To Human Freedom

Fall and Expulsion of Adam and Eve Michelangelo Wikimedia Commons

Fall and Expulsion of Adam and Eve
Wikimedia Commons

Freedom brings us glory or ignominy.  Our freedom is rooted in reason and will.    Through freedom is the power to rise above all creatures on earth or to dwell amongst the lowest of earth’s creatures.  The power of freedom resides in our choice to act or not act and to do or not do.   Our life is shaped the choices we make.

Good choices generate more freedom in service of greater good and justice. Greater good and justice are not achieved by satisfying our own interests and earthly pleasures.  Greater good and justice grows and matures the human experience, proclaims truth, and abounds in goodness.  Good choices proclaim the image and likeness we were created in and advance us towards the glory we are intended for.  Poor choices diminish freedom and enslave, truth is denied, and self-centeredness reigns and the human experience atrophies.

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Petitions Offered in Prayer

St. Francis de Sales Wikimedia Commons

St. Francis de Sales
Wikimedia Commons

According to St. Francis de Sales in his Sermons on Prayer, petitions offered in prayer are between meditation and contemplation prayer.   He contends that petitions are made to God in prayer when “we become confident enough to ask for and entreat Him to give us what we desire.”

St. Francis warns that petitions made by justice are not prayer.  For what is being asked of God is being asked for in justice for that which we feel is due.  He further warns us that petitions made by authority are not prayer.  For what is being asked is being asked in the form of a command.

However, the Saint contends that petitions made by grace are true prayer.   For what is being asked of God, who is far superior to us, by grace is that which is not due us.

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To My Rock, Fortress, and Deliver

God the Father Wikimedia Commons

God the Father
Wikimedia Commons

The Psalmist frequently refers to the Lord as my rock, fortress and deliver.  Throughout 1 and 2 Samuel, Kings and Chronicles when the Lord is called on by Judah He supports, protects, and defends her from peril.   However, when Judah ignores and disregards the Lord, He withdraws His support and protection, and Judah suffers.

The Psalms remind us that the Lord is the rock, fortress and deliver of individuals and nations who call upon Him.  But, persons and nations that turn from Him, like Eve seeking pleasure and godliness, He withdraws.  Alone and without God, they are left to battle the powers and principalities of this world.

The choice is ours, as individuals and as nations.   We can seek ad love the Lord with our entire mind, body and soul, or to turn in on self.   To those who seek Him, the Lord is a good Father.  He protects and defends them danger.  And, to those who turn away from Him, He honors their choice, leaving them alone, to provide for their own support, defense and protection.

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In Defense of Pondering

Blessed Virgin Mary in Prayer Durer Wikimedia Commons

Blessed Virgin Mary in Prayer
Wikimedia Commons

Our journey with God is filled with many events, some enjoyable and some not that enjoyable, each capable of drawing us closer to God, if we so choose.  We can, like the Blessed Mother, ponder God’s presence in each of these events, or we can like the Hebrews wandering in the desert, murmur against God and the path He has selected for us to journey.

God is always inviting us to draw closer to Him. By pondering Him in our heart rather than the event, He uses the enjoyable and not so enjoyable events to enter our life more deeply.  Murmuring about the event and centering on our need and desire excludes God and His invitation to enter our life.

In all ponder God and persevere in faith, hope and charity.

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To the Domestic Church

Wedding of Mary and Joseph Brookyln Museum  Wikimedia Commons

Wedding of Mary and Joseph
Brookyln Museum
Wikimedia Commons

Jesus Christ was born into a family, a domestic church of Joseph and Mary, husband and wife.  God’s plan for humanity was the family, from which faith, hope and love springs forth to others.

Woman was created to be a companion of man, the two cling to one another forming one flesh.  And God blessed them (presided at and blessed their marriage), and said to them, “be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth” (Genesis 1:28).

The importance of marriage and family can be seen in the Ten Commandments.   Three of the seven dealing with man’s relationship with neighbor emphasize the scared nature of marriage and the importance of family — honor thy father and mother, thou shall not commit adultery, and thou shall not covet thy neighbor’s wife.  Furthermore, honor they father and mother recites a reward for those who honor their parents; their days will be long lived.

Paul refers to the domestic church as a “great mystery” (Ephesians 5:32).  As Christ incorporates us in His body to form the Church, husband and wife are incorporated in one body to form a domestic church.  As the love of Father brings forth life, “God said, ‘Let us make man in our image’” (Genesis 1:26), in marriage husband and wife, in union with God, bring forth life in their image.

For these reasons, attacks against the sanctity marriage are contrary to the vary nature of man and woman, and any diminishment of the procreative nature of marriage mocks the life giving love of God and the sacred nature of marriage.

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A Gracious Thank You and Some Awards











For these awards, I graciously thank Biltrix and praying for one day.  I am honored.  Many other bloggers are also deserving of these awards.

The Rules:

1.  Use the award logo in the post.

2.  Link to whoever nominated you.

3.   Write 10 pieces of information about yourself.

4.   Nominate fellow bloggers who meet the indicated criteria.

5.   Leave a comment on the nominees’ blogs to tell them of the award.

My ten statements:

1.         I am an avid cook and bicyclist, each of which sustains the other.

2.         I prefer to ride my bicycle up a mountain, rather than down a mountain.

3.        Professionally, I am a geek.  My thesis was on excited states of low-spin d6 metals complexes, if this makes sense to you, shot me an e-mail.

4.         One of the few remaining persons who can use all twenty-one scales on a slide rule.

5.         I do not understand fitted bed sheets, they never fit the mattress, they cannot be neatly folded, and they are impossible to dry without wadding up.

6.         The number of states I have lived in is greater than the number I have never been to.

7.         I have never been to Alaska, Montana, Idaho, and North and South Dakota.

8.         I prefer black and white photographs and movies to color photographs and movies.

9.         I wish I had more time for blogging.

10.       Thank you reading my blog, Christmas Blessings and Happy New Year.

The nominees for the awards are:

Semper Fidelis Award (Semper Fidelis for always faithful):


Enlarging the Heart

Back of the World

Peanut gallery

Servus Fidelis

Teilhard de Chardin

Contemplative Home School


Lonely Pilgrim

Reader Appreciation Award:

R Ann This That and the Other Thing


Finding God Every Day

So Much to Say, So Little Time

Suffering with Joy

Catholic Alcoholic

The Ladder to the Paradise of God

Best Moment Award (to person/blog that brought a special moment):

1 Catholic Salmon

Mightier than the Sword

Smaller Manhattans

Mormon in Minnesota

8 Kids and a Business

Journey Towards Easter

Eureka Jess

Sunshine Award (to to person/blog that brought sunshine):

Friar Musings

Dan Frugalberg

Ubique Lucet

Lady in the House

Saints and Angles

Roses Near Running Waters

Joy of Nine 9

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Jesus Christ, His Only Son

Filippo Lippi Wikimedia Commons

Filippo Lippi
Wikimedia Commons

On Christmas we celebrate the birth of Jesus the true Son of the one, true God.  God, the Father, acknowledged Jesus as His “beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17) and Jesus spoke often of his father, “every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 10:32-33).

However, heresies persist regarding the relationship of Jesus and God.  Some heresies, such as the heresy of Photinus, claimed that Jesus was a good man, leading a good life, thereby merited being called a son of God through adoption.  We know this to be false. Jesus is the “only son from the Father” (John 1:14) (note John sates that Jesus is the only son “from” and not “of” the Father).  Other heresies (of Photinus, Sabellius, and Arius) contended that Jesus began to exist in time and that he came into exist separate from and after the Father.  This is contrary to Jesus proclamation that, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30).

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Christ with the Samaritan Woman at the Well Angelika Kaffman Wikimedia Commons

Christ with the Samaritan Woman at the Well
Angelika Kauffman
Wikimedia Commons

Our hearts rejoice in beauty, rest in love, and find comfort in mercy and goodness.   We long to hold these within our heart, to draw of them more deeply.  We thirst for them and from whence they come, Our Father in Heaven.

Our hearts sense the beauty of God’s creation, rest in His love, and find consolation in His mercy and goodness and rejoice, yet we thirst and desire to draw more deeply of His presence.  In prayer, we draw and drink yet our hearts desire more of His prefect and eternal love, mercy and goodness.  This is the tension faced in prayer, the closer we are drawn by God, more closeness is desired – not for lack of fulfillment, but for ever more fulfillment – for we were created to be filled with His perfect, ever lasting love, mercy and goodness.

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To Our Human Dignity

Nativite Charles Jaeg Wikimedia Commons

Charles Jaeg
Wikimedia Commons

This coming Wednesday we will celebrate the birth of Christ, the embodiment of God in human flesh. God, the maker of all things visible and invisible will take on a human body, that which after the angles is most like God the creator: “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness” (Genesis 1:26).   This likeness with God is not a corporal likeness, but a likeness endowed with freewill and incorruptibly, a likeness of the soul.   For this reason humans enjoy a special dignity that is not forsaken because of Adam’s fall from grace or our concupiscence.  Rather, as Paul encourages us,  “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14), subjecting ourselves to God and obeying and serving Him in all.

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To Prayer

Old Man Praying by Falat Wikimedia Commons

Old Man Praying by Falat
Wikimedia Commons

Brother Giles of Assisi said prayer is to give one to one — to give our soul to God so that He can give Himself in return.  Prayer is being occupied with God, raising the mind to God, to heaven; searching to find God and be joined to Him; desiring only Him; surrendering of our will for His, to have His will be done in all aspects of our life.

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