Tag: Christianity

Discerning the Lord’s Voice

 

St Ignatius of Loyola, Father General of the Jesuit order, prepared a guide to help Christians distinguish the voice of God in their hearts and minds from other voices during prayer. Those others are one’s own voice (reason and imagination), the voice of the world (learned expectations and concerns), and the demonic voices which seek to confuse, isolate, embitter, and discourage. St Ignatius insightfully recognized that evil spirits attack a person differently in moments of weakness than in moments of strength. A summary of his rules can be found here

To that timeless advice, allow me to add a few further thoughts. 

Jesus, Betrayed By All

 

Many Catholics recall particular sets of “mysteries” for each day of the week while praying with the rosary. On Tuesdays and Fridays, we remember the Sorrowful Mysteries: Christ’s agonized prayers in the garden of Gethsemane, the scourging, the crown of thorns, carrying of the cross to His place of death, and finally His lonely crucifixion.

We recall the pains Jesus accepted to pay the price of justice for our sins. Per Isaiah:

Marriage and Roles

 

When I played football, I wanted to be a running back. I wanted to be the bull that charges over and through opposition, pitting my strength against theirs.

Instead, the coach assigned me to tight end. My role was the less glorious — but no less important — job of blocking. At least in hindsight, I trust that the coach’s choice for me was the right one. But the dream of playing running back stayed with me.

Quote of the Day: Reflections on John 1

 

I’m just beginning a re-read of the book of John in my daily time with the Lord. I read the first chapter on Monday and parts of it really struck me, almost like I hadn’t read it before. I thought I’d take the opportunity to share my thoughts on a few sections! First:

This was John’s [the Baptist] testimony when the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him, “Who are you?” 

Member Post

 

Christian dogma offers few specifcs about the nature of Heaven. As said in Isaiah and echoed in Paul’s letter to Corinth, eye has not seen and ear has not heard the wonders of paradise. What is certain is that Heaven is the perfected union of God and humanity. Faith is made unnecessary by union of direct […]

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‘Fault Lines’: A Book Review

 

One benefit of driving across the United States these past couple of weeks is the opportunity to catch up with terrific audiobooks. One was Dr. Wilfred McClay’s fabulous “Our Land of Hope,” the best survey of American history I’ve read to date, published in 2019. The second was “Fault Lines” by Voddie Baucham Jr., a prominent Southern Baptist African American pastor and divinity school dean.

Wow. And what makes Baucham’s book launch and tour earlier this summer all the more impressive was the time he spent at the Mayo Clinic, recovering from heart surgery.

Both books have attracted a lot of attention, but Baucham’s “Fault Lines” strikes a chord in tackling the cultural issue du jour – Critical Race Theory (CRT). A quick search for reviews of the book underscores that. While Baucham’s book focuses on the battle over social justice raging within evangelical churches, it is valuable for anyone seeking to understand CRT and its growing global march across many institutions.

Happy Baptism!

 

Do you know the day you were baptized? I don’t know mine. There’s a record somewhere, neglected. 

We all know our birthdays. We celebrate them. But why? Those are not the days we began. Those are not the days we were chosen, given to God, set apart, made alive in Christ.

Meeting the Miracles

 

One of the great joys of Christianity and the communion of saints, though often overlooked, is the knowledge that in Heaven we will meet not only our loved ones who accepted Christ’s mercy but also the disciples of God whose stories became testaments in the Holy Bible. How much nearer those stories become if we consider that the souls therein have become of our own community, brothers and sisters in Christ.

Every prophet and apostle, every father or mother in the holy line between Abraham and Mary, every person who Jesus miraculously cleansed of affliction or freed of demonic torment — they have become my eternal family. One day, be it an hour or a thousand years after my passage through death to the world of life, I will meet them face-to-face in the perfect joy and understanding of God’s unfiltered grace. They will become friends with whom I can share the Lord’s endless wonders.

Jack brings his National Review colleague Cameron Hilditch back to the show and attempts to force him to take a side on the plausibility of recent UFO revelations. The two then ponder the theological implications of possible extraterrestrial life, and wonder whether one should baptize an extraterrestrial.

A Poem for Pentecost

 

The moment was forever
when tongues of fire were born.
We watched in aweful silence
descending of the storm.
A noise of Being speaking
without the fire we heard;
a thunder-shaking vision
without the Rabbi’s word.

The firestorm fell among us,
but peace would hold us still
as noise of fire was parted
by Heaven’s hidden will.
The flames were storm no longer,
with musical select;
a note within the mystery
for each of the elect.

Member Post

 

Happiness or emotional peace signals a harmony between the external and the internal. When what we witness or experience in circumstance conforms with who and how we are, then we are content.  The catch is that every one of us is imperfect. We are not exactly who we hope to be or who we think […]

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“I have told you this so that you may not fall away.They will expel you from the synagogues;in fact, the hour is coming when everyone who kills youwill think he is offering worship to God.They will do this because they have not known either the Father or me.I have told you this so that when […]

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Christians and Jews should not think in the same manner as agnostics. There will always be much to explore and to discover. But some answers have been given to us. Sacred scripture and apostolic tradition bear witness to received truths, general or particular, from which research and reason can proceed in confidence.  Hadley Arkes explains […]

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“…Today You Will Be with Me in Paradise.”

 

You know how sometimes Scripture just seems to jump out at you, or you notice something you hadn’t before? Well, I had one of those moments Friday. My pastor has a daily devotional podcast, and for the Good Friday episode this year, he opted to simply read the story of Jesus’ sacrifice for us from the Bible. When he was reading from Matthew, one verse in particular struck me (I’ve also included the preceding verses for context):

Then two criminals were crucified with him, one on the right and one on the left. Those who passed by were yelling insults at him, shaking their heads and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross!” In the same way the chief priests, with the scribes and elders, mocked him and said, “He saved others, but he cannot save himself! He is the King of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. He trusts in God; let God rescue him now — if he takes pleasure in him! For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’” In the same way even the criminals who were crucified with him taunted him.

Member Post

 

We were told but did not believe: He would rise again. The Lord did not cast aside those who turned from Him in unbelief. For the seventy-seventh time, Jesus opened the wondrous treasury of His sacred heart and let His mercy rain down upon us in abundance.  Let them turn to the LORD to find […]

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