Friday, March 30, 2012

Listen

“This Psalm is spoken
in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ,
both head and members.
He is the head, we are the members.
Not without good reason then,
His voice is ours and our voice is also His.
Let us therefore listen to the Psalm
and recognize in it
the voice of Christ.”
~St. Augustine

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Words

“Words are gold, split and shared as coinage, small pebbles, emblems offered back and forth—given, received; given, received—expanding the vocabulary of the soul.”
~Michael O'Brien

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Good Reminder

“He greatly deceives himself who thinks that prayer perfects one without perseverance and obedience.”
~St. Francis de Sales

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Looking for Him...

“The very first step is to try to forget about the self altogether. He [C.S. Lewis] says elsewhere that that's the very definition of humility. Humility does not mean to have a low view of your self. It means to have no view of yourself. Having a low view of yourself is miserable--psychologists know that. And that's also the solution to the problem of introspection. If I ask myself, how am I doing, I come out with one of three answers: well, terribly, or so-so.

If I say I'm doing well, I'm a proud, self-righteous, arrogant, self-satisfied, priggish Pharisee; if I say I'm doing lousy, I'm a miserable worm with a guilt complex and I need some psychiatry; and if I say I'm sort of fair to midland then I'm dull, wishy-washy, Charlie Brown. So what's the solution? Don't look at yourself. Take your temperature when you're sick, otherwise look at other people and God. They're much more interesting. The first step is to try to forget about yourself altogether. Your real self, your new self, will not come as long as you are looking for it. It will come only when you're looking for Him.”
~Peter Kreeft

Monday, March 26, 2012

Learning Christ

“Teach me, my Lord, to be sweet and gentle in all the events of life -- in disappointments, in the thoughtlessness of others, in the insincerity of those I trusted, in the unfaithfulness of those on whom I relied.
Let me put myself aside, to think of the happiness of others, to hide my little pains and heartaches, so that I may be the only one to suffer from them.
Teach me to profit by the suffering that comes across my path. Let me so use it that it may mellow me, not harden nor embitter me; that it may make me patient, not irritable; that it may make me broad in my forgiveness, not narrow, haughty and overbearing.
May no one be less good for having come within my influence. No one less pure, less true, less kind, less noble for having been a fellow traveler in our journey toward Eternal Life.
As I go my rounds from one distraction to another, let me whisper from time to time, a word of love to Thee. May my life be lived in the supernatural, full of power for good, and strong in its purpose of sanctity.”
Amen
~John Henry Newman

Friday, March 23, 2012

Some Quotes from The Little Prince

“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

“What makes the desert beautiful,” says the little prince, “is that somewhere it hides a well.”

“You're beautiful, but you're empty.... No one could die for you.”

“One must command from each what each can perform,” the king went on. “Authority is based first of all upon reason. If you command your subjects to jump into the ocean, there will be a revolution. I am entitled to command obedience because my orders are reasonable.”

“You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed.”

~From Le Petit Prince (The Little Prince) by Antoine de Saint Exupéry

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Invocation

If I were to ever write a book, I might want to use a similar prayer as the following for the preface. Sadly, Ronald Knox did not live to complete this particular book...

(Addressed to God)
“I know well that in your sight every thought of the human mind is full of ignorance and misapprehensions. But some of us—and perhaps, at the roots of our being, all of us—cannot forego that search for truth in which full satisfaction is denied us here. We apprehend that there is no encounter with reality, from without or from within, that does not echo with your foot-fall. We scrutinize the values, and can give no account of them except as a mask of the divine. Something of all these elusive considerations finds a place in my book. And you, who need nobody’s service, can use anybody’s. So I would ask that, among all the millions of souls you cherish, some few, upon the occasion of reading it, may learn to understand you a little, and to love you much.”
~Ronald Knox

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Where Else?

“...most of us pursue the successful life with a kind of ‘quiet desperation’... A comfortable life, kept well under control, can delay that moment of hard grace. After all, who wants pain? Moreover, what’s wrong with a nice life? Well, nothing, as long as you don’t pursue it at any cost. Nothing, as long as you don’t try to preserve it by eliminating human beings. Nothing, as long as it remains within the limits of what is simple, reasonable, and appropriate to the dignity of the human person. But be forewarned that a lifetime spent avoiding unpleasantness can deform us badly without our even knowing it. Unsuspecting, we can become incapable of sacrifice, and worse, incapable of hearing the truth.

...I would maintain that the truth sets us free when we become willing to be poor to the core of our being. When we can look into the darkness, trusting that Jesus dwells there already, believing that there in the very centre of our fears, is not nothingness, but Love Himself, waiting for us to meet Him. To meet Him there. There in the absolute poverty of our human condition. Until then, until we begin to really learn to trust God, we will either continue to choose various means of escape, or we will slide slowly into a habit of bitterness. Either we begin to accept the innate poverty of the human condition, or we eventually fall victim to a spirit of rage and rebellion. If we refuse to learn this absolutely essential lesson, then quiet desperation can gradually become despair.

Trust is a choice. We cannot always help our feelings. But our will is our own. In exhaustion, desolation, darkness, sickness, and doubts, we can choose to flee into the Lord’s own arms. We must pray—and we must make a conscious decision to pray—especially in those times when we least feel like praying. We can make mental acts of trust in divine providence, especially when our surroundings are a disaster zone. When temptation pounds away at our hearts, we can run to the Lord in the Sacraments, hide ourselves in His Sacred Heart, cry out to Him from beneath the cross. We will find that He always supplies the graces necessary to bearing our crosses. Step by step, little by little, we learn that God is infinitely patient—and generous—with those who sincerely seek Him. The fight against fear may even be a life-long effort, but still we mustn’t be unduly fearful. Where else but in fearful situations will we learn courage? Where else but in disaster zones will we learn to trust absolutely?”
~Michael O’Brien

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Deep Thoughts... (just for fun)

“As the light changed from red to green to yellow and back to red again, I sat there thinking about life. Was it nothing more than a bunch of honking and yelling? Sometimes it seemed that way.”

“Maybe in order to understand mankind we have to look at that word itself. MANKIND. Basically, it's made up of two separate words ‘mank’ and ‘ind.’ What do these words mean? It's a mystery and so is mankind.”

“If you ever crawl inside an old hollow log and go to sleep, and while you're in there some guys come and seal up both ends and then put it on a truck and take it to another city, boy, I don't know...”

~Jack Handey

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Time to Think

I had the pleasure to attend an address today on The Mind in the Net. It was given by Nicholas Carr, author of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains. Here is a quote he shared in his presentation from David Wallace:

“Learning how to think... means being conscious and aware enough to choose what you pay attention to and to choose how you construct meaning from experience.”
~David Wallace

Monday, March 12, 2012

Evening

When evening is coming down
And the darkness falls gentle on me
And the city is very still
Then I think of you

And when I’m waiting for a subway train
In that brief moment of solitude
And the world around me seems to fade away
Then I think of you
~Ken Medema

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Words of Assurance

"Hear the good news! Who is in a position to condemn? Only Christ, and Christ died for us, Christ rose for us, Christ reigns in power for us, Christ prays for us. Anyone who is in Christ is a new creation. The old life has gone; a new life has begun. Know that you are forgiven and rest in God's peace."
~Author Unknown (from church today)

Friday, March 9, 2012

From The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe

“...they went and knocked at the study door, and the Professor said ‘Come in,’ and got up and found chairs for them and said he was quite at their disposal. Then he sat listening to them with the tips of his fingers pressed together and never interrupting, till they had finished the whole story. After that he said nothing for quite a long time. Then he cleared his throat and said the last thing either of them expected.

‘How do you know?’ he asked, ‘that your sister’s story is not true?’

‘Oh, but—‘ began Susan, and then stopped.

Anyone could see from the old man’s face that he was perfectly serious. Then Susan pulled herself together and said, ‘But Edmund said they had only been pretending.’

‘That is a point,’ said the Professor, ‘which certainly deserves consideration; very careful consideration. For instance—if you will excuse me for asking the question—does your experience lead you to regard your brother or your sister as the more reliable? I mean, which is the more truthful?’

‘That’s just the funny thing about it, Sir,’ said Peter. ‘Up till now, I’d have said Lucy every time.’

‘And what do you think, my dear?’ said the Professor, turning to Susan.

‘Well,’ said Susan, ‘in general, I’d say the same as Peter, but this couldn’t be true—all this about the wood and the Faun.’

‘That is more than I know,’ said the Professor, ‘and a charge of lying against someone whom you have always found truthful is a very serious thing; a very serious thing indeed.’

‘We were afraid it mightn’t even be lying,’ said Susan. ‘We thought there might be something wrong with Lucy.’

‘Madness, you mean?’ said the Professor quite coolly. ‘Oh, you can make your minds easy about that. One has only to look at her and talk to her to see that she is not mad.’

‘But then,’ said Susan and stopped. She had never dreamed that a grown-up would talk like the Professor and didn’t know what to think.

‘Logic!’ said the Professor half to himself. ‘Why don’t they teach logic at these schools? There are only three possibilities. Either your sister is telling lies, or she is mad, or she is telling the truth. You know she doesn’t tell lies and it is obvious that she is not mad. For the moment then and unless any further evidence turns up, we must assume that she is telling the truth.’

Susan looked at him very hard and was quite sure from the expression on his face that he was not making fun of them.

‘But how could it be true, Sir?’ said Peter.

‘Why do you say that?’ asked the Professor.

‘Well, for one thing,’ said Peter, ‘if it was real why doesn’t everyone find this country every time they go to the wardrobe? I mean, there was nothing there when we looked; even Lucy didn’t pretend there was.’

‘What has that to do with it?’ said the Professor.

‘Well, Sir, if things are real, they’re there all the time.’

‘Are they?’ said the Professor; and Peter did not know quite what to say.

‘But there was not time,’ said Susan, ‘Lucy had had no time to have gone anywhere, even if there was such a place. She came running after us the very moment we were out of the room. It was less than a minute, and she pretended to have been away for hours.’

‘That is the very thing that makes her story so likely to be true,’ said the Professor. ‘If there really is a door in this house that leads to some other world (and I should warn you that this is a very strange house, and even I know very little about it)—if, I say, she had got into another world, I should not be at all surprised to find that that other world had a separate time of its own; so that however long you stayed there it would never take up any of our time. On the other hand, I don’t think many girls of her age would invent that idea for themselves. If she had been pretending, she would have hidden for a reasonable time before coming out and telling her story.’

‘But do you really mean, Sir,’ said Peter, ‘that there could be other worlds—all over the place, just round the corner—like that?’

‘Nothing is more probable,’ said the Professor, taking off his spectacles and beginning to polish them, while he muttered to himself, ‘I wonder what they do teach them at these schools.’
~C. S. Lewis

Monday, March 5, 2012

Losing and Finding

“Finding leads to losing, losing lets you find, living leads to dying, and life leaves death behind. Losing leads to finding, there's nothing more to say, no one will find life another way.”
~Ken Medema

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Today is Holy to our Lord

“Today is holy to the Lord your God. Do not be sad, and do not weep; for today is holy to our Lord. Do not be saddened this day, for rejoicing in the Lord must be your strength!”
~Nehemiah 8: 9,10

Thursday, March 1, 2012

March

With rushing winds and gloomy skies
The dark and stubborn Winter dies:
Far-off, unseen, Spring faintly cries,
Bidding her earliest child arise;
March!
~Bayard Taylor