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Wednesday 6 August 2014

Maybe this is an answer pour moi and for podders

Look at

Need immediate prayers, please

Within 24 hours of opening up this new computer, I was hit by a huge and horrible virus. This one comes in on Microsoft Updates.

I am in the process of removing, also, the unwanted programs sent to me through the updates.

This is interfering with my ability to blog today.

Readers, please pray for me. I cannot deal with all of this and pray and do my chores. I usually do not spend that much time on the computer, and more time is a cross.

This is the second time my computers got this bug and I blame Microsoft for not having the type of security on the updates.

Again, prayers. I need to do my reading and prayers.

Bye for now....Wednesday noonish...

Do Not Pretend

When I was in my early twenties, the priest in my parish asked me to visit people in their homes and in the hospital. He was the only priest in a large inner city parish and he was overwhelmed with work. I remember one lady I visited over forty years ago, and today, she came to my mind, as she reminds me of so many people I have met in the past nine months.

The woman was elderly. She was about 75 and fairly housebound, but not physically, only by her emotions. She was comfortable financially, upper middle-class and she was a widow. Her children never visited her, except rarely, as they lived in other states, far away. She was suffering from depression.

Two things I noticed immediately when I first visited her. One was that her hair was always immaculately set. She had this done once a week. The second thing I noticed was that she always held her little white Maltese dog, who was also neatly groomed, when I visited. Some weeks, the dog would have red polish on its "nails" and a matching red bow. While, on another day, the dog would sport a white bow and white nail polish.

This lady, and I shall call her Dorothy, complained about her sad life, her loss of her husband years ago, the fact that her children never came.

I suggested, in my youthful way, that she could join groups, go out, enjoy herself. Money was not an issue.

No, she was too low to go out.

Eventually, in my young state, I lost patience with her one day and said, "Why don't you do something for someone else? Instead of thinking of yourself all the time, why don't you get out of yourself?"

Dorothy became furious. She gave me the list of reasons why she not possibly help anyone. I listened and then I got up to leave.

"I am going now," I said. Dorothy grabbed my hand. "You won't leave me like the others, will you?"

I smiled a rather sad smile. She knew exactly what she had done. She had pushed away love, because it was not the kind of love she wanted. She wanted something specific. She was trying to tell God how to love her. She could not see the Cross as love.

She wanted me and others to love her image of herself she had created. Dorothy was her own idol.

At some point, I gave her a Bible and prayed with her for peace. I suggested she would read the Bible.

She said she would try, but she could hardly read with a dog on her lap, and the dog was always on her lap.

Dorothy had overcome the will of the dog, who just sat there. She had pushed away her family because she wanted something they could not give. She wanted to be a god, or rather, a goddess. She did not know how to love or be loved. Perhaps, she was too full of fear to be "found out" that she, too, was imperfect.

I do not know what happened to Dorothy, as I moved away to another city. The parish priest was moved to another church far away and all contact as lost with the sad, lonely woman.

I see this today, among the old and the young. They want to be loved in a fantasy world. They want to be loved in the image they have of themselves, not in the truth of their being, not in the uniqueness of how God created them.

They want people to love an image of themselves and not really themselves. They want to play God and say, "Love me like this!" These people may even only want a certain type of person to love them, like members of their own families, or people with status, not a young parish visitor.

The dog did not care if Dorothy lied to herself about her selfishness and pettiness. But, God did and God was trying to break down Dorothy's fear of real love.

Sometimes, we are closed to love as we want certain kinds of love and we pretend to be someone we are not. In this state, real love will not come our way.

God waits. He comes to the honest soul, the open mind, the heart which seeks Him. He is not manipulated or overcome like the poor, little white dog.

He wants two things from us. He wants us to know Him, but He also wants us to know ourselves as we really are, full of sin, pride, fears.

He will not leave us unless we push Him away. There are many ways to push God away and one is to avoid suffering. Another is to refuse to accept the fact that only God is good and without Him, we are nothing.

I pray for Dorothy today. She died a long time ago. I hope she became open to love.

Living the Gospel

I am trying out something new I learned from St. Therese, the Little Flower. Remember how she kept smiling at the very difficult nun, who finally had a softening of heart?

My new prayer is this. God show me how to love...........(fill in the blank with a name).

Sometimes, people are so closed to love, one just cannot figure out how to love them.

In this younger generation who have stuffed themselves with things and sex, there is a lack of openings to real love. They do not know what love is and so one must pray for creative ways to love.

Now, when one is poor, one cannot go out and buy chocolates or flowers to show concern or compassion or empathy.

Like the Little Flower, who lived the life of poverty in the convent, one must love from the self, as it were. Doing dishes, sweeping a floor, being cheerful, complementing a dinner or comment, being creative in love can be a challenge. Some of those who are closed to love do not want to talk, or share anything about themselves.

And, so, I pray. God show me how to love........Perhaps the answer will be to only pray for that person.

I know, right now, in "my world" two people who have never experienced disinterested, free love. Their entire lives in their families were prisons of expectations, of love with strings attached. These two people, both solidly middle-aged, have never really felt love.

And, they are closed to love, objective, holy love. So, I stop and say, God show me how to love .....

Then, I listen.

Then, I act.

Try it. Stop pretending that you know how to love and let God love through you.

It is the love of God which converts and changes people, not our own limited love.


If you are frustrated with my long and on-going series on perfection, I highly recommend Ralph Martin's The Fulfillment of All Desire, which I am finally reading. He is not only a true scholar, but a clear writer, making the process of perfection clear to readers.

Now, there is always a little fudge room when examining the lives of the saints. I disagree (humbly) with Martin's excellent chart, believing myself, more in keeping with Garrigou-Lagrange, that the states or stages are more separated and less overlapping.

I do believe, with St. John of the Cross, that one does not sin in the Unitive State, but is tempted, of course.

I have not reached that chapter yet.

One order the book from Emmaus Press. I highly recommend it. I am only on Chapter Four. Many of the sources he uses I have used on this blog. It is refreshing that this man is a lay person, married, with I think, six children. Perfection is for all.

Back soon....

Part of The Dark Night

One of the worst parts of the Dark Night is the fact that one realizes one should be damned for one's sins. This awareness of the life of failure to respond to grace, the missed opportunities for growth in holiness, the persistence in habitual venial sin, brings one to almost despair.

One realizes that God was giving grace, constantly wooing one to greater love and mercy, and one just got busy about many things.

I beg God not to stop wooing me. And holiness is not about how many devotions we follow, the length of our prayers or even daily Mass. Our relationship with God must be based on love and love alone.

To be days and nights in the throes of the truth of one's self is painful, indeed. But, God whispers in one's ears-Let me do this. Let me perfect you. You cannot perfect yourself.

And so, the person must stop and answer, Yes, God, do it. Thy will be done.

And, like any sinner, one must endure the undoing of years of sins of omission and commission.

Likewise, especially in modern times, when so many people have not experienced stable, loving families, one must wait for God to heal the emotions.

In the Old Testament, the prophets write about the "healing of rebellion." Rebellion is not only in the will, but in the emotions, in the passions.

To submit to God, letting God be God and truly accepting the Sacrifice of Christ on the Cross as the absolute necessity of one's salvation, are all parts of the Dark Night.

One waits for God, and sometimes, one must chase after Him, calling Him to keep wooing one, and not to give up.

Yes, God does give grace, but He expect us to use it. One of the graces of the Dark Night is to will to trust in the Love of God one cannot see or feel.

Trust can be an act of the will. I shall trust Thee, Lord and I shall love Thee, even though Thou chastens me.

The Dark Night can be like a small experience of hell. One loves as much as one can, even in the darkness.

Like loving a spouse in the will rather than in the emotions, one loves in the will, as the emotions are torn to shreds by remorse and fear.

At some point, perfect love casts out fear. This comes in the Illuminative State.

In the meantime, one waits at the threshold of the House of God.