All posts filed under: Spirituality

Finding Respite in a Chaotic World

Not too long ago, I happened to be walking by my local parish and felt what I can only describe as a longing to go inside for a few minutes, away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Approaching the doors, outside of normal mass times, they were of course, locked. In this day and age, it’s become a necessity to protect the property when it is otherwise unattended. It saddens me to think that a house of God should ever be completely empty. How wonderful a world would it be if church doors could always be open, if the Blessed Sacrament was never alone? I had been feeling a great deal of frustration that day, and somewhat harried, I’ll admit, but rather than turn away, I decided to approach the rectory and parish offices instead. A compassionate staff person informed me that absolutely, it would be okay (during parish office hours) to go inside. There were no other events taking place at that time (no wedding or funeral masses, etc). I only needed …

Updates

It’s been a while (about two weeks) since my last posting, so I wanted to give you an update. Everything’s been fine, however, I haven’t really had anything on my heart to share with you all. My hope is that this blog will be a place to share about God, but only when I follow those promptings to write. Sometimes, this will mean that there may be multiple posts in a single week, other times, I may be silent for weeks at a time. Your lives are busy enough without reading the filler I could be posting without the Spirit’s promptings, just for the sake of meeting a schedule for a blog that is essentially, just a hobbyist endeavor. I respect your time (and mine) too much to go down that road. As I pursue a simpler life (as the photo for this post suggests), I hope that you will remain open to God’s will in your life, and always have the necessary graces to do His will. God bless you!

Timing: God’s or Ours?

I’m not proud of this post today. And if I’m completely honest, I’ve delayed some of you who need this message from receiving it sooner, because my vanity wanted a perfectly crafted post. Because presenting a professional, polished, good-enough-to-sell post somehow makes the message more valid, as if God needed my HTML formatting, photo selection and narrative skills to make a point. For that, I am truly sorry.

Small Beginnings: One Practice I Used to Encourage More Focused Prayer

It began with a jar. An extra jar leftover from the holiday season, currently out of use, and just sitting around my kitchen. ‘Why do I always buy too much instead of just enough?’ I’d wondered. It was a dollar; I’m not going to the trouble of queueing in a line to return it for a dollar. So it’s been sitting in my kitchen, for no other reason than it seemed a good place to keep breakables. I’m in a mood to create more order and find spaces for things. It’s been several months since we moved into our new place, and we’ve ‘settled’ as much as one can, but, I still don’t have my old nook for prayer. I’m giving serious consideration to having a dedicated prayer space now. A Place For Prayer In a symbolic gesture of beating my sword into a plow, I convert my writing desk into an altar by pushing it against one wall of my office, draping a never-used-before white tablecloth over it, and adding a candle, a few …

My Rule of Life

Tranquility in the midst of rolling pastures and fences to keep in one’s livestock. It’s a lovely picture of serenity, balance and order and just the sort of thing that is a good representation of what I’d like my life to imitate. Oh sure, underneath it all there’s still dirt, manure, and bug city, but there’s also the rain, the blooms, the green and yellow fields, and a vast expanse of sky from here to the horizon. 

Reining in Wild Horses: Crafting a Rule of Life

In his YouTube talk, Rules of Life: A Brief Introduction, modern-day monastic practitioner and author, Evan B. Howard said, “One Christmas break [my wife and I] decided to take the reins of the wild horse[s] of our life, by God’s grace, and write our own rules of life.” Howard goes on to describe how, over several decades, together they defined and refined a way of life with God at its focus, and how you too can establish your own ‘rules of life’ to create boundaries — for work, for play, for prayer, etc. Howard’s four-part series (so far), available on YouTube and Vimeo, is a simply-filmed, homegrown production, but his earnest, quirky personality makes him a delight to watch. The videos are an expression of the couple’s faith (my guess is his wife, Sherry, is  operating the camera off-screen) and a desire to reach others with the message of simplifying one’s life by establishing limits and boundaries. The Myth of Self-Mastery Christians talking about boundaries is nothing new. In my Evangelical Christian background, I was …