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Monday, January 20, 2020

Pray for Marriages (Resisting the Cultural Waves)

Greetings Prayer Warriors, 

Have you ever met anyone who stated that marriage was easy? Neither have I. Yet from the beginning, Christ willed that man and women come together, live a life ordered to the good of each other, make a lifetime matrimonial covenant before him, and procreate. So important was the institution of marriage that God willed that his Son come into the world via a family. God never promised Mary and Joseph their lives would be easy, but He did promise His abundant grace.

Today’s culture completely promotes the dissolubility of marriage. After over a half century of a rising divorce rate, we have seen not only the breakdown of the family, but the entire societal culture.  As a result, there’s a crumbling of morality, a rising hate of Christian principles, and a quest for money and power, rather than a desire for holiness and godliness. 

The catechism states:

“This unequivocal insistence on the indissolubility of the marriage bond may have left some perplexed and could seem to be a demand impossible to realize. However, Jesus has not placed on spouses a burden impossible to bear, or too heavy - heavier than the Law of Moses.”  CCC 1615

The Pharisees approached and asked, “Is it lawful for a husband to divorce his wife?” They were testing him. He said to them in reply, “What did Moses command you? They replied, “Moses permitted him to write a bill of divorce and dismiss her.” But Jesus told them, “Because of the hardness of your hearts he wrote you this commandment. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female. For this reason, a man shall leave his father and mother [and be joined to his wife], and the two shall become one flesh.’ So, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, no human being must separate.”  Mark 10:2-9

“By coming to restore the original order of creation disturbed by sin, he himself gives the strength and grace to live marriage in the new dimension of the Reign of God. It is by following Christ, renouncing themselves, and taking up their crosses that spouses will be able to "receive" the original meaning of marriage and live it with the help of Christ.” CCC 1615

“Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.  Mark 8:34

Lord, grant all married couples a renewal in faith, a greater commitment to love, and the peace to know you will never leave their side. Give them the courage to completely trust in you and resist the enticement of a culture that promises freedom, by cutting their tether to you. Lord, hear our collective prayers and  be their strength! Amen.

Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”  Matthew 11:29-30

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Someone you know is experiencing a marital tsunami. Pray for them, let them know we are too,  and pass it on! 

Friday, January 17, 2020

Pray for Families (The Delusion of Self-Repair)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Have you ever tried to repair something, and in an effort to find an easier, less costly fix, cut corners only to discover that it didn’t really help the problem but created even more hassles? 

Unfortunately, all too often we do that with our spiritual life. We sin, minimize and rationalize it, only to continue to sin and rather than seeking the Divine Healer in Confession, we delude ourselves by the self-talk of, “I’m really a good person, better than most people I know. I don’t need help, I’ve got this. Compared to my friends and coworkers, I’m a saint!”

As we continue on the journey and find ourselves lonely, dismissed, or unappreciated, instead of turning to the Divine Lover who yearns for time with us, we seek to fill the void with food, drug, alcohol, or the wrong people or the wrong things.  

Since my heart was embittered and my soul deeply wounded, I was stupid and could not understand. Psalms 73:21-22

We all have a God-sized hole in our heart, that only He can fill. There is no cut-rate substitute that can fill it, as it will only create more destruction. Let us then turn to the Divine Healer on behalf of ourselves and our families, and pray for the humility to admit how much we need the Lord. 

Come Lord Jesus! Heal us of the blindness that prevents us from seeing ourselves how we truly are.  Heal us of our pride and vanity, so that we may only seek to please you. Come fill our hearts, so that we may love with purity of intention. May we always praise your goodness with our words and our actions!

Whom else have I in the heavens? None beside you delights me on earth. Though my flesh and my heart fail, God is the rock of my heart, my portion forever.  Psalms 73:25-26

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Make a difference and pass it on! 

Monday, January 13, 2020

Pray for Marriages (A Promise to Believe in)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Today I had a day where NOTHING went as expected. A total snowball effect ensued. Needless to say, I felt my stress levels rise. I took to prayer and remembered I had just the day before quoted to an acquaintance from the book of Job:

“The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD!” Job 1:21

This was ironically perfect for me a day later.  Such is life, filled with blessings and what at least in the moment, can feel like curses. Yet when we patiently surrender and await resolution, there is always a blessing in the trial.  So too it is with marriage. The Lord will continue to test our love and our commitment, hoping we will choose to build (or rebuild) our marriage upon Him, the only foundation. 

The one who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” Then he said, “Write these words down, for they are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21:5

So, I leave you with His encouraging words, which are TRUSTWORTHY AND TRUE.  Keep the faith.  Hold tight to His promises, and continue to pray for marriages, that each spouse may persevere and trust in His promises. 

Blessed be the name of the Lord!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Share this with anyone who could benefit by a marriage recharge or reboot!  Pass it on!

Friday, January 10, 2020

Pray for Families (Forgiveness and Patience)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Ten days into the New Year and I am completely out of step with my expectations of myself for 2020.  (I even forgot to blog!) How easy it is to beat up ourselves!  Perhaps we need to begin the year by asking ourselves who we need to forgive for not living up to our expectations, beginning with ourselves.  Introspectively, we need to focus on what theLord’s expectationfor us is.  Every time we misstep, He assures us of His love and encourages us to keep moving forward. When we offend Him and seek forgiveness with a contrite heart, He offers us his mercy. 

Rend your hearts, not your garments, and return to the LORD, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love, and relenting in punishment.  Joel 2:13

Next, we need to look at our family and ask ourselves, who have we been uncharitable to for not living up to our expectations.  We need to treat them as Christ treats us: with love, encouragement, and mercy.  Even the Lord admonishes us, but it is always with a heart filled with love.  

You are my God; be gracious to me, Lord; to you I call all the day. Gladden the soul of your servant;to you, Lord, I lift up my soul. Lord, you are good and forgiving, most merciful to all who call on you. LORD, hear my prayer; listen to my cry for help. Psalms 86:2-6

Lord, help us to see ourselves as you do; a cherished child of God.  Help us to understand that You gave each of us different spiritual gifts.  May we not expect family members to be just like us. (Or perhaps they are and that’s why there are difficulties?) Lord, give each of us the grace to see our family through Your eyes and grant us the wisdom to have appropriate expectations of them, with the patience to help them fulfill Your most perfect plan. Jesus, we trust in You!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Mercy me! Mercy you! Pass it on!

Friday, January 3, 2020

Pray for Families (20-20 Clarity)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

Happy New Year!  I can’t believe we are in the year 2020! I feel blessed, grateful, and challenged to start another year anew. And already I am behind schedule! Nothing like a clean slate, clearing our body, mind, and soul of the toxins that build up. Having a clean slate isn’t a passive event, rather it takes a commitment to change and grow. Look back on 2019. What did you do or perhaps fail to do? Have you taken care of your body, keeping in mind it is a temple of the Holy Spirit? Have you been mindful of the condition of your soul? Do you go to regular confession? Whether you are Catholic or not, do a self-examination of conscience, and seek to reconcile with God and jumpstart your faith. 

This year, let us seek greater “20-20” clarity of the path that the Lord has ordained for us.  Let us commit more time to prayer and especially listening. Don’t hear the Lord? Perhaps you need to spend more time reading scripture and contemplating his Word. As you reach spiritual fitness, your beacon of faith with shine brighter to your family. What a gift, a living prayer!

At present we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. At present I know partially; then I shall know fully, as I am fully known. 
1 Corinthians 13:12

Lord, I pray for all these prayer warriors and their families and ask that you give them the grace to become more spiritually curious, to develop a greater desire for holiness, to seek a greater boldness in their faith, and to love one another in imitation of You. Amen!

Peace, Joy, and Love,

Need a New Year’s resolution?  Pass it on!

Monday, December 30, 2019

Pray for Marriages (End of Year Reflections)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

It’s hard to believe another year is ending.  It makes me very introspective.  Am I fulfilling the purpose for which the Lord created me?  Since I do not know the length of my life, but realize it is shortening with each breath, am I living each second, minute, hour, and day conscious of how finite my existence is here, and with a purpose of gaining an eternity with God?  Am I bringing other souls closer to Him?  

It is the hour now for you to awake from sleep. For our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed; the night is advanced, the day is at hand.  Romans 13:11-12

What have I done to serve and glorify the Lord this year?  What have I failed to do? In what ways do I unconsciously offend the Lord?  Have I glorified Him in my life, especially in my marriage?  Do I reflect on how the Lord is working in my life, and praise Him for the many blessings?

With reminders in every other segment of our lives, perhaps 2020 is the year of embracing technology to remind us to pray and read scripture, for each brings us closer to God. Plus, the Word is the perfect guide to perfect living.
  • Let love be sincere; hate what is evil, hold on to what is good; love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor. 
  • Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.
  • Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer.
  • Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality.
  • Bless those who persecute [you], bless and do not curse them.
  • Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
  • Have the same regard for one another; do not be haughty but associate with the lowly; do not be wise in your own estimation.
  • Do not repay anyone evil for evil; be concerned for what is noble in the sight of all.
  • If possible, on your part, live at peace with all.   Romans 12: 9-17
Life is a marvelous journey, made more joyful when one is united with prayer warriors like yourselves. Know you never walk alone, for the Lord is always with you. Know you never pray alone either, for we all remain united in prayer for one another.

O Lord of all, I know how much you love each one of these prayer warriors. Please provide abundant blessings for each one, with extra graces upon their marriage and family. Defend and protect them, and bring them your enduring peace. Help them to see the wisdom of your perfect plan for them that they may glorify you in this life and the next. Amen. 

Peace, Joy, and Love, 

Praise God by increasing the heavenly noise in 2020. Pass it on! 

Friday, December 27, 2019

Pray for Families (Life and Light)

Greetings Prayer Warriors,

While you enjoy these 12 days of Christmas, continue to spend time with your family and rejoice in such a gift!  Pray for He who is Light to enter in to both illuminate the love and eliminate any darkness that seeks to sow discord, conflict, and division. 

All things came to be through Him, and without Him nothing came to be. What came to be through him was life, and this life was the light of the human race!  John 1:3-4

Praise to you, Heavenly Father, for the gift of family! Continue to bathe us in your Light, immerse us in your Love, and fill us with your Peace!

Peace, Joy, and Love, 

A prayer is a source of life and light, so share it by passing it on!