Saturday, September 17, 2011
Have you ever expirienced a time where you are crying because you are happy. A time that something marvelous has happened to you. Maybe you have graduated college. Maybe you heard a song on your radio that brings back a wonderful memory, a special reminder. Or it may be that you are getting married.
What ever the case, we can always recall what it feels like. A joy so intense, with waves of many emotions rolling over us. Culminating in a moment, a brief moment in time. It was St.Therese of Lisieux who said "Life is a moment between two eternities." Even after that moment has past. Even after the tears of joy are gone and we return from the cloud that we have been put on, we can still remember. For even those tears help slate that moment in infamy.
I write this because I believe that there are many things we can have those tears of joy for, that get over looked. In this fast world we live in, we zoom by things at blazing speeds. In moments of joy and celebration, they past by like a passing fancy. Is it because we don't want the bad memories, that the smallest of good ones get over looked?
A mother seeing her child take the first steps, a dad taking his son or daughter fishing. watching as they try to cast the line into the water, doing so much more than just fishing. Watching a child grow up, from tumbling over their feet, to tumbling over to high school, to college. What do we feel when say a young woman grows up and looks at all she has accomplished while keeping herself a temple of the Lord? That after everything she can stand on those shifting sands a triumph of life. Is it to out of reach? I say no. Because I have seen those tears of joy.
I often wonder what I would do if I was at the place where Jesus died. I would certainly not deserve to be there for sure. But when I see the sky darken, when I see him take his last breath, the last breath for our salvation, you I cry sad tears? I would cry those most wonderful tears of joy, for I have been ransomed. I am not my own. 1 Corinthians 6:20 "For you are brought with a great price. Glorify and bear God in your body."
Each day there is potential for us to be filled with joy. Each day when we rise we have another chance for a ever lasting memory. When you come home from school. When you are around with friends, catching up smiling, trading stories, it is those times that are joyful, that we should take an even greater breath in. When a couple is with friends, talking about life the universe and everything around a camp fire, let each take it in extra for those memories allows us to be closer, to love one another more like Christ. We each have our own battles, and when we get a victory it is cause for marvelous joy. Know that in Christ we have won our biggest battle.
When we take those extra seconds out of our day, amongst the toil amongst the daily dirt. We can look and see what we have that make those joyful tears possible. what would make us look forward to shedding tears that cause no frowns.
Sunday, September 11, 2011
For this day we remember. A day that is in infamy. Where in a moment millions of lives were changed forever. As I write this memorial blog, I would like to take some passages from a blog written by Jennifer Hartline. She talks about losing innocence in 9/11 and I would like to add my own expiriencesd while highlighting her thoughts.
She Writes "There are many days when I’d give anything to trade in some life experience and get my innocence back. That loss is the worst part about growing up. The gradual, almost unnoticed fading away of our ideals, our hopes, our belief in goodness and even the possibility of things we can’t imagine. Cynicism replaces optimism; guardedness shuts out generosity and faith; fear replaces trust.
Then there are the moments like September 11, 2001, when innocence is shattered forever in an instant by a horror we still can’t comprehend and never saw coming."
When I look back on that day. I remember how I was starting my last year in elementary. A fresh little guy, who couldn't wait to graduate and leave the school of nuns and move on to the next phase of growing up. I remember stomping in puddles, making snow angels, and overall trying to make the life of the nuns less than smooth. I took in the dew drops of summer mornings, an inhaled the salty smell of the sea. But then it all changed, in an instant something was off, a tilted wobbly scale turned over. At that age it didn't hit me right away, I just knew something wasn't write, that the country I was brought up to know was altered.
I couldn't get it back, we couldn't get it back. Jennifer writes, "One minute I was sleeping cuddled up with my firstborn baby, holding her tiny fingers, breathing in her intoxicating new-baby scent, surrounded by bunnies and pink blankets, and everything was perfect and pure. The next minute the explosions in New York blew everything apart. She Continues, "And just like that, I realized that my daughter and I were no longer from the same country.
The country I grew up in was gone. I could never pass it on to her. She’ll know it only through stories and history books. I don’t claim to be the first parent to ever feel this way, and there’ve surely been other page-turning events in our history that left two different Americas on either side. But there’s no denying that 9/11 changed everything in a radical way."
The days are shifted, our lives altered. But in the wake of it all we still found hope. the only Hope; wile we may never look at an airplane the same way again, when we would pause for a split second on a trip, to scan the area, when we may hold a slight breath when sirens come down the street near a big building, know that the hardened of hearts need not be hardened. As she continues "We cannot go back to unsullied ignorance; we’ll never be naïve again. But we really can be restored to purity again; our innocence can be renewed. At the Cross we trade in our dirt and rubble and the Spotless Lamb washes us clean again. Innocence Himself takes away our stain and gives us His own pure life. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Cor 5:21"
We have seen that even in the devastating attack that happened, a light that we could be drawn to was shown to us. That God is always with us. Whatever harm may befall us. Let us remain steady, and we can be made anew over an over again in Him
So let us pray for those dearly departed. May God bless us all on this day of remembrance. Never Forget
Saturday, September 10, 2011
Since this time is so crucial, I think it is something for us to not only remember the home work due tomorrow, or the test coming up next week, but I also think we should take time to see ourselves. I think today for a person who is just starting out in college, who has stuck to the faculties of the Christian life, college is an exotic land. One that may or may not have seen missionaries come by. This is where we should stop and think about how we are when we step in to that land, and how we might be when we step out.
I have been fortunate enough to have grown up in the Catholic school system. From grade school, high school, and now I'm back again after taking a four year hiatus I am back in the system of my youth. But I know many fellow Catholics who didn't or specifically the audience of this blog are the ones who are not.
College puts you on the cusp of something bigger. In universities, and colleges across the country, young adults are going to take a part o something that may very well be there future. But in doing this they enter into well the exotic land mentioned above, and in this land has a different way. Today colleges are a place where the values of the building blocks of society are tossed aside, replaced with a "modern" blue print. For a young Catholic who is going to navigate this labyrinth this can seem a pretty daunting task.
But I in no way want you to feel discouraged, for what you are doing is taking part in something that leads you to God. Learning is a transcending experience, and it gives you identity, a piece of yourself that you will always have with you. For whatever the shifting sand of society are going, you can always remain in something greater. That knowledge, you develop more and more everyday by attending lectures, and practicing problems, it is a very real sign of the love that God has for you, to lead you towards the mysteries of the cosmos, even the law class you are taking in your Criminal Justice Major.
In college, so many can be a witness to the hope that is in you. Never be ashamed of that. The Christian tenet of Charity comes in. To help those in need. This can be done by helping your fellow student out. To be there, to lend a hand. For it is in giving that we receive.
Let it be that you can take heart in Peter, the rock. That wherever the passing fancies of contemporaneity life go you can allays be firm . Today school is filled with the ism's that only tear away at the fabric of ourselves and reduce us to cattle off to the slaughter. So stand and always be a light for those tossed on that stormy sea.
I guess it is safe to say that you will do a lot of reading right.?...
Disorientation: How to go to College Without Losing Your Mind written in part by Catholic Professors, Journalist, Theologians, Priest, Philosophers to help guide you through the popular errors of Modernism, Progressivism, Scientism, Fundamentalism, and others. The other book is the recently published, youcat or the Youth Catechism as it is known. Also as a tip I have learned throughout my years in college, is to study before you go to bed, but do not cram that is acually harmful to the majority of kids, and when you wake up have a banana, especially when there is an exam that day.
So may God bless you and keep you, and grant you his precious gift of peace.