Friday, December 02, 2016

BUILD YOUR HOUSE ON THE ROCK

Matthew 7:21, 24-27

Jesus said to his disciples: 
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the Kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them
will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. 
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house. 
But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. 
And everyone who listens to these words of mine
but does not act on them
will be like a fool who built his house on sand. 
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house. 
And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”



~*~

Does this scripture sound a little familiar? It reminds me of the three little pigs building their houses to get away from the big, bad wolf!

On the serious side, Jesus is telling each of us to build our faith on a foundation that is strong and cannot be moved by even the strongest storm in our lives. Pity those who do not know Jesus and build their hopes on false promises, selfishness, and everything that goes against God's commandments. They will be struck down and will not pass Jesus and meet the Father.

Remember what he says, "Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock." Of course, this is a strong metaphor, but it drives home the point Jesus is making.

It is not enough to say "I believe" or "I have faith" ...... NO! You must act on what is God's words; YOU MUST LIVE IT. Conduct yourselves in a Christian-like manner. Practice living a life that reflects Jesus in you. Live a life that peope will remember "he is a true Christian". Pity those who do not believe. I talk of Jesus in some crowds and everyone just looks at me! I cannot quite find the words as to how I feel when this happens. I'm not going to preach to them. If they do not see Jesus living in me with The Holy Spirit, and they choose to ignore it or snicker about it our of my hearing, I do pity them. And I almost become angry, but Jesus stops the anger. You can take a horse to water, but you cannot ever make him drink.

Set your faith on a strong rock high up on the mountain so that when Jesus comes for His people and the skies fill with smoke and the days the skies are full of fire, He will protect you from harm, and eventually, you will be among the blessed to be taken by Jesus, himself, up into the heavens to me His Father, GOD.

The song "Beautiful Savior" comes to mind. See below. Jesus is named in Merriman-Webster's Dictionary:

Definition of savior

  1. 1:  one that saves from danger or destruction
  2. 2:  one who brings salvation; specifically capitalized :  jesus 1

A short story: A friend of mine's husband whose sister is an alcoholic. She used to live with her elderly mother who has alzheimer's and now lives with the son and his wife. She has not tried in two years to get a job. Rather, she spent her money on rent and alcohol. Now she is completely destitute. I need to say that she ran up her elderly mother's credit cards when she lived with her. The son has told her that she has to pay back the tens of thousands she has taken. He is Power of Attorney and his mother said "don't give her any more money". She called them two nights ago saying she needed money for food. The son, in spite of his anger at her for her past transgressions wants to go and buy her some groceries and not give her money so she can buy liquor. The wife says he should obey his mother's wishes to not give her any money. HOWEVER, the elderly woman suffering from alsheimers makes you wonder if she meant what she said, if she knew her daughter's situation.

It is a family situation that must be decided by the son. But I had to tell them what I felt about this situation. I said, "It is Christmas, a season of giving without expecting anything in return. What would Jesus do? I believe he would ask her to make out a grocery list and I would go buy her groceries and take them to her, thereby avoiding giving her money to buy liquor. On the other hand, his wife feels if he starts this, it will never stop. I am praying for them in this difficult choice. I believe I know which avenue the son will choose. He is a Godly man and he'll do what is right. Would you help your sister who was destitute but had taken thousands of dollars from her mother without the mother realizing it before she was diagnosed with Alzheimers?

I cannot help how I feel and I feel that this is right: Jesus would help the poor and tell them to sin no more.

Lovingly in Christ this Advent Season,
ABBEY

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

INTENDED OR COINCIDENCE?

As a Dollywood employee was cleaning up in Pigeon Forge after the fire, they happened upon this small page from a Bible. It is, to me, VERY ironic. Do you believe in irony or perhaps it was left as a message. It is a passage from Joel 1:19-20.  You make your own decision. I am only the messenger.

Dollywood employee finds lone Bible page while cleaning up after fire

THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION NOVENA - DAY 2

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Peace be with you!
Today, we would like to pray for the intentions of the Pray More Novenas community.

There are more than 290,000 people praying with us!

To post your own intentions, and to pray for everyone else's intentions, click here:

http://www.praymorenovenas.com/immaculate-conception-novena/#respond

We're praying for you!

Here are the prayers for today: 
Day 2 - The Immaculate Conception Novena 
(Audio/Video Version)
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O most pure Virgin Mary conceived without sin, from the very first instant, you were entirely immaculate.  O glorious Mary full of grace, you are the mother of my God – the Queen of Angels and of men. I humbly venerate you as the chosen mother of my Savior, Jesus Christ.
The Prince of Peace and the Lord of Lords chose you for the singular grace and honor of being His beloved mother. By the power of His Cross, He preserved you from all sin. Therefore, by His power and love, I have hope and bold confidence in your prayers for my holiness and salvation.
I pray that your prayers will bring me to imitate your holiness and submission to Jesus and the Divine Will.
Hail Mary, full of Grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
Now, Queen of Heaven, I beg you to beg my Savior to grant me these requests…
(Mention your intentions)
My holy Mother, I know that you were obedient to the will of God. In making this petition, I know that God’s will is more perfect than mine. So, grant that I may receive God’s grace with humility like you.

As my final request, I ask that you pray for me to increase in faith in our risen Lord; I ask that you pray for me to increase in hope in our risen Lord; I ask that you pray for me to increase in love for the risen Jesus!
Amen.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. 

Thank you for praying with us!

Don't forget to click here to let everyone know what you're praying for so we can pray for you too!

We are praying for you!

God bless you!
John-Paul & Annie - PrayMoreNovenas.com
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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

LECTIO DIVINA FOR THE FIRST WEEK OF ADVENT

Lectio Divina for the
First Week of Advent

We begin our prayer:
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the
Holy Spirit. Amen.
Stir up your power, we pray, O Lord, and come,
that with you to protect us, we may find rescue
from the pressing dangers of our sins,
and with you to set us free,
we may be found worthy of salvation.
Who live and reign with God the Father
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

(Collect for Friday of the First Week
of Advent)

Reading (Lectio)

Read the following Scripture two or three times.
Matthew 24:37-44

Jesus said to his disciples: “As it was in the
days of Noah, so it will be at the coming
of the Son of Man. In those days before
the flood, they were eating and drinking,
marrying and giving in marriage, up to the
day that Noah entered the ark. They did
not know until the flood came and carried
them all away. So will it be also at the
coming of the Son of Man. Two men will
be out in the field; one will be taken, and
one will be left. Two women will be grinding
at the mill; one will be taken, and one
will be left. Therefore, stay awake! For you
do not know on which day your Lord will
come. Be sure of this: if the master of the
house had known the hour of night when
the thief was coming, he would have stayed
awake and not let his house be broken into.
So too, you also must be prepared, for at
an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man
will come.”

Meditation (Meditatio)

After the reading, take some time to reflect in silence on
one or more of the following questions:
• What word or words in this passage caught
your attention?
• What in this passage comforted you?
• What in this passage challenged you?
If practicing lectio divina as a family or in a group,
after the reflection time, invite the participants to share
their responses.

Contemplation (Contemplatio)

Read the scripture passage again, followed by
this reflection:
How does this passage connect with the experience of
your daily life?

In those days before the flood, they were eating and
drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the
day that Noah entered the ark. How do my daily activities
reflect my call to Christian discipleship? Do I follow
Christ willingly and wholeheartedly? In what ways
do I delay taking the steps I need to take to become a
missionary disciple?

Therefore, stay awake! What aspects of my life allowed
me to be lulled into indifference or laziness?
Whatsteps can I take this week to be more attentive to the
needs of others and more faithful to God’s call?
So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you
do not expect, the Son of Man will come.
How am I preparing for the coming of the Lord—both at
Christmas and at the end of time? How can I prepare
myself to be a missionary disciple who helps others
encounter Christ?

Prayer (Oratio)

Read the scripture passage one more time.
Bring to theLord the praise, petition, or
thanksgiving that the Word inspires in you.
After all have had a chance to make their prayer, all
recite the Lord’s Prayer and the following:

Closing Prayer:

On that day it will be said:
“Behold our God, to whom we looked to
save us! This is the Lord for whom we looked;
let us rejoice and be glad that he has
saved us!”
(Isaiah 25:9)

THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION NOVENA - DAY 1

PrayMoreNovenas.com
Peace be with you!
The Feast of the Immaculate Conception is an important day for us to reflect on the Blessed Virgin Mary's life. Her life is the ideal example of the Christian life lived for God.

So we will strive during this novena to imitate Mary, and especially her profound love of God.

To begin, let's pray for all of those who suffer material poverty and go unnoticed, and un-cared for.

Let's pray not only that God will provide for them, but that we may also provide for them.

Let's also pray that we may not take anything for granted in our lives.

You can post your prayer intentions here, and we invite you to pray for the other intentions you see there:

http://www.praymorenovenas.com/immaculate-conception-novena/#respond

Here are the prayers for today: 
Day 1 - The Immaculate Conception Novena 
(Audio/Video Version)
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

O most pure Virgin Mary conceived without sin, from the very first instant, you were entirely immaculate.  O glorious Mary full of grace, you are the mother of my God – the Queen of Angels and of men. I humbly venerate you as the chosen mother of my Savior, Jesus Christ.
The Prince of Peace and the Lord of Lords chose you for the singular grace and honor of being His beloved mother. By the power of His Cross, He preserved you from all sin. Therefore, by His power and love, I have hope and bold confidence in your prayers for my holiness and salvation.
I pray that your prayers will bring me to imitate your holiness and submission to Jesus and the Divine Will.
Hail Mary, full of Grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
Now, Queen of Heaven, I beg you to beg my Savior to grant me these requests…
(Mention your intentions)
My holy Mother, I know that you were obedient to the will of God. In making this petition, I know that God’s will is more perfect than mine. So, grant that I may receive God’s grace with humility like you.

As my final request, I ask that you pray for me to increase in faith in our risen Lord; I ask that you pray for me to increase in hope in our risen Lord; I ask that you pray for me to increase in love for the risen Jesus!
Amen.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.