‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’

My schedule yesterday for work didn’t allow me the time to post; today I’m just staring at the screen struggling to type anything.  Why?  Yesterday was a hard day at work where I had to write down a project that not only I bid but managed as well.  Very humbling and very stressful.  In the midst of all of that, the past few month has been a political nightmare – to know 800,000 people are forced from their jobs as political folly is hard to imagine, but it still goes on today.  To watch grown adults cheer loudly as a bill is passed in New York was truly a slap in the face to all who support the Pro-Life cause.  The see children berated by the Press, by Catholic Priests, by numerous people popping off on Twitter for “disrespecting” a native american.  To be quite honest, I was a frustrated individual yesterday.

But in all that, I learned a few new insights on prayer over the last couple of days that I know will help my attitude.  I also put into practice something I’ve known for a long time about how to battle stress and the hardships of life.

First, what I learned about praying.  God has given us many gifts and has given us many advocates to realize what those gifts are…Jesus, the Blessed Mother, the Holy Spirit and a guardian Angel.  I have always had a devotion to Jesus – HE IS MY LORD AND HE IS MY SAVIOR.  I have over the past 25 years grown very close to our Blessed Mother – the new eve, the ark of the new covenant, the one chosen by God to bear His Son.  Wednesday night, while attending a Confirmation Mass at St. Mary Magdalen, I renewed my commitment to ask for guidance of the Holy Spirit on a daily basis – it is through The Holy Spirit that I seek guidance that all I do is for the greater glory of God.  Also on Wednesday, while listening to program on EWTN, I heard a message about how God has given every person on earth an guardian angel to assist us.  I will add to my Rosary this simple prayer and pray that my angel stays by my side at all times.  My parents taught me this prayer and shame on me for letting this fall from my regular cadence of prayers…

Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits thee here.  Every this day be at my side, to light, to guard, to rule, to guide.  Amen.

Those were the insights that renewed my spiritual life this past week.  Now to tell you what I learned long ago that is the best way to heal my soul.  Family.  God has blessed Sarah and I with many children and there is nothing I enjoy more than to be able to spend time with my wife and children.  So early yesterday morning, as I headed into work to prepare the report for my “bosses” at work, projecting out the losses we are going to absorb on my project, I kept telling myself, in order to help me focus on the task at hand, that I would get to watch my daughter play basketball that night, last night.  To me, there is nothing better than to be able to leave work and head out to watch a child compete in a sporting venue – soccer, basketball, volleyball, track and field, wrestling, baseball, cheer-leading (only one year of that – phew) and field hockey (only one year of that – never did figure out the rules).  Add to that the choir concerts and school plays and that makes for a lot of after work activities.  I am convinced that God knew I would need a lot of “stress relievers” – my eight children and my beautiful wife do exactly that.

So, in the midst of all this stress, I will continue to pray as fervently as ever and I will continue to enjoy spending time with my family.

Do something great for our Lord today – seek out the gifts He has given you.  Say a prayer to Christ our Savior, Mary our Mother, the Holy Spirit and your guardian angel.

God’s will, not mine, be done.

Be not afraid; just have faith.

Jesus, I trust in You.

He must increase, I must decrease.

PS:  My daughter is No. 5

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