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Everything Stays the Same

My mom’s friend came over today and we usually get all riled up talking about politics and the state of the world. I was reminded of the Bible class I had last studying the prophet Amos. He is known as the “social justice” prophet. He warned the people that their immoral behavior and the their disdain for the poor would lead to terrible consequences. Instead of listening to the prophet, some countries even threw him out. The countries were in fact annihilated. At the same time, God had mercy on the “remnant” who continued to follow Him. That all happened about 3000 years ago. Yet, here in our current times, there is civil unrest. The gap between the rich and the poor widens. Groups of people protest due to unfair treatment. At the same time, Christian groups who try to get involved with leadership are seen as “pushing their beliefs on others”. It’s as if nothing has changed. Societies rise and fall. And through it all there are still the faithful just trying to do the right thing. I pray for conversion for all and that God has mercy on His “remnant”.

I Found God today realizing He remains faithful.

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Inspiring Faith and Strength

I visited a good friend today whose husband has Parkinson’s. She has been really struggling recently as he falls often and has difficulty with his daily activities. She has not wanted to move him into a nursing home, but has been very aware that his care is becoming more than she can provide on her own. Last week, his doctors said that based on what is happening at this point, it was time to start hospice care. This took my friend back and she naturally had a few days of sadness and lamenting. Since then, they have met with the team who will be coming in to the house to take care of specific needs. My friend said that her husband is very accepting of the whirlwind of people, the paperwork, and the help he will be receiving. This alone has helped her to trust that this is the right course of action and she is grateful for the help. Mostly, she depends on God to guide them through the struggles of life, this illness, and whatever the future holds. Her faith and strength are inspiring.

I Found God today visiting an inspiring friend.

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On Task

I had a difficult time during my last semester of Bible class. When my dad had the stroke, I fell way behind. It was a marathon to get the reading and homework completed. But, with the encouragement of my teacher, I got it done. The new school year started last week. I was able to complete all the reading and the homework that I emailed to my instructor tonight. I enjoyed the lesson about the prophets Jonah and Nahum, as I reflected on God’s mercy. And it felt great to be right on task. So far, so good.

I Found God today enjoying and completing a Bible lesson.

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Fun Afar

My son came over for a visit today. It is always good to see him, to talk and laugh. He told me about some games that he plays online with his brother and nephews. I thought about the effort it took to stay in touch with my brothers, sisters, and my parents when we all lived in different states. I am so glad that my sons and grandchildren are able to not only stay in touch so easily, but also be able to play games and have fun together from afar.

I Found God today knowing the excellent relationships my children and grandchildren have.

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The Best Medicine

I found a couple of shows on TV tonight that were just plain fun entertainment. One was “Masters of Illusion”. We watched the amazing acts including a hilarious pick-pocket. My mom and dad recounted how my grandfather who was a magician also had a pick-pocket routine. They laughed as they explained how his “patter” – constant talking and distraction – got the person so confused they didn’t even know what they had or what they were missing. He was quite a character. After that show, we watched funny animal videos. We were again amused and laughed quite a bit. Ironically, after that my mom felt stronger than she had all day as she mastered going up the stairs. It did feel very therapeutic.

I Found God today in a therapeutic evening of laughter.

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Dinner for Dessert

My brother provides a fruit of the month subscription from Harry&David for my mom’s birthday. The other day, my mom received a beautiful box of large plums. She always made an amazing pflaumenkuchen, so I made my version of the recipe today. It turned out amazing. For dinner, I made a turkey tenderloin and stuffing. It took way longer than I anticipated. As it got later and later, I was afraid it was going to get too late to enjoy our dessert. So, I asked my mom and dad if they wanted to start our meal with dessert while we were waiting. The answer was a resounding YES! So, we had the plum cake with vanilla ice cream for dinner. By the time we finished, the turkey was finally done. We each had a small portion of turkey dinner for dessert. Having dessert for our first course made things interesting and it was well worth it.

I Found God today enjoying good food in a different way.

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Courage Defined

Today I received a newsletter from the monastery that I visit on occasion. It was full of articles and reflections from the sisters that touched my heart. One was about courage. It stated that the definition of courage is “the ability to do something that frightens you.” That grabbed my attention right there. I feel there have been many times that I have been afraid of what is going to happen, but I somehow push through. The article written by Sister Mary Colleen Schwarz, OSB, Vocations Director continued:

God says to “fear not,” “to be of good cheer,” and to “have courage” in our lives. Living in this pandemic takes COURAGE! We make daily decisions that influence our levels of anxiety, stress, danger, pain, anger, depression, doubts, loneliness, and fear. Employing courage helps us face these decisions and the consequences. In our Christian faith, do we open our hearts to seek God amid this pandemic?

To me, the sisters are very down to earth, relevant, and hope-filled. Thinking about this word, courage, I realized that I have been courageous in many circumstances and thanked God for the ability to do so. It was a good reminder that I am not walking through this life alone.

I Found God today reflecting on how courageous I have been.

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Divine Love Endures

I saw a quote today from Fr. John Waiss that touched my heart.
“In heaven, we will see God face-to-face, with a love that’s deeper and greater in intensity than anything we have ever experienced before. Divine love is what endures.”
I also heard that people are now so consumed with living a long time, we have forgotten that this life is part of our journey with the biological part of us naturally coming to an end. Infinity begins after that. These two thoughts to me were full of hope and joy.

I Found God today in a reminder of His infinite overwhelming love.

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Biblical School Year 3

I had my first Biblical School class tonight. This year will be completely virtual. It was somewhat distracting to begin with as people figured out how to get into the class and how to make the application work for more than 50 people. But once we got past that and I was able to focus on just the teaching, it was pretty good. This lesson was on Jonah and Nahum – both who God sent to Ninevah. Jonah warned that the city would be destroyed if the people didn’t repent. To his surprise, the whole city did repent and were spared. However, after years went by, they reverted back to their evil ways. Then Nahum went back to them and reminded them of their imminent demise if they didn’t follow God. The crux of the lesson was that God is merciful when we repent. However, if we choose to continue doing what is wrong, we will have to face the consequences. It was good to delve back into the Bible in this class.

I Found God today starting another year of Bible Class.

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Jeremiah’s Voice

I am excited to start another year of Biblical School tomorrow. The classes will be all online, so that will make it helpful for me anyways. Today I listened to a pre-class lecture introducing the prophets. The woman who gave the talk will be my teacher this year. She said that Jeremiah is her favorite prophet and that while much of the prophets talk about doom and gloom, they also give us hope. She quoted Jeremiah 29:11, which has been one of my favorites, “For I know well the plans I have in mind for you—oracle of the LORD—plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope.” Words from Jeremiah have come up often lately – in unexpected messages from friends, in caregiver’s devotional readings and such. I am looking forward to learning more about him and his messages.

I Found God today hearing from the prophet Jeremiah.