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Posts Tagged ‘Christian?’

“Make the lives of others more pleasant.”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/09/11 at 12:00 AM
For as long as you are convinced that others should always live as if they depended on you, and for as long as you delay the decision to serve (to hide yourself and disappear from view), your dealings with your brothers, colleagues and friends will be a constant source of disappointment, ill-humour and pride. (Furrow, 712)

When you find it difficult to do a favour or a service for someone, remember that he or she is a child of God, and that the Lord has asked us to love one another. Furthermore, go deeper into that evangelical precept every day; do not remain on the surface. Draw the right conclusions from it — it is quite easy to do so. Then adapt your conduct, on every occasion, to those requirements. (Furrow, 727)

May you know how to put yourself out cheerfully, discreetly and generously each day, serving others and making their lives more pleasant. To act in this way is to practice the true charity of Jesus Christ. (The Forge, 150)

If we let Christ reign in our soul, we will not become authoritarian. Rather we will serve everyone. How I like that word: service! To serve my king and, through him, all those who have been redeemed by his blood. I really wish we Christians knew how to serve, for only by serving can we know and love Christ and make him known and loved.

And how will we show him to souls? By our example. Through our voluntary service of Jesus Christ, we should be witnesses to him in all our activities, for he is the Lord of our entire lives, the only and ultimate reason for our existence. Then, once we have given this witness of service, we will be able to give instruction by our word. That was how Christ acted. “He began to do and to teach” [1]; he first taught by his action, and then by his divine preaching. (Christ is passing by, 182)

[1] Acts 1:1

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What’s In a Name? by Jack Reagan

In 08 Musings by Jack Reagan on 2015/03/20 at 12:00 AM

Did you know that the majority of those who live in the U.S. label themselves “Christian”?  That  is a great number of people by any standard; yet, by any Christian standard, the United States is a pagan country in practice, if nothing else.

Consider the following: more than fifty million babies have been killed because they were inconvenient for someone…….and the majority is silent.

We spend over 30 billion dollars a year on pets while countless humans lack the basics of food, shelter…… and the majority is silent.

Pornography is another billion dollar business in the U.S……. and the majority is silent.

The media of all types ridicules and distorts Christianity routinely while almost never doing the same to another religion…….and the majority is silent.

Television and movies depict sex and violence as not only acceptable, but, in some cases, as desirable…… and the majority is silent.

Health and fitness have become for many a quasi-religion, ignoring the fact that one’s  spiritual fitness, not physical fitness, determines one’s eternal destiny…….and the majority is silent.

In a nation that says it is overwhelmingly Christian, something is amiss beyond the obvious fact that too many “Christians” are participants in the above.

So, let’s look a little deeper into what research has discovered.

Most Americans say there is no absolute truth.  Most evangelical Christians do not believe in absolutes. (An absolute is a doctrinal or moral principle that is true for all people, everywhere, at all times. For example, the Ten Commandments and the existence of God.)

Most of those 18-25 do not believe in absolutes. The majority of evangelicals believe “that the Bible is the written word of God and is totally accurate in all that it teaches”. BUT, most of Americans say they believe this too which is about the same percentage that reject absolutes. (The Bible is full of absolutes.)

Most “fundamentalists” engage in non-marital sex; about the same rate for non-Christians. Half of the  Protestants and  Catholics are pro-abortion. Half of Evangelicals and Catholics believe in euthanasia. Half of freshman entering Christian colleges cannot explain or defend basic doctrines of the faith. Half of the youth who do attend church do not believe in absolutes.

It seems that the word “Christian” can mean many things to many people. One thing seems obvious which is that too many “Christians” are “cafeteria Christians” who pick and choose what doctrines and morals apply to them.  That is the result of rejecting absolutes.  If there are no absolutes, there can be no abiding truth that we cannot challenge without risk to our spiritual welfare.  We are left with human opinions instead of divine knowledge and revelation.  And the blind lead the blind.

We cannot even begin to change the situation until we recognize that the American Christian world is not in good shape. Then we have to determine how we came to reflect the reality above. There is no salvation in using that name “Christian” only in the name of Jesus.

Note: Poll statistics generalized because of constant fluctuation; sadly on the rising side.

“Through daily life, give a proof of faith”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/06/27 at 9:11 AM
Many things, whether they be material, technical, economic, social, political or cultural, when left to themselves, or left in the hands of those who lack the light of the faith, become formidable obstacles to the supernatural life. They form a sort of closed shop which is hostile to the Church. You, as a Christian and, perhaps, as a research worker, writer, scientist, politician or labourer, have the duty to sanctify those things. Remember that the whole universe – as the Apostle says – is groaning as in the pangs of labor, awaiting the liberation of the children of God. (Furrow, 311)

I have often spoken of it before, but let me insist once again on the naturalness and simplicity of St Joseph’s life, which was in no way remote from that of his neighbours, and which raised no artificial obstacles to his dealings with them.

So, though it may be proper to some periods or situations, I do not like to talk of catholic workers, catholic engineers, catholic doctors and so on, as if describing a species within a genus, as if Catholics formed a little group separate from others. That creates the impression that there is a chasm between Christians and the rest of society. While respecting the contrary opinion, I think it more correct to speak of workers who are Catholics, or Catholics who are workers or engineers. For a man of faith who practices a profession, whether intellectual, technical or manual, feels himself and is in fact at one with others; he is the same as others, with the same rights and obligations, the same desire to improve, the same interest in facing and solving common problems.

The Catholic who is prepared to live in this way will, through his daily life, give a proof of his faith, hope and charity: a simple and normal testimony without need of pomp and circumstance. The vitality of his life will show the constant presence of the Church in the world, since all Catholics are themselves the Church, because they are members in their own right of the one People of God. (Christ is passing by, 53)

“Feeling that I am a son of God fills me with real hope”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/01/06 at 9:11 AM

Perhaps there is no greater tragedy for man than the sense of disillusionment he suffers when he has corrupted or falsified his hope, by placing it in something other than the one Love which satisfies without ever satiating. (Friends of God, 208)

If we transform our temporal projects into ends in themselves and blot out from our horizon our eternal dwelling place and the end for which we have been created, which is to love and praise the Lord and then to possess him for ever in Heaven, then our most brilliant endeavors turn traitor, and can even become a means of degrading our fellow creatures. Remember that sincere and well‑known exclamation of St Augustine, who had such bitter experience when God was unknown to him and he was seeking happiness outside God: ‘You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless till they rest in you!’[1]…

In my case, and I wish the same to happen to you, the certainty I derive from feeling — from knowing — that I am a son of God fills me with real hope which, being a supernatural virtue, adapts to our nature when it is infused in us, and so is also a very human virtue. I am happy because I am certain we will attain Heaven if we remain faithful to the end; I rejoice in the thought of the bliss that will be ours, because my God is good and his mercy infinite. [2] This conviction spurs me on to grasp that only those things that bear the imprint of God can display the indelible sign of eternity and have lasting value. Therefore, far from separating me from the things of this earth, hope draws me closer to these realities in a new way, a Christian way, which seeks to discover in everything the relation between our fallen nature and God, our Creator and Redeemer. (Friends of God, 208)

[1] St Augustine, Confessions, 1,1,1 (PL 32,661)
[2] Ps 105:1

“Heroism is expected of the Christian”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2011/06/06 at 9:43 AM
Many who would willingly let themselves be nailed to a Cross before the astonished gaze of a thousand onlookers cannot bear with a Christian spirit the pinpricks of each day! Think, then, which is the more heroic. (The Way, 204)

Today, as yesterday, heroism is expected of the Christian. A heroism in great struggles, if the need arises. Normally, however, heroism in the little skirmishes of each day. When you put up a continuous fight, with love, in apparently insignificant things, the Lord is always present at your side, as a loving shepherd: “I myself pasture my sheep, I myself will show them where to rest — it is the Lord Yahweh who speaks. I shall look for the lost one, bring back the stray, bandage the wounded, and make the weak strong…. They will feel safe in their own pastures. And men will learn that I am Yahweh when I break their yoke straps and release them from their captivity.”

A Christian can rest completely assured that if he wants to fight, God will take him by the right hand. It is Jesus the king of peace who says on entering Jerusalem astride a miserable donkey: “The kingdom of heaven has been subjected to violence and the violent are taking it by storm.” This violence is not directed against others. It is a violence used to fight your own weaknesses and miseries, a fortitude which prevents you from camouflaging your own infidelities, a boldness to own up to the faith even when the environment is hostile. (Christ is passing by, 82)