Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Nose Knows

Drying the 4yr-old after a bath, he wrinkles his nose in disgust and questions, "What's that burning smell?"

I take a whiff and say, "I just smell the crockpot"

He sighs, "Yeah, maybe it's just supper."

Fear Not the Night Day 3 part 2

Do not ask the Lord to guide your footsteps if you are not willing to move your feet.

"Hear the prayer of this fool who takes pride in what I mistake for wisdom. Help me to set aside my own knowledge and walk in your service like an untutored child. Let me become ignorant so as to be wise 'for the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.'"

I will have trouble with this - becoming ignorant. Because I have the drive to know, to learn, to be an authority. Then again if I can be convinced that sort of wisdom is "foolishness with God"...if I can concentrate on knowing God in all His Persons I should stay on the right track, yes? Pray for me, my brothers and sisters.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Fear Not the Night Day 3

Praying for more knowledge? "Only those who set aside their own knowledge and walk in God's service like unlearned children receive wisdom from God." "...If we are to enter into God's wisdom we will do it by unknowing, rather than by knowing.... It is the night of our own treasured wisdom."

I know if I had been in the Garden of Eden, the voice of Reason would not have been mine. I'd have been right there with my girlfriend Eve, shoveling that luscious fruit in my mouth. "Heck, yeah, I want to know what God knows. And the fruit is awfully pretty. I love God SO much - I DO want to be like Him. And how can I serve if I don't know anything?"

Then again, my girl Eve found that sweet fruit had a bitter, bitter aftertaste. And in order to know what God knows, St. John of the Cross tells us we have to become as unlearned children. However a good look at my children shows me they're not unlearned. They know love. They do as their father and I ask not out of fear of punishment or hope for reward, but because they LOVE us. Why can't I love God like that?

"Lord, please light the fire that once burned bright and clear. Replace the lamp of my first love that burned in Holy Fear."

Let go of what you know.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Fear Not the Night Day 2 Part 2

I wasn't as aware of my own beam as I should have been - I'm afraid I indulged in gossip of various drs with my psychiatrist. I need to pray more for the gifts of the Spirit; especially knowledge.

A new e-friend, Marianne, "facilitates" two saints choosing to be your Patrons for the year - also a gift and a fruit of the Spirit to pray for and strive toward and strenghthen.

I was chosen by Sts. Joachim and Anne; Our Lady's parents, who had a fruitful love before they bore her then raised her to the most perfect child of God. Just what I want to aim for as Bill and I parent! Then there's St. Martha...goodness know's I'm not the best housekeeper in the world. I need help learning to seve my family (and through them the Lord). The special gift of the Spirit is knowledge; always needed as I guide our children. Someone such as I, suffering from chronic depression, also always needs joy: the special fruit of the Spirit I'm to pray for. A supernatural joy that's ever in me despite pain, emotions, circumstances, noise level, stressors, etc. Despite fear.

"Descend on my soul now like a river of peace to take away my uncertainties, my fear of the dark."

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Fear Not the Night Day 2

Bill and I with the grace of God manage to do a few things that spiritually hit the mark. Suddenly I'm an "advisor" in the Kingdom of God. Well, maybe. But most of all a warrior like everyone else. I don't want to strain out a gnat and swallow a camel.

Beware the Beam in Your Own Eye.

"Living a good life should engender humility." Self-awareness is not pride - if one senses humility in oneself it is not to cease being humble. It may be a bad modern habit,but it's not pride.

"Do not become one of those complacent beginners who in their spiritual presumption publicly condemn others...."

I am guilty of this. I need to remember only God knows the heart. Only He is able to condemn or justify.And who knows where on that continuum I will be?! Lord, Have Mercy on me, a sinner!

Beware the Beam in Your Eye.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Fear Not the Night Day 1

Our attachments are to what is less than nothing. They impede our reaching out to God and being transformed by Him.

Nothing compares with God. We're incapable of union with God until our attachments are God and all others are purged.


Is this an attachment? Is it between you and God? Look again at it, make it sub-serviant to God. Detach from it. Look again.

You're only a pilgrim, you're not an owner. Keep your watch set for Home. This is not our home, we're only passing through; we're just in a tent.

Do not lose your first Love. Don't limp into Heaven; accelerate into Eternity. Gratitude will set you free from yourself. A Hindu proverb says, "They who give have everything. Those who withhold have nothing." Look again at gratitude.

Friday, August 11, 2006

How Slow is 30 MPH?

Set the cruise at 62 MPH on an overcast day, just enjoying the view on the rural highway heading home. Suddenly, from the backseat, my 7 yr old daughter asks, "How fast are we going?"

"62 MPH," I practically chirped.

"Is that legal?"

Oh, groan. What now? I can't say yes and blithely continue 7 MPH over the posted speed limit. I can't say no, but it's okay: that's the wrong message entirely. So I said, "Sarah, would you like me to slow down?"

"Only if YOU want to."

Good grief. Chastened by Someone Bigger than my daughter, I slowed down. I've driven the speed limit since.

Sarah Elisabeth White. Watch out for her. She'll be a Doctor of the Church someday. Or at the very least a great Spiritual Advisor.

Sunday, August 6, 2006

Fear Not the Night

Prologue, part 2.

John of the Cross is accessible, for our common goal is final, complete union with God. "There is no other place to find God than where we find ourselves." (p 12-13) Matt 28:20b "And lo, I am with you always; even to the end of time."

I've always found it hard to read Carmelites in general, St. John of the Cross in particular, because I get discouraged, I think. I could never do that - I can't be that holy. Now this book tells me, "Understanding is not the point. Your heart's response is.....You're not reading these passages, you're praying them." That's been a huge problem for me as well. I often treat a book as something to get through, not something to savor. I must move slowly here.

Fear Not the Night

At this time in my life I'm incredibly fatigued; I have back pain, adhesion pain, and migraines. I endure horrible nightmares; and I've begun hearing voices. My psychiatrist assures me this is because of Rx interactions. They usually accur in my twilight states between wakefulness and sleep, so I am learning to fear the night.

Lately I've been interested in Carmelite spirituality as well, so this book with exerpts by St. John of the Cross seemed just what I needed. Holy Spirit, guide my study. May I keep the image of our Lord ever before me and may the three Persons of the One God give me strength to incorporate St. John's words and advice. Mother Seton, St. Dymphna and St. John of the Cross please pray for me. Mother Mary, Guardian Angel, please hold me close. Amen.