Thursday, September 1, 2011

I can't but you can...

"Lord Jesus, I can't but you can. And you will. Please take care of my intentions in the best way. Thank you for acting."
Sr. Susan Evangelist

The other day, I answered the phone and heard a lilting Irish voice on the other end. Sure and Begorrah! It was Sr. Evangelist, the Irish Sister of Mercy who taught me Spanish in high school! She was visiting in the US and gave me a call! I hadn't heard this lilting Irish voice for twenty-five years, but it was unmistakable. It was like I was fifteen again and raptly listened to the wit and wisdom of Sr. E. After we caught up with each others' lives (She works in a House of Prayer in Drumkeen, Ireland) she wanted to pray with me over the phone. The prayer was a simple one of hope and peace and I am sharing it with you today. Clearly, I would not be the person I am today if not for Sr. E (I sure wouldn't have the Irish brogue down as well as I do!) But, also, all the dear sisters I had in school, the Sisters of Charity and the Sisters of Mercy, alike. Now, as a grown up, I deeply appreciate all they did for me and thanks be to God, I got the chance to tell her! So, today, I invite you to jot down Sr. E's little prayer and pray it with an Irish may work better! Love, heidi

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

There is a time...

"There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens.
A time to be born and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to uproot the plant..."
Ecclesiastes 3:1-2

The end of August seems so much more than just the end of August. It feels like the end of summer, the end of a whole season. September has a completely different feel to it. It is chilly mornings, new activities, and the threshold of winter. I tend to dig my heels in this time of year, reluctant to go forth into fall, with winter right behind it. This last day of August, I feel I need to latch onto to summer and not let go. But, there is a time to move forward, as this favorite reading from Ecclesiastes reminds us. We cannot linger in the summer; we must move ahead. We will soon uproot that which we have planted and God has grown. I am wistful today. Tomorrow is a new season and I have really loved this one! Blessings on your last day in August! Love, heidi

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Step back...let God work!

"It is the work that God does through us that counts, not what we do for (God)."
Oswald Chambers, "My Utmost for His Highest"

Oh, I love this today! When will we realize that God can do so much more through us if we will just get out of the way? Our human abilities are so limited and yet, we can take such pride in them! On the other hand, if we just keep God foremost in our hearts and minds, anything we can do is God, working through us. So much more good can be done if we just allow God to take the reigns. My favorite definition of humility is using our gifts for good and giving God all the credit. Anything we do well is God working through us and us stepping back and letting God. On this Tuesday, as our August wanes into memory, let's look just to God. What will God have us do today? How can we step back and let God work through us? Love, heidi

Monday, August 29, 2011

Called to act!

"He went off and beheaded (John the Baptist) in the prison. He brought in the head on a platter and gave it to the girl."
Mark 6:27-28

Most surprisingly, this gospel story was actually illustrated in my children's bible when I was a kid! The picture was gruesome, this head on a plate, with curly dark hair, eyes and mouth open. It was scary and I usually avoided the page like the plague. So, of course, every time I read the gospel of the death of John the Baptist, I see that picture in my mind--I'm haunted fifty years later. Which brings me to the conclusion--we are afraid of the hard stuff. We are afraid of things not going well, of people dying, of our lives taking a bad turn; aren't we? We are afraid of the gruesome, the gory, the ugly...the lepers, the maimed, the not-all-there. We avoid it all, just like I avoided the picture of John the Baptist's head on a plate. But that doesn't mean it isn't there or doesn't happen. What must we do? How do we cope with the things we cannot face; the things we wish didn't happen but that we cannot control? We clearly must do what we can to correct injustice. We must find ways in our small circles of influence to right wrongs and support justice for all people near and far. Maybe it means stopping the gossip at the lunch table. Maybe it means supporting relief efforts a half a world away. Maybe it means praying for those on death row. We can pray for God to guide our thoughts, words and actions to bring about justice for people who suffer. We can do something and we must rely on God to guide our steps. I still shudder at the picture of John's head. But that should lead me to action! Love, heidi