Belonging and Baseball

I’m on my way with a friend to their grandson’s Little League game. My heart is full, anticipating these young boys in their clean jerseys all ready to play baseball. It’s not unlike the anticipation of a major league baseball game when your favorite pitcher is starting and your heart is racing, all pumped up for the game with hope and exhilaration. There is something thrilling watching these young, nascent ball players doing their best, the joy they communicate, belonging to a team. The  elation they exhibit when they win, the agony of defeat, is felt throughout the crowd. When they trust that they played their best, they are satisfied and look forward to the next contest with hope, course correction, and determination. I don’t know if God plays baseball but I bet He enjoys the human soul embracing teamwork, learning to forgive and let go, and sportsmanship in action!

by Gracie

The Steering Wheel

Years ago I heard a quote by Corrie ten Boom, “Is God your spare tire or your steering wheel?” That question resonated deep in my soul. It caused me to reflect and see if this was true of my prayer life. Prayer is abandonment to the love and grace of God. We pray because it is the way we communicate and learn the ways that God chooses to break into our life.  Prayer becomes the vehicle to connect our hearts to the Divine Heart. Pray as you can, in the quiet of your heart and soul. God is always faithful to show up. As we do, prayer truly does become our steering wheel in all of life. It reminds us who is really “driving”!

by Cathy

Abundance Again

I spent many hours of my childhood in the public library of my small hometown in Minnesota. Granted, there wasn’t much to do then but I don’t think it was boredom that drew me into a life-long love of learning. I just remember always wanting to know more about, well, everything. A small, often fearful little girl, I felt empowered by knowledge in a positive way. Besides looking up information, I loved reading novels and plays that transported me into a much bigger world, into understanding the human psyche and the vast spiritual realm. Today, I am delighted by the Internet’s infinite educational opportunities. Now I have a library at my fingertips. In an instant, I can read any passage in the bible, do the Liturgy of the Hours, look up St. Teresa of Avila, an obscure poem, or anything about world religions I do not understand. To me, this is miraculous, a gift from the Holy One, who knows our needs and pours out abundance beyond our wildest dreams.

by DC

Sunday Nights

There’s a beautiful, committed-to-the bone women who runs a youth ministry called Insight along with a peer leadership group called SURF. When our daughter was entering high school she let us know that on Sunday nights, after church, she would be attending a gathering of young adults. As far as I can remember this was entirely her decision. Somehow, somewhere, she caught the sweet aroma of Christian fellowship. There was music, laughter and honesty. There were tears and revelation. This fellowship blew in the Holy Spirit and helped develop long lasting relationships. I began to notice a sparkle in the eyes of the participants. I saw trust and love and an inner peace in those eyes. Not even the words of the great scholars of our time could capture the essence and truth behind those eyes. It appears that God never takes off. Not on Sunday night after church, not on Monday morning, not ever. Sometimes we just need each other to realize how fortunate we are that our “God Reigns”. That together, in fellowship, there is peace. There is life.

by Diego

 

RCIA Mystagogia Nights

The neophytes and team have been pondering the deeper mysteries of faith ever since Easter. This phase of RCIA is called “Mystagogia.” We have explored spirituality, social teachings and stewardship as ways to witness love in the world. Our final class session tonight (May 16)  focuses on “Called and Gifted,” a discernment of where the journey is leading in the future. Be sure to listen to the podcasts of these and all of the other wonderful sessions we have posted this year. Here is the link: http://tuesday-nights-at-rcia.madewithopinion.com/our-witness-to-love-in-the-world/#

Blessings of grace and peace always. . . Donna

Learning How to Serve

One of the many lessons I have learned about service  from Fr. Greg Boyle ever since touring Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles is, “God can get tiny, if we’re not careful.” For years, the lessons in the spiritual life have taught me to continue to challenge myself to open my arms, to intentionally expand my heart and mind and look with new eyes on everyone and everything I encounter.  I’ve spent the past thirty years focused on a deliberate and deep relationship with God.  The more I learn, the more there is to learn. Every day, the Holy One beckons and teaches me about an abundant love I could never fathom on my own. As a human being, ever restless and wanting closure, I need to make God tiny and in my own image. But, as I am so humbly reminded every day, God cannot be categorized, put in a box, or labeled with certain descriptions. God is anything BUT TINY!  I pray I don’t forget.

by Andrew

Trust and Joy

“For our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name.” (Psalm 33:21)  I wish I had a nickel for how many times I’ve told myself, “God has a plan.” I tend to be a bit of a control freak. Personally it is my biggest challenge to “let go, let God” because I always want to fix things and I have to constantly remind myself that the Lord knows what he is doing. I even have a little card on the bulletin board next to my desk that reads “Relax! God’s in charge!” The most amazing thing is that when I am able to give up wanting to manage every aspect of every difficulty I encounter on the road of life, I experience a sense of freedom and of true joy that is almost like a present I’ve given myself. And that is when my “…heart is (truly) glad in him.”

by JAM

Remembering Mom

Today, on Mother’s Day, I am flooded with memories of my Mom who went home to God in 2010.  Of all the images of her that I hold dear, the recollection of her hands knitting remains most precious. Service to others was always foremost in her mind throughout her very active life of teaching and raising a family. We could never go anywhere without picking up someone who needed a ride or stopping to drop off food for a shut-in.  Later in life, forced to slow down, she devoted herself to the ministry of creating prayer shawls, baby sweaters, and afghans for those in need. I love this picture because it combines her dedication to action and prayerful contemplation.  With each stitch, she said a “Hail Mary” for the lucky recipient of her handiwork. Remembering Mom, and all of the great women who have laid down their lives in self-sacrificing service to others, I extend grace and blessings on this day we celebrate the outpouring of powerful maternal love.

by DC