Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Finally managed to capture a free computer here at the hospital this morning. I couldn't wait to see Our Lady's message from Christmas Day.  "Be a blessing and be peace."  It is a beautiful request and I will attest that these two things bring joy to your own heart, as well as to God, Jesus and Our Holy Mother.

Two Medjugorje Apparitions for Christmas

On Christmas day, December 25, 2010, Our Lady appeared to the visionary Marija and delivered this message to the world:

"Dear children! Today, I and my Son desire to give you an abundance of joy and peace so that each of you may be a joyful carrier and witness of peace and joy in the places where you live. Little children, be a blessing and be peace. Thank you for having responded to my call."

On the same day, Jakov Colo, the youngest of the six visionaries, experienced his annual apparition. At the last daily apparition to Jakov Colo in 1998, Our Lady told him that henceforth he would have one apparition a year, on Christmas Day. This year's apparition began on Christmas day in Medjugorje at 2:25 pm and lasted 7 minutes.

After the apparition, Jakov said, "Our Lady spoke to me about the secrets and at the end said: 'Pray, pray, pray.'"

The brief message Jakov received this year was different from most messages of past years, which have tended to be longer.

Sunday, December 26, 2010


... and all through my house, we are praying for continuing improvement of my Mother following her stroke last week. 

I just discovered these computers at the hospital where anyone can check their mail and catch up.  Wish I'd known sooner . . .

Mother had therapy every day this week.  They had to insert some "blocks" of time for her to rest as she was tiring very easily.  I don't think a day has passed that I didn't shed a few tears after leaving her for the night.  I thank God for the many blessings we have had, i.e., that she survived, that an untimely incident such as her stroke turned to a timely event of bringing our family close together for the first time in a long while, and for an answer from God to a long struggle in making a huge decision.

It is unfortunate for my dear Mother that it took her going through this to bring me home, but Lee and I will be returning to our home and begin preparations for moving to Texas.  I love Texas; but, leaving my children and my grandchildren will be the most difficult thing I have ever faced, and it will take the Grace of God to hold me up.

I look forward to moving "home" where I was raised.  I've always loved Texas and so, I look forward to house-hunting, but even more so, to the day Mother is released to go home (probably 5-6 more weeks).  She has a long way to go and she knows it.  She gives 110% and laughs at herself when she cannot get the words out, saying "I'll spit it out in a minute!"  My mother is one in a zillion.  She has always been a dedicated child of God. She was raised in the Pentecostal Assembly of God Church.  Unfortunately, they "kicked her out" when she married my Daddy because he was a divorced man.  It hurt her so deeply that even today, 57 years later, she attends Hillside Christian Church and has been attending regularly for years, but has never "joined".  She told me a while back, "being kicked out of my church after having gone there for 21 years of my life hurt me so badly, I'm afraid of joining another church."  She is a loved member, whether or not it has been made official on paper.

Yesterday, I cooked fresh green beans just like Mother cooks them, fried corn, whipped potatoes and a good friend had ordered a cooked beef tenderloing for us.  So, we packed up everthing and brought it to Mother's room, including her favorite Christmas tee-shirt, and we had Christmas dinner together.  We had a lot of blessings to count and we made the best of the day.

Mother's right arm and leg are still limp, but she says sometimes that she can "kinda" feel something when you scratch her fingers or her arm.  We meet with the Case Worker on Thursday, and I'm praying for good news.  My Daddy is taking this very hard.  He cannot sleep, he cries and says he wishes he could wake up from this bad dream.  But, Lee and I have assured him that we are here and will be here permanently as soon as we can.  He and my Mother are madly in love with each other at 79 years of age.  Daddy wishes it were he in that bed instead of Mother.

I know that by the Grace of our Heavenly Father, we will get through this, but six weeks seems so long.  I'm going to have to leave him next week to get back home and get things going.  I'll be depending on friends to look after him.

Until the next time I post, please offer up my Mother, Betty White, in your prayers for the sick, and also my Daddy, Bob, and all our family as we pray for our dear Mother's healing.

In Christ,

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

THIS DAY'S . . .

In the midst of the shopping and the wrapping and the arranging of presents under your tree this Christmas, may you not forget the gifts you cannot yet hold in your hands.

~T. D. Jakes


Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

~Isaiah 7:14 


I've been using my step-sister's computer and she leaves tomorrow, so I will be back out of touch again.  I may (or may not) have my daughter log into my blog and give you an update.  Until the next time, I wish you Peace On Earth and Good Will Toward One Another!


Monday, December 20, 2010


Dear Ones,

I'm suddenly at a loss for words.  Well, not suddenly; I've been living in a nightmare-ish, surreal world for the past six days.   I'll try to capsulize.

I spent all day last Tuesday wrapping all the Christmas gifts. We had pretty much finished up the shopping, including Sam's for quantity items, and I was down to the house preparations for visitors and my personal list of "TO DO" notes.

Wednesday was a gray, misty day. The temps were fairly low the night before, and though I had planned to get my nails done and get that out of the way, I almost talked myself out of it.  But, I went ahead anyway and was glad that I had gotten out of the house.  As I was on my way home, I received a call from my Daddy.  "Your Mama's in the hospital . . . " - silence.  "Daddy, take a deep breath and just calm down. What's wrong with Mother?"  "She's had a stroke . . . "  I listened for the next few minutes of his story of their morning routine and how Mother had come to the bedroom as he was dressing and said her hand was numb, she had no feeling.  He felt her hand, "can you feel my hand?"  "No," she said.  "Can you squeeze my hand?", Daddy asked.  She did, and he then said, "we're going to the ER."

Daddy got them both dressed and my Mother walked herself to the car and it was at that moment that she said she couldn't get in.  Daddy helped her in and raced to the hospital.  The staff took her in immediately as Daddy went through the Admissions process.  All he could tell me was that she had had a stroke and her right side was paralyzed, and that she tried to talk, but you couldn't understand her.

I couldn't get a flight that day; it was too late in the day, so I was resigned to coming Home on Thursday with Lee.  We were picked up at the airport by lifelong friend John Dodson and taken directly to the hospital.  Daddy met us at the entrance and took us to SICU  where Mother was being kept.  That first time of seeing her and hearing her try so hard to speak only to splurt garble was shocking.  I tried to talk to her, to tell her I loved her, and she looked straight at me with glazed over eyes as if she didn't know me.  I left the room and the dam overflowed.

Hours or a day later, I cannot recall, we were told that she had experienced a brain bleed and they were still concerned with some small bleeders.  The next update by a physician was that the bleeding had stabilized, but that we needed to know that she would never be as she was before the stroke.  I had to begin preparing myself, which was to break down again and cry it out.  One of the speech therapists had asked us to bring photographs to show her to help her remember people and things we did together.  Well, that blew up in my face.  I began showing her photographs and the third picture was my sister's senior year photograph.  My Mother broke, and she fell against me and cried in great waves of wailing, and I cried right along with her.  Everyone in the room cried.  It was unbelievable.  She was at the lowest point, mentally, and I, my dad, the physicians, none of us could help her. 

It was odd when staff came to talk to us about the rehab and what our "plan" would be when they had "gotten her as far as they possibly could, whether a nursing home or home or whatever."  It hurt and angered me that they said this IN FRONT OF my mother.  I immediately said, "she's going home."

Days later, here I am to tell you that we have seen many small miracles in the few days that I have been here.  But the greatest of all was walking into her room this morning to the sound of her voice forming phrases and expressing thoughts.  The elation we felt was indescribable.  Mother has been on prayer chains all over the country, and my tearful prayer last night was "Heavenly and Merciful Father, I Believe in Your Will, and my Mother has spent her entire life devoted to You. She doesn't deserve this; I already see Your work in this event of our lives.  But please, if it is Your will, heal my precious Mother."

Miracles happen; I've seen them and the greatest of those that I have experienced personally was hearing my Mother speaking today.

I don't know, or cannot express in words, the feeling of being a part of such divine intervention.  IF there was any doubt left, it is certainly replaced with full conversion that will carry me the rest of my days.  I knew a day would come when I would lose my mother and my daddy.  To quote my mother just this evening, "I never thought that I'd be here."

All our days are numbered, each one of us has a number.  We know this to be an irreversible fact, yet we cannot help but take our lives for granted at times, even the most faithful of followers.  It is my greatest hope that I never take another minute for granted, but I am only human and I know that I will.  But I have to tell my story, the story of Our Miracle at Christmastime.  I can see the value and the lessons of this entire debacle already.  There are fences being mended, family members who were astray now coming together; the enormous gift of seeing in person the great love of the multitude of friends of my folks that have been with them for half a century.

I send you my warmest and most heartfelt wish of a very Merry Christmas as you celebrate our Lord Jesus' birthday!  What a joyful day it is for us this year.  There is no tree as they had planned to be with us this Christmas; there are no material gifts; but we have seen the greatest gift of all - our own Miracle from Heaven and I thank the Father and the Son, the Blessed Mother, my patron saint, and all the angels and saints on whom I have laid my mother down for a miracle.

Praise God! Jesus Christ is Born! Celebrate Him, and teach your children well.

God bless you all and much love,

P.S.  My mother's brother came for three days, my Uncle Loyd.  He hasn't been here in 30 years and it was a great reunion, witnessing both he and my mother cry and laugh at the same time as they greeted one another.  This had to be the best medicine ever for my Mom.  You could see that his surprise visit meant everything in this world to her.  See how God brought them together?  He's always right, you know, and His Works are ALWAYS GOOD!

P.S.S.  I'm posting this without proofing so forgive me if it runs awkward or whatever ... borrowing a puter and just trying to keep in touch!  Bye for now . . .

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Dear Ones,

As things go, I was not going to get out in the misty air today and take a chance on some possible slick roads.  But, I needed to get my nails done (a girls gotta do what a girls' gotta do!), so I left, turned off the radio, and had that time of silence that was so needed.  I talked with Him for a bit, and then I began singing my favorite Christmas Carols, all the ones about that Holiest of nights.  It felt right, it felt good.

My nails sure did look perty, and I was just on my way home when my Daddy called.  I know him and I knew in his voice, something was wrong.  He was choked up and I knew it was my dear Mother.  I'll just get to it.

They were having breakfast as normal, and Dad had gone to the back to get dressed.  Mother came in and said her right hand was numb.  He touched it and asked if she could feel it, she said "no".  He said, "we're going to the ER".  She walked to the car but couldn't get in so he helped her.  Soon as they got to the hospital, the experts took over immediately.

Right now, she has had a gamut of tests, along with a CT and MRI.  The results of those tests are a blod pocket the size of a silver dollar on her brain.  And there is still a little bleeding going on.  At first, thoughts were of immediate surgery, but the neurologist said wait.  He is trying "clot busters" (medication) to break up the clot and stop the bleeding.  She can TRY to speak, but you cannot understand her.  She finally lost it about 1/2 way through the day.  My Daddy is so lost and afraid.  He wouldn't do without her.

I tried to get a flight out today but it was just too late.  Lee and I will be traveling to Amarillo tomorrow getting there around lunchtime.  I can't wait to see my mother and my daddy.

I'm still in a bit of shock, I guess.  I tried to pack and just walked in circles. I changed what I was wearing tomorrow four times already.  I'm hurt, but I have Faith in God, and God knows what He is doing.  I trust Him completely, and He knows it.  That is a comfort, but yet, my love for my Mother cannot be put into words, as you all know.

If you have a prayer chain, please put Betty on it for me.  And for my dad, Bob, as well.  They're both 79 years young and it's a tough time.  I don't know when I will be back home or back on line.  I don't have an air card, so I'll see you when I see you.  Don't forget about me, because I'm not going to forget you all.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Laugh and the whole world will laugh with you!



Attitude is vastly important because it presents your image to the world and is the driving force behind behavior. Your attitude influences your world and everything you do in it. It defines the energy you send out and, in turn, takes shape and color in your circumstances. If you have a positive attitude, you are more welcoming and people are drawn to you. A positive attitude opens you to the flow of life. If you are depressed, angry, and unhappy, no one wants to be around you. You literally push people and opportunities away.

The wonderful thing is that you have the freedom to choose which attitude you want to adopt. There is no perfect way; each way is unique to each individual. Knowing that you can choose how to react is especially important when unexpected problems occur. Remind yourself of techniques to keep a positive attitude. In doing so, you are guaranteed to have a happier life.

To attract positive, joyful, and prosperous situations to you, you must be that way yourself. If you have an open, loving, positive attitude, anything burdensome in life can be lightened. Therefore, it is important to be aware of your mood. It is created by your thoughts. Every day you have a choice of how you will behave, the mood you will give out to the world, and how you want people to know you.

So if you want something in your life, first you must think of it, put your intention behind it, and keep your focus on it. It is almost like baking a cake. The thought is in the oven and you have to keep it baking with belief. You have to see your thought manifesting and becoming real.

Follow your heart and be true to yourself. Never live the life of another. You have to create your own road. You have a responsibility to be the best you can possibly be, so keep your mind and heart open to the higher aspects of your being. And you will harness the power to have a loving and fulfilling life with attitude!

By James Van Praagh


Syd, I knew you were out there somewhere .... thank you for this message.  I think everyone will enjoy it!


I met this guy while I was in Albuquerque and he has a motto he lives by everyday. He said listen carefully and live by these 4 rules : Drink, Steal, Swear, & Lie.

I was shaking my head 'no', but he then told me to listen while he explained his four rules. So here they are :

1. "Drink" from the "everlasting cup" every day.

2. "Steal" a moment to help someone that is in worse shape than you are.

3. "Swear" that you will be a better person today than yesterday.

4. And last, but not least, when you "lie" down at night, thank God you live in America and have freedom.

I am not as good as I should be.
I am not as good as I could be.
But THANK GOD I am better than I used to be!

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass...
it's about learning how to dance in the rain."


Keep reading below .... it's a good one!


I came across this on Facebook and the title is what nudged me to read Rev. Mark Brown's short article.  It provoked the question within me (and the answer, quickly): Am I still long enough and often enough? NO! Let's get busy correcting that ....


Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. 2 Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. Colossians 3:1-2 (New Living Translation)

Up early and after some breakfast I headed to the gym. Completed my workout and headed home a head full of tasks, things to be completed and though only still early, feeling like I was already running out of time.

Then I sat down to pray and attacked the prayer time like everything else on my to do list, get in, do it, get out! But God had other plans. What was meant to take a few minutes ended up being a wonderful time of finding God given peace amidst my crazy day. But it took a while, it wasn’t instant, it took the decision on my part to slow the pace right down. I went from speeding along the highway to sitting in a park, from running around to being still, completely still.

And my time of prayer was refreshing! Like charging a battery or getting a healthy meal when I am starving, I felt like God gave me peace and perspective. And this is part of what it means when it talks about Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. That I stop my constant activity and for a moment spend time completely focused on God in prayer.

I find a quiet place, I sit still, I invite God into my thoughts, the Holy Spirit to inspire me, to guide me. And then I give all my stress and struggle over to God. I bring those things that are stressing me to mind and hand it over to God. I say, “Lord I give this over to you, I need you to help me out with this right now.’ And as I do this I feel the burden somewhat lift, I feel the peace that comes with knowing that I am not alone – praise God!!

And right now I need many more moments of being still, of prayer and turning my day over to God for Him to get involved.

Be still often.

God bless,


Monday, December 13, 2010


"On what authority are You doing these things?" -Matthew 21:23

Sadly, many modern-day Catholics dare to act as their own authority. They ignore or reject the authoritative teachings of the Church in matters such as artificial birth control, sterilization, premarital sexual activity, abortion, etc. Instead, they place themselves in authority in these matters and make their own choices.

This widespread rejection of godly authority in matters of personal moral behavior resembles the situation in the Old Testament time of the Judges. The author of Judges sums up the scenario as follows: "In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what he thought best" (Jgs 17:6; 21:25). The widespread selfish behavior in those days resulted in a nation living in godlessness, chaos, and lawlessness.

When Catholics act as their own authority, they are in fact rejecting the authority of King Jesus, Whose feast we celebrated three weeks ago. When we do what we think best without regard to God's authority, we act as if there is "no king" (Jgs 17:6); we act as if Jesus is not the King Who has given His commands to His Church. Are we praying "Your kingdom come" (Mt 6:10), but living a lifestyle that rejects Jesus as our King?

Repent! "Make ready the way of the Lord, clear Him a straight path" (Lk 3:4). Submit to the Lord's authority, and change your behavior to live under the authority of King Jesus. Seek His authority and His kingship over you, and He will give you all things besides (Mt 6:33).

Prayer: "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name, Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven" (Mt 6:9-10). Come and reign over me, Christ the King!

Promise: "Good and upright is the Lord; thus He shows sinners the way." -Ps 25:8

Praise: A disappointed suitor accused St. Lucy of being a Christian and she gave witness to her faith in Jesus by martyrdom.

THIS DAY'S . . .

I know This Day's Smile works; I've been falling asleep for years in the midst of prayer when I cannot sleep.


Jesus did not come to explain away suffering or remove it. He came to fill it with His Presence.

~Paul Claudel


“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”

~Mark 14:38


Don't count sheep if you can't sleep. Talk to the shepherd.

~Paul Frost

Friday, December 10, 2010


By Stephanie Dowrick

Do you assume that other people should prove they ''deserve'' your kindness,thoughtfulness or consideration before they get it ?

''Why should I be nice to her when she was so rude to me ?''

''Mean old bag , never smiles, who would want to treat her decently?''

''He hurt me. I'm not going to waste my time talking to him.''

Living like this- and many people do- you are letting other people decide how you will behave. You are giving away your power to decide. You are letting them determine how you will think and feel.

When you treat people decently because you can you are relying on something far more solid than other's people reactions (or your assumptions about those reactions ).

You are relying on your values.And living them.

No one can give you self-respect.No one can take it away, either.

Self-respect begins in your own mind : with the way you think and talk about yourself.

Self-respect powerfully guides other people in how they should treat you.It also allows you to see when someone else's actions or behavior have less to do with you than with their own issues or projections.

THIS DAY'S . . .

Setting aside a day of rest is difficult. We are surrounded by too many things to do, too many places to go, and far too many distractions. What would it be like if we could ignore these distractions and spend an entire day every week with our family and friends, and our spiritual thoughts? An answer to this hypothetical question appears in the Talmud, which tells us that the world would be redeemed if everyone observed only two consecutive Sabbaths.

~Robert Schoen


“O our God, we thank you and praise your glorious name, but who am I and who are my people that we should be permitted to give anything to you? Everything we have has come from you, and we only give you what is yours already! For we are here for but a moment, strangers in the land as our fathers were before us; our days on earth are like a shadow, gone so soon, without a trace. O Lord our God, all of this material that we have gathered to build a temple for your holy name comes from you! It all belongs to you! I know, my God, that you test men to see if they are good; for you enjoy good men. I have done all this with good motives, and I have watched your people offer their gifts willingly and joyously.”

~1 Chronicles 29:13-17


I love everything in life, even to be sad.

~Arthur Rubinstein

Thursday, December 09, 2010


Sadness overcomes me as I learn that there is yet another thoughtless and selfish group of individuals who plan to protest at the funeral of Elizabeth Edwards.  This is the most deplorable, thoughtless and appalling forms of behavior, and in engaging such, skins the ignorance of those in that group. I cannot imagine anyone gaining any redeeming value from protesting, and in fact, making mockery at the burial of the loved one of any family in the world.  I am sure that Mrs. Edwards, who radiated kindness, generosity, grace and dignity would have never dreamed of the idea that anyone would "protest" at her funeral with signs declaring "God Hates You."  But, knowing her, she would smile and shake it off in her own dignified way.  I sometimes imagine how God feels, and wonder how He holds onto the wrath that He very well could send down.  Our loving Father, however, is a very patient God, too.  I can imagine Him holding onto His "big book" of plans for the demise of our world and the lists of whom is to receive what; that, He has turned another page to add these thoughtless individuals to one of His lists of "misbehaved children."

What would Jesus do?  Luke 23:24 - And Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments.

Would ye protestors like to form a single line leading to Mrs. Edwards gravesite and cast lots to divide her garments?  Or might you actually entertain, albeit foolishly, the inclination that "you" are leaving something good in the wake of your legacies?  Think again . . . "Ignorance is Bliss" and it lives on the road with the wide gate, the wide path, the one that leads straight to hades, IMMHO.
I have little to no tolerance for this type of display and you may be hearing more of my views regarding the political, financial and world view climate in the coming year.
Forgiveness is theirs for the asking; I, for one, will not ask anyone, most of all, Almighty God, to overlook their ignorance.  This is a quite conscious choice these groups are making and they deserve to reap what they sow.
In His Service,


Dedicated to the bravest of all men and women, the ones who have given their lives in the name of Freedom, Human Rights and the Right to Life, and the thousands of men and women who continue the fight for what's right every day.  Praying the our Loving and Merciful Father will protect you and your families and that this will be the last Christmas that you will have to live away from your loved ones.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010


The statistics contained in this communication are tragic! I send this not as an urge to join any organization, but rather, I felt it imperative to alert my Catholic Family to the ongoing downfall of Catholic education in our parochial schools, particularly. Catholic colleges.  This is very alarming, so feel free to copy and paste or email to all your Catholic friends.



Most Rev. Joseph Martino
Bishop Emeritus, Diocese of Scranton
December 7, 2010
Second Week of Advent

My dear friend in Christ,

I write to you today with great pastoral concern for the young people in Catholic education, and on behalf of my friends at The Cardinal Newman Society.

Did you know that nearly 1-in-8 Catholics will leave the Faith while attending a Catholic college?

On many of our Catholic campuses, there is a crisis that imperils the souls of tens of thousands of the Church's sons and daughters, grandsons and granddaughters, brothers and sisters, and nieces and nephews.

This Advent season, I am asking you to join The Cardinal Newman Society, which has tirelessly worked to end this crisis for more than 17 years.

Today's Gospel reads: "If a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them should go astray: doth he not leave the ninety-nine in the mountains, and go to seek that which is gone astray?... [I]t is not the will of your Father, who is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish."

My friend, Scripture here reminds us of why we must be vigilant in protecting the faith of every son and daughter.

We also must fight for a return to the flock of those colleges that are, perhaps unwittingly, teaching false theology and condoning promiscuous student life.

This is the work of The Cardinal Newman Society. And it is why I hope that you will join me in supporting their work during this Advent season.

Because while 1-in-8 Catholic students at Catholic colleges abandon the Faith, we have disturbing clues as to why it happens. A recent Cardinal Newman Society survey found that:

- 27% of students at Catholic colleges view pornography.

- 59% say their friends regularly use drugs.

- Nearly 1-in-5 know a student who had or paid for an abortion.

- 61% disagree with the Church's infallible teaching on the male priesthood.

- 60% think that abortion should be legal (and even 50% of those who attend Mass weekly!).

- 60% think that premarital sex with someone you care about is not a sin.

- 78% disagree that using a condom is a serious sin.

- 58% support "gay marriage".

If we cannot do better than that at a Catholic college, what will happen to our culture?

This is a terrible crisis and we all need to do our part. The future of the Church and our nation is at risk, as are the souls of our young Catholic men and women.

I am so very thankful that The Cardinal Newman Society remains steadfast in its commitment to our Faith.

I support their mission to prod wayward Catholic colleges to embrace the richness that is genuine Catholic education. It is a cause that is near to the hearts of Pope Benedict and his venerable predecessor, Pope John Paul II.

Please stand with them in this important fight. I know from experience how difficult it can be to stand alone, crying in the wilderness for fidelity.

I have had a close relationship with The Cardinal Newman Society and am grateful that they are on the job:

- alerting the faithful to scandal on Catholic campuses,

- working with college leaders to improve policies and programs,

- helping Catholic families in their search for good colleges,

- promoting Eucharistic Adoration on campuses,

- helping colleges defend their religious liberty from secularism,

- and much more!

They seek to renew Catholic colleges campus by campus, until the graduates of these colleges are strong in their faith and lead the New Evangelization.

Already The Cardinal Newman Society works with a small but exciting group of faithful Catholic colleges, that embrace their Catholic identity and each year turn out a small army of well educated and faithful students prepared to evangelize the world.

We all need to do our part to renew our Catholic colleges -- and they are truly "ours," since they rightly belong to the universal Church.

One way you can help is to encourage your family and friends to send their children to the strong, faithful Catholic colleges recommended in the Society's Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College (which is in print and on the Internet).

Another way is to become a member of The Cardinal Newman Society, standing in solidarity with our Holy Father and Catholic families across the nation for authentic Catholic higher education.

My friend, please also remember to pray that we may continue to fight the good fight... and only with God before us!

May God bless you this Advent -- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!

Sincerely yours in the Risen Christ,

+ Joseph Martino

P.S. Please join with me in prayer, and become a member of The Cardinal Newman Society today. It is an easy and effective way to stand for strong Catholic identity.

"It's Called Christmas"

My bestest friend sent this to me and it is grand!  Enjoy, and MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Now that you've had a great pick-me-up, keep reading This Day's below.  It contains a quote from our dearest and most beloved Pope Paul II.

Share the Love,

THIS DAY'S . . .

Every Christian must refer "always and everywhere" to the Scriptures for all his choices, becoming "like a child" before it, seeking in it the most effective remedy against all his various weaknesses, and not daring to take a step without being illuminated by the divine rays of those words.

~Pope John Paul II


If you make the Most High your dwelling - even the LORD, who is my refuge - then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

~Psalm 91:9-13

Monday, December 06, 2010


Dear Friends,

We lost another child in our neighborhood as a result of a prank gone wrong.  His parents had to make the difficult decision to leave him in God's hands.  He has gone to heaven now, and his father, mother, brother and sister will have to face this Christmas without him.  This is the second child in our neighborhood to die within the last six months due to a tragic mistake.

Most of you have probably heard by now that Elizabeth Edwards has taken a sudden turn for the worse, as her doctors tell her that further chemotherapy would not help her. She is bedridden surrounded by her family.

Another great loss yesterday was that of Don Meredith.  Being raised in Texas, I was initated early on as Dallas Cowboys fan.  Dandy Don was one of the first quarterbacks that I recall.  I thought he was cute, I was just a young girl.  He suffered a brain hemorrage yesterday at age 72.

God has a date for each of us.  No matter where you are or what you are doing, when that time comes, God will take you; nothing can change the fact that He knows the number of hairs on your head, and He knows now many days you will live on this earth.

The loss of a child is especially hard, not just on the family, but on the community.  You see, I live in a small town in Alabama.  We are a family, we help each other, we catch one another's backs, and we pray together in times of tragedy and need.  But, the family of this young man have to go through the joyful time of Jesus' birthday with a heavy heart.  I wish there were something I could say, anyone could say, that would take the pain away, especially for his siblings.

Elizabeth Edwards has held her head high through troubled times, walked with dignity and grace, and remained optimistic throughout her battle with cancer.  It appears she will lose this battle.  She has posted this "good-bye" message on her personal Facebook page: you can read it HERE.

Very brave, very eloquent ....

Be blessed,


This is one of the most beautiful Christmas cards that I've ever seen!  I think it will bring a sense of warmth to your heart!



Please continue your prayers for our country and its "leaders" (and I use that term very loosely), that we make it through this administration before we all end up in the poor house!


Dear American Taxpayer

For only the second time in my adult life, I am not ashamed of my country. I want to thank the hard working American people for paying $242 thousand dollars for my vacation in Spain . My daughter Sasha, several long-time family friends, my personal staff and various guests had a wonderful time. Honestly, you just haven't lived until you have stayed in a $2,500.00 per night suite at a 5-Star luxury hotel. Thank you also for the use of Air Force 2 and the 70 Secret Service personnel who tagged along to be sure we were safe and cared for at all times.

Air Force 2 only used 47,500 gallons of jet fuel for this trip and carbon emissions were a mere 1,031 tons of CO2. These are only rough estimates, but they are close. That's quite a carbon footprint as my good friend Al Gore would say, so we must ask the American citizens to drive smaller, more fuel efficient cars and drive less too, so we can lessen our combined carbon footprint.

I know times are hard and millions of you are struggling to put food on the table and trying to make ends meet. I do appreciate your sacrifice and do hope you find work soon. I was really exhausted after Barack took our family on a luxury vacation in Maine a few weeks ago. I just had to get away for a few days.

Michelle (Moochelle) Obama

P.S. Thank you as well for the $2 BILLION trip to India we are currently on! Love ya, mean it.

Sunday, December 05, 2010



One day you will see that it all has finally come together.
What you have always wished for has finally come to be.
You will look back and laugh at what has passed and you will ask yourselF, "How did I get through all of that?"
Just never let go of hope.
Just never quit dreaming.
And never let love depart from your life.

~ Jancarl Campi ~


There's more inspiration below, so don't stop now!



Reading 1, Is 11:1-10

1 A shoot will spring from the stock of Jesse, a new shoot will grow from his roots.

2 On him will rest the spirit of Yahweh, the spirit of wisdom and insight, the spirit of counsel and power, the spirit of knowledge and fear of Yahweh:

3 his inspiration will lie in fearing Yahweh. His judgement will not be by appearances. his verdict not given on hearsay.

4 He will judge the weak with integrity and give fair sentence for the humblest in the land. He will strike the country with the rod of his mouth and with the breath of his lips bring death to the wicked.

5 Uprightness will be the belt around his waist, and constancy the belt about his hips.

6 The wolf will live with the lamb, the panther lie down with the kid, calf, lion and fat-stock beast together, with a little boy to lead them.

7 The cow and the bear will graze, their young will lie down together. The lion will eat hay like the ox.

8 The infant will play over the den of the adder; the baby will put his hand into the viper's lair.

9 No hurt, no harm will be done on all my holy mountain, for the country will be full of knowledge of Yahweh as the waters cover the sea.

10 That day, the root of Jesse, standing as a signal for the peoples, will be sought out by the nations and its home will be glorious.

Gospel, Mt 3:1-12

1 In due course John the Baptist appeared; he proclaimed this message in the desert of Judaea,

2 'Repent, for the kingdom of Heaven is close at hand.'

3 This was the man spoken of by the prophet Isaiah when he said: A voice of one that cries in the desert, 'Prepare a way for the Lord, make his paths straight.'

4 This man John wore a garment made of camel-hair with a leather loin-cloth round his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey.

5 Then Jerusalem and all Judaea and the whole Jordan district made their way to him,

6 and as they were baptised by him in the river Jordan they confessed their sins.

7 But when he saw a number of Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism he said to them, 'Brood of vipers, who warned you to flee from the coming retribution?

8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance,

9 and do not presume to tell yourselves, "We have Abraham as our father," because, I tell you, God can raise children for Abraham from these stones.

10 Even now the axe is being laid to the root of the trees, so that any tree failing to produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown on the fire.

11 I baptise you in water for repentance, but the one who comes after me is more powerful than I, and I am not fit to carry his sandals; he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and fire.

12 His winnowing-fan is in his hand; he will clear his threshing-floor and gather his wheat into his barn; but the chaff he will burn in a fire that will never go out.'

Reading 2, Rom 15:4-9

4 And all these things which were written so long ago were written so that we, learning perseverance and the encouragement which the scriptures give, should have hope.

5 Now the God of perseverance and encouragement give you all the same purpose, following the example of Christ Jesus,

6 so that you may together give glory to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ with one heart.

7 Accept one another, then, for the sake of God's glory, as Christ accepted you.

8 I tell you that Christ's work was to serve the circumcised, fulfilling the truthfulness of God by carrying out the promises made to the fathers,

9 and his work was also for the gentiles, so that they should give glory to God for his faithful love; as scripture says: For this I shall praise you among the nations and sing praise to your name.


The Holy Bible is full to the brim of promise and literally begging people of the world to come to Jesus.  Our Lady comes every month in apparition begging us to come to Jesus.  Yet there are so, so many who would be lost if Jesus were to come today, this minute of your life.  Prayer is vital in order to have communion with Jesus, and no one shall enter unto heaven except through the Son, Jesus Christ.  Jesus cares not where you are, or what you are, you are a child of God, a sinner, and you are still welcome at the Table of Plenty! Convert yourselves to Christ today and be has happy as I am in the knowledge that there is a higher power that never leaves me, and always does what is best to care for me.

Happy Sunday and Merry Christmas,


"Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake."

~Matthew 5:11

Saturday, December 04, 2010


GW guaranteed the people recourse against such actions as described in the article below; however, OBMANATION rescinded it within 60 days of taking office.  tis issue took on a confusing priority, in my opinion, when considering the national debt, the war in Iraq, unemployments rates being at an all-time high, big business failing, for instance ... yet the issue of an individual making a concientious decision to not participate in a late term abortion, in the end, had no recourse.  The information contained in this article is appalling, as is about 100% this presidency.  He loves to travel, watch sports, smoke cigars ..... tell me, who's minding the store?


James S. Cole | Monday, 29 November 2010

Have US conscience clause protections been eviscerated?

An American nurse who was forced to participate in a late-term abortion has effectively nowhere she can lodge a grievance.

Can an American nurse refuse to participate in a medical procedure repugnant to her conscience? As of last week, it appears that the answer is no. A Federal Court has ruled that a nurse who was told to assist in a late-term abortion or lose her job cannot file a grievance.

Here is the legal background.

A federal statute known as the "Church Amendment" prohibits an institution that receives federal money under certain programs from discriminating against an individual who either participates or refuses to participate in an abortion. (The statute is named for its sponsor, the late Senator Frank Church, not for any religious organization.) On November 23, 2010, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that individuals cannot file suit to vindicate their rights under the Church Amendment. (Cenzon-DeCarlo v. Mt. Sinai Hospital, no. 10-556 (2d. Cir. 11/23/10)).

Catherina Cenzon-DeCarlo worked as a nurse at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. She sued the hospital in July2009, alleging that its management forced her to participate in a late-term abortion, despite her written conscientious objection that she had provided on the hospital’s personnel form when she was hired. Furthermore, she claimed that when she filed a personnel grievance after the abortion, Mount Sinai attempted to coerce her into signing a consent to participate in abortions in the future.

The federal appellate court dismissed Ms Cenzon-DeCarlo’s case without a trial. It said that Congress had not provided a "private cause of action" for enforcement of the statute. In other words, Congress had not allowed an individual to file a lawsuit in federal court when his or her rights were violated. So, if Ms. Cenzon-DeCarlo’s has a legal remedy at all, it lies in the courts of New York State. This is not a surprising result, for in the past 30 years or so, the US Supreme Court has turned remarkably hostile to allowing private parties to file suit in federal courts to protect rights granted under federal statutes, if the statutes do not explicitly allow it.

This attitude shifts responsibility for protection of individual rights onto the Federal government, including the conscience-rights protections under the Church Amendment. This is exactly what the Bush Administration attempted to do when it promulgated regulations in December, 2008 to enforce federal conscience clause rights. The enforcement mechanisms would have begun with the Office for Civil Rights, which was designated in the regulations “to receive complaints of discrimination and coercion based on the healthcare conscience protection statutes . . . [and to] coordinate handling of complaints with the staff of the Departmental programs from which the entity, with respect to whom a complaint has been filed, receives funding…” Annual certifications of compliance by the funded hospitals and other institutions would be required under the Bush regulations. HHS could ultimately withhold federal money from institutions that violated the conscience rights of protected individuals.

Contrary to some rather histrionic claims from pro-abortionists, the 2008 regulations did not enact any new rights or restrictions. They simply provided the means to initiate federal administrative enforcement remedies for the rights which had already been guaranteed in the Church Amendment.

Within 60 days of taking office, the Obama Administration effectively cut off the enforcement of conscience clause rights by announcing an intent to rescind the Bush regulations(cont'd)


On this day, God wants you to know .....

... that the voice of God is best heard in silence. All too often loud events and daily busyness cloud your vision of God. Take some time to slow down; let there be silence, let there be peace. Calm your mind and let your inner voice re-emerge from the silence. Allow yourself to see visions, allow yourself to dream dreams; and you may hear the voice of God reaching out to you...


This is why God tells us to go behind a door, in a closet, to pray alone in the quiet. It reaffirms to me that my visions are real and that rush that flows through my veins is when God is givng me His answer to my prayers.  Probably the most amazing feeling ever, to be one with God.



Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

~John 8:12


Darkness is more than a symbol; it is a pervasive way of living and viewing the world. Darkness is the place of deception, evil, crime, predators, sin, and death. To follow Jesus means to bring him our heart and let him cast out the darkness that plagues us on the inside so we don't have to be afraid of the darkness on the outside. In this way, Jesus gives us light, but it is a light that does more than fill a dark room with light. This is a light that illumines the heart.


Holy God who lives in glorious and irrepressible light, I praise you for sending Jesus to cast away the dark fears that so easily envelop me. I pray for strength and courage to not only live in the light, but show others their way to the light. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Friday, December 03, 2010



On this day, God wants you to know .....

... that you only need to Ask. God is waiting for your Asking, waiting to reach out to you.


Our Lady appeared to the visionary Mirjana, as she does now on every 2nd of the month to pray for unbelievers, and gave the following message:

"Dear children; Today I am praying here with you that you may gather the strength to open your hearts and thus to become aware of the mighty love of the suffering God. Through this His love, goodness and meekness, I am also with you. I invite you for this special time of preparation to be a time of prayer, penance and conversion. My children, you need God. You cannot go forward without my Son. When you comprehend and accept this, what was promised to you will be realized. Through the Holy Spirit the Kingdom of Heaven will be born in your hearts. I am leading you to this. Thank you."

Thursday, December 02, 2010

THIS DAY'S . . .

Do not despise your situation. In it you must act, suffer and conquer. From every point on earth, we are equally near to heaven and the infinite.

~Henri Frederic Amiel


The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.

~Proverbs 21:5


I think you all will love and appreciate this!


A Nativity Scene was erected in a church yard. During the night, some folks came across this scene.

An abandoned dog was looking for a comfortable, protected place to sleep. He chose baby Jesus as his comfort.

No one had the heart to send him away so he was there all night.

We should all have the good sense of this dog and curl up in Jesus' lap from time to time.

Note that the dog breed is a "shepherd!"


Never underestimate your power to change yourself. Never overestimate your power to change others.


Both can be accomplished by having God at your center, and spreading His Word both by example and by deed, every day of your life.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


This little girl is 7 years old! I am stunned at her amazing rendition of our National Anthem!



If you have never had the pleasure of seeing the Northern Lights, as I have not, then you will find this an amazing and beautiful time lapse of the Northern Lights over Norway. Notice the stars moving in some of the sequences and realize that the earth is turning. I have no education on this phenomenon, but I intend to research it. In the meantime, enjoy what is a surreal and beautiful creation of our Loving Father in Heaven.



On this day, God wants you to know ...

... that true faith flowers from and through doubt. If you never questioned your beliefs, you are just a puppet dancing to somebody's strings. If God had wanted your mindless obedience, you would've been created without mind and without free will. But you have both so you can come to God of your own accord. Just look at the lives of saints, most of them had gone through a dark night of the soul, and that's why their faith was so strong. The path to true faith always goes through doubt. So ask those questions you've always been afraid to ask, and find the answers, and then your faith will become unshakable.


Wasn't that an amazing lesson? It makes so much sense, and I can't imagine how anyone could argue against it.

Scroll down so you don't miss the wonderful message from HEARTLIGHT!




But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

~2 Peter 3:10-11


Holiness is that forgotten character virtue that is the Christian's reflection of God, his or her holy and righteous Father. In a day when grace is so easily cheapened, when anything goes just as long as we want to be buddies with Jesus, Peter's words should shock us into reverence - the holy commitment to set our lives apart from the evil and satanic sludge that defiles our world and to offer our bodies, hearts, and minds to do his will and reflect his character.


Holy and Righteous Father, teach me to do your will and reflect your character while offering your grace to others. May the movements of my heart, the thoughts of my mind, and the actions of my life be pleasing to you and reflect your holiness and grace. In Jesus' holy name I pray. Amen.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Shower of Roses

I have been in constant prayer for special intentions and that includes asking my patron saint to intercede for me.  Tonight, I received a "shower of roses" from my dear St. Therese of Lisieux. I was overwhelmed with joy; humbled by her love; moved by the form of her acknowledgment to my prayers.  I hope you enjoy this shower of roses as much as I have.



"You cannot know the day your Lord is coming." ~
Matthew 24:42

This first day of the Church year could be the last day of the world, for we know not the day or the hour. "The Son of Man is coming at the time you least expect" (Mt 24:44). "The coming of the Son of Man will repeat what happened in Noah's time. In the days before the flood people were eating and drinking, marrying and being married, right up to the day Noah entered the ark. They were totally unconcerned" (Mt 24:37-39).

Many are busily getting ready for Christmas, but how many are ready for Christ? What if this Advent didn't mean waiting for His Christmas coming but His actual Second Coming? Would we be busy about many things (see Lk 10:41), or prepared and ready to greet Him when He comes again? (see Mt 24:44) What if today were the world's last day, or your last day? Would you spend Christmas in heaven? "You know the time in which we are living. It is now the hour for you to wake from sleep, for our salvation is closer than when we first accepted the faith" (Rm 13:11). "Let us live honorably as in daylight; not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual excess and lust, not in quarreling and jealousy" (Rm 13:13).

When Jesus comes back this hour, day, Advent, Christmas, year, or whenever, may He see Himself in us because we have "put on the Lord Jesus Christ" and have made "no provision for the desires of the flesh" (Rm 13:14). Come, Lord Jesus!

Prayer: Jesus, come back today, this Advent, or as soon as possible.

Promise:  "The mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the highest mountain." -Is 2:2

Praise:  Praise Jesus, exalted at God's right hand, Who will come again in glory! Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!

Saturday, November 27, 2010


I've waited a whole year to say that to officially begin the Season of Advent, celebrating the birth of Christ, our Savior!  Following is from "One Bread, One Body".  I have to say, this is some of the most wonderful spiritual food that I have ever read.  It touched my heart in its deepest part.  And, it is so uplifting that I could not help but smile. Read it aloud as I did.  It is AMAZING GRACE! Blessings and much love to you and yours.



"Remember, I am coming soon! Happy the man who heeds the prophetic message of this book!"
~Revelation 22:7

Today, on the last day of the Church's year, the Church proclaims to us the last chapter of the Bible. The Bible begins in an earthly paradise and ends in a heavenly paradise. The heavenly paradise is not only the restoration of the earthly paradise, but its fulfillment. (WOW! I never thought of this, or looked at the Bible in this way - amazing!)

The heavenly paradise has a river of life-giving water flowing down the middle of its streets (Rv 22:1-2). On both sides of the river grow fruit-bearing trees of life (Rv 22:2). In the heavenly paradise, there are twelve growing seasons each year (Rv 22:2). There is no sin in heaven, for there God's servants faithfully serve Him (Rv 22:3). In heaven, we will see God face to face (Rv 22:4; 1 Cor 13:12). There, all light comes directly from the Lord, not from electricity or the sun (Rv 22:5). In heaven, we will reign forever (Rv 22:5). This all may sound too good to be true, but the Lord assures us through one of His angels: "These words are trustworthy and true" (Rv 22:6).

The Lord wants to end this Church year the way He started it - by telling us He loves us. He intends to show this love by giving us the perfect happiness of heaven. Let the Lord love you.

Prayer: Father, on this last day of the Church year, may I repent of all my sins and thus remove all obstacles to receiving Your love.

Promise: "Pray constantly for the strength to escape whatever is in prospect, and to stand secure before the Son of Man." -Lk 21:36

Praise: David repented and was baptized just weeks before he died

Friday, November 26, 2010

Our Lady's Message to Marija

Today, November 25, 2010, Our Lady appeared to the visionary Marija and delivered the following message:

"Dear children! I look at you and I see in your heart death without hope, restlessness and hunger. There is no prayer or trust in God, that is why the Most High permits me to bring you hope and joy. Open yourselves. Open your hearts to God’s mercy and He will give you everything you need and will fill your hearts with peace, because He is peace and your hope. Thank you for having responded to my call."

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I wish each of you a very blessed Thanksgiving Day, filled with the love of God and the presence of your beloved family and friends. Pray for those less fortunate and be thankful to God for all that you have and all that you are.

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone, and let the Season of Advent Begin!

THIS DAY'S . . .

Were there no God, we would be in this glorious world with grateful hearts, and no one to thank.

~Christina Rossetti


I give thee thanks, O LORD, with my whole heart; before the gods I sing thy praise; I bow down toward thy holy temple and give thanks to thy name for thy steadfast love and thy faithfulness; for thou hast exalted above everything thy name and thy word. On the day I called, thou didst answer me, my strength of soul thou didst increase.

~Psalm 138:1-3


Thanksgiving is a good thing: thanksliving is better.


Monday, November 22, 2010


St. Cecilia's family was one of the principle families of Rome. According to the cultural custom of the time, Cecilia's family betrothed her to a young man named Valerius. On their wedding night, Cecilia told Valerius that he had sworn to remain a virgin before God and that an angel guarded her body, protecting her virginity from violation. She told Valerius that he would be able to see this angel if he went to a certain milestone along the road. Valerius went, and there encountered Pope Urbanus, who instructed the young man and baptized him.

During that era, it was forbidden to bury the bodies of the Christians. Valerius and his brother dedicated themselves to burying the bodies of all the Christians they found. For this, they were arrested and brought before a judge who ordered them to worship the Roman god Jupiter. They refused and were martyred.

The police then came for Cecilia and advised her to renounce her faith. She told them that she would prefer to die than to denounce the true faith. They brought her to a hot oven with the intention of suffocating her with the hot and toxic gasses it emitted. Instead of choking, Cecilia began to sing, which is perhaps why she is considered the patron of musicians. Infuriated, her persecutors attempted to behead her, but after three strokes of the sword, Cecilia was still alive and her head was not severed. . The soldiers left her covered in blood in her own home, where she remained for three days before she died

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Solemnity of Christ the King

"There was an inscription over His head: 'THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS.' "
~Luke 23:38

On this last Sunday of the Church year, we totally commit our lives to Jesus and acknowledge Him as our King and the King of kings. Like the good thief, we may have ignored Jesus' kingship for years or even for our entire lives, but we can repent today. When we say "Jesus, remember me when You enter upon Your reign" (Lk 23:42), Jesus will also reply to us: "I assure you: this day you will be with Me in paradise" (Lk 23:43).

Today we can make or renew a commitment to Jesus, which will have eternal significance. Some people think they don't need to commit their lives to Jesus. They are "good people" who go to church, pray, and have decent morals. Yet all this is only part of being a subject of King Jesus. He rightly demands not just good, prayerful, decent people but people begotten from above (Jn 3:3), new creations (2 Cor 5:17), children of God (Jn 1:12).

To be born again, be made new, and become children of our heavenly Father, we must be baptized into King Jesus (Rm 6:3) and live that new life by faith. This faith will be expressed in total commitment of our lives to King Jesus.

Prayer: King Jesus, thank You for the ultimate privilege of being Your subject. I give all to You.

Promise: "He rescued us from the power of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of His beloved Son. Through Him we have redemption, the forgiveness of our sins." -Col 1:13-14

Praise: All praise to You, Jesus, King of Kings and Lord of Lords! All hail, King Jesus! Alleluia!

Making The Best Use Of The Time

by Mark Elder

How do you make the best use of the time God has given you here on earth? That’s what we’re going to learn today as we look at Ephesians chapter 5--the 19th highest ranking passage of the Top 20 passages in the Bible.

When Billy Graham was asked what the most surprising thing was to him about life, he responded, “The brevity of it.”

Life is short, and God wants you to make the best use of the time He’s given you here on earth. He doesn’t want you to waste it on sinful activities that, while possibly providing some momentary pleasure, will eventually end up wasting--and even destroying--your life and the lives of others.

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he writes:

“Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16).

There are a lot of ways you can spend your days, and Paul spends the rest of chapter 5 comparing and contrasting several of them with practical examples. Here are a few:

In talking about living a life of purity, Paul says: “Be imitators of God. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us....” (Ephesians 5:1-2a). He goes on to say that we shouldn’t have even a hint of sexual immorality, impurity, or covetousness, and adds, “Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving” (Ephesians 5:3-4).

In talking about drinking, Paul says: “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:18-20a).

In talking about relationships, Paul says not to abuse any authority God may have given you--whether it’s between husbands and wives, children and parents, or workers and bosses--but to submit to one another out of love, being willing to give up your life those God has put in your care, as Christ laid down His life for us (see Ephesians 5:22-33 and 6:1-9).

What do you want to be remembered for in life? And how might God want you to use your life to make a mark on this world for Him?

You may have heard of the famous Nobel Peace Prize, named after Alfred Nobel. But you may not have heard that Alfred Nobel was one of the wealthiest arms and weapons manufacturers in the world. When Alfred’s brother died, a French newspaper mistakenly printed an obituary of Alfred instead, with the heading, “The merchant of death is dead.” The paper went on to say that, “Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday.”

Alfred was so disturbed by this assessment of his life that he decided to change the way he lived it and the way he would be remembered throughout history. He donated the bulk of his estate to establish the Nobel Prizes, given annually to those who have made an outstanding contribution to the world in the areas of physical science, chemistry, medical science, literature, and finally “peace.” This man who might have been remembered as the one of the most notorious “merchants of death” is now remembered as the one of the most famous encouragers of peace.

Henry Manning, a priest back in 1884 wrote: “Next to grace, time is the most precious gift of God. Yet how much of both we waste.”

God doesn’t want you to waste the days He’s given you. He wants you to make the best of them. If you’re not sure how to do that, read Ephesians 5 and look for specific things that God might want you to stop, or start, doing with your life. Then do as Paul encouraged the Ephesians to do, “Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is” (Ephesians 5:17).

Let’s pray...

Father, thank You for giving us the time we have here on the earth. Help us to make the best use of it that we can. Keep us from destroying ourselves and others by the things that we think and say and do, and help us to bless You and bless others instead. In Jesus’ name, Amen.