Until God ordains otherwise, a man ought to bear patiently whatever he cannot correct in himself and in others. Imitation of Christ by John Kempis

Selfishness My Sin

SELFISHNESS MY SIN

I am still in the process of observing when I am selfish.   Since I wrote the last Blog post Selfishness, I have had many times when I think that a situation is all about me, what I want is more important than another person’s needs and wants.

I noticed that when someone offends me how hard it is to pray for them.  God has shown me that situations can change if I pray for my enemies, (or I perceive them as enemies).

Greed plays a part in my selfishness.  I want more, food, money, homes, cars and any thing that I might see my friends or family may have more than me.  It seems that my generation was the one that was always looking for bigger, better, best.  Television has educated us on all the newest and most improved, and we ran out and bought it.  Even fist fighting to obtain something at a big sale.  We would sleep outside for days to be the first in line to purchase the biggest better and best product.  It was also a false sense of,, I have arrived a status symbol of success.  Superficial actions are respected by the World.  The shallowness of worshiping anything but God, never brings fulfillment.  My own will can deceive me to believe that my happiness is what matters, forgetting everyone else.  Very strong emotions then take over, no more compromise with others.  A good example is for years I would take over the Christmas Tree decoration.  Why, because it was very important that is was beautiful and the best of all.  I would make everyone miserable if they did not do it my way.  Christmas is a season of generosity, giving, hope, and JOY.  I needed to let go of competition and detach.  I needed to be a team player and share.

In getting ready to retire we bought a home that was 1700 sq.ft. moved in and immediately saw it was too small.  It was not big enough for my large family to come home.  So I wanted to look for another home that was 2200 sq ft.  I had been accustomed to the prestige of even larger homes 3000 sq.ft.  We had a mountain home and a condo on the ocean.  Only the best!!!!!!  Retirement is downsizing.  As I got older I was not accustomed to limitations.  I never needed to make a list and my memory was waning.  I was never inconvenienced.  In other words I was spoiled and it made selfish.   So back to the 2200 sq.ft. home I believed was going to be perfect.  On Moving day, I realized the other smaller home had more storage.  We added a porch for even more room.   Then we bought more furniture to fill it.  When it came time to clean it, and it was hard for me to keep the large yard and the home .  I was exhausted!  That had never happened before not enough energy.  I was getting older. The best one yet, is the kids stopped coming home, which was the reason for a bigger home. We realized that we made a big mistake.  We then decided to sell the house at a time when the home prices crashed.  We got the great idea to rent the home.  We planned a trip around the country, help us see where we should retire.  We then had 5 garage sales to get rid everything that would not fit in the camper.  The furniture left we put in storage.  We traveled all over the country for a year, leaving Tampa.  At the end of the trip we decided on Ocala, Florida because it had lower prices, train stop, Airport close, small town with hospital, shopping center, good doctors ect.  I was not happy because none of the campgrounds had hot tubs, as advertised.  So I wanted to quickly find a place where there was a hot tub.  We found 55 plus community that would impress everyone with the golf course and beautiful pool ect.  So we moved into our 1600 sq. ft. home.  We thought that it would be nice to be with our own age group.  Our spoiled, selfish generation was so evident living with so many in one spot. We had a Thanksgiving dinner with everyone at the clubhouse, I thought it would be good to make new friends.  We arrived late and went to get food and there was no dark meat chicken and everything was almost gone. Everyone took more food and their selfishness left us with short of food.

Remember the kids did not come in the 2200 sq. Ft. home, well they started coming home in the 1600 home, go figure.   I have learned that most of my wants are an illusion and a lie from the devil.  Anyway long story short we had two rentals and the home in Ocala.  The renter of 1800 sq. Ft. home did not pay rent for months.  We almost lost the Ocala home but were able to sell it for less than we paid.  The 2200 home we lost it.  So we had to move back to the 1800 sq. ft. home, the first home we purchased.  I was devastated and knew that my enemies would love this news.  My friends would say we did make wise choices.  The status seekers would not like us anymore (and that happened).  All of my fears happened. So returning to the very home I started with, the 1700 home is perfect now.  I can clean it easily and it has a 2nd floor that the family can come home. The truth the first home was not too small.

If we do not live by God’s word and do not trust his provisions for our lives, then we suffer.  Suffering is how we learn we are not God.

In my family, divorce has brought division and strife to us all.  It is selfish to use children as a pawn because of past hurts, preventing them from seeing both families.  Retaliation only hurts us and the poor child.  Selfishness hurts our children in ways that wound their young hearts forever.  Children are mentally healthy when they can love both parents, just the way God made them without condemnation.  Our family is what we are accustomed to being with from a young age and know nothing else, we love them.  When we marry it brings in another family into our lives, to love. When selfishness is present, competition causes accusations and criticism to pull the partner to be ashamed of their family.  No one ever realizes the that both families are wonderful.  If it continues on both families parts eventually they both lose the blessing of growing together in unity and love.

I know that God brought me back to this home with neighbors I knew before.  Since we left everything is so close and convenient.  That is Gods way of teaching us to trust him.

Praise God. When we pursue God, we realize that the most irreplaceable gifts He gives us on earth are His peace, love, wisdom and strength.

Blessed Are The Meek, They Shall Inherit The Land.

PSALM 91

You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High,*

who abide in the shade of the Almighty,*

2

Say to the LORD, “My refuge and fortress,

my God in whom I trust.”

3

He will rescue you from the fowler’s snare,

from the destroying plague,

4

He will shelter you with his pinions,

and under his wings you may take refuge;

his faithfulness is a protecting shield.

5

You shall not fear the terror of the night

nor the arrow that flies by day,

6

Nor the pestilence that roams in darkness,

nor the plague that ravages at noon

7

Though a thousand fall at your side,

ten thousand at your right hand,

near you it shall not come.

8

You need simply watch;

the punishment of the wicked you will see.

9

Because you have the LORD for your refuge

and have made the Most High your stronghold,

10

No evil shall befall you,

no affliction come near your tent

11

*For he commands his angels with regard to you

to guard you wherever you go

12

With their hands they shall support you,

lest you strike your foot against a stone.

13

You can tread upon the asp and the viper,

trample the lion and the dragon.

II

14

Because he clings to me I will deliver him;

because he knows my name I will set him on high.

15

He will call upon me and I will answer;l

I will be with him in distress;

I will deliver him and give him honor.

16

With length of days I will satisfy him,

and fill him with my saving power.

Selfishness

During Advent season I began to write about examining my sins.  It is hard for me to find a good examination of conscience for my sins.  So I began to ask God to help me.  A friend sent me a book that gave me insight into my sinful use of my tongue.  That helped me so much that I ask God to show me what to write about next SELFISHNESS was loud and clear.  My first thought was Uh Oh, I am an only child, everyone says we are selfish. The first thing is what is the definition of selfish,  1 : concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself : seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others. 2 : arising from concern with one’s own welfare or advantage in disregard of others a selfish act.

Then I looked up, “the strongman”, and other demons that work together with selfishess:

Jealousy (strongman}

Impatience

bitterness

strife

covetness

control

revenge

wrath

retaliation

suspicion

anger

rage

hatred

murder

abortion

violence

restlessness

I never thought of Jealousy leading me to being selfish.  Yet when I allow myself to be jealous, I am the only one, no one else has a place in my thinking.  There is no understanding or compassion, just my needs.  I am the only one that understands or experiences God’s truths.  Or, what I am decieved in to thinking, what God’s truths really mean for all.

Matthew 23:25

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence.

So lets look at Charity being love of God and love of neighbor and selfishness is all of our interests rooted in self interests.  My agenda is the most important to me and my time is for that agenda only.  If I had been Mary when the Angel of the lord said go and help Elizabeth.  My reply would have been are kidding me, walk all that way to help her, why can’t her husband help her ?  Mary said, “Let it be done to me according to your will.”   What Trust!  When Mary arrived Elizabeth greeted Mary with words from the Holy Spirit, ” Who am i that the mother of my lord should come to me?  And the child leaped in her womb. From that encounter ,filled with Holy Spirit, Mary already-overflowing immediately filled Elizabeth and her unborn son in her womb. Does this mean that when we are selfless and trusting of God, Our children will be healed.  Then what happens to our children when we are selfish and jealous.

Philippians 2:3

“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves”

Ego is a big problem to conquer.  We only want to talk about ourselves and take up the whole conversation and never ask about anyone elses life or only call someone when we need something or do, something for someone when it benefits us.  The worst is when we do not even notice that others are very upset, totally being self-absorbed.  Even worse is when we just do not care at all about anyone else. The problem this is  thinking that we have come because of hurts and then lied to ourselves, wrongly thinking this is the only answer to be happy.

Philippians 2:4-8

do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.  Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who although He existed in the form of god, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped.

We are bombarded in every area in the media with lies.  The only way to be happy is to have more, be well known, have a mercedes, pool, perfect children, and on and on.  When the real truth is TRUST GOD, surrender and do his will.

Our prayer should be Lord help me to be grateful and humble.  I know that too many carbs are bad for me.  I WANT THEM!!!  I am addicted to them.  I have committed over and over again to quit eating them except on Sunday.  I cannot tell you how many times I have been deceived to eat more.  Satan is just waiting to deceive us and tempt us.  We must learn to suffer for our own good.

2 Timothy 3:1-2

But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come.  For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy.

It is very clear to me that we all need to change our thinking and habits of selfishness.  Our world is very scarey right now.  We are being lied to and deceptions are everywhere.  We have been lukewarm for far too long.  The Bible is not being taught or read.  Our time is spent in pleasures of the world and we have become complacent.  Hopefully we all wake up and see how needed we are to save souls with our good example.  ” Today, bring me the souls who have become lukewarm, and immerse them in the abyss of my mercy.” These souls wound My Heart most painfully.  My soul suffered the most dreadful loathing in the garden of Olives because of lukewarm souls.  They were the reason I cried out:” Father , take this cup away from Me, if it be your will. For them the last hope of salvation is to run to My mercy.”

“When we Christians behave badly, or fail to behave well, we are making Christianity unbelievable to the outside world.”

#CSLewis

Ezekiel 34:8

“As I live,”  declares the Lord God, “Surely because My flock has become prey, My flock has even become food for all the beasts of the field for lack of shepherd, and MY shepherds did not search for MY flock, but rather the shepherds fed themselves and did not feed My flock;

My hope is that our shepherds pray to be ever present to those who need salvation.  Our Shephard’s are being tempted just like us in selfishness.  Our prayer should be let them see the truth and set them free to love.

“If conversion to Christianity makes no improvement in a man’s outward actions – if he continues to be just a snobbish or spiteful or envious as he was before – then I think we must suspect that his ‘conversion’ was largely imaginary.”

#CSLewis

Guide us to see the graces God gives us as gifts not rewards and to respond with gratitude and humility, not pride and selfishness. Amen · ← St. Mary MacKillop ..

In my opinion Gods Grace is the answer to conquering sin. God chooses when we are given Grace and it is a free gift. If our hearts are closed by sin we are doomed. My journey, is to meditate and open my heart to God so He can fill me with all I need to do His will. I am grateful and also over joyed with Gods mercy and generosity.

I don’t know about you but examining my conscience everyday helps me to see more of the truth about myself. I find myself seeing my faults and the need to pray for Gods help. This has helped me become a better Christian example. I also have no time to judge other because I am too busy working on my own sins.

Selfishness

Examination of conscience:

1. Have I ignored the person needing help because of how they looked?

2. Has judge mental thinking kept me from confessing my sins?

3. Has discouragement kept me away from Gods house?

4. Do I only help someone who can help me more?

5. Do I keep things I borrow?

6. Do I ignore someone who is hurting and tell them you had something worse.

7. Do I have to be the one in control?

8. Do I need to be respected and honored at the cost of others humiliation?

10. Do I complain?

11. When God heals me do I say thank you?

12. Is it hard for me to see others success?

13. Is it ok when you are ignored?

14. Are you generous with your time, talent and treasure?

There is only one way to conquer our bad qualities and that is confess your sins and try hard to stop. Forgive yourself and others. TRUST GOD!!!

MY SIN

MY SIN

My Sin

In the advent season I began writing Healing the Soul, and I wrote a section called Sins of the Tongue. I did this study to prepare for Lent. Ash Wednesday is March 6th. I am going to use this post to prepare for Lent. I am not going to get discouraged when I fail. I have the rest of my life to change my bad habits. I know that I need continue and not give up. Silence is golden. Knowing when to talk and when to stop talking. I also wrote on silence this year. My message to others is my message to myself.

The Power of Words

A careless word may kindle strife;

A cruel word may wreck a life.

A bitter word may hate instill;

A brutal word may smith and kill.

A gracious word may smoothe the way;

A joyous word may light the day.

A timely word may lessen stress;

A loving word may heal and blessauthor Unknown

Sins with the TONGUE

Did I engage in any form of Lying?

Proverbs 8:7-8

” My mouth speaks what is true, for my lips detest wickedness. All the words of my mouth are just; none of them is crooked or perverse.”

Did I flatter someone?

Job 32:21-22

“I will show partiality to no one, nor will I flatter any man; for if I were skilled in flattery, my maker would soon take me away

Did I manipulate someone for my gain or advantage?

Judges 16:15

Then Delilah pouted, “How can you say you love me when you don’t confide in me? You’ve made fun of me three times now, and you still haven’t told me what makes you so strong.”

Did I speak too hastily?

Proverbs 29:20

Do you see a man hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool that for him.

Did my words cause division

Matthew 5:9

Blessed are the peacemakers; for they shall be called the children of God.

Was I argumentative or Contentious?

Proverbs 20:3

Avoiding a fight is a mark of honor, only fools insist on quarreling

Did boast or speak with pride?

Proverbs 27:2

Let another praise you not your own mouth; someone else, and not your own lips.

Did I engage in self putdown?

Exodus 4:10

Moses said to the Lord, “:O Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.”

Did I slander someone?

Philippians 4:8

whatever things that are true, noble, just , pure, lovely, and of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy about someone, I comment only on these things.

Did I gossip?

Proverbs 18:8

The words of a gossip are like choice morsels they go down to a mans inmost parts.

Did I meddle in anybodys affairs?

2 Thessalonians 3:11

Some of you are living idle lives refusing to work wasting time meddling in other peoples business.

Did I betray someones trust?

Proverbs 11:13

A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy man keeps a secret.

Did I belittle someone?

Ephesians 4:29

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building other up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Was I cynical, scornful , or sarcastic?

1 Samuel 17 28-29

Now Eliah his oldest brother heard when spoke to the men; and Eliahs anger burned against David and he said

“Why have you come down? and with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your insolence and the wickedness of your heart; for you have come down in order to see the battle.” But David said

“What have I done now?”

Did I speak as a Know-It-All?

Proverbs 12:23

A prudent man conceals knowledge.

Did I use harsh abusive words?

Proverbs 15: 1

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Did I fail to speak with tact or diplomacy?

Colossians 4:6

Let your conversations be gracious and effective so that you will have the right answer for everyone.

Did I attempt to intimidate with my words?

1 Samuel 17:44

The philistine said to David. “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field.

Was I rude?

Isaiah 35:8

There will be a highway called the Holy road. No one rude or rebellious is permitted on the road. Its for Gods people exclusively.

Was I critical or judgmental?

Matthew 7:1-2

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged.

Was I self absorbed in my conversations?

Philippians 2:4

Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

Did I use profanity?

James 3:10

Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.

Did I complain?

Psalm 142:1-2

I cry aloud with my voice to the Lord; I make supplications with my voice to the lord I pour out my complint before him; I declare my trouble before Him.

Did I retaliate?

1 Peter 3:9

Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate when people say unkind things about you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God wants you to do, and he will bless you for it.

Did I accuse someone?

Revelation 12:10

The accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.

Was I discouraging?

Job 29:24

When they were discouraged, I smiled at them. My look of approval was precious to them.

Did I express doubt and unbelief?

Mark 11:23

For assuredly, I say to you whoever says to this mountain, “Be removed and be cast into the seal.” and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.

Did I talk too much?

Proverbs 10:19

When words are many, sin is not absent but he who holds his tongue is wise.

Was I discreet in my discussions?

Proverbs 2:11

Discretion will protect you and understanding will guard you.

Did I keep silent when I should have communicated?

Ecclesiastes 3:1,7

There is a time for every activity under heaven…. a time to be silent and a time to speak.

I don’t know about you but I did not do well with this list. I am overwhelmed with my tongue control. I need self control. I need self-compassion right now, if I am able to be successful in changing my bad habits with my tongue. I think that making a gratitude list will be helpful in reminding myself of my many blessings.

“There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal…

It is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit…

Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses.”

C. S. Lewis

The Weight of Glory

Gossip is Murder

A member of my family ask if everyone is talking about them and their business. I began to think what is good to tell about someone and what I should avoid telling. I am the mother and grandmother of this large family. My desire is that all my family love each other. When a family member ask me about someone else in the family, I enjoy sharing about them and their lives. WRONG!!!! It seems that my sharing was not appreciated. So I began to avoid telling what I know. It sounds like an excuse but I never thought it was bad. Well it was gossip. So I had to break the habit and I am still trying to harness my tongue. For lent I have been studying scriptures on the tongue, that I started at Advent. Before I studied this topic I felt that I was ok. It is always good to evaluate how pure your actions are in the eyes of God’s word. I now know that I need to break this terrible habit.

I have experienced the harmful effects of gossip in the church, family and friends. The consequence was a destroyed ministry, an unhappy family and loss of friendship. I no a woman that left the church forever, when she was told what was being said about her personally. Gossip is murder, it kills relationships and our own self esteem. It hurts and destroys unity. In our world it is accepted, but for a Christian it is murder, and we must avoid it.

Proverbs 18:8

The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to a man’s inmost parts.

Are you guilty of this fun pastime or are you guilty of listening? I have done both and then judged a person in the past. I have now chosen to ignore all gossip. I have learned that it is usually not the truth. Gossip breaks trust and hurts feelings. Gossip can be defined as information about the behavior or personal life of other people, often without the full truth revealed or known.

A good question to ask yourself;

What is it to you?

Why do you care?

What do you plan to do with the information?

Are you envious or jealous?

Are you getting revenge?

Try telling the gossip something really good about the person. This may help turn the conversation to positive and halt the gossip. If that does not work say your fasting from gossiping.

2 Corinthians 12:20

For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder.

So sounds like this is a common problem with human nature and the flesh in us all. So it is important to realize that we must try to avoid this sin. psalm 19:14 Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in the sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer. I believe prayer and avoiding those who cause us to listen or speak gossip, until we conquer this habit.

Ephesians 4:29

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

I can tell you that this is more satisfying and healing for those we love.

Proverbs 16:28

A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.

How sad gossip kills friendships and also family closeness.

So this is what my solution is on how to conquer this habit of mine. Even if it would offend me, I will try not to say anything about any member of my family. It is not about what I feel is ok, it is about what they feel is ok. I am trying not to say their name and just focus on who I am talking to. I found this Psalm to pray and I will finish by praying it everyday to help me remember.

Psalm 101

A psalm of David.

I sing of mercy and justice;

to you, LORD, I sing praise.

2

I study the way of integrity;a

when will you come to me?

I act with integrity of heart

within my household.*b

3

I do not allow into my presence anything base.

I hate wrongdoing;

I will have no part of it.c

4

May the devious heart keep far from me;

the wicked I will not acknowledge.

5

Whoever slanders a neighbor in secret

I will reduce to silence.d

Haughty eyes and arrogant heartse

I cannot endure.

II

6

I look to the faithful of the land*

to sit at my side.

Whoever follows the way of integrityf

is the one to enter my service.

7

No one who practices deceit

can remain within my house.

No one who speaks falsely

can last in my presence.g

8

*Morning after morning I clear all the wicked from the land,

to rid the city of the LORD of all doers of evil

An email I received from Marie Gobin an amazing Bible Study small home group leader. I really loved what she wrote and am sharing it.
June,

This was a lot of food for thought. As I was preparing for the SCC lesson today it brought your blog to mind. The tendency to focus on the splinter in another’s eye when we should be looking at the log in our own. Instead of accepting the other as he/she is, we may want to push our views upon them instead of listening and understanding their views. In our judging, we often misjudge. If that is not enough, gossip may follow. We don’t realize that when we gossip we are telling so much about who we really are, our true selves. The best thing we can do for ourselves and the world is to learn to know who we are. If we only learn to love and care as Jesus, to think positive and not let our biases get the best of us. Father Tony de Mello used to day, When I change, my whole world changes”.
Keep ministering June. We need you to help us become better versions of ourselves.
❤️ Marie

FEAR OF THE LORD

Proverbs 1:7

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Wisdom saves us from making bad choices.  When we become whimsical and lack self control we loose our faith and become fearful of suffering.  Our anger causes us to give in to self-destructive behavior.

Proverbs 1:29

Since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the LORD,

They were led astray by their own selfish passions.

Proverbs 2:5

then you will understand the fear of the LORD and find the knowledge of God.

Proverbs 3:7

Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.

Do not be influenced by worldly thinking and think your know better than God’s word.  No one escapes prideful actions destruction.  Make wise choices suggested by God’s word.

Proverbs 8:13

To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech.

Flirting with evil and not realizing its slippery slope to more evil, until you are totally lost..  Then you pride causes blindness to the real danger of Hell.

Proverbs 9:10

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.

Getting to know God through praise, prayer and adoration.  Become friends….

Receive power

Proverbs 10:27

The fear of the LORD adds length to life, but the years of the wicked are cut short.

God protects us when we follow his word.  If we are wicked we have no protection from the evils of this world.

Proverbs 14:2

He whose walk is upright fears the LORD, but he whose ways are devious despises him.

It is all about who you choose to follow.  If it is the world then it will take you to wickedness.  If it is God you trust Him in everyway and have a clear conscience.  Confession is good for the soul.

Proverbs 14:16

A wise man fears the LORD and shuns evil, but a fool is hotheaded and reckless.

The world wants you to think that there are no consequences for your reckless rebellious choices.  However if you read the word it cautions on the effects of sin to save us from unhappiness.

Proverbs 14:26

He who fears the LORD has a secure fortress, and for his children it will be a refuge.

God protects us and our families when we fear the Lord.  Even though we may not always see it at the time.  We have security in our lives.

Proverbs 14:27

The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, turning a man from the snares of death.

God is bringing life into to every area protecting us from all forms of death.  We must realize and be grateful to his Mercy.

Proverbs 15:16

Better a little with the fear of the LORD than great wealth with turmoil.

Money the root of all evil.  We desire it for power and superiority.  Wealth is the lure of evil men.  Our fear of the lord supplies all our needs.  We are satisfied.  Greed never satisfies.

Proverbs 15:33

The fear of the LORD teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor.

Humility does not need honor.  God gives it to us though.

Proverbs 16:6

Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for; through the fear of the LORD a man avoids evil.

Prayer saves us.  Our love for God keeps us from offending Him.  We are protected by our good choices.

Proverbs 19:23

The fear of the LORD leads to life: Then one rests content, untouched by trouble.

This promise of making God first protects us completely.  We will never die.

Proverbs 22:4

Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life.

We will never out give God.

Proverbs 23:17

Do not let your heart envy sinners, but always be zealous for the fear of the LORD.

Fools are envious.  The world is envious and greedy.

Proverbs 24:21

Fear the LORD and the king, my son, and do not join with the rebellious,

Rebellion is the same as witchcraft.  It is easy to follow the crowd but it can take you straight to hell.

Proverbs 28:14

Blessed is the man who always fears the LORD, but he who hardens his heart falls into trouble.

Unforgiveness hardens the heart.  It is a lie that if we retaliate it hurts them.  That is trouble for us.  But trust and mercy saves us from trouble.

Proverbs 29:25

Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe.

God should be on a pedistal in our lives as number one.

Proverbs 31:30

Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.

It is good to understand the world loves a beautiful woman.  This is empty because it does not take into account her holiness and how she loves.  It is shallow and will not be someone that will prove worthy.

Fire of God’s Love 🔥

St. John of the cross

“ Where there is no love, put love and you will gain love. “

This month I have been writing about God’s Love for us.  In my last post God said to me in prayer Tell them I love them.  So I began to see scripture and evidence of How much God loves us and how we take it for granted.   I then began to think about the burning bush and how Moses was told He was on Holy ground and not to come to close.  What power that must have been present and yet the fire did not destroy anything.

When I finished the blog post, I felt it was not finished.  I also needed someone to edit it.  Sometimes my husband does it for me but he was busy.   I was complaining to my prayer partner Jane Ann and she volunteered to help me.  Jane Ann has 11 children and not tons of time yet she said she would help me.  It was a wonderful blessing for me.  Not only did she help but wrote the whole thing over.  When I received her version I knew that she had finished it.  I went over my original writing and added her version to the end and I felt it was finally finished.  I cannot tell you the gratitude and peaceful feelings from her loving kindness to me.  It is a blessing from God that cannot be explained but must be passed on.  That is how the fire of Gods love works.  We catch the fire from someone already on fire and all the negative in us is burned away.  We are truly one in the Spirit of Gods love.

JaneAnn Bonbrake

http://www.dimeadozenmom.com

The Flames of Divine Love

In Exodus 3:2-4, we read of Moses’ miraculous encounter with the burning bush:

“The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.”

God reveals how the fire of his love does not destroy or consume us but burn away all evil and leave us with guidance on living a full life. God reveal the power of his love for us. God sets boundaries to protect us from destruction. Moses was changed forever after this encounter and we were too. It is obvious that Moses was filled with more grace to continue to suffer. Once the soul has learned to suffer through love, it can now enjoy the mercy of God that burns as an immense furnace of charity unfathomable in its perfection. And so we should not be afraid of the fire of divine love. Our Lord said to St. Faustina:

“Let the sinner not be afraid to approach Me. The flames of mercy are burning Me – clamoring to be spent; I want to pour them out upon these souls. Gather all sinners from the entire word and immerse them in the abyss of My mercy. I want to give Myself to souls; I yearn for the souls.”

The Fire of the Saints

Of course, all of the saints discovered this love of Christ to some degree. Some, however, experienced the flames of divine love in a remarkable way. Here, I would like to highlight three of them.

St. Gemma Galgani:

St. Gemma Galgani had an extraordinary love for God. During the course of her short life, she had visions, received the stigmata, took communion from Christ himself, and suffered terrible attacks from the devil. The flames of divine love were manifested in her physically, as she explained to her spiritual director:

“For the last eight days I have felt something mysterious in the area of my heart that I cannot understand. The first couple of days I disregarded it, because it gave me only a little trouble. But today is the third day, and this fire has increased, oh so much, as to be almost unbearable. I should need ice to put it out, and it hinders my eating and sleeping. It is a mysterious fire that comes from within, then goes to the outside. It is, however, a fire that does not torment me, rather it delights me, but it also exhausts and consumes me……Jesus, Father, will make you understand everything about it. Great God, how I love You! Oh, how love You!”

While in ecstasy, Gemma was heard to say:

“You are on fire Oh Lord, and I burn. Oh pain, oh infinitely happy love! Oh sweet fire! Oh sweet flames! And would You wish my heart to become a flame? Oh, I have found the flame that destroys and reduces to ashes! Cease, cease, I cannot withdraw my heart from so much fire. What am I saying…No; rather come Jesus! I will open my heart to You; put Thy Divine fire into it. You are a flame, and let my heart be turned into a flame!….Come then, Oh Jesus! Your heart is a flame and you wish mine to be turned into a flame as well….Jesus, I feel I must die when you are throbbing so in my heart.”

This fire caused her great suffering but also the greatest joy. On another occasion, she writes:

“My heart, Father, is the victim of Love, and I shall soon die of love. These flames of love consume my body, as well as my heart, and I shall be reduced to ashes. Yesterday, as I drew near to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, I felt myself burning so violently, that I was obliged to move away. I was burning all over; it rose even to my face. Viva Gesu! How does it happen that so many who are standing so close to Jesus do not burn to ashes?”

St. Pio gives us a description of the fires of divine love acting primarily as a source of consolation:

“I no sooner began to pray than my heart is filled with a fire of love. This fire does not resemble any fire of this lowly earth. It is a delicate and very gentle flame which consumes without causing any pain…This is a wonderful thing for me, something I will perhaps never understand until I get to Heaven.”

It is important to note that the aspiration of the Christian should not solely be in consolations such as those granted to St. Pio and St. Gemma. They are a gift from God, and if we receive them we should remember that the gift can never be greater than the giver (naturally). Thus, St. Pio offers this piece of wisdom to remind us that the fires of divine love do not come without struggle:

“In order to attract us, the Lord grants us many graces that we believe can easily obtain us Heaven. We do not know, however, that in order to grow, we need hard bread: the cross, humiliation, trials and denial.

St. Thérèse is known for her simplicity in her “little way” to Christ. In her life, she experienced no visions or locutions, received no stigmata or extraordinary divine revelations. She did, however, put all of her trust in God, even as she suffered immensely through a time of spiritual dryness. At times, she felt that God was very far away, but still, the fires of divine love burned in this little child of Jesus through her simplicity, innocence, and heroic virtue. Her trust in God’s love is expressed by her as such:

“In times of aridity when I am incapable of praying, of practicing virtue, I seek little opportunities, mere trifles, to give pleasure to Jesus; for instance a smile, a pleasant word when inclined to be silent and to show weariness. If I find no opportunities, I at least tell Him again and again that I love Him; that is not difficult and it keeps alive the fire in my heart. Even though this fire of love might seem extinct I would still throw little straws upon the embers and I am certain it would rekindle.”

A different translation of the last sentiment above reads:

“Even if the fire of love seemed to have gone out, I would keep on throwing fuel in it and Jesus would take care to light it up again.”

St. Thérèse knew that God would provide. As long as she made an effort, she knew that Jesus would be there to meet her, and this is why the flames of love were never extinguished in the heart of this holy saint. Even as she lay suffering during the last months of her short life, she did not fear death, as she writes:

“No, I cannot fear Purgatory; I know that I do not merit even to enter with the Holy Souls into that place of expiation, but I know too that the fire of Love is more sanctifying than the fire of Purgatory, I know that Jesus cannot will needless suffering for us, and that He would not inspire me with the desires I feel if He were unwilling to fulfill them.”

Thus we see that the flames of divine love inspire within the soul great trust in He who bestows them.

 “Kindle In Them The Fire of Your Love”

Although the saints offer compelling testimonies to the love of God that can sometimes seem out of our reach, we should remember that this love is not for a select few. Jesus desires to bestow the flames of divine love unto all people: “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!” (Luke 12:49) Yet men continue to reject the infinite charity of Our Lord, because the acceptance of divine love also implies the acceptance of the Cross. If only it were known that the Cross in turn implies Joy! As St. Ignatius said,

“Ask God to send you many sufferings. The flame of Divine Love never rises higher than when fed with the wood of the Cross, which the infinite charity of the Savior used to finish His sacrifice. All the pleasures of the world are nothing compared with the sweetness found in the gall and vinegar offered to Jesus Christ.”

The flames of divine love must blaze in the night as a testimony to the eternal Truth in a world of darkness. For this reason, the prayer that should be continually on the lips of all Catholics in these times is this:

Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love.

While on earth, this fire must be fed. Through the sacraments, prayer, and earnest devotion we can keep the holy fire of the faith alive.

My Lord, grant that your Flame of Love may burn in me and, growing into a single flame, may it burn constantly on the altar of my heart. May your Flame of Love burn through my soul and consume it, so that the last day of my life may be a day of union with you forever…Amen.

-St.  Augustine

O Sacred Heart of Jesus, fountain of eternal life, Your Heart is a glowing furnace of Love. You are my refuge and my sanctuary. O my adorable and loving Savior, consume my heart with the burning fire with which Yours is aflame. Pour down on my soul those graces which flow from Your love. Let my heart be united with Yours. Let my will be conformed to Yours in all things. May Your Will be the rule of all my desires and actions. Amen.

-St. Gertrude

%d bloggers like this: