Everyday Spirituality

Posts tagged ‘God’

In Full Bloom

This video above seems for me to visually represent what happens to your heart as you prepare to receive the Holy Spirit. Just as the petals of this flower open and unfurl so does one’s heart as we anticipate Pentecost.

Now is the time for the Holy Spirit to blossom in us and through us.

If I do not open my heart to let the Holy Spirit bring forth God’s gifts within me I have wasted some of God’s brilliance and beauty. How ungrateful would that be… to waste the opportunity to bring forth the beauty of God.

Pentecost is about God’s brilliance; about his beauty being realized through each one of us. We are His Beloved Creations and Pentecost is about living up to that reality “in full bloom”.

I have had some time during my recovery from surgery to think about the approaching feast of Pentecost. I want to be ready for Pentecost ready for the Holy Spirit to burst forth…ready to reveal God’s lavishness.

The beauty in these flowers is nothing compared to the beauty the gifts of the Holy Spirit can reveal in each of us. Each and every petal layered together…a thing of incredible beauty.

Now imagine for a moment the beauty you have inside with all the petals of the gifts of the Spirit. The petals of Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord known now as Wonder and Awe.

As you watch this next video relish the beauty of each flower as they unfold before your eyes in a fleeting time lapse moment. We can bring the vibrant beauty and breath-taking brilliance of God to others. The Fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal. 5:22) Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Mildness, Faith, Modesty, Self- Control, and Chastity become our internal bouquet. A bouquet we can offer to others every day.

When was the last time you really took pleasure and appreciated a flower? We are all here to spread the Fragrance of God everywhere we go and the Holy Spirit is within us in every way.

You are a beautiful flower in the Garden of God…fragrant beyond comparison…

Let this Pentecost be like no other you have experienced.

Make a bouquet in your heart of these gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit.

Live your life “in full bloom”!

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Soul Stirrings:Empty Bucket

The Samaritan Woman carried her  empty bucket to the well.

We all know the ‘well’ story.

 

 

 

May I offer you a slightly different view…the Samaritan woman did carry her bucket that indeed was empty, but embedded into the clay of the bucket were the burdens of her life. I am amazed at how God is continuing to speak to me through this familiar story.

 

She carried with her to the well all of her burdens; things she could not go back and change…things that had become a way of life for her…things she could not see…things strangling her very soul.



Jesus offered her so much more than her bucket could hold, but more importantly after their encounter she did not return to her village with the bucket. She left without her bucket. She did not forget her bucket. She left it behind. She was a changed woman. She was not only able to leave the bucket, but all that it represented in her life.

This is what the sacrament of Reconciliation can be for each of us. We too come with our heavy laden, empty bucket and leave filled with the love, mercy, and forgiveness of our Lord.

Carry your bucket to the foot of the cross… leaves it there…return home with a changed heart…filled with God’s mercy and love.

You alone, Lord, know what burdens are embedded into the clay of my bucket.

I give them all to you…I surrender my bucket to you.

Let my life be a living testimony to the power of the ‘empty’ bucket.

 



Soul Stirrings: Joy within Sorrow

 

Nestled within our penitential season of Lent is the wonderful solemnity of the Annunciation. As I was trying to absorb the depth of Mary’s ‘yes’ I was struck by the church’s timing. Here we are well into Lent, a time of renewal… A time of repentance for our inability to love as we should… A time for true change. And what does the church give us, but the joyful Annunciation. What an example of renewal, love, and change. The Annunciation during lent to me represents joy within trials and sorrow. When the angel revealed to Mary, a young girl, that God had chosen her to be the mother of the messiah, she had to renew her commitment; willing to do the will of God. She was blessed with abundant grace and the capacity to love beyond measure. Little did she know then how much this love she felt in her soul would be pierced with immense sorrow. That blessed day Mary’s life changed forever and her body truly became the temple of the living God, Jesus.

My mind is flooded with images of the Passion. My heart is saddened by Mary’s sorrow as she must stand by and witness unspeakable assaults on her precious son. I see the exquisite image of the Pieta…Mary tenderly holding the lifeless body of her beloved Son. Mary’s joy at the angel’s announcement is somehow entombed within this season of lent. But yet we often hear of the many joys that can be found within pain and sorrow. Some even consider these gifts.

Reflecting on the Annunciation during Lent is a reminder to always be mindful of the joys in our life.

Celebrating the Annunciation during Lent is a reminder that even when we are struggling with life and draped in purple cloth joy can still be found.

 

Every year during Lent; we have the opportunity to renew our commitment, love more, and change our heart. Mary had one moment in time when she embraced the ultimate commitment to love more and she was forever changed for us.

Where have you missed the joy in your life?

Has sorrow instead overshadowed the joy in your life?

 

“Soul Stirrings” for Lent

As Jason Upton writes, “…in the silence you are speaking” For some time I have intermittently spent an hour in Eucharistic Adoration and I feel God is inviting me to make a regular appointment to be in silence with him. To sit in his holy presence…to be still…to be silent…to listen. To allow him to stir up my soul. And then allow him to remove the sediment that has settled to the bottom. Cleansing it of all that is not of him…cleansing it of all that does not give him glory.
Am I ready and willing to accept these ‘Soul Stirrings’ sitting in silence before him? It is a rather unsettling feeling. Do I trust him enough to submit to the changes he wants to make in me? It is hard to ‘let go and let God’ as the saying goes.
These are some tough questions I can not honestly answer at this time. Of course my intention would be to say, ‘yes’, but secretly would I be holding back just a tiny bit?

Throughout these next forty days of Lent, please join me as I post personal reflections called ‘Soul Stirrings’ for Lent. God never asks us to be more than we can be and he never promised it would be easy.

I hope you enjoy this video as a prelude to our time together this Lent. Look at the images in this video they are a rich complement to Jason’s lyrics.

Be still and know that I am God. Ps.46:10

God is Light: Wordle

God is Light

 This is the time of year when ceativity reaches a peak. Decorating your house for Christmas allows all sorts of creative juices to flow…after all it’s Christmas and anything goes.

Wrapping paper in all colors and patterns…matching bows curled or looped…candles in every size, color, and fragrance imaginable…gifts that fit in the palm of your hand or on a finger to ones that defy being wrapped…visits with family (now I admit sometimes that really requires some creativity) what will we talk about???? Let’s see… “No” not that subject…”how about ____? “No that will never work.” So we end up resorting to polite frivolous small talk.

“Lke, what dessert are you having first?”

Oh my, Creativity is so much fun during the Christmas holidays!

So I want to offer you an opportunity to explore your creative side with Wordle. I used Wordle to create the picture at the top of this post.

Here are the directions:

First you type some text you would like to use. I used scirpture passages from the readings for this week.

Next you go to www.wordle.net

Click on the “CREATE  your own” button. Once there copy your selected text into the box or you can just type your text right in their box. 

Then click on GO button.

In seconds you will have created your very own Wordle “word cloud”. Now you may be excited with the results, but I encourage you to “play” with the many different options offered. At the top of your newly created wordle are some buttons; the color, font, and layout are the ones you should explore.

Find one you like and celebrate that you can be creative in many ways.

I believe creativity is inspired by God, who has certainly given us numerous examples of his wild creativity…just look at nature or the animal kingdom.

Show your children or grandchildren  Wordle and let them have some fun together.

Now I am going to create one with the names of everyone in my family. That will surely give us something to talk about…!!! I must make sure that I do not forget anyone’s name!

~Christmas Blessings~

May your life be overflowing with JOY…and generously sprinkled with FUN.

If you have any questions about Wordle just send me a message.

What are you WAITING for?

Advent Reflections Week 1:  

We have been waiting from the moment we were conceived. Who knows maybe we were even waiting to be conceived to just the right parents. Once we were conceived gestational waiting was only about nine months. While waiting we were a bundle of activity; our tiny bodies were developing at a remarkable rate.

Even while waiting much inner activity can be occurring; activity not seen externally. Waiting is not a time to fall asleep but a time to watch and keep vigil. A time to prepare for what will be after the waiting period ends.

Little children know the frustration of waiting for Christmas or their next birthday. Children eagerly wait to lose their first tooth…to start school…and later to go out on a first date…drive…get a job. So many things to wait for.

Sadly some are waiting for their next warm meal…a warm place to sleep…or a job.

Some are waiting for a test result hoping for a clean bill of health.

Some are waiting for a loved one to return home from military service.

The truth is we are all waiting for something.

The beauty of advent is that every year we are reminded that for Jesus to become flesh he too had to enter into the human gestational waiting period. He had to wait in the darkness of the womb of Mary.

Mary too had to wait amidst much joy and anxiety for this period of waiting to be completed. Mary and Jesus had to wait before their first physical embrace. Mary had to wait before she could gently caress Jesus and cradle him in her arms…lovingly gaze into his eyes…give him a butterfly kiss on the cheek.

Jesus had to wait before he could be about his father’s business. Jesus had to wait before his appointed time to fully embrace his divinity within his humanity. Jesus had to wait to choose his followers from varied walks of life. Jesus had to wait for his disciples to recognize and acknowledge who he was. Jesus had to wait for his Ressurection from the tomb.

As a pregnant mother waits she is also getting in touch with how her body is changing. She is bonding and growing to love this new life within. Advent is a time for us to get in touch with God, the Father, a time to bond our heart and soul to him. Advent is a time to consider our personal relationship with Jesus, the Son. Advent is a time to allow the Holy Spirit to overshadow us with unconditional Divine Love.

As you light the Advent candle of this first week, pray for the gifts that only waiting can bring. Gifts of patience and surrender for what is to come.

We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us, says Joseph Campbell.

There is so much inside of us waiting to be discovered, nurtured. Now is the time to truly let go and let God. The ‘day is at hand’ let us not miss what we are waiting for.

Darkness is waiting for light…Hatred for love…War for peace…Cold for warmth…Poverty for wealth…Broken for healing…Noise for silence…Winter for Spring…

Advent is a time to honor all that we are waiting for.

So I ask, “What are you waiting for?”   God is waiting for YOU!

May you be Blessed in all of your waiting.

We eagerly wait for your comments.