Google+

The Importance of Reading Spiritual Books

The first thing I was going to do was dive right into my spiritual reading list. But it dawned on me that I have to backtrack for just a moment and discuss the importance of spiritual reading.       Did you ever have that good friend that you can always go to for advice? Or when you weren’t even in need of advice, they share their life’s story and journey with you? They tell you what they went through, how they did it, and who helped them along the way. Spiritual reading is like that. You see, when we pray, we talk to God. But when we read, we hear Him talk back to us. Spiritual reading is important for building up a good conscience. To listen to the words of God and to meditate on them. What is even great about spiritual reading is that we have an abundance of writers from Saints to Popes, to theologians to read that will help us on our path the holiness. After all, that is why we read spiritual books — build ourselves up, and to help us on our path to holiness. So now that we have the why sorted out let’s get straight to the how.   How To Read Spiritually   Pick the spiritual book. The most common book is the Bible, but there are many books out there that will help you on your spiritual journey. You don’t have to be a theologian or a philosopher to read these books, spiritual books are found at any (intellectual) level that works for you.  One of the best ways I...

Truth, Freedom, and Relativism

  In New York City, we have veins of subway lines and bus routes that helps you get to where you’re going. While riding on the train or bus, you’re not thinking about the complex system, you are focused on where you have to get and if you’re running late. But, given the chance to freely choose a destination with no time constraints or obligations, your mind begins to see the complete picture of the subway system. Life is very much like this. While you’re in the grind, you are really not as aware of your situation. Yes, you know your alive, but in a way, you are sleeping. Completely unaware of what’s brewing under the surface.   Truth & Freedom   I find that it’s interesting I come to this point after Martin Luther King Jr. Day, since what he (and others)  stood for and died for changed America forever. Our founding fathers declared in the Declaration of Independence, that: ” we hold these truths to be self evident.” Strong words: truth to be self evident. Looking at the founding principles of what freedom is, it is built upon truth. An absolute truth. Truth was: all men were created equal. #Freedom was built on an absolute #truth Click To Tweet Not one was created higher than the other, we are all born babies–helpless. Now we have a growing culture where freedom is separated from truth. That there is no strong foundation where truth will set us free.  Instead, we are living in a world where we openly say, “to each his own.” This is known as relativism.   Why is relativism not such a great thing?...

Remembering Those Before Us

I have so many favorite prayers that I like to pray, or thanks to iTunes, sing to.  One of my favorite ones is the Litany of Saints?  What is so great about the Litany of Saints.  Well, it’s calling on all the Saints to pray for us. Have you met someone who is going through some problems in life (or maybe you are that person).  What is the first thing that we usually say to them, “I’ll pray for you.”  Well, this is like that.   One of my favorite prayers is the Litany of the Saints.  Usually, we recite this prayer during All Saints Day (November 1) and Easter Vigil when new converts enter the Church.     Litany of Saints   The very first time I heard the prayer of the Litany of Saints, it was the night of my conversion back in high school on  Easter Vigil when I too entered and became part of the Catholic family. I can remember that Church I went to had all the lights out and the complete Church was lit only by candle light.  There we (seven of us) knelt, as the congregation called the names of each saint, and ask that they pray for us. Saint Michael, Raphael, Gabriel… names of the saints called one by one; and in my mind I would imagine them taking up post in the Church with us–praying for us.  As we neared to the end of the list, I could honesty feel that there were more than just the congregation in the church with us.  I felt as if each Saint was present with us, as we remembered...

Making Sacrifices as One

Things in my home is starting to get back to normal.  I have been quiet for the past two weeks because my household has been sick.  It seems like one after another, we’re coming down with something (a cold) and we’re out of commission.  Homeschool had to pause for a week, but I thank God everyday that we’re a head and not behind. I am also very thankful that the children are feeling well enough to continue Monday. My household coming down with a cold that required multiple doctor visits (and ended with one with an ear infection), reminded me so much of a Bible passage of 1 Corinthians 12:12-27. “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ….” Our little family is one body.  The husband who is the head of the household, the wife is the neck, and the children make up the other various parts of the system.  If one is sick or not able to do its part, then the body suffers.  The head cannot say that it’s of no concern to the pains of the  hands or the foot.  The foot cannot say that issues with the head does  not affect the foot. As one body–one family body–we are all connected.  My family fell ill last week, and firsthand it affected each one of us, starting with the baby and ending with myself.  But I’ve noticed that when one is down we’re all down.  We adjust meals to suit the sick one.  We change our schedules so that...

Born In Poverty

Next week, we celebrate Christmas.  We are retold the story of how the Holy family had to go back to Bethlehem because of a census.  We learn that the city was full, and Mary was in labor.  We relive the birth of Christ in a stable and how even in not the best conditions (to our high standards), our King and Savior was born into this world. Will we be filled with joy because of Christmas?  Are we going to celebrate the Birth of Christ with praise and thanksgiving, or are we going to feel disappointed because we didn’t get the things that we wanted?     Jesus was born in poverty.  A stable, full of animals, and not once in the scriptures do we hear about Mary saying that this place is not fit for the King of all Nations.  We don’t hear about the complaints and groans of this Holy Family because they know that what was to happen was by the divine will of God. Now imagine us.  How many of us would be okay giving birth in a stable full of animals?  How many of us get bent out of shape when we don’t get the things we want?  Could we put ourselves in the Blessed Virgin Mary’s shoes and humbly accepted that all these events come with saying ‘yes’?  Can fathers put themselves in Saint Joseph’s shoes knowing that they not only married a woman who did not carry their child, but out of love for her (and obeying God), his wife was about to give birth in what seems like appalling conditions? The Holy Family did not have control...

Season of Peace

Have you noticed how often we use the word peace?  We are at peace.  They keep the peace.  I’m looking for peace and quiet. We throw around the word so much these days, that we forget what it means to be at peace.  In the worldly sense, peace means tranquility.  But can we be in tranquility all the time?  Can we wake up in peace, not have any disturbances, and end our day in peace?  Nope.  Honestly, it just doesn’t happen. The toil of daily life calls us.  Frustrates us.     Advent of Peace   This week of Advent the second candle is lit.  The candle of peace.  In the secular sense, peace can be obtained by mediating, or by doing various poses of Yoga, or even baking to relieve the tension of the day. In the news we hear about war, turmoil, strife, and sickness.  We see, and are fully aware of so much despair out there, that we will begin to question to ourselves: what is peace? As we focus on the peace this week in Advent, we are reminded that Christ is coming.  We are truly not forgotten, we suffer for a purpose.   True Image of Peace   I am reminded of the sign of peace that we give each other at Mass.  Not only are we saying that we want peace for our brothers and sisters, but we are saying that the peace that we hope for them, is the peace that can only be offered through Christ. These days, I’m truly amazed at how our secular world views God, and the peace that is offered through...
Google+