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Day 19 Heart-Pondering Prayer

The sentence from the book that I think would be beneficial to ponder in prayer.   St. Teresa “followed the example of Mary who was always “pondering in her heart” the “good things” that God was doing in her life (see Luke 2:19, 51).

Not everyday but rarely do I miss a night reflecting on the events of the days.  The problem that I have though is that I have a tendency to always go to the negative.  Reason, is I like to ask for forgiveness for the temptations (sin) that I succumb to throughout the day.  Where I have failed miserably is, I forget to rejoice in the good things.  Mary is calling us to rejoice in the good things that God has given us.  If your like me though you have a tendency to always recognize the burdens and challenges, and migrate to the negative.  It’s easy to do, for the devil is always there ready to pounce.

So, for the remainder of this retreat, each night I am going to Say yes to Mary, I am going to ask to be within Her Immaculate Heart, and I am going ask her to do as she has taught us and to ponder all the amazing blessings God has given us, and all the areas where I did good and chose Christ throughout the day.   Mary Queen of Heaven, Help us see the good in our lives, Help us See Jesus throughout the day, and help us find good in the bad.

Day 18 The Immaculate Heart of Mary

Once again the readings reminded me of events in the past. The question that was brought up in the reading was what if we find ourselves before the crucified Lord and feel little or nothing. I know how Sin can harden a mans heart and since each of us Sin, this is battle that will last a lifetime, yet can this task of avoiding sin and/or repenting to come before Jesus with a pure heart so that we are moved and open to His will, be made easier. I must have missed these readings or been at a place where I just wasn’t listening for as I read them today I was thinking wow, another way to battle the temptations of the world. Mother Teresa prayed and ask the Virgin Mary to “Lend me Your heart”. Mother Teresa was asking Mary to help her to love with a perfect Love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Yet as I read them tonight, I ask myself If I ask that same question of our Most Holy Mother, am I willing to do what will be asked of me. Then I read the following and my doubt vanished– Mother Teresa is “not just asking for Mary’s Heart to be in her but for her to be in Mary’s Heart”, and so now I ask, who is the one that consumes Mary’s Heart, who is the one that Mary Said Yes to, who is the one that Mary helped raise to be the Savior of the world, JESUS! In the Immaculate Heart of Mary, we will all find Jesus! Immaculate Heart of Mary, Show us Jesus!

The Visions of 1947- 33 days to Morning Glory, Day 17

We are now over  halfway through this Marian Retreat.  I can say that I have had my days where I have felt like I was growing nearer to Mary, yet I have had days where it seemed like I wasn’t going anywhere towards my Blessed Mother, nor her son.  Like it or not, I am still clinging on to things that are keeping me from giving my all to Mary and to Jesus.  Pride, worldly desires, and being scared of life without certain things are obstacles that I face and that we all face throughout our life, yet I can say that my devotion to Mary and the knowledge that have already been presented to me have brought me even closer to Her Son.

Today’s readings include details on three visions that St. Teresa had and explain the words that defined her missions, “I Thirst”.   I will share the third.

Third Vision- The same great crowd was there but they were covered in darkness.    Within this scene, Jesus jung on the Cross, and Our Lady was a little distance away.  Teresa, as a little child , was just in front of Mary.   With Both Mary and Teresa Facing Cross, Jesus spoke to Teresa.  “I  have asked you.  They have asked you, and she, my Mother has asked you.  Will you refuse to do this for me?”

Mary was present in the visions bringing comfort and support and pointing to the way to Jesus.  St. Teresa’s visions had to be something that stirred her up on the inside.   Jesus is asking St. Teresa if she is going to refuse to take care the poor and the children.  I would like to take it a step further and say that I  see this as Jesus asking Teresa to give up a life style to serve him.    I have to believe that St Teresa had doubts, surely she had to wonder if Her life was going to change dramatically if said yes to the mission Jesus presented to her.  Yet she chose to listen to the call within.  I am so amazed by these Saints and their ability to detach themselves from worldly desires.  I mean I have a hard time saying no to Dr. Pepper, and Food in general, let alone to choose a life of poverty where you can carry everything you own in one bag.   I have to believe that Mary was there helping St. Teresa  overcome these desires and guiding her to Her Son Jesus.  Mary help all reading this to detach ourselves from these desires and help us say yes to the “Call Within”.

Mary Holy Mother, St. Teresa, St Kolbe, Pray for us!

The Gift God Gave September 10th- Day 16 of 33

Today’s readings were basically a letter that St. Teresa of Calcutta had written to her Missionaries of Charity.   I will keep it short tonight and focus on the words that became part to St. Teresa, her life and her mission to take care of the poor.  These words were first heard by our Blessed Mother.  She was there on Calvary, as Jesus Crucified cried out these words to the World.  She knows the deep meaning and she knows how much Jesus is still longing for us still thirsting for us today.   These Words our  “I Thirst”.    Mary came face to face with Crucified Jesus and she is there now to bring us all face to face with Jesus who thirst for all of us.

Jesus said these words as he was dying upon the cross and He is still to this day crying these words out to you and me.  He thirsts for our souls.  St. Teresa believed that we will not understand who Jesus wants to be for us, if we don’t understand the magnitude that Jesus Thirsts for us.  In the letter she stated that we should hear Jesus saying everyday  “I Thirst”,”I love you”.

So do you hear Jesus say I love you.  I honestly do and I think I shared that a few blogs before this.   I love praying to Jesus, and as I am praying I get interrupted by Jesus, who says over and over again, Wade I love!!!

Last, I just want us all to reflect on the words “I thirst”, and ask ourselves do we believe that no matter what we have done in the past, no matter what other think, no matter how we look, no matter how lonely, no matter how unworthy we may feel, Jesus Thirsts for us!!  Jesus Thirst For You!

Day 15 Lover of the Heart of Jesus- St Teresa of Calcutta

As I read today’s readings, I was reminded of some dark days in my life.  Whether we admit it or not, every single one of us, experiences dark days.  During this time of struggle, I remember thinking will it ever end, will I ever be the same, what are others going to think about me if they find out, so many questions at the time that created even more stress, yet now it all seems so minute.  “Dark” days still come for me for in life everyday has its struggles, yet I now am not scared of them!  Before ever reading this book, I have found that difficult days, difficult time periods, only bring me closer to Jesus.  I am very quick to run to Him and to ask for help, for forgiveness, for peace, and for understanding. How do I run to Him?? Well for this retreat I have dedicated to giving my all to Mary, and so I have stopped and said Hail Mary’s asking for Mary to pray for us, I have stopped and had a conversation or two with my blessed Mother.  I have said the rosary, and asked Mary to help me be the Father that my wife and children deserve.

So tonight as I read about St Teresa, how she experienced “Dark Days” and how she looked at them as “A gift from God”, it was reassuring.   Her words tugged at my Heart, and brought new meaning to suffering. A quote from book “Suffering, pain, sorrow, humiliation, feelings of loneliness, are nothing but the kiss of Jesus, a sign that you have come so close that he can kiss you.——–That suffering has to come that came in the life of Our Lady, that came in the life of Jesus–It has to come in our life also”

I know none of us want to suffer.  We would all like to be Happy 24/7 with no worries.  Yet, what I have found is that my most dark days, challenging days,  have also brought me closer to Jesus.  Some of the most tragic events in my life caused much pain and brought about many dark days, yet these dark times have brought a peace I wish that everyone reading has experience, or already has experienced.  Mary knows our sufferings, for she was fully human as she watched Her son be beaten and crucified on a cross.  I can’t imagine the pain and darkness this brought to her life.  So Like all good Mothers, she wants to be there for her children and make our walk a little easier.  So tonight let us all ask Mary for the peace and understanding to help us see dark days or sufferings, as gifts from God.

Mary Our Most Blessed Mother, let us see our challenges, our fears, and our dark days as us being so close to the Cross that we are being kissed by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  God Bless!

Day 14 Kolbe’s Prayer of Consecration

Tonights Blog I will simply share the beautiful prayer of Consecration with one thought as I read prayer.  In the prayer Kolbe helped me to once again see that God trusted Jesus to Mary and  If God Trusted Mary to be the Mother of Jesus, why would he not trust her to be the Mother of all His creation.

O Immaculata, Queen of heaven and earth, refuge of sinners and our most loving mother, God has willed to entrust the entire order of mercy to you. I, (Name, Wade)  a repentant sinner, cast myself at your feet humbly imploring you to take me with all that I am and have, wholly to yourself as your possession and property.  Please make of me, of all my powers of soul and body, of my whole life, death and eternity, whatever most pleases you.  If it pleases you, use all that I am and have without reserve, wholly to accomplish what was said of you:  “She will crush your head,” and, “You alone have destroyed all heresies in the whole world.” Let me be a fit instrument in your immaculate and merciful hands for introducing and increasing your glory to the maximum in all the many strayed and indifferent souls, and thus help extend as far as possible the blessed kingdom of the most Sacred Heart of Jesus.  For wherever you enter you obtain the grace of conversion and growth in holiness, since it is through your hands that all graces come to us from the most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Mother Mary, Queen of Heaven bring us to the most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

To Be an Instrument-Rather, to be Instruments

I look at this title and think, Easy to Say, Hard To Do.  Yet this morning during chores, many things were running through my mind as I thought about Mary, as I thought about our souls, and as I thought about others around me.  I will come back to this later. As far as the readings today, I would like to share some exact quotes from the book  “St. Maximilian didn’t want to just ask for graces from the Immaculata.  He wanted to ‘be’ the graces.  He wanted to be the will of the immaculate. He figured Well, if people can give themselves over to Satan to be possesses by and him and instruments of evil, why can’t people give themselves over to God to be possessed by him and be his instruments of love.”   This makes sense to me, and yet he took it a step further.  “St. Maximilian further reasoned that, more than anyone the immaculate is “possessed” by the Holy Spirit so why not ask to be possessed by her so as to be perfectly united to God’s will.  What St. Maximilian is showing us is a path that is easy and fast to Jesus through Mary.  His goal was to build a Militia Immaculata as fast and easy as he could, so that these souls brought to Jesus through Mary, may be present in the world showing Jesus to others.   A quote from St. Maximilian “If we really love God, if we truly long for his kingdom, then we should find the quickest and easiest way to sainthood, and thereby return to Him.” Now, Maybe to some  reading this  the quote makes no sense, but to a person that was searching for answers and was having trouble finding answers to questions such as purpose, why did things happen, etc- a quick easier path sounds very appealing.  This great Saint is telling us that Mary who is fully human, who more than anyone is “possessed” by the Holy Spirit is there, and whose union with Jesus is Heavenly, is there to help us all to become Saints, and its this path that is easier and faster.

Now for chores this morning-  Today as I was thinking about Mary, about Jesus, and about God,  I looked up and I saw the the sun began to start peaking through.  Then I looked out at the farm and saw the complete mess that it is in right now.  I could have swore I had some rock on this farm yet, not sure where it is right now.   Well, at this point Mary started doing her thing, which is pointing us to her Son, Jesus.  It was like she was saying, Wade your soul was a mess at one point just like your farm. (And it still gets messed up at times)  All you could focus on was what was wrong, and all the negatives.  Like your farm, you focused on the 2 feet of mud, the ruts, the lack of things that make life easier, instead of those kids there helping you chore and a wife inside taking care of kids and cooking lunch.  You refused to allow people like Ed Meyer bring you rock, even though Rodney Burdiek says he likes to sneak a few chargers in there on you :)   She seemed to say, Wade you were going to make sure that you did it all on your own, but you found out that you can’t, you found out that your tractor was buried in 3 feet of mud, simply because you would’t let someone help.

As I read this book for a second time, it seems much clearer that Mary was there in that little Church in Onaga, as I decided to start to pray the Rosary more Faithfully, and do so in front of Jesus in the Eucharist. Things didn’t change overnight yet those countless hours spent praying the Rosary,  asking Mary to show me the way, asking the Holy Spirit to come, and Asking Jesus to Forgive me, lead me and continues to lead me God’s Will.   Although the Sun appeared today, it is going to be muddy for quite some time,  yet the mud didn’t seem as bad today after that and with each day of sun, there will be less mud.  Just as we grow closer to Jesus, “The Son of Man” the challenges will be there but they will be easier, and with each day with him there will be less Mud.  May we all go order some rock from Ed Meyer, and  take a path to Jesus with the least amount of Mud, so that we all can show Him to others.    Mary our most Gracious Loving Mother,  show unto me Jesus!!!

The Immaculata Always Does God’s Will Perfectly

Today’s readings explains what comes forth from this amazing union, amazing marriage between Mary and Holy Spirit, which is: Mary does God’s will perfectly.  Seems like a bold statement, especially since Mary was fully human.  Yet, St. Kolbe explains that Mary  “is the creature most completely filled with this love, filled with God himself, the Immaculata, who never contracted the lightest stain of sin, who never departed in the least from God’s Will.  United to the Holy Spirit as his spouse, she is one with God in an incomparably more perfect way than can be predicted.

Everything comes forth from God and is going back to God, more or less perfectly.  Mary is there to guide us to perfection.

I will keep it short tonight, and instead of posting a long reflection, I am going to ask others to chime in as they so please, and/or get a book and join us on Day 12

Day 10 of 33 Days to Morning Glory Who are you O Immaculate Conception (part 2)

As I read the readings today, I was thinking that St. Maximilian Kolbe was going over board in His teachings.  He explained that the Holy Spirit was the Uncreated Immaculate Conception, and Mary was the created Immaculate Conception, and I honestly was thinking why does this matter?  St. Kolbe referred to the apparitions in Lourdes where Mary Appeared to St. Bernadette and stated “I am the Immaculate Conception”.  As Catholics we believe that Mary was immaculately conceived, yet she did not say that she was Immaculate conceived, she states “I am the Immaculate Conception”.   St. Kolby wrestled with this statement of Mary’s for it  was as if she was making herself divine, when we all know Mary is not God.  If you are confused well, let me reassure you, I was too at this point, and its still a little murky.

It wasn’t until the readings took us to the union between the Holy Spirit and Mary did things start to make at least a little sense.  When man and woman on earth decide to become one in the sacrament of marriage, the woman changes her last name to that of her husband.   The two become one!  So applying this to Mary, the Union of the Holy spirit and Mary formed Jesus, this must be a profound union.  When Mary appeared to St. Bernadette and said “I am the Immaculate Conception”, she is taking on the name of the Holy Spirit, the uncreated Immaculate Conception who for eternity springs from God the Father and God the Son.  This is why the teachings of Kolbe teach of two Immaculate Conceptions, Created (Mary) and Uncreated (Holy Spirit).

Now lets get away from the theology and reflect on the Union between the Holy Spirit and Mary. This union took my thoughts to a song that I wrote, call the More I love you.  I wrote this song for Tammy after I started to realize that the closer I became to God, the more my love for her grew.  I have no doubt that this is the case in all marriages, and all relationships.  I think about how after almost 20 years I connected I feel to Tammy, how I am incomplete without her.   Now applying this to Mary and the Divine Holy Spirit, whose Union formed Jesus, and I think this Union is beyond something we can understand on earth.  It opens my eyes up to the importance of Getting to know Mary even better for Her Union is with God Himself.  No she is not God, but this Union between the them is absolutely Heavenly!!

Mary Queen of Heaven, St. Bernadette, St Kolbe, St Louis  Pray For Us!

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