Just Asking

This one is from Saturday

A bit late but Saturday turned into quite a day

John 16:23B-28

Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

“I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures, but will tell you plainly of the Father. On that day you will ask in my name. I do not say to you that I will ask the Father for you; for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. I came from the Father and have come into the world; now, I am leaving the world and am going to the Father.”

Good Morning Gentle Readers

As I sit here getting ready for work, it’s my half day Saturday, I am forced to think about all of the times I have went to the Lord with really bad requests, asking for things that I did not need or things that in the end might have done me harm.

God is not an ATM, you know, insert prayer and get a response, that’s not how it works. But God does listen, and every time God does respond, sometimes in ways that we just don’t get.

This passage touches me in two almost opposing ways. On the one hand, it reminds me of my “greedy” side. When I pray, it’s often to ask the Lord for something, some favour if you will. And oftentimes, I feel the Lord has listened. My prayers were answered just as I hoped, prayed, and in the way I imagined. Then, on the other hand, the truer side, are times when the Lord did not answer my prayer, or so I thought. I often lamented and didn’t understand how the Lord could’ve “failed” me. Didn’t God know what I needed? Didn’t I pray hard enough, long enough, loud enough? Its these time that I have to stop and think, if my two year old asked for a sharp knife would I give it to him? We don’t know the whole story and God does, its sort of better to leave it in his hands.

There have been times when God has answered my prayers and I have not seen the answer. I missed that yes, God came through, just not the way I thought he would, or better than I could have ever imagined.

That reminds me of the old joke, If you want to hear God laugh, make a plan….

“Amen, amen, I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. “

Jesus tells us ask and you will receive, and yes, this is true, he also says that we have to work for the Kingdom of God, build it here so there are two parts to this. God gives us the tools, we just need to do the work sometimes. The “In my Father’s name.” also tells us what to ask for, is it God’s kingdom we are building, or our own.

As you go about your day today and ask God for help, ask yourself who’s kingdom you are building

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

Time May Change Me

May 11 2018

John 16:20-23

Jesus said to his disciples, “Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy.

“When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world.

“So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. On that day you will ask nothing of me. Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.”

Good Morning Gentle Readers

I really dislike the winter, the cold. The snow, clearing frost off my car, all of it, and yet I live in Southern Ontario Canada, and to be honest it is where I want to live. Every year I watch the seasons change and I do love the spring, the summer and the fall and yes that first snow fall, the crisp air, and of course Christmas makes the winter for me.

Life is sort of like the changing seasons, we have good times and bad, dry spells and times when everything flows and goes our way. I have lived in times of darkness and despair, and I have lived in times of joy and love, and always in the good and the bad, God has been there with me, always helping, always weeping with my sorrow and rejoicing in my joy.

The changing seasons call us to appreciate the rhythms of life. Jesus beckons his disciples to lean into that same cadence in this passage: “You will grieve,” he says, “You will weep and mourn.” He speaks of the phases of grief and joy a mother experiences in child birth, and explains that she experiences pain “because her hour has come.”

This passage offers us permission to sit with the seasons, even those of grief or pain that come our way. Jesus anchors us in the reality that God is constantly at work in this dynamic world that ebbs and flows, gives and takes. No matter how much change or even suffering we experience, we know that in Jesus Christ, the victory has already been won—unexpected or even unfavourable environments do not have to separate us from God.

“So you have pain now,” Jesus tells us, “but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you.”

Today as you go through the joys of the day or the heart break remember that God is with you on the journey, always right here beside you in all you do….

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

Sometimes it Hurts

John 16:16-20

Jesus went on to say,“In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.”At this, some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying,”In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,’and‘ Because I am going to the Father’?”They kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he is saying.

Jesus saw that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them,“Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me’? Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy.

Good Morning Gentle Readers

We have to feel for the disciples today, they are confused, worried and a bit put off by what Jesus has to say to them. We have the advantage of looking back at history, but in that moment they where just scared.

This gospel has a few layers to it. On the first level it is the story of Jesus trying to prepare his followers for what was going to happen and this would have taken a lot of work. The disciples, like us, have a hard time keeping up with the Lord.

On a deeper level this is Jesus talking to us, telling us our story. Christians of the present day have reason to feel almost as bewildered and unsure about what Jesus said as the first disciples. After rising from the dead, Jesus ascended to heaven, and while we believe that at the end of time he will return in glory, we do not know when that will be. In the meantime, we are still here in this life, in a world where every day brings new evidence of sin and suffering. We look at the tragedies in our lives, great and small, and wonder why these things happen. Like the first disciples, we can ask, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’?”When will enough be enough?

Jesus tells us” You will have pain, you will have suffering, but don’t lose hope, keep moving forward because in a little while there will be joy.” We have to look to that joy, work toward it, and know in our heart of hearts that it is coming.

Today while you go about what you do in the world keep in my that a time is coming, keep in mind that our God is an “On time God”, and brothers and sisters we need to keep the faith….

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

You Can’t Handle the Truth

John 16:12-15

Jesus said to his disciples, “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own, but will speak whatever he hears, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.

“He will glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine. For this reason I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”

You can’t handle the truth”

Good Morning Gentle Readers

Well I had to quote “A Few Good Men” for this reflection, I just had to. Today Jesus tells the disciples that they can’t just know the truth, that they can’t just be told and its done, and he right you have to live the truth, you have to walk the road to know it. While I am sure that Jesus was a fantastic speaker nothing he could have said would have been enough to give these people the understanding that they needed to continue on in the ministry that they had chosen. Like them, we need to walk the road that takes us to the Lord, and while it is a wonderful journey there are hard parts that we need help with and that’s where the Holy Spirit, the advocate comes in, yes we, like them, walk with God.

Today as you go down the road, take a moment to speak with the Lord, he is always ready to help, and yes he can handle our truths.

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

The People in Need

May 8 2018

Good Morning Gentle Readers

As I sit over one more coffee this morning my mind wanders to people in need. Now there are a ton, and a ton more of people who are in desperate need of something. Sometimes its the basic necessities of life, food, shelter and basic human dignity. Sometimes its as simple as a kind word, sometimes it is as much as “laying down one’s life”. In the end there are a lot of needs. It is hard for us to see these needs, mostly because we need to and it is difficult to look past our own hurts, our own needs to see the other.

In the gospel today Jesus tells the apostles that the advocate is coming and that even though Jesus will no longer be with them he will still be close to hand, still meeting there needs.

In our life we do need help from time to time, we do need and God does still send his advocate for us as well, and sometimes we get to listen to God, and with his help, act on his behalf.

Today if God asks you to be his advocate, please try to respond. It can be a kind word, a smile on the trip into work, a coffee for a homeless person, a word of encouragement to a coworker, a hug for an over taxed spouse…..

Anything really

We all need the help…..

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

Tasty, Easy, Wonderful

Mini Oreo Cheesecake Muffins

Good Morning Gentle Readers

Well its a great day and I am sitting here getting ready to go to work but I thought before I went off to the world I thought that i would share something with you.

Mini Oreo Cheesecake Muffins

What you need

Paper muffin cups (at least 12)

12 Oreo Cookies (whole)

6 Oreo Cookies (Chopped or crushed)

16 Ounces of Cream cheese (2 packages)(Softened)

1/2 Cup sugar

1/2 Teaspoon of vanilla exact

2 Large eggs beaten

1/2 Cup of sour cream

What to do

Preheat your oven to 300 F

Drop a whole Oreo cookie in each muffin cup

Mix up the cream cheese and the sugar

Mix in the two eggs, sour cream, vanilla

Mix the whole thing until its creamy

Pour over the whole Oreo’s till half full

Sprinkle the chopped /crushed Oreo’s on the top

Pour the mixture over the top until covered

Bake at 300 F for thirty minutes

Refrigerate for ten minutes

Take them out of the fridge and enjoy. I really love these they are so good and so easy.

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

Big Things

John 15:9-17

Jesus said to his disciples, “As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete.

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I do not call you servants any longer, because the servant does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father.

“You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.”

Good Evening Gentle Readers

Today’s gospel is a bunch of things, somehow I think Jesus liked it that way. First he tells us about the love his father has for him, then he lets them know that he shares that level of love for them. For a moment think about how much you would love your child, think about that bond, that power, then think about sharing that level of love and commitment with not only those close to you but everyone everywhere, that’s what we are talking about, that kind of love. He tells them this so that they will have joy, how much joy is in a fathers love for his son?

Today’s gospel is a bit of Jesus doing what in sales they call bait and switch sort of. He tells the apostles, after letting them know how much they are loved he drops the other shoe. In gaining this love they will be asked to give of themselves completely, to lay down there lives for there fiends and again for people that they will never know.

When I was young I was in the army, and I knew the bond that grows between soldiers, yes I would lay down my life for the men with me, but strangers, well you are fighting for an idea bigger than yourself so sort of, but to be honest I never thought of it that way. Later in my life I was in religious life and the true meaning of what Jesus says here hit home. Yes these are my brothers, my sisters and yes I put myself often in situations that were not pleasant and sometimes even dangerous, but I knew somehow that I would be alright, I was doing what Jesus asked, putting myself out there and the rewards far outweighed the danger.

Now I am raising a family, I can’t go out and do the street ministry that I did before but the willingness to be a brother to those who need me is still there, thank God my Cindy lou understands this, and is alright with it.

Jesus is telling us all we have to do is love, love like he loves, and while that sounds so very big it really is within our grasp, with God’s help to do it.

I pray that when God puts people in my life that I need to love that I will hear Jesus saying,

“You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. I am giving you these commands so that you may love one another.”

Go out tonight, tomorrow, and remember

Love someone

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough

A Good lawyer

A former lawyer who left his profession to become a Capuchin Franciscan priest, Saint Fidelis of Sigmaringen has his liturgical memorial on April 24.

Fidelis’ life bridged the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, a time of religious conflict in Western Europe. He died at the hands of a mob while preaching in Switzerland, where he had gone to combat the Calvinist heresy.

The future “Fidelis” received the name of Mark Rey at the time of his birth, during 1577 in present-day Germany. Mark studied at the University of Freiburg, and worked for a time as a private tutor. Eventually he went back to the university and earned his law degree around 1611.

Though he had already shown signs of devotion to God and studied canon law alongside civil law, Mark opted for a secular career as an attorney. Within a year he was known as “the poor man’s lawyer” because of his concern for the needy. Just as quickly, he became disgusted with the corrupt ways of his chosen field .

Leaving his legal practice behind, Mark decided to give his life directly to the service of Christ and the Church. In short order he received ordination as a priest, and joined the Capuchin Franciscans in Freiburg.

With his entry into the order he received the name “Fidelis,” meaning “faithful” — after the words of Jesus Christ in the Book of Revelation, “Remain faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.” As he embraced radical poverty and simplicity, the attorney-turned-Franciscan left his inheritance to a scholarship fund for poor seminarians, who also received his books.

Fidelis showed his love for God through prayer and fasting, while caring for his neighbors through preaching, writing, and the celebration of the sacraments. He showed particular care for the poor and sick, and was especially revered for his work among Austrian soldiers who were suffering from a plague epidemic.

During 1614 a Swiss Catholic bishop had sought help from the Capuchins, to restore the faith and counteract the spread of Calvinist Protestantism. In 1621, Fidelis was sent on the mission. He brought just four items: a Bible, a prayer book, a crucifix and a copy of the Capuchin rule.

The winter of 1621-22 was a busy period of preaching, instruction and theological disputation for the Franciscan priest. He preached not only in the pulpits of Catholic churches, but also in public places, and even in the meeting-places of the Calvinists themselves. Some Swiss Protestants responded with hostility, but many others were also brought back to the Church.

Like many cases of religious persecution during this time, Fidelis’ treatment at the hands of the Calvinists did not stem exclusively from doctrinal disagreement. National and cultural tensions also contributed, with many Swiss Protestants suspecting that the Catholic mission was part of an Austrian plot against their nation.

This volatile situation boiled over on April 24, 1622, when Fidelis’ preaching provoked a riot at a church in the village of Seewis. Some Austrian soldiers were killed in the uproar, and a would-be assassin shot at the priest.

After declining an offer of help from a Protestant, Fidelis was confronted outside the church by a mob, and told to choose between his Catholic beliefs and his life. Fidelis was defiant: “The Catholic religion is the faith of all ages. I fear not death.”

St. Fidelis was beaten and stabbed to death. The sight of his martyrdom, however, is said to have converted one of the Protestant preachers who led the mob. A succession of attested miracles led to his canonization in 1746.

Stand with Me In Prayer

Another Call for Prayer

Good Evening Gentle Readers

April 23 2018

Well again the spectre of random, senseless violence has rocked us. A man drove a van on to a busy sidewalk in Toronto today killing ten innocent people and injuring sixteen more.

While details of this crime, the why of it has yet to surface, a city is shocked by the disregard for human life.

I hope and pray that all of my brothers and sisters in the Toronto community are safe tonight, I pray for those who are hurt, and I wish them a full recovery, and for those who have died I pray that peace is yours.

I hope that I am wrong, I hope that this is not some person with a political agenda or view trying to get his message spelled out in the blood of the innocent,

Again I ask

Pray for Peace, pray that we can see the fact that we are all brothers and sisters, all connected, all with the same fears, the same hopes, the same desire for peace and justice in our world.

My Dear Readers, please be safe tonight…

Please pray with me that we can be the thing that changes this world of bigotry, mad political ideology, and fear into the Kingdom of Peace that we all long for

Take Care and God Bless

Good Enough