Saturday, July 23, 2011

A Few Good Books Before the End of Summer

Summer is almost up for this teacher. I am starting at a new school, as in, newly built, so they want us to come in for training early.  That means I have about a week to cover a few good books I wanted to read or re-read this summer.

1. Re-read: Poverty of Spirit by Johannes Baptist Metz
I can't get enough of this 52 page small book. The description of the crucifixion is beautiful.

2. Read: Eleanore of Aquitane and the Four Kings
I don't always read biographies, but I think this one promises to hold my other favorite subject, history.  I'm sure when I finish reading it, I'll relate it to something suitable for Jesus.

3. Skim Read: Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu
This will probably finalize my interest in Eastern culture and religion. I took a world religions class in college which was very interesting.  The professor asked us to introduce ourselves the first day with what we expect to get out of the class, I went with a chipper, " To evangelize for Christ!"  It's true though, He is Truth.  I feel it is important to understand other religions so you can meet people where they are and then be able to bring them toward Christ if it is the Father's will.

4. Practice Read: Fables Choises by La Fontaine
One of many French prose books I like to read and study. I am not fluent in French but I read it often.  Five years of French in elementary and high school and a Cajun French speaking grandmother have endeared the language on my heart.

5. Quick read: Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
A children's book, a Newbury Honor book.  I teach 5th grade, delightful and pleasant little people, so I try to find books they like and put them on my classroom shelf.

Wish me luck!! I have a full week and then my brain starts preparing for school even though it doesn't start until Aug 22nd!

Monday, July 18, 2011

New to me Website for Catholics

This looks pretty cool, but I haven't read everything in it yet.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Grand Expectation


Guy walks into a church, bartender asks, “The usual, Bob?” Bob says, “Yep!”

Bob has been going to a place where his usual drink is well known.  The bar may be his church in a world where vice is accepted as necessity.  Our expectations of life and living vary in wide degrees between cultures.  And thankfully they also change as we learn more about our Savior and ourselves.  

Many people we hear about, seem to get really hooked on expectations.  There are ideas about what a loved one should do or look like or have.  There are scales for wealth depending on race and age and status.  There are expectations for yourself as far as your dreams and hopes and worries.

Do these matter?  Do any of our expectations for ourselves or expectations of other people matter?  No they don’t.  In some ways, if they are centered on the good for a person, other’s opinions may be helpful. But in the long run, imagine a Creator that is Omnipotent, Powerful and Engaging, who could also crush you like a bug.  

This is the guy whose expectations matter.

This guy, or God, has set us up for life!  We have prime positioning over all the Earth and beyond.  We have emotions that can carry you to the moon, in a good way.  We have the full and complete attention of the same divine God that created a Pangea as well as our very selves.

Expectations you say?  Innocent guy walks into a court, comes out sentenced to die for all humanity so they know what true Love is.

Pretty wacky and illogical if you don’t expect it, but this God that gives full attention to small man, planned the whole thing.


Christ said, “Hey guys, I’ll see ya later in Heaven, but I’m going to send my friend over to help you out.”

That friend, The Holy Ghost, came along with a big load of grace. It’s like when your sick and some cheesy girlfriend or boyfriend at the time brings you a can of Campbell’s. Replace the ‘chicken noodle’ with ‘Grace: Zero Sodium, No Calorie!’ and you’ve got an allotted portion of grace that is for you!

Now take all of your expectations about life and living and the way those have changed and morphed into what you didn’t want and maybe did or found out was kind of okay.  Jesus has a big-ole-pantry full of extra cans of ‘Grace:Zero Sodium, No Calorie!’ and you can have as much as you want! 

You only have to ask.

Remember, God had the expectation that his creation would have the free will to love Him. Jesus came and gave us his expectation for life and living.  It’s a matter of getting over the other people’s opinions and ideas and expecting great things in Christ.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Paraclete Judge

In light of today's ruling in the case of a small child that died, I was thinking about judges in general when I went to adoration and read John 16.  In verse 8 Jesus says: "And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation".  In the 1983 version I read, it said justice instead of righteousness.

The link will guide you to the USCCB reading of Chapter 16 of John in the New American Bible.  This chapter goes on to state the necessity of the Holy Ghost coming and Christ going back to his Father.  In the footnote to explain the passage I mentioned is the word 'forensic', meaning in this instance I assume, a judgement made with methodical and meticulous logic.

All of this made me think of the direct relationship of authority and how our systems reflect the Kingdom.  I am no theologian or philosopher, but I know that the Kingdom of God is flawless in its judgement, where we are full of flaws in our systems.  But we can see in a logical way the idea of a judge working for a greater personage as 'the state' or on the federal level, 'the nation's interests'.

This brings me back to the Holy Ghost coming to guide us and judge us and the fact that Christ says that the Holy Ghost will share nothing that is not of Himself and of the Father.  I think it is pretty interesting to consider the Holy Ghost in light of your relationship with Jesus Christ.  Many may have heard of Christ, but have they truly sought Him? The Holy Ghost will know.  Many may have talked the talk, but the Holy Ghost reads the heart.

I have met a judge before to help me with a speeding ticket.  I was definitely speeding, but I was young and didn't want it on my record.  But the point is, he knew me.  If he wouldn't have known me, he probably wouldn't have helped me.  The Holy Ghost, the Paraclete is the divine judge in the end acting for the one true King that we have in this life, Our Lord Jesus Christ Son of God.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Galactic Catholic Photo of the Day: Mission

Mission work in Mexico was probably easier 15 years ago.  I have more than a few friends working on mission projects in Mexico. Please pray for them and their success in Christ's mission.  The picture below is when I was still coming back into the Church. Our Lady of Guadalupe was my guide.

An hour outside Saltillo, Mexico 1997
Our Lady, Pray for Us!
Saint Therese of Lisieux, Pray for all Missionaries throughout the world!

The Mission Trip

Looking Past the Present

A friend recently made a comment about something I said about disliking all the yucky stuff that goes on in this world. I said I couldn't wait to be done with it, but I know I'll end up living till 100 years old like the rest of the Cajuns in my family.

When I said this, she tilted her head slightly and said,"You know, it is good to have that perspective, that there is more to look forward to."

She said it because she has so many beautiful things in her life, and so do I, but it is easy to forget that our main goal is to be able to stand before Christ unashamed.

I would like to think that everybody thinks like me, but the fact is there are plenty people that are much, much smarter! and holier! But one thing I keep in mind is the prize of being in the presence of Our Lord Jesus Christ on the Throne of Heaven and Earth. While there are so many good things on this planet and people to love, no one who knows anything about love cannot deny that people are doing a lot of hating lately.

The same people who preach tolerance and peace are the ones that define those terms as "agree with me" or else your stupid and intolerant and racist and a bigot and a homophobe.

So my peeps, don't be hatin' and remember that Christ is the Kingdom, the Power and Glory.