Tuesday, July 1, 2014

merton

A prayer of Thomas Merton:

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. 
I do not see the road ahead of me. 
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself, 
and the fact that I think that I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so. 
But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. 
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. 
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. 
And I know that if I do this, you will lead me by the right road, 
though I may know nothing about it. 
Therefore I will trust you always, 
though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. 
I will not fear, 
for you are ever with me, 
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone."




Wednesday, May 7, 2014

the stars in our skies


The stars in our skies... we all have them. 

The people we love, who make our corners of the universe a little brighter, even when things feel dark and cold - kind of like standing outside on a winter's night, looking up at the stars, swearing you can feel their warmth. 

They are the ones we love, the ones we laugh with, and cry with, too. They are the ones we gladly suffer for; we would willingly walk beside them through any dark night of theirs - first, because we love them, and secondly, because they either have, or gladly would, do the same for us. 

They are the stars in our skies. Some may burn brighter than others; some may fade over time. Sometimes they are close, and sometimes farther away, but no matter what, they always remain with us. 

May we love the stars in our skies. 

Say a prayer for them tonight, and always. 

Hold them close to your heart. You never know when they may need it most.


"If we are going to love others at all, we must make up our minds to love them well." 
- Thomas Merton


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

silence

Our world is noisy - from our phones and iPods to all of our chatter over social media and other means. We have a need, it seems, to be constantly connected to one another, to the Internet, to Facebook, to whatever. 

While I would be hard pressed to give up my iPhone, and I enjoy my fair share of social media, texting, blogging, email, and all of these things, I have to admit to a love/hate relationship with them. Maybe you can relate. Although I appreciate the benefits of modern communications, I am often the person in my circle of friends who doesn't answer the phone, or misses text messages - because I left my phone on silent, or in another room. Oftentimes, I've unintentionally forgotten to turn the ringer back on - this is true. However, it's also true that I will sometimes leave my phone in "solitary confinement," neglecting it for hours at a time, just to disconnect.

Silence is important, particularly in a world addicted to noise - in my opinion, "noise" can encompass what we hear, read, and see - as we are almost constantly bombarded with sensory messages. All that noise may keep us connected to the world, but it can also distract us from thinking about things in our lives, and it can stifle our relationship with God, who doesn't always speak in loud or obvious ways. Scripture offers a great reminder of this in 1 Kings 19, where Elijah waits for the Lord to pass by - through wind and earthquake and fire; and when He does finally pass by, it is in the silence after all these other noisy things have happened. Silence is a powerful catalyst for conversing with God.

As much as we need our connections to each other, and as important as those connections are, we need silence. We need to unplug. Go off the grid. Observe radio silence. Find God in the quiet. Pray.

"Why should we pray? Well, why breathe? We have to take in fresh air and get rid of bad air; we have to take in new power and get rid of our old weaknesses. Just as a battery sometimes runs down and needs to be charged, so we have to be renewed in spiritual vigor. Our Blessed Lord said: 'Without me you can do nothing.' Oh yes, we can eat and drink, and we can sin but we cannot do anything toward our supernatural merit and heaven without Him." - Archbishop Fulton Sheen