Archive for January, 2009

Hands Awaiting

Friday, January 23rd, 2009

When my grandmother (my mother’s mother) was dying, I was just a little girl, only five-years-old.  I have very few memories that date back that long ago, but I strongly remember my love for her.  We had a special bond.  Several years ago, midway through my teenage years, my mother told me some details about the hours leading up to my grandmother’s death.  She said that right before grandmother died, the agonizing whimpers she had been uttering ceased and she began giggling like a little girl.  She was giggling and saying, “they’re ticking me…they’re all around me and it tickles.”  My mother and her siblings who were in the room witnessing this miracle knew then that God had sent his best angels to escort my grandmother to heaven.

Hearing this boosted my faith and gave me an almost tangible proof that there is a Heaven and God is there waiting with open arms to bring us home.  Lately, I rely so much on my spiritual connection with my grandmother in Heaven.  I listen to her whispers in my life, just as I listen to God’s whispers (and sometimes his shouts!)

Recommendation: I am almost finished reading the novel “The Shack” by William Young.  A wonderful novel I highly recommend to any Christian who needs that extra “proof” that there is a God… who let his only son, Jesus die for our salvation–a man made in our own image–we may sometimes forget just how ‘human’ God really is.

Beth

Mary Undoer of Knots

Saturday, January 17th, 2009

This prayer works! I said it for the typical 9 days but am thinking I will say it more. I was going through a number of relationship and health issues which were helped significantly during the Novena. At the end of the Novena a nice, surprise news story came out about my business. While not all the answers I received were the ones I wanted, I received answers just the same and many knots were untied. I am thankful to feel the power of grace.

Give it a try:
www.maryundoerofknots.com

Another site with more info:
http://www.desatadora.com.ar/indice-i.htm

maryundoerofknots.com/virgin_mary.jpg

Credit: maryundoerofknots.com

John McDougall

Sparks of God

Friday, January 16th, 2009

Twenty years ago you came in a beam of light
shining through the clouds of my youth
carving a cross on my heart

I sat in the library
at green mountain college
on my birthday in December
praying desperately to see the true meaning of life

Is it Buddha
Is it Brahma
Is it native spirituality?
Lord tell me if Jesus is truly the Son of God and the way

Instantly the sun came out from behind a thick wall of clouds
and I knew without any doubt that Jesus would be my savior for life

Two friends in particular when I was young,
Mike and Doug, shared their faith and conversion stories
They planted seeds and sparked a fire
That will burn forever.

After many years of trying different churches of all denominations, I started going to Catholic Masses, where I felt a sense of peace and a powerful presence. I decided to get confirmed and the process made me confident I was at home in the Church that Jesus formed. Since then I have been to Fatima, Lourdes, The Vatican (with Pope John Paul in 2000), Garabandal in Spain and various spiritual places. I believe in the true presence of Christ in the Eucharist and continue to read and pray to grow my faith. God sometimes feels distant and life can be dark but often it is in those times, if we push through it prayerfully, that we can experience true graces of the holy spirit that inspire us and renew our faith. When my mother died, too young, of a stroke in her fifties, my faith was put to the test. I got on my knees and prayed (at Mass General Hospital) that she would come out of her coma. I saw in my mind the gates of heaven opening for her and was given a message that it was her time to go and that it was meant to be. That really helped me get through an awful time but also made me realize, if you think your Catholic and have faith, think again! You may not realize how real God is untill such experiences make you question the ultimate facts of life. If she is dying, will I ever see her again? Is heaven real? If I truly have faith I will see her again? This increased my faith when I responed by trusting that my visions were a grace and that God is truly real. Even though I had a powerful conversion 10 years before, my faith needed a reality check. And more tests have come my way than I could have ever dreamed. I believe that God tries the ones he loves but it is for our own benefit and that we grow from it and our suffering has a purpose.  Thank God for the sacraments and the Saints that help us get through it all and bring the spirit into our lives and help us pass it on to others.

John McDougall