Friday, August 16, 2013

Woman flees to the wilderness...

"The woman herself fled into the wilderness where she had a place prepared for her by God."
Revelations 12:6

As I listened to this reading last night at mass, my ears perked up at this part. "Wow," I thought. "That sounds like me! Woman fleeing into the wilderness!" I am so blessed to be able to make a silent retreat at Marymount Hermitage over in western Idaho for the next several days, so I am fleeing to the wilderness myself...definitely to a place prepared for me by God. In today's reflection in "Reflections for Ragamuffins," Brennan Manning says, "...everything that happens to us has been designed to teach us holiness." Isn't that amazing?  You will all be in my prayers while I'm on retreat and I will be listening intently to the Holy Spirit so should have many new tidbits to share when the Heidi-grams return next Wednesday. Blessings to you all and enjoy your summer weekend! Love, heidi

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Believe in miracles!

"My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; and my spirit rejoices in God, my Savior..."
Luke 1:46-47

No matter what we believe, exactly, about the Virgin Mary, today's Feast of the Assumption tells us to believe in miracles.  It doesn't just suggest that miracles could have occurred, or it's OK to believe in miracles, it TELLS us to believe in miracles.  The miracle of Mary's Assumption is just a glimpse of what heaven and Jesus returning in Glory will mean for all of us.  While there is murkiness about Mary's death, there is scriptural evidence about how she lived.  She lived her life in faith, ever available for God to use in the plan of salvation.  Mary's "Yes," echoes all throughout the Gospels, and The Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55) is one of the most beautiful passages in all of scripture! So, today's let's celebrate the miracle that is Mary, her life, her Assumption into heaven, and her companionship with us.  She is never far from us, a loving Mother, leading us into relationship with her Son.  Love, heidi

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Words that "bind"

"Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven."
Matthew 18:18

Have you "bound" anything lately?  That seems to be kind of weird language to us but let's look into it.  Matthew says that when we bind something, it is bound on earth and in heaven.  That seems like an incredible power but what does it mean?  "The Word Among Us," reflects on it and suggests that what we say, how we forgive, even our self-talk can be included in this "binding."  In thinking about it, I can say some pretty awful things about other drivers!  Could I be more forgiving of them and remember the times I have made dumb mistakes while driving?  Could be.  Also, gossip could be another situation where what we say can "bind" another person.  We can put someone in a bad light while talking to others and really influence how others feel about that person.  Is that a form of binding, too?  Certainly.  If what we say is binding on earth and in heaven, what if we tried to make positive comments instead of judgmental, possibly hurtful comments?  Whether speaking to someone or about them to others, let's take a second to realize that what we say can build up or tear down another person.  Even thinking negative thoughts to ourselves can establish a pattern of negativity.  Let's try to think positive thoughts about ourselves and others today!  And let's remember St. Maximilian Kolbe's feast day today and pray, with him, for all who are imprisoned.  Love, heidi

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Beautiful Blog!

Today, I would like to call your attention to a wonderful blog written by a childhood friend of mine, JoDee Theade Ahmann called "Lessons From My Daughter."  I have added JoDee's beautiful blog to my list on the right side of this page but will also give you the link at the end of this post.  I encourage you to curl up and start her blog from the very beginning.  Your spiritual life will soar learning about JoDee's daughter Christina, her beautiful faith in God and love for Jesus. Enjoy!
  Lessons From My Daughter

Happy to let God lead...

"It is the Lord who marches before you and will never fail you or forsake you. so do not fear or be dismayed."
Deuteronomy 31:8

I remember learning the Exodus story as a kid and thinking it was pretty unfair that Moses didn't get to go into the Promised Land with the Israelites when the time came.  But I read it today with different eyes.  Moses seems perfectly content to let the people go into the Land of Milk and Honey with Joshua.  Moses was old and tired.  He had wandered with these cantankerous people for forty years.  He was done and probably glad to turn them over to someone else.  But, more importantly, Moses knew that God would continue to lead them and that was who they needed now.  The people looked to Moses, but Moses knew God was behind every saving action that had occurred for forty years.  He was just the middle man.  This verse applies to us in our comings and goings too.  I don't know how many times I have ventured into a challenging situation and prayed, "Please help me with this may be over my head!"  So, today, if a situation or challenging circumstance arises, remember what Moses tells the Israelites, "It is the Lord who marches before you and will never fail or forsake you..."  Blessings on your day! Love, heidi

Monday, August 12, 2013

The lessons of Abraham

"By faith, Abraham obeyed...By faith he sojourned...By faith he received power to generate..."
Hebrews 11:8, 9, 11

I love it when lessons come in lovely packages of three! So I loved our homily this past Sunday.  Abraham did what we are all asked to do.  In faith, Abraham obeyed and followed God to an unknown land.  Abraham even obeyed God in the shocking request of sacrificing his own son.  Abraham obeyed.  In order to obey God, Abraham had to listen and hear God, so that is essential first.  We are also called to listen, hear and obey in our lives.  What do we hear God asking us to do?  Is it to take up a ministry? Donate to a worthy cause? Befriend someone new to our neighborhood? Second, Abraham was asked to journey.  He had to leave what was comfortable and familiar for a new place.  He traveled.  He went out of himself.  Sometimes we can get stuck in the rut of the familiar and we need to shake our lives up a bit.  If we cannot uproot completely, can we go away for a while to an unfamiliar place? Can we change our routine a bit? Add prayer time on one end of the day or the other?  Finally, Abraham generated.  He generated many new people, but the point is he did something.  What are we being asked to do? Are we being asked to go out and make disciples of all the nations? (Pope Francis has said so!) Or are we being asked to evangelize the people around our own dinner table? In our work environments? Can we generate new disciples by living our faith fully and showing the joy of knowing Jesus to others?  Obey, journey, generate.  How are we being asked to do what God asked of Abraham?  Let's think about it this week!  Love, heidi