To him be honor and eternal power. Amen.

I had one of those days yesterday where it seemed that from the time I left my house at 6:45am and returned home at 11:30pm, that I was doing, doing and doing. I cannot tell you how prepared I was to be like Jesus to my world and how I failed miserably throughout the day. Instead of being the loving person I wanted to be, I was mad, frustrated, spouting off my disappointment with what was happening and frankly, not the person someone would say, wow, he loves and follows Jesus.

Jesus, where were you yesterday? I know the answer. He was right with me every step of the way. I allowed Him a few moments which broke the frustration and anger but I needed to get back to me and handle all these problems. And when I couldn’t handle them, I let others know why I couldn’t handle them….IT WAS BECAUSE OF THEM!

I have had too many of these days in my life. I don’t seem to learn. No matter how many good days I may have, days like yesterday stand out. All I can think of is that Jesus is trying to show me that if I continue to live with pride, I’ll continue to suffer in my pride. I have grown though because I realize in these types of moments, I still have to pray and talk to God. Even in my sinful ways, I find myself talking to God. I want to accept whatever God gives me. I tell God I want to go to Heaven. I cannot do anything to earn it but am I doing things that are really frustrating God? I think I am so I continue to talk and try to listen.

So this is what I think I heard. GOD: Do you love your family? Me: Yes Lord. Do they always do everything perfectly according to the will of God? No Lord. Do you still love them? Yes Lord. My love and mercy are greater than anyone can imagine. But Lord, I know I am sinning and I don’t seem to care. I think it offends you but I am selfish and I only think of me. I will even tell you how much I love you all throughout the day but many of my actions do not show it. And Lord, even though I don’t say it, I don’t care until after I choose sin, which I think makes it all the worse. And I still love you! That is so hard to understand because it’s hard for me to love myself but thank you Jesus. You gave your life for me and I still hurt and offend you. I am sorry dear Jesus. Please forgive me because I think, no matter how hard I try, I will do it again. Please have mercy on me a sinner. I do.

I do not know how anyone else communicates with God but my mind rambles like this all the time. My heart believes in God’s love and mercy, even for me, and sometimes in my darkness, I think I am the worst sinner ever and would be embarrassed to reveal to the world my thoughts and desires. Today’s first reading from the Letter of St. Paul to Timothy ends with…

To him be honor and eternal power. Amen.


To him be honor and eternal power. Amen.

I Suppose…

Today a Pharisee who invited Jesus to dine with him could only see sin in a woman who sat at the foot of Jesus, bathed His feet with her tears, wiped them clean with her hair, never ceased kissing His feet and anointed His feet with ointment.

He was so righteous that he could only see her sin and none of his own. Jesus says something so simple that anyone could answer…

“Two people were in debt to a certain creditor; one owed five hundred days’ wages and the other owed fifty. Since they were unable to repay the debt, he forgave it for both. Which of them will love him more?”

The Pharisee’s answer?…

“The one, I suppose, whose larger debt was forgiven.”

Thank you Mr. Pharisee!!! You have helped me to realize more fully the extremely large debt of my sins that have been covered by the blood of Jesus. Your sins, Mr. Pharisee killed Jesus! My sins, Mr. Pharisee killed Jesus! I suppose Mr. Pharisee, that if we both get on our knees in humble repentance that we both might hear the words that the sinful woman you despised heard from Jesus…

“Your sins are forgiven.”

Alleluia, thank you Jesus!

I Suppose…

The Pillar & Foundation Of Truth – The Bible? or The Church?

St. Paul, in today’s first reading from 1Timothy 3:15 says…

But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.

I think before I really began to take the teachings of the Catholic Church to heart, I probably would have answered the Bible. Many Christians today believe that the Bible is the authority we are to live by. To a certain extent, I would agree but there has to be a teaching authority and that is the Church. If I believe the Bible is the Word of God and my friend believes that the Bible is the Word of God, and we disagree on a scripture passage and it’s meaning, who is right? There can only be one truth and we know that one truth is Jesus. So how do we know what Jesus actually is revealing to us if we both believe we are being guided by the Holy Spirit?

Jesus says in Matthew 16:18-19…

“And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

The Church! Yes, our church, filled with sinners like me that say the wrong things, do the wrong things and constantly beg for God’s mercy because of the selfish sinful hypocritical catholics that we are. Yet God loves us and reveals His truth through the authority of the Church through Sacred Scripture, Sacred Tradition and the Magisterium of the Church (teaching authority).

Even with so much separation, even within the Catholic Church itself, there is still one truth. We may change as Christians and come to a fuller understanding of the truth but the truth does not change. The world wants the church to get with the times but the real truth is, the world loses and Jesus, the truth has already won. So, my answer today is THE CHURCH and I will add that in the truth, I love the Lord with all my heart, soul, mind and strength and I love my neighbor as myself. Thank you Jesus!

The Pillar & Foundation Of Truth – The Bible? or The Church?

Suffering In Love

Today is the Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows. I do not like to think of our dear Mother Mary being sad or suffering even though I am well aware of the passion of Jesus. So today, Timothy Cardinal Dolan in his homily at Mass, said something that I thought was very profound coming from a man and priest.

I will paraphrase but he said that when a child is really sick, who suffers more, the child or the mother? He thought it was the mother and so do I. I can remember my wife with so many sleepless nights, filled with love, care and anxiety over our precious little girls. Knowing my wife, she would have gladly taken on their sickness and pain to see her babies healthy again.

So then Cardinal Dolan had me think about Jesus. Our Lord agonized, sweating drops of blood, was beaten, spit on, cursed at, nailed to a cross and died. Who suffered more, the child or the mother? I love our Blessed Mother and she like Jesus suffered greatly. Thank God for all of you mothers. We love you and thank God for you but I will speak for myself, I do not think I really have a clue how much you have suffered for your children. Thank you.

Suffering In Love

Liar, Lunatic or Lord

And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?”

So Jesus asks us the same question today. Before Mass today, we were played a video clip by Matthew Kelly in which he shared C.S. Lewis’ trilemma of who is Jesus to us.

If I thought He was a liar, I would be a fool to follow Him. I am a liar. I am capable of lying at any time. God sends me His grace to not lie and I have a choice to accept it or not accept it. If I choose my sinful ways, I would lie to you in a heartbeat. Jesus did not lie. He just kept loving, healing and presenting the truth to all the liars, hypocrites and sinners like me. How many of us walk away and turn our backs on Jesus?

How can He be a lunatic? Do lunatics heal and do miracles like Jesus? Do lunatics speak like Jesus? A lunatic is crazy and irrational. Jesus’ ways may seem crazy and irrational in the world, but it is us lunatics who choose the world over Jesus.

I know He is the Lord. My life has great meaning. It had no meaning prior to my conversion. It was all about me. Now it’s all about Jesus and me seeking His grace to eliminate the bad, selfish and evil habits I have grown to call normal prior to knowing the truth.

So without blinking an eye or seeking to think, I know my answer. It is LORD. If your answer is LORD, Jesus tells us today…

“Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it.”

How many of us are willing to give up our lives for the sake of the Gospel?

Liar, Lunatic or Lord

A Letter Of Humility To My Heart

When I read today’s first reading from 1 Timothy 1:15-17, I had to stop and write. My Lord has blessed me to reveal to me much of the sinner that I am. I think that if God were to truly reveal to me the full sinner that I am, I would probably lose hope. Today, Saint Paul in this letter to Timothy speaks to my heart and gives me such great hope. I would think that all of us followers of Jesus would look at St. Paul as a great apostle of Jesus and his great writings inspired by the Holy Spirit.

If St. Paul considers himself the foremost of sinners with all the great works he has accomplished in Christ, what does that say about me? Though I do not know the answer fully, what I do know is that like St. Paul, all of us sinners who believe in our Lord and Savior Jesus are being treated mercifully. I pray to never forget to give all glory to God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. Of these I am the foremost. But for that reason I was mercifully treated, so that in me, as the foremost, Christ Jesus might display all his patience as an example for those who would come to believe in him for everlasting life. To the king of ages, incorruptible, invisible, the only God, honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

A Letter Of Humility To My Heart

I Can See Clearly Now

I remember the song by Johnny Nash – “I can see clearly now the rain is gone; I can see all obstacles in my way; Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind; It’s gonna be a bright, bright sunshiny day.” Today’s Gospel reading from Luke 6 reminds me how I can see clearly and it isn’t the way of the world today.

Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own? How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me remove that splinter in your eye,’ when you do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother’s eye.”

How often it is so easy to see the faults of others. It’s harder to look deeply into the mirror and see what God knows about me that I would like to keep hidden from the world. I often tell people that I am an open book but really that’s not true. The most intimate person I have ever known is my wife and there are way too many things I would not want her to know about me.

I guess my point would be that I need to be as merciful with others as I want God to be merciful with me. I am working on it and by the grace of God, I am doing much better. I do think often of God’s commandments of Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself. The only way I think I can truly love my neighbor is if I can keep sawing away at my wooden beam so that I might see a little more clearly each day, both myself and my neighbor.

I Can See Clearly Now

Take A Deep Breath

Today’s Responsorial Psalm

PS 150:1B-2, 3-4, 5-6

R. (6) Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise the LORD in his sanctuary,
praise him in the firmament of his strength.
Praise him for his mighty deeds,
praise him for his sovereign majesty.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise him with the blast of the trumpet,
praise him with lyre and harp,
Praise him with timbrel and dance,
praise him with strings and pipe.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise him with sounding cymbals,
praise him with clanging cymbals.
Let everything that has breath
praise the LORD! Alleluia.
R. Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Not much more to say. Coming from this alive and breathing musician, I plan to make a lot of music praising the Lord!
Take A Deep Breath

It’s Not Easy To Follow Jesus

In today’s Gospel from Luke 6:20-26, it is filled with blessings and woes!

Let’s look at the blessings: Blessed are you who are poor                                                                                                   Blessed are you who are now hungry                                                                                         Blessed are you who are now weeping                                                                                      Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they                                                           exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on                                                account of the Son of Man

Let’s look at the woes: Woe to you who are rich                                                                                                             Woe to you who are filled now                                                                                                   Woe to you who laugh now                                                                                                       Woe to you when all speak well of you

When I think about how I live my life, it’s very hard to even think where I might stand in the presence of God. It reminds me all the more that I can depend on myself for nothing and like a child, I must depend completely on my Lord.

Jesus, it is very difficult to follow you. I pray to be open to your grace to be transformed into the child of God you created me to be. Lord, have mercy on me a sinner. Amen.

It’s Not Easy To Follow Jesus