of me, I was very aware that I must remain holy. Then I realized that Lord is present everywhere outside the chapel too, so I need to be so aware at all times, no matter where I happen to be.
Thursday, March 3, 2022
Communion experience. The Lord made me see all my imperfections before him. Then when I received Holy Communion, he perfected me. What a rewarding experience! (Of course, being human, we become imperfect again, then the Lord is there to perfect us again.)
In today's Gospel reading from Luke 9, Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life for my sake will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it." So it comes down to following the Lord or yourself. It's no contest if you believe that Christ is the Lord. So it comes down further to whether you believe in Christ or not. The fact that he challenges us to the core here only shows that he is authentically the Lord, for there's not another one like him.
Wednesday, March 2, 2022
Today is Ash Wednesday. In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 6, Jesus said to his disciples: "Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them; otherwise, you have no recompense from your heavenly Father." Jesus wants us to perform righteous deeds in secret only for the Father to see. In other words, we must not do anything in order to make ourselves feel and look good before others. Glorify God alone, not ourselves. We are all sinners who need to remain humble to get into heaven.
If you're not quite sure that you'll get into heaven, you probably won't; for Jesus' promise that whoever believes in him will have eternal life is ironclad. There are also people who continue to sin but say that they wouldn't mind going thru purgatory first. Well, here they put themselves in the danger zone already, for they've decided to continue offending God and think that they'll get off the hook by paying a little price later. This is sheer folly! It doesn't work that way. Besides, the suffering in purgatory, if they ever get there, can be long-lasting and quite severe. So do yourself a big favor: stop sinning and start following Christ, then you'll have nothing to worry about.
Tuesday, March 1, 2022
In today's first reading from 1 Peter 1, Peter wrote, ". . . be holy yourselves in every aspect of your conduct, for it is written, Be holy because I am holy." Here Peter quoted from Leviticus 11 and/or 19. This is a great reason for us to be holy. Since God is always present among us, how can we possibly not be holy? "Be unholy because God is holy" would absolutely make no sense.