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I woke up mad this morning. Sometimes, people make choices that may not directly affect you, but the results do. You want something, you hope something goes a certain way, and it doesn't. And the reason it doesn't is because the consequences of choices haven't even begun to unwind.
I've gotta let it go. There must be a plan or purpose that I don't see. There's almost nothing in this world to convince me that it makes sense, but that's nothing new. Into Your hands, O Lord.
But last night was a great night. I reconnected with an old friend from high school, had some pizza, beer, and chicken wings.
Sometimes, just listening can be as good as any "gospel presentation." I can't say that mine is any kind of perfect life, or anything close to an actual saintly life, but hopefully it will be said that I lived a human life of real passion and meaning in the light of Christ. There is a dignity in this life only made sharper by the subhuman dignity of our sins freely chosen. When we see the Church as this weak human institution, we forget how freely Christ entered into His Passion; he is not unaware of the measure of our treachery. St. Paul was not being melodramatic when he said we were "enemies" in the fifth chapter of Romans. But as far as the east is from the west, so far does God want to take our sins from us! Man, do you even know? The human race had gone full-blown Adolph on the God of Heaven and earth, and Jesus said, "I'll go and die to bring them back." More than that, the sacraments extend the humanity of Christ to the whole world. His priests are his healing hands to you and me wherever we are! Christ is still going as far as He can to bring us home. Brother, I don't worry if you say that you struggle and sometimes fall. I don't worry at having to come again and again to the fount of mercy. Just don't shut your eyes. Don't see an ordinary world when you look around. This world is on fire with the love of God in the reconciling work of Jesus Christ. It may be a creation groaning, but it is also a world screaming for joy because Christ has been raised!
This delicious beverage is what it is because of Christ. The beauty of that woman has its meaning because of Christ. My night of fun with my friends matters because of Christ. I really don't want to have fun or joy or any other thing without Him.
There are no rules in Christianity. The only rule is Love. Don't bother gritting your teeth and trying harder without being gripped by Love. God loves you and me more than we do. If we need to fear for our souls, let us do so. But we could not dare to fear as much as He loves. My priest and friend has said to me over and over that the answer to my sin is the love of God. [Oh, no, not again!--ed.] May the chains that bind him now be broken by that same Love.
There is a thing I want, and my brother in the Lord said to me, "You should pray a Novena." And it's heavy enough that we said I should do the whole 54 days. "Start tomorrow," he said yesterday. And wouldn't you know it, today is the Feast of the Most Holy Rosary. Very funny, Mother and Jesus, very funny. And I'll say that the readings today were...relevant. Ahem.

Comments

I had confession with the priest who I'm sure you are referring to a few months ago. I was really struggling with self-loathing. He said how can we not love what God created and sent his son to die for, yet we all have a poverty of love. I thought those were such beautiful words and deep, deep truth of our human condition.

If I was pressed to summarize my life of faith in the few short months since becoming Catholic, I would have to say it is discovering love. Not that I was devoid of love prior, but the directions the Lord has been leading me have all been based on love--his love for me which I am still struggling to comprehend and my love for others which I am finding more graces to reach beyond myself.

I am amazed at the people he has sent to shower love onto me. They have been an example and an inspiration for me to pass it on to others.

I am still holding on to the words of another of our beloved priests who ended my first confessions by repeating -- "God is nothing but love and mercy, God is nothing but love and mercy, God is nothing by love and mercy." What a great gift he gave me.

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