Becoming Holy

Mopping Up!!

This morning at Mass, our priest gave a homily that was so profound.  He was speaking of the Creed and told us to take notice that Jesus is “seated” at the right hand of the Father.  Jesus is not standing.  The battle is over.  He sacrificed once, for all.  Father Auve said that what we are doing now is more of a “mop up” job.  I broke into a grin!  This imagery is something I can totally relate to and participate in.  As a stay at home mom, I certainly can appreciate the “mop up” scene.  After all, floors get walked on, items are broken, things spill, and someone has to clean up.  Despite Jesus’ perfect sacrifice, we live in an imperfect world and are left with the grime that evil and sin leave behind.  

As I drove home from Mass, pondering the battle scene of Christ’s crucifixion, His victory, and now our participation in mopping up, I realized something.  When I am mopping and really want things to be clean or need to get into every corner and crevice, I don’t use a damp mop or a squeeze mop~I get down on my knees and make sure I’ve gotten it all.  It was one of those “ah-ha” moments.  I know God spoke to me this morning to remind me that my best work in the Kingdom is when I take time to kneel down and pray.  It is the part of “mopping up” that I am most equipped to do. It’s also the part that I most often neglect to do.  It is so easy for me to get caught up in being and doing and talking and thinking~I forget to structure prayer into my day and spend time doing what God most desires of me~praying.  

The message God had for me today actually inspired me to do some ordinary mopping as well.  I found myself mopping the floors and spiritually mopping at the same time.  Prayers for a friend’s mom who is in the hospital, prayers for my 107 year old aunt who is suffering, prayers for my sister-in-law’s nephew, prayers for my husband’s safe travels~all lifted to God along with my chores.  My heart feels lighter, my floors are cleaner (for awhile,) and I am reminded of the power of prayer in my daily life.

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Oh, what a beautiful morning!

051God’s graces are shining this morning.  Today began with a wonderful walk with a friend.  Grace-filled moments of sharing words, sharing experiences, and breathing in the glory of God’s creation.  A gentle reminder of all I have to be thankful for!  The title of this post is to honor my sweet mom.  I remember her singing the words from “Oklahoma!” around the house in the early morning, “Oh, what a beautiful morning, oh what a beautiful day. Oh what a beautiful feeling, everything’s going my way.”  She would call upstairs to wake us up, “Good morning, girls!”  She fairly sang that as well!  How could one wake up grumpy with a mom waking you up like that?!  I’m pretty sure I still managed a little morning irritability, but I loved and still love my mom’s continuous efforts to bring joy to her children!

It is my turn now. I hear my mom’s voice when I sing from that same musical.  I copy her intonation and cadence as I sing “Good morning!” to my children.  I love that I get to be mom to my kids.  It is amazing what we pass down to our children.  Both good and bad.  I pray each day that the good in me become stronger and that the bad become less.  I ponder the words of St. Paul when he says in Romans 7:15, “For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate.”  If St. Paul struggled, we must expect to struggle as well.  The important thing is to continue to struggle, to continue to work at the good we want to do.

This is the journey to holiness I desire~to dive into the Scriptures and learn from God, Himself, what He asks of me.  As Matthew Kelly often says, “We cannot become more like Jesus Christ and stay exactly as we are.”  Our lives should be in a constant state of change and my goal must be to become more and more like Jesus Christ.  I look at my mom, a busy farm wife with ten children, finding time to sing joyful songs, to wake her children with love, to work daily at becoming more and more like Jesus Christ~and I cannot help but sing, “Oh what a beautiful morning!”  

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Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done marvelous deeds! Psalm 98:1

This morning at Mass, this was the Responsorial Psalm and it filled my heart with joy.  You know those moments when the corners of your mouth go up, as if tugged by helium balloons, into a huge, uncontrollable smile!  I love when God speaks to my heart in the psalms.  I am asking myself what this “new song” is that God is challenging me to sing!  God is challenging each of us to sing a new song…to put off the old songs and bring in the new.  I have no doubt, this new song is to be one of praise, one of joy, one of love.  I know I am to sing it with my entire being~my thoughts, words, actions!  The children are slow to rise this morning…slow to embrace the new school week.  I am called to sing to them~not with words of frustration, but those of encouragement.  Please help me to sing, Jesus.  Let me hear your voice, that I might find my own.  I know if I sing in harmony with you, mine will be a voice of beauty!  Praising God this morning!  Make it a blessed day!

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“This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118

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What a glorious day!  We awakened to the sun shining for the first time in a week!  Cups of coffee in hand, we shared the morning as our children joined us, one by one, on the Lord’s day.  Our oldest is in San Francisco, attending Mass at the Cathedral and touring the oldest, intact mission on the California Mission trail.  As much as I love having all of us together, my heart swells with joy at the thought of Jordan expanding her horizons in San Francisco.  She attended the West Coast Walk for Life this weekend on a spur of the moment decision!  Praise God for her faith, youth and enthusiasm.  We, at home, are all blessed by her travels.  Watching EWTN to see the March, our kids were invigorated at the thought of going to San Francisco next year to participate.  We were boldly challenged by the Reverend Clenard Childress when he spoke at the rally.  He reminded the participants of Dante Alighieri when he said, “The hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in times of great moral crises maintain their neutrality.”  Reverend Childress spoke with conviction that we must not remain neutral on the abortion issue.  WOW!  Talk about impact!  We have always been a pro-Life family, but the challenge is there to become more so.  Much to pray for and think about and act on today!  Now is the time to become holy, not to remain neutral.  Praising God for His continued affirmations!

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“Our deepest fe…

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”~often attributed to Nelson Mandela

This quote inspires me to become holy…to recognize the power of Jesus Christ made visible in each of us as children of God!  It is time for each of us to let our own light shine and to help others do the same!  May these words remind us always to be the light God calls us to be!

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Prince Charming

This was taken in Leavenworth, Washington, just after Christmas in 2012.  Joe is the love of my life.  We have been married for almost 23 years and have been blessed with six beautiful children…five on earth and one in heaven.  To me, life is a fairy tale, complete with the battle between good and evil.  I thank God every day for sending Prince Charming to stand at my side, ever ready to slay the dragons!

Prince Charming

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Phillippians 4: 6-7 "Cast your cares upon the Lord & He will give you a peace and grace beyond understanding" ....in other words.... As Bob Marley sang it, "Say, don't worry, about a 'ting, cuz every little 'ting, is gonnna be alright!"

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