Gold on glass

Sr. Dorcee:

Friday: from the archives

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

Makoto Fujimura is a Christian contemporary artist.  He studied under Matazo Kayama.  One of Kayama-sensei’s lessons teach us a lot about the spiritual life, about God’s wonderful work in our souls.  Fujimura reflects on one lesson:

“When he gathered us students to teach us how to use gold, he had one of his assistants bring a clear piece of glass.  He then proceeded to glue the gold right onto the glass.  Lifting the glass, he showed us that the most pure gold is nearly transparent as it casts a bluish light and halo.  I mentally pictured the new Jerusalem ‘coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband’ (Rev. 21.2).  The transparency of gold that Kayama-sensei was displaying overlapped with John’s vision.  For the new Jerusalem is a ‘city of pure gold, as pure as glass’ (Rev. 21.18).”  (Makoto Fujimura, Refractions)

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God is holding on to you

Sr. Dorcee:

Friday: from the archives

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

Do you have times when you feel that no matter how well-intentioned you are, you still blow it?  Here are St. Francis de Sales’ thoughts on the matter:

You should be like a little child who while it knows that its mother is holding its sleeve walks boldly and runs all round without being distressed at a little fall or stumble; after all, it is a s yet rather unsteady on its legs.  In the same way, as long as you realize that God is holding on to you by your will and resolution to serve him, go on boldly and do not be upset by your little set-backs and falls; there is no need to be put out by this provided you throw yourselves into his arms from time to time and kiss him with the kiss of charity.  Go on joyfully and with your heart as open and…

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What to give up for Lent

Sr. Dorcee:

I have been reblogging this post for the last couple of years. I still think it is important.

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

I realize that Lent is well underway and numbers of you have already pondered this question: “What should I give up for Lent?”  and well on your way into Lent, giving that thing up as you decided. At the same time, there are probably some of you that are either behind in answering it . . . or perhaps you had an answer, but are not really doing what you set out to do.  Any of those is a good excuse for me to share my favorite answer to that perennial question–and probably one of the most important answers.  It comes from a Magnificat article written by Fr. Peter John Cameron a few years ago.  I do not have time to quote the whole article (which is always dangerous because what you read will be edited), but I hope–especially those of you who despair of ever giving up what he…

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Listening to Lent – Have Mercy

Sr. Dorcee:

A poem and another song to minister to your soul today.  (Click on “view original” in order to hear the song.)

Originally posted on Barnstorming:

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Holy God
Holy and Mighty
Holy Immortal One
Have mercy, have mercy on us.

Holy God
Holy and mighty,
Holy Immortal One
Have mercy, have mercy on us.

Holy God
Holy and mighty
Holy Immortal One
Have mercy, have mercy, have mercy,
Have mercy, have mercy on us.
~Fernando Ortego “Trisagion”

On this day,
I begin the dusty journey
into the darkest ash heap
of my soul, confronting
my limitations,
my temptations,
my inability to think of myself second,
my acknowledgement that salvation
comes from no work of my own.

Have mercy on this head bowed low, listening.

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“His answer changed my life.”

Sr. Dorcee:

I’m reposting this because I’m reading this book again and this section had the same impact on me today as it did three years ago: to live trust is by praise and thanksgiving. Still learning . . .

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

As some of you know, I recently gave a talk at Witnesses to Hope on undoing the sin of Eve by deciding to trust in God’s goodness.  At the end of the talk I shared about what the Lord had been teaching me about the importance of thanking Him in all circumstances.  This morning I was reading from Consoling the Heart of Jesus, a Do-It-Yourself Retreat by Fr. Michael Gaitley.  Fr. Michael was describing a conversation he had had with an older priest about trusting in Jesus.  I was so encouraged to read this conclusion to the conversation:

[The older priest asked:] “And how do you live trust?  What’s its concrete expression in your daily living?”

I was stumped, “I don’t know.”

His answer changed my life: “The way you live trust is by praise and thanksgiving, to praise and thank God in all things.  That’s what the Lord said…

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The musician

Sr. Dorcee:

from the archives . . .

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

A story from St. Francis de Sales that I call to mind when prayer gets “tough”:

One of the world’s finest musicians, who played the lute to perfection, in a brief time became so extremely deaf that he completely lost the use of his hearing.  However, in spite of that he did not give up singing and playing the lute, doing so with marvelous delicacy by reason of his great skill which his deafness had not taken away.  he had no pleasure either in singing or in the sound of the lute, since after his loss of hearing he could not perceive their sweetness and beauty.  Hence he no longer sang or played except to entertain a prince whose native subject he was and whom he had a great inclination as well as an infinite obligation to please since he had been brought up from his youth in the prince’s…

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Seeing ourselves through the eyes of God

Sr. Dorcee:

Good to read again . . .

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

Magnificat has added a monthly feature written by Heather King (Parched) commenting on a particular feast of the month.  I thought I would share an excerpt from her piece on the Presentation:

To present our experiences at the temple is to sacramentalize them.  To present our experiences is to recognize that all experience, from the smallest to the largest, has a supernatural dimension.  We offer our experiences on the altar of the fact that we are loved just as we are, and that everything that happens to us is an opportunity to draw closer to Christ.  We present ourselves at the temple because our lives, our work, our sacrifices are not ourown.

Before we present ourselves at the temple, we see ourselves through the eyes of the world.  After we present ourselves at the temple, we see ourselves through the eyes of God.

Outside of the temple, for…

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The voice of the Father

Originally posted on Witnesses to Hope:

One of the wonders of the Lord’s Baptism, which we celebrate today, is that for the first time Christ heard His Father’s voice as a man.  This has incredible meaning for us, this unveiling of the heart of the Father for us:

“It is as man that he now hears his Father and sees the Spirit, and he rejoices that, because he now dwells humbly among the sons of men, the Father can no longer speak to him without his fellow-man feeling something of the vibration of that resounding Voice.  Christ brings man not so much a teaching as a dazzling proximity to the inner life of God.  And the very essence of the divine life, the very life-breath of the Son, is the good pleasure, the gracious favor and delight of the Father.” (Erasmo Leiva-Merikakis)

Through His baptism by John, Jesus shows us the way to attaining this inner…

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You Will Cry and Not Be Heard

Originally posted on Contemplative in the Mud:

You will cry and not be heard. That in which you sought and hoped to find relief will only make you more disconsolate. God will show you no sign of love, but will seem to turn from you in disdain… What then, ought you to do?

There is nothing at which to be dismayed, but great need of courage. Do not feel miserable about the state you are in, but rather, rejoice in God’s love for you, although you may not realize it at the time. Do not depend on your feelings; they are often both misled and deceiving.
Saint John of Ávila

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