Moving on?

Christmas is over. Now what? New Years? That’s what the world would say. Do we just take down the tree and the decorations and go on with our lives like we do all year long, not even giving a second thought to what Christmas is truly about? If you were like most of the world, that’s what you would do, but you’re not.

Most of you that read this blog are not like the rest of the world. Your faith is important to you. So why do we forget about Christmas once the season is over? To steal a saying from a friend of mine, Paul Masek, we should all make “our hearts mangers” for the Lord. Our hearts should be resting places for Him, and not just during the Christmas season. If we truly want to be good Christians, we should celebrate Christmas in our hearts EVERY DAY! Not just during Christmas season, not just on Sunday, but at every moment of every day.

So what are you going to do to celebrate Christmas every day? I am going to commit to make my heart like a manger for Christ. I am going to do this by spending more time in prayer, doing my best to avoid sin and temptation, get to the Sacrament of Reconciliation when I can’t, and show my love for Christ to everyone through my words and my actions. I encourage all of you to do the same.

Published in: on December 27, 2008 at 7:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

Worship

I pray every day. I ask God to help me with this, to do that for me. I ask Him to help my friends and family. I ask him to give me strength. I go to Church every week. I also read the bible every day. But the question I’m asking myself (and you) is “Do I (you) worship God?” Does what I do every day in my faith life give God the glory and honor He deserves?

It might help to define what worship means. Worship means: a reverent honor and homage paid to God or a sacred personage, or to any object regarded as sacred. To worship is to pay homage and to adore God. It is to give Him the glory He deserves for our life. We would not be who we are today, we would not even exist, if it were not for the will of God. He deserves our worship and our gratitude.

So, to get back to my original question…Do I worship God? I’m afraid I don’t. The whole idea of worship it to give glory to God through our prayers. All I do in my prayers is ask God for things. I ask Him to help me, to help my friends, to help my family. I ask him to give me what I need. All of this is good prayer, but I do not give praise and honor to the One who gave me life.

Lord God, I give you all my praise and glory. You are the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. You are deserving of my worship. I am forever grateful to You for the life you have given me. Fill me with the Holy Spirit so that I may worship You in all I do.

Published in: on December 18, 2008 at 9:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

Are you burdened?

I read the bible every day. Yesterday, I read the gospel for the day from Matthew:

“Come to me, all you who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you. Take my yoke upon your shoulders and learn learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart. Your souls will find rest, for my yoke is easy and my burden light.” Matthew 11:28-30

What wonderful words to be expressed in the midst of all that is going on! All of us have burdens on us right now–whether it be the pressures of preparing for Christmas, dealing with unemployment, illness, financial struggles, exams at school, or some other burden. Take heart! Jesus will take these burdens away from us! He will refresh us! All we have to do is go to Him. All we have to do is spend time with Him in prayer, voicing our burdens to Him and letting go. So, if we pray to Jesus, does that mean that He will miraculously take away our struggles, illness, and school exams? Maybe He will, with the exception of school exams. More likely, Jesus will give us the strength we need to deal with the burdens that present themselves in our lives. He will “refresh us” so that we can face our burdens, endure them, and grow from them.

Lord, we give to you all of our struggles and burdens. If it be your will, take these burdens from us. If not, give us the strength to endure them and to grow from them. For it is in the struggles of life that we are drawn closer to you. Amen.

Published in: on December 11, 2008 at 6:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

Christmas Preparations

It’s Christmastime! What are you doing this year? What traditions do you have? Do you deck the halls, decorate the house in preparation for the “big day”? Do you go shopping, getting all the things you want for others (and maybe a few things for yourself)? Do you bake cookies, with the delicious aroma hanging in the air? How do you prepare for Christmas day?

I think that last question is the key question to ask ourselves this year. I was raised with more of a focus on the decorations, food, and presents than I was in anticipation of the coming of a Savior. I don’t fault my parents for that. It’s how the world sees Christmas. It is so easy to get caught up in the worldly perspective of Christmas. Every time you turn on the radio or television you get coerced into thinking that Christmas is all about getting more stuff and doing more things. I fear I am raising my children with that same perspective on the season.

I want to do things differently this year. Advent is about waiting. It looks forward to the threefold coming of Christ: His historical coming, His second coming, and His continual coming in every moment in our lives. I think that the third “coming” is the most important. I am going to focus on His continual coming. I am going to focus on entering into a deeper relationship with Christ. I am going to commit to spend more time this Advent in front of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. And I’m not going to let it end after Christmas day, like the retailers do when they are done trying to earn your hard earned dollars. Advent is a time to refocus life on what is truly important–living a Christ-like life, not buying lots of toys or baking lots of cookies.

What are you going to do this Advent to prepare for Christmas?

Published in: on December 1, 2008 at 12:09 am  Leave a Comment