The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Visits to the Blessed Sacrament are powerful and indispensable means of overcoming the attacks of the devil. How tender our heart is towards those who have failed morally is at least one measure of the hardness of our heart. It lays claim to the whole man, body and soul, intellect and will, inducing him to raise his mind above the changing conditions of this earthly existence and reach upwards for the eternal life of heaven, where one day he will find his unfailing happiness and peace. Let the philosopher no longer disdain from listening to the common laborer; the wise, to the simple; the educated, to the illiterate; a child of a prince, to a peasant. Faith is our only shield; our sole protection against his trickery. I found it a day or two ago thought I would show it. We said no questions.
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David loved that lamb but this was a terrifying situation. Kill time, and eternity bleeds. And the ovum, you see, it does not have an immortal soul. You are well aware that our sins arouse God's anger. Everything she knew or ever became was because of him. Jesus will never leave you or forsake you. For more, see Is it Mad to be Mad at God?
Original Christian poems and poetry inspired by the Holy Spirit, can be found here. Plus a wide variety of thought provoking poems to help you learn, funny poems to bring a smile, and comforting poems for a hurting heart.
There are three Christian poems and Inspirational poems indexes , with search capability, to help you find what you are looking for. Sample Inspirational poems and Christian poems categories include: Christian Poems for Children Christian Poems for Women Life Poetry and Christian Poetry. Jesus was the focus of their attack. Jesus, the Holy Spirit, was the one they sought to insult and discredit. It just turned out that, as would be expected, insulting one member of the Trinity insults all three.
The doctrine of the Trinity renders ridiculous any notion that the Holy Spirit might be more holy or more sensitive or less forgiving than the Son of God. For more, see Unforgivable? They hurt, but they go to the very heart and nature of God because God himself hurts. Through your painful experiences God is able to share his secrets with you.
It is something deeply spiritual and intimate and precious. Through the evil you suffered you have been granted unique insight into the heart of God. By it you will move from mere head knowledge to deep heart knowledge of God and his love and his ways. The most precious experiences cost, but they are more than worth all the pain. The greatest torment you, in fit of fury, have ever wished to be savaged upon those who cruelly hurt you was rained upon Jesus to secure the justice you craved.
By the abuse meted out to the innocent Son of God, the Almighty Lord, the Judge of all the earth, has proclaimed that the offense against you was so grave, and your honor so precious to him, that nothing less than the horrors Jesus suffered could put it right. Will you let the magnitude of his sacrifice soothe your anger and give you peace? Bitterness is like barbed wire in your insides. Will you let his love dissolve it? For more, see Sweet Revenge! The Master Restorer treasures what lesser persons discard.
He works on events that people think of as junk and builds on them. He keeps polishing them until they gleam with divine glory and builds on them until they become astonishing works of beauty that all of heaven will admire for all eternity.
We are too fast at pointing the finger and too slow at lending a hand; too quick to quote the Bible at others and too slow to live it ourselves; too eager to act superior and too proud to weep with those who weep. For more, see Spiritual Abuse: Nevertheless, this does not imply that everyone must know about Jesus before Jesus can save them. Scripture teaches that Jesus died as much for those who died before his sacrifice, as he died for those who were born after his sacrifice see Hebrews 9: Pre-Christian saints like Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Jacob, and so on, will be in heaven even though they never sought forgiveness through Jesus.
As indicated in Hebrews 11, note especially verse 7; Romans 4: They trusted that God would somehow forgive them, without knowing the details as to how salvation was possible. For more, see What about those who have never heard the Gospel? Despite our best intentions to forgive, the mistaken fear that anger is unchristian can cause us to back off so far, so quickly after first sensing the slightest anger bubbling within us that we deny ourselves the opportunity to truly acknowledge the extent of the injury we have suffered.
Sadly, this highly commendable desire to do the right thing could end up causing us to unknowingly short-circuit the entire forgiving process. You cannot forgive someone for stealing a million dollars when you believe he has only stolen five dollars. Forgiveness necessitates fully acknowledging the extent of the offence.
The same is true of prayer. Most of us have heard of, or even had a taste of, the exhilaration that prayer can produce. There are times when prayer is effortless and thrilling and you are moved by a power beyond your own. Nevertheless, many of us end up drifting in the shallows because we have not understood the necessity of the prayer equivalent of paddling in order to catch a spiritual wave. What we now think is the ultimate in red-blooded passion, thrilling adventure and heart-thumping excitement will be seen as boring child-play, once we taste the wonders of heaven.
One of the wonders of heaven is that we will have an increased capacity for love. Couples will be many times more in love with each other than they ever were on earth. And yet the astounding thing is that everyone else in heaven will thrill this former couple as utterly as they thrill each other.
Everyone will be so head-over-heels in love with everyone else as to render unthinkable an exclusive relationship such as marriage. For more, see No Marriage In Heaven? He is perfect, and yet most people reject him. And because he truly loves, that rejection truly hurts him. No one knows the pain of a broken heart like him. Yet he is continually reaching out to people who despise him. And some eventually respond. To shrink from the possibility of pain is to shrink from life.
That would be a tragic waste; not only for you, but for those you would have blessed. We are called to greatness and never-ending fulfillment that pleasure junkies can only wistfully dream about. For more, see Should Christians Masturbate?
Suppose a woman let doctors treat some of her ailments but refused to let them examine the lump that will kill her if left untreated. That is like letting Jesus treat some of our problems, but insisting on dealing with the critical blame issue ourselves. Forgiving someone who has hurt us does not mean shifting blame from the other party to ourselves or trying to minimize the horrific gravity of the offense.
That would not facilitate healing. Christian forgiving transfers all blame to the cross, where Jesus bore the horrific punishment it deserved. Once he finds something that shakes us up he keeps trying it over and over relentlessly until he is absolutely convinced that his tactics will never again work with you.
When, finally, he seems to leave, it is only to bide his time for a surprise attack. His persistence is most unpleasant.
The positive side, however, is that this will make you stronger and stronger as you keep resisting his lies. Adoption by the King of kings opens to us wonders that will keep us dancing for all eternity. The full story, however, is even more astounding. At that instant a fundamental change in our entire nature occurred. For more, see Is it Mad to be Mad at God? Yet, tragically, countless thousands have walked down a church aisle and falsely assumed that made them born again.
Like marriage, it is a relationship, not a ritual that counts. Spiritual rebirth results from a life-changing union between two persons. Your act can be so convincing that you even fool yourself, and remain unaware that your life has missed an entire dimension.
Likewise, if you disagree with anything, ensure it is because the Spirit disagrees. There might be a powerful anointing of God upon a sentence of mine. It could have come as a direct revelation from the throne of God. But that does not make it impossible for the next sentence to be straight from Satan. For more, see Truth: As air rushes to fill a vacuum, God rushes to cleanse and exalt such people.
Conversely, nothing saddens, disgusts and infuriates God more than the arrogant self-righteousness of someone who thinks himself morally superior to the most despised sinner. The same Jesus who was ever so tender towards those acutely aware of their sin, tore strips of the self-righteous. Our Judge is eager to credit each of us with the humanly unattainable moral purity and exquisite perfection of the Holy Lord himself.
Tragically, however, there are those who forfeit this stupendous gift. They remain polluted by their sins because they refuse to abandon the delusion that they are morally superior to such obvious sinners as rapists, serial killers and Satanists. The wages of sin is death. There is no need to fear or fret about a thing. The Lord is in control and he is eager to sort out all your problems.
The transformation is like a machine with nearly dead batteries being plugged into a new power source. Jesus fills the unfillable hole within us. He makes us whole. He meets our deepest needs. As pianos were made to be played, we were made for Jesus. He alone releases our full potential. It means hu man ity. Like that computer, we could still function a little, but so much has been lost. For all eternity Jesus has been uniquely connected to God as a pure conductor of holy power.
He offered himself so that through his own person you could be connected with God. As usual, the infinitely high-voltage power of Almighty God surged through him, but this time, because he was no longer a pure conductor of such power, it killed him.
Yet by his sacrificial act he become a safe connector for anyone willing to let go of their ineffective ways of coping with pain and, spiritually speaking, reach out and touch Jesus. The moment you do, you are suddenly connected to unlimited supernatural power.
You spiritually light up. Because it is spiritual, not mental or emotional or physical, you may not feel it, but something of profound significance takes place in the deepest and most important part of you.
That union, Scripture boldly declares, has a spiritual parallel Ephesians 5: The inexhaustible creativity of God longs, through our union with him, to birth within us unique and wondrous things, bearing the image, not just of one partner, but of both him and us.
A musician and an instrument unite to produce sounds which neither would produce without the other. We are living instruments fashioned by the divine Instrument Maker with greater sophistication than any man-made instrument, having our own creativity.
Like an instrument maker with his cherished instrument, our Maker longs to blend his ability with ours to produce unique sights and sounds to bless the world. For more, see In Tune with God: It is when they are brought into the light that they lose their power to terrify. It is then that they cease to haunt us. Living in denial can never change reality. Nothing can change the past. Driven by infinite love, he passionately longs to keep on forgiving you and to lavish his mercy upon you for all eternity.
His is eager to forgive; his only reluctance is in giving signs and feelings to confirm our forgiveness. Doing so makes us spiritually vulnerable by fostering a dependence upon something that the Deceiver can easily replicate and manipulate. The devil cannot touch spiritual truth but he can toy with signs and feelings. Faith is our only shield; our sole protection against his trickery.
Consider how you would cherish that precious new part of you. What was once a vital part of another person is now a vital part of you.
Your body keeps your new heart alive and that heart keeps your body alive. Your welfare and destinies are one. The consequences of a man and woman becoming one flesh are as profound as this life-transforming surgery.
The tragic possibility of a heart transplant is that the body might turn against its new organ, attacking it as if it were a disease rather than the essential part of itself that it has become. This is what it is like when a wife and husband fight. Regardless of whether they use lips, fists, threats, silent treatment, finances, withholding sex, trashing treasured objects, or whatever, it is as foolish as attacking your heart with a knife.
I think it literally impossible for any famous Christian leader in our times to avoid being virtually idolized by some Christians and maliciously condemned by at least some Christian leaders. I say it with tears: I take that as proof of how small time I am. To be loving, however, is another world. It is to be Christlike. It is not a fluke; it is a virtue, an achievement, a deliberate, praiseworthy act.
Being in love is fleeting; being loving is eternal. When in love we hardly think about ourselves other than wanting to make ourselves more desirable for the one we love.
Our thoughts and dreams revolve around the other person. There is a huge shift away from ourselves. The one we love becomes the center of our universe. Does this make us feel half dead? Is this losing of our pre-occupation with ourselves a painful, miserable experience? Anyone in love has never felt more excited or more alive. So it is with falling in love with the King of kings.
At the death of infatuation with myself, my spiritual senses become alive to the thrilling reality of God. I behold the most wonderful, exciting and beautiful Person in existence. It is then that I truly live. The God who loves even his enemies keeps on loving, regardless of whether the objects of his love are deserving of it. He finds them lovable because he is loving; not because others find them desirable. He loves not because of who people are, but because of who he is. This is how we must love.
They are like someone pathetically drawn to loud, gaudy objects because their foolishly abused senses have grown too dim to appreciate real beauty. Chances are they are prematurely becoming a spent force sexually and romantically because they have squandered their sexuality on immorality. Their decadent stupidity need not be blatant, physical unfaithfulness.
The devastation of this sinful folly could well be irreversible. Perhaps you are presently in so much pain that even that statement makes you angry. The Bible calls trials birth pangs. Many a woman immediately after childbirth is convinced she will never allow herself to have another baby. And yet the time comes when she is happily planning another child. Because the pain is lavishly compensated by the rewards.
He bore in his entire being the full consequences of every injustice this planet has ever seen. That is what the second coming is all about. His delay is none other than his mercy in giving us opportunity to repent before crunch time.
It does not fizzle when hot-blooded leaps of imagination hit cold reality. It is unfazed by sagging beauty, declining abilities and changes of fortune.
This unstoppable force powers on regardless. It is fueled not by the beloved but by daily dying to self and coming alive to the God of gods who sacrificed everything and became the highest by becoming the lowest.
Yes, for love that never dies you must die daily. To find such love you must lose self. This love is noble, making you worthy of never-ending honor. Like an exquisite garden, it does not magically arrive; it is carefully nurtured.
It is a virtue; a perpetual choice; a way of life for which you will literally be eternally grateful. A few burn in the limelight while the rest of us shiver in the shadows. The exaltation of a few and the hiding of their flaws makes us ordinary Christians feel inferior; hindering us from achieving the greatness we were born for.
For more, see Who is Grantley Morris? This difference is not because Scripture was written by primitive people who did not know any better than to attribute natural events to God. Over and over, Scripture attributes to God, what we attribute to natural or human causes. When it says that God sends wind, rain, sunshine, locust plagues, and so on, it is not because people in the Bible era had not discovered the laws of nature.
Do you think Jesus, who said God feeds the birds of the air, did not know all the effort a sparrow goes to in order to find food? Do you think Isaiah was unaware that farmers teach their sons and learn off each other, and experiment and gain experience for themselves?
Do you imagine he thought those who deny God are unable to farm? No one imagines that an all-powerful God would be incapable of using processes or unable to control vast numbers of intricate, seemingly insignificant events. And yet somehow most of us begin to act as if the discovery of some of those processes removes God from the equation.
Likewise, regardless of whether you ever get to use it, by making you a sexual being, God has honored you with a responsibility that not even angels are granted. From the onset, the Lord of hosts delegated authority to man and woman Genesis 1: If you were granted police powers, would you tolerate a law breaker vandalizing a sacred place, or assaulting someone, or molesting a child?
Is it proper for you to passively endure an evil assault upon your person? When opposed by vile spirits, rise with indignation and enforce your Christ-won authority by ousting those frauds. You are called to be that proof. The woman at the well was driven by a craving that was clearly not being satisfied. At an exorbitant emotional cost, her restless searching had taken her from man to man to man to man to man to man, with her heart being repeatedly shattered into smaller and smaller pieces.
Sadly, this is disconcertingly close to what most modern Christians, even those with high morals, suffer today. They call it dating and vainly hope the habit they have concreted into their lives will somehow magically disappear after signing a marriage license. Those who seem to succeed in this quest usually find themselves hooked on romantic highs that scientists insist can only last with one partner for a probable maximum of thirty months. Like the woman at the well, hoping for lasting happiness through romantic highs just keeps its victims aching for more.
I must hit you between the eyes with something so obvious that most of us miss it: Jesus did not offer her a divine matchmaking service. The frightening thing about most Christians is that we hope to use God as our Fairy Godmother who will grant us what we think we need. You might build an empire by believing in yourself. In time, however, every empire falls. Only by abandoning faith in self can you build for eternity. The secret of an earth-shaking ministry is to by-pass our limitations and tap directly into the power of the One who holds the stars.
In him is all power, all wisdom, all love. Why, then, do we act like those who have no God? Empowered by him, our accomplishments should excel anything godless humanity could contemplate. Jesus said, happy are the poor, the grieving, the meek, the persecuted. For Jesus, the pursuit of earthly happiness is itself an alien concept. The pursuit of happiness is as hollow and pathetic as making drug-induced highs your reason for living.
It is faith, sincerity and humility, not native intelligence or prideful self-sufficiency, that he honors. I do not imagine that all Christian academic institutions have fallen for it, but the temptation hovers over them to focus on training the mind and underplay the fact that correct Bible interpretation is an activity as spiritual as prayer or receiving divine guidance. Any attempt to reduce Bible interpretation to an academic exercise is destined to fail.
It is vital to read the Bible with a view to living it, but not out of legalism or dreary duty but out of a passionate longing to better know God, the Love of your life, and to delight him.
The Lord keeps much of its meaning a closely guarded secret from casual readers because he aches for your love. The Bible is a book with supernatural origins divinely intended to be understood only by people who can tap into the supernatural.
You need a great intellect, however, to truly appreciate great art. Ironically, we live too close to life to be able to see the really big things. Squandering our lives chasing after popularity or money or pleasure are just a few of the possibilities.
Heroes are ordinary people lucky enough to be thrown into situations where almost everything goes wrong and then they refuse to let that stop them. Within every Christian is the power of an eagle to face contrary winds and soar higher the fiercer they blow.
The imperfections of life are our opportunity for glory. For more, see Feel Ugly? Dam-busting, mountain-blasting, Satan-crushing power resides in you. Jettison the dead-weights of doubt and defeatism and wing to the heights you were born for. A lesser god would have stopped at making it an essential power-house. Our Lord even went far beyond making it an exquisite time-piece. His love and ingenuity soared as he fashioned a warm bath of pleasure, delighting and inspiring all humanity.
It forms weather patterns, sculpts clouds, sends leaves twisting and twirling like a ballerina. Everything God does displays the inexhaustible creativity and extravagant generosity of the One who invites and empowers us to imitate him.
And you were made for him. He longs to express his creativity through you. As an instrument and musician together make beautiful music, you and your Lord can unite to create exquisite beauty. What you can do together defies imagination. It is violating her person; stripping her of her decency; invading her private parts. It is denying her the right to appear in public without someone using her for his sexual pleasure or having her physical attributes critically compared with a hundred images of airbrushed sluts distorted beyond what any woman can compete with.
Stealing a look is to use her up, spit her out, and move on to the next victim; treating her with less respect than a blow-up plastic dummy. Her consent is not sought, nor is payment offered. A whore is treated with more dignity. The victim has no more control over her degradation than if she were abducted and reduced to a sex slave. Steal a look and you can never repay the woman you have demeaned and defiled, nor the husband or future husband you have offended.
Through the lens of your eyes photos have developed in your mind and you can never hand over the negatives. Like robbing a woman of her virginity, it can never be returned.
It is accurate to call leering visual rape. For more, see An Innocent Look? To have someone special is so rare for me that I would want us to spend every second focused on each other, not squander the opportunity on a movie. Nevertheless, the existence of movie dates is of immense spiritual significance to me. That charges me with hope. Living, as we do, in an era in which most relatively mindless tasks have been replaced by machines, the majority of us are left with days crammed with activities that demand full concentration.
An envious person torments himself with needless misery. To rise above this degradation is a continual challenge. The more we praise God, however, the more he will praise us. Christians looking for a soft life in this age are like firefighters partying while houses go up in flames. Like want-to-be athletes who think they can avoid the rigor and austerity of training, they will make a laughing stock of themselves on the Big Day.
Those who live as if earthly comfort is their reward are to be pitied. Like couch potatoes squandering their lives, those living the soft life miss the excitement and achievement and fulfillment of extending themselves to the max. They are two-time losers: The stupendous Lord of the Galaxies, the Source of all beauty, feels for you so immensely that it would actually relieve his distress for him to fully bear your torment himself.
You are not alone: The more human heads in your collection of personal kills, the bigger the man you are. Only weak, effeminate, no-hopers would pass up an opportunity to murder a vulnerable person. With this background, if a man became a Christian, he would face nothing short of an identity crisis. To stop headhunting would be as devastating to this manhood and self-image as for a normal man in our society to start wearing high heels and dresses in public.
Even though after his encounter with God he realizes that it is morally right not to murder, he would be repeatedly assaulted by self-accusations of being weak and effeminate if he stops murdering innocents. Because it is the society we have grown up in, however, we have absorbed its values into our personalities as surely as food becomes a part of our bodies.
Much of our society has indoctrinated us to equate masculinity with stubborn selfishness and inflicting emotional pressure upon those we love. For more, see Husband, Head of a Submissive Wife?
Under the Old Testament each of these sins, attracted the death penalty. This does not excuse sin, but it renders us without excuse if we find ourselves hypocritically being more tolerant of some sins than others.
We must remove the log from our own eyes, repenting of our own sins and hypocrisies and lack of love before we have a hope of being remotely Christlike in our attitude towards gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals.
Non-essential trappings weigh it down. We need to keep the Gospel message sleek and lean. To maximize its power-to-weight ratio is not just exciting and highly glorifying to God, it is essential for making Christianity the explosive force for good that it is divinely fashioned to be.
It is like focusing candlelight until it is transformed into a laser beam. Jargon, superstitions and weirdness build up like rust in every expression of Christianity. Many of these attitudes and paraphernalia were always encumbrances, some are relevant to a particular group of people but have been transferred too far afield, and some had a valid function years ago but have passed their expiry date.
For more, see Worldliness: Prized silverware is reserved for special occasions. The fact that it is rarely used hardly means it is of little value. A craftsman will use some tools more than others, simply because they have different functions.
No one in a right relationship with God has a sane reason for feeling inferior to people who are used often. If we seem to be achieving nothing, it is usual to feel like second-hand chewing gum. She does not enter the promised land. She prepares a world she will not see. In old age the years are short and day's long. If you wish to be brothers, drop your weapons. He who has faith knows this truly; let him rejoice. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Whatever you want to do, do it now!
There are only so many tomorrows. Without this mark of holiness, our word will have difficulty in touching the heart of modern man. It risks being vain and sterile. Which of us can escape His mighty hand? From this previously-existing and most true Church, it is very clear that these later heresies, and others which have come into being since then, are counterfeit and novel inventions. But the one who knows how to control the tongue is prepared to resist the attacks of lust.
There is nothing mean in charity, nothing arrogant. Charity knows no schism, does not rebel, does all things in concord. In charity all the elect of God have been made perfect. Where love exists, it works great things. But when it ceases to act, it ceases to exist.
To renounce what one has is a minor thing; but to renounce what one is, that is asking a lot. We have departed from it by pride, disobedience, abuse of the senses, therefore it is needed that we return to it by obedience, contempt of the world, and by taming the desires of the flesh; thus we return to our own country by another road.
By forbidden pleasures we have forfeited the joys of paradise, by penance we must regain them. But God, who has promised pardon to every repentant sinner, has not promised us tomorrow. Therefore we must always dread the final day, which we can never foresee. This very day is a day of truce, a day for conversion.
And yet we refuse to cry over the evil we have done! Not only do we not weep for the sins we have committed, we even add to them. Those holy spirits of heaven have indeed always been spirits. They can only be called angels when they deliver some message. Moreover, those who deliver messages of lesser importance are called angels; and those who proclaim messages of supreme importance are called archangels.
Rightly then, the heart of the just is said to be the altar of God. In the same way, your good works should be the daily nourishment of your hearts. Your bodies are fed with food and your spirits with good works.
In it we see our inner face. From the Scriptures we can learn our spiritual deformities and beauties. And there too we discover the progress we are making and how far we are from perfection. He who is truth says that whoever utters blasphemy against the Holy Spirit will be pardoned neither in this age nor in the age to come. From this sentence, we understand that certain offenses can be forgiven in this age, but certain others in the age to come.
In the beginning, they experience the charms of sweetness; in the middle, the contests of temptation; and in the end, the fullness of perfection. Whence, we preach nothing except what we have received from our forefathers. In all things, therefore, both in the rule of faith in the observance of discipline, let the pattern of antiquity be observed. Remember who is your head and of whose body you are a member. Never forget that you have been rescued from the power of darkness and brought into the light of the Kingdom of God.
They are consecrated priests by the oil of the Holy Spirit, so that beyond the special service of our ministry as priests, all spiritual and mature Christians know that they are a royal race and are sharers in the office of the priesthood.
For this, dearly-beloved, was gained by that confession, which, inspired in the Apostle's heart by God the Father, transcended all the uncertainty of human opinions, and was endued with the firmness of a rock, which no assaults could shake. For throughout the Church, Peter daily says, 'Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God,' and every tongue which confesses the Lord, accepts the instruction his voice conveys. This Faith conquers the devil, and breaks the bonds of his prisoners.
It uproots us from this earth and plants us in heaven, and the gates of Hades cannot prevail against it. For with such solidity is it endued by GOD that the depravity of heretics cannot mar it nor the unbelief of the heathen overcome it. I can do all in Him who strengthens me. His Power is infinite, and if I lean on him, it will be mine. His Wisdom is infinite, and if I look to Him for counsel, I shall not be deceived. His Goodness is infinite, and if my trust is stayed in Him, I shall not be abandoned.
Yet in the midst of this tide of evil, the Virgin Most Merciful rises before our eyes like a rainbow, as the arbiter of peace between God and man. You have taken me from the love of the world and given me patience to suffer.
Now receive my spirit. I belong to Him whom the angels serve. My Mother; into thy blessed trust and special custody, and into the bosom of thy mercy, I this day, and every day, and in the hour of my death, commend my soul and body. To thee I commit all my anxieties and sorrows, my life and the end of my life, that by they most holy intercession, and by thy merits, all my actions may be directed and governed by thy will and that of thy Son.
A soft answer extinguishes the fire of wrath. Hence, the Sovereign Pontiffs, the Councils, and the Fathers have been most careful to reject all novelties or new doctrines on matters of faith which differed from those already received. Plants of this sort cannot grow in a soil cursed by God; they can only take root in that Church where the True Faith is professed God cannot sanction the performance of a miracle except in favour of the true religion; were He to permit it in support of error, He would deceive us.
And are not they fools who seek after happiness in this world, where they will remain only a few days, and expose themselves to the risk of being unhappy in the next, where they must live for eternity? Let us take them some small gift if they are poor, or, at least let us go and wait on them and comfort them.
There can be no greater Lord than God; neither can there be a more ardent lover than He. Let us, then, return thanks for what He has bestowed on us. Who can tell whether, if we had had a larger share of ability or stronger health, we should not have possessed them to our destruction. He who is full, refreshes others. How is it that novelties are introduced which were never even thought of by our predecessors? The Church's foundation is unshakable and firm against assaults of the raging sea.
Waves lash at the Church but do not shatter it. Although the elements of this world constantly beat upon the Church with crashing sounds, the Church possesses the safest harbor of salvation for all in distress. Throw wide the gate of your heart, stand before the sun of the everlasting light.
For this reason Saint Augustine said: It is as if he had said: Charity is not able to sin. Give me then what you promise to give through your Truth. You, O God, are faithful; grant that I may receive my request, so that my joy may be complete.
If you take credit for something that does not belong to you, you will be guilty of theft. How many religious did it blind! How many cloistered religious did it deceive! Money is the 'droppings of birds' that blinded the eyes of Tobit. The devil seizes the divided soul and drags it to hell.
To induce us to follow Him, He gives us Himself as an example and promises us a reward in His kingdom. We are full of words but empty of actions, and therefore are cursed by the Lord, since he himself cursed the fig tree when he found no fruit but only leaves. It is useless for a man to flaunt his knowledge of the law if he undermines its teaching by his actions. In His providence Christ conceals them in a hidden place that they may not shine before others when they might wish to do so.
Yet they are always ready to exchange the quiet of contemplation for the works of mercy as soon as they perceive in their heart the invitation of Christ. Its roots are sunk in the swamp, and its exterior is fair to behold; but inside it is hollow. If a man leans on such a reed, it will snap off and pierce his soul.
Our humble and sincere request to the Spirit for ourselves should be that we may bring the day of Pentecost to fulfillment, insofar as he infuses us with his grace, by using our bodily senses in a perfect manner by keeping the commandments. Likewise we shall request that we may be filled with a keen sense of sorrow and with fiery tongues for confessing the faith so our deserved reward may be to stand in the blazing splendor of the saints and to look upon the triune God. The creator of the heavens obeys a carpenter; the God of eternal glory listens to a poor virgin.
Has anyone ever witnessed anything comparable to this? Let the philosopher no longer disdain from listening to the common laborer; the wise, to the simple; the educated, to the illiterate; a child of a prince, to a peasant. Love in the person who preaches the word of God is like fire in a musket.
If a person were to throw a bullet with his hands, he would hardly make a dent in anything; but if the person takes the same bullet and ignites some gunpowder behind it, it can kill. It is much the same with the word of God. If it is spoken by someone who is filled with the fire of charity — the fire of love of God and neighbor — it will work wonders.
The man who burns with the fire of divine love is a son of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and wherever he goes, he enkindles that flame; he deserves and works with all this strength to inflame all men with the fire of God's love. He thinks only of how he might follow Jesus Christ and imitate him by his prayers, his labors, his sufferings, and by caring always and only for the glory of God and the salvation of souls.
And as to him who neglects it, the fact will soon be observed by his progress. On this the Church was founded; and if anyone departs from this, he neither is, nor any longer ought to be called, a Christian. He cries out, saying: Taking pity on mankind's weakness, and moved by our corruption, he could not stand aside and see death have the mastery over us. He did not want creation to perish and his Father's work in fashioning man to be in vain. He therefore took to himself a body, no different from our own, for he did not wish simply to be in a body or only to be seen.
See yourself as tempted in Him, and see yourself as victorious in Him. He could have kept the devil from Himself; but if he were not tempted he could not teach you how to triumph over temptation. You abound in temporal possessions, but you need things eternal. You listen to the needs of a human beggar, yet yourself are a beggar of God.
What you do with those who beg from you is what God will do with His beggar. You are filled and you are empty. Fill your empty neighbor with your fullness, so that your emptiness may be filled from God's fullness.
You don't have to defend it. It will defend itself. Begin with little ones. Your second task is to put up with the trials and temptations of this world that will be brought on by the change in your life and to persevere to the very end in the midst of these things.
As desires diminish in the soul, charity increases in it; and when it no longer feels any desire, then it possesses perfect charity. The value of it is yourself. Give yourself for it and you shall have it. For He departed, and behold, He is here. If you speak, speak out of love. Work as though everything depended on you. There is no repose where you are seeking it. Search as you like, it is not where you are looking. You are seeking a happy life in the realm of death, and it will not be found there.
How could life be happy where there is no life at all? But you have already borne the pain. What you have not done is feel all you are beyond the pain. Call her to your assistance, for such is the divine Will that she should help in every kind of necessity. Not to seek what is for your own benefit, but what is for the benefit of the one loved, both in body and in soul.
In respect to piety, both are of the same force. No one will contradict any of these, no one, at any rate, who is even moderately versed in matters ecclesiastical. Indeed, were we to try to reject unwritten customs as having no great authority, we would unwittingly injure the gospel in its vitals; or rather, we would reduce the Christian message to a mere term.
Do not stand among sinners, but leap aside. I must also pray, she said, for the conversion of sinners. I asked her many times what she meant by that, but she only smiled. Finally, with outstretched arms and eyes looking up to heaven, she told me she was the Immaculate Conception. Let not her name depart from your lips, never suffer it to leave your heart.
And that you may obtain the assistance of her prayer, neglect not to walk in her footsteps. With her for guide, you shall never go astray; invoking her, you shall never lose heart. Mary was a rose, white for maidenhood, red for love; white in body, red in soul; white in her seeking after virtue, red in treading down vice; white in cleansing her affections, red in mortifying her flesh; white in her love of God, red in compassion for her neighbor.
Think but of Jesus, speak but the name of Jesus, the clouds disperse, and peace descends anew from heaven. Have you fallen into sin? So that you fear death? No obduracy of the soul, no weakness, no coldness of heart can resist this holy name; there is no heart which will not soften and open in tears at this holy name.
It is its own merit, its own reward. Love looks for no cause outside itself, no effect beyond itself. Its profit lies in the practice. Of all the movements, sensations and feelings of the soul, love is the only one in which the creature can respond to the Creator and make some sort of similar return however unequal though it be. For when God loves, all he desires is to be loved in return. The sole purpose of his love is to be loved, int he knowledge that those who love him are made happy by their love of him.
If you greet her, she will answer you right away and converse with you! He praised the name of Jesus 'at all times,' but never more than when 'bearing witness to his faith. Whenever the divine favor chooses someone to receive a special grace, or to accept a lofty vocation, God adorns the person chosen with all the gifts of the Spirit needed to fulfill the task at hand. This general rule is especially verified in the case of Saint Joseph, the foster-father of our Lord, and the husband of the Queen of our world, enthroned above the angels.
Ask your most holy bride, the Virgin Mary, to look kindly upon us, since she is the mother of him who with the Father and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns eternally. God who dwells in inaccessible light and eternal glory comes to us in the face of Christ and the activity of the Holy Spirit. Divine life is therefore also our life. The heart of the Christian life is to be united with the God of Jesus Christ by means of communion with one another.
No adult is in state of salvation unless he has faithful understanding in his mind, loving compassion in his heart, and enduring perseverance in his actions. Francis saw Beauty itself, and through His vestiges imprinted on creation he followed his Beloved everywhere, making from all things a ladder by which he could climb up and embrace Him who is utterly desirable.
If you desire to know … ask grace, not instruction; desire, not understanding; the groaning of prayer, not diligent reading; the Spouse, not the teacher; God, not man; darkness not clarity; not light, but fire that totally inflames and carries us into God by ecstatic unctions and burning affections. You find the same thing in the Order of Saint Francis; in this way God reveals that it did not come about through human calculations but through Christ. What we ourselves cannot bear let us bear with the help of Christ.
For He is all-powerful, and He tells us: The days of anguish and of tribulation have overtaken us; if God so wills, "let us die for the holy laws of our fathers," so that we may deserve to obtain an eternal inheritance with them. Lay down your arms, for we are told in Scripture not to render evil for good but to overcome evil by good. I would like an abundance of peace. I would like full vessels of charity. I would like rich treasures of mercy. I would like cheerfulness to preside over all.
I would like Jesus to be present. I would like the three Marys of illustrious renown to be with us. I would like the friends of Heaven to be gathered around us from all parts. I would like myself to be a rent payer to the Lord; that I should suffer distress, that he would bestow a good blessing upon me. I would like a great lake of beer for the King of Kings. I would like to be watching Heaven's family drinking it through all eternity.
Rejoice, because you have escaped the various dangers and shipwrecks of the stormy world. Rejoice because you have reached the quiet and safe anchorage of a secret harbor.
Many wish to come into this port, and many make great efforts to do so, yet do not achieve it. Indeed many, after reaching it, have been thrust out, since it was not granted them from above.
Thus the divine fire works in the soul: God holds the soul in the fire until its every imperfection is burnt away and it is brought to perfection, as it were to the purity of twenty-four carats, each soul however according to its own degree. When the soul has been purified it stays wholly in God, having nothing of self in it; its being is in God who has led this cleansed soul to Himself; it can suffer no more for nothing is left in it to be burnt away; were it held in the fire when it has thus been cleansed, it would feel no pain.
Rather the fire of divine love would be to it like eternal life and in no way contrary to it. Cry out with a hundred thousand tongues. I see that the world is rotten because of silence. Let the truth be your delight These are the ones who fatten their souls, enlarging them in the abyss of my charity.
Then I become their spiritual provider. The Holy Spirit becomes their servant. For you are a fire ever burning and never consumed, which itself consumes all the selfish love that fills my being. Yes, you are a fire that takes away the coldness, illuminates the mind with its light, and causes me to know your truth.
And I know that you are beauty and wisdom itself. The food of angels, you gave yourself to man in the fire of your love. Keep the stove tightly shut so that it will not lose its heat and grow cold.
In other words, avoid distractions as well as you can. Stay quiet with God. Do not spend your time in useless chatter. If you do not, people will notice that you say one thing, but live otherwise, and your words will bring only cynical laughter and a derisive shake of the head. In meditation we find the strength to bring Christ to birth in ourselves and in other men. Go forth without fear, for he who created you has made you holy, has always protected you, and loves you as a mother.
Blessed be you, my God, for having created me. If you are imperfect, go often to Communion that you may amend your faults. He will not fail to reproach me if I begin to relax; each day He will counsel me and give me new strength; He will instruct, console, and encourage me and give me all the graces for which I pray.
What I have the Lord gave me, it has been taken away by Him. It is not a lawsuit or a thief that has ruined you or a certain person that has slandered you; if your child dies it is not by accident or wrong treatment, but because God, to whom all belongs, has not wished you to keep it longer. A strange and unhappy slavery is that of a man who seeks to please other men.
I vow never to do anything nor to leave anything undone because of what people think. This will set up in me a great interior peace. If through human weakness we fail, we must always without delay arise again by means of holy penance, and give our attention to leading a good life and to dying a holy death.
May the Father of all mercy, the Son by his holy passion, and the Holy Spirit, source of peace, sweetness and love, fill us with their consolation. We accept nothing outside this evangelical and apostolic teaching.
There was no heretic, no Jew, no schismatic, but the Catholic Faith, as first delivered to us by you, the successor of the apostles, is kept unshaken We, indeed, are, as I have said, chained to the Chair of Saint Peter; for although Rome is great and known afar, it is great and honored with us only by this Chair.
You Fidus said that they ought not to be baptized within the second or third day after their birth, that the old law of circumcision must be taken into consideration, and that you did not think that one should be baptized and sanctified within the eighth day after his birth. In our council it seemed to us far otherwise.
No one agreed to the course which you thought should be taken. Rather, we all judge that the mercy and grace of God ought to be denied to no man born. God is one and Christ is one, and his Church is one; one is the faith, and one is the people cemented together by harmony into the strong unity of a body If we are the heirs of Christ, let us abide in the peace of Christ; if we are the sons of God, let us be lovers of peace.
Inspire the hearts of your people with your word and your teaching. You called us to preach the Gospel of your Christ and to encourage them to lives and works pleasing to you.
This is a Mystery that surpasses any discription or explanation. He undertook to help the descendants of Abraham, fashioning a body for himself from a woman and sharing our flesh and blood, to enable us to see in him not only God, but also, by reason of this union, a man like ourselves. It is held, therefore, that there is in Emmanuel two entities, divinity and humanity. Yet our Lord Jesus Christ is nonetheless one, the one true Son, both God and man; not a defied man on the same footing as those who share the divine nature by grace, but true God who for our sake appeared in human form.
For just as the Bread of the Eucharist after the invocation of the Holy Spirit is simple bread no longer, but the Body of Christ, so also this holy ointment is no longer plain ointment, nor, so to speak, common, after the invocation. Rather, it is the gracious gift of Christ; and it is made fit for the imparting of His Godhead by the coming of the Holy Spirit. This ointment is symbolically applied to your forehead and to your other senses; and while your body is anointed with the visible ointment, your soul is sanctified by the holy and life-creating Spirit.
After holy Baptism and the Mystical Chrism, having put on the full suit of armor of the Holy Spirit, you are to withstand the power of the adversary, and defeat him, saying, 'I am able to do all things in Christ, Who strengthens me. This may give you some idea of my daily work. Picture to yourself a collection of huts with lepers.
No doctor; in fact, as there is no cure, there seems no place for a doctor's skill. We must either command them or be enslaved by them. It is better to be a hammer than an anvil. But it doesn't always stay that way. Whoever belongs to Christ must go the whole way with him. He must mature to adulthood: He must one day or other walk the way of the cross to Gethsemane and Golgotha. It needs what we are. Everything else we do is a means to an end.
But love is an end already, since God is love. And there is no profession which cannot be practiced by a woman. All that we do is a means to an end, but love is an end in itself, because God is love. The souls that have reached this point are truly the heart of the Church. I would do that.
At the end of the service, I was certain that I had been heard. But what this carrying of the cross was to consist in, that I did not yet know. If you esteem my Religion treason, then I am guilty; as for the other treason, I never committed any, God is my judge. The expense is reckoned, the enterprise is begun; it is of God, it cannot be withstood.
So the faith was planted; so it must be restored. And bears it for me! Only let him love me in the Lord, with a chaste, marital affection, so that we, in the same way, might hope for the reward of eternal life from him who has sanctified the law of marriage.
We know that he gives us every grace, every abundant grace; and though we are so weak of ourselves, this grace is able to carry us through every obstacle and difficulty. It is the gift He loves most. God is like a looking glass in which souls see each other.
The more we are united to Him by love, the nearer we are to those who belong to Him. Jesus will never leave you or forsake you. I learned that by bitter experience. He will give you the heavenly and divine seal which makes the devil tremble; He will arm you for the fight; He will give you strength.
Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy. Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit, and raises man to Heaven. The holy apostles handed down some things in the scriptures, other things in tradition. But those who say that there was a time when the Son or the Holy Spirit was not, or was made out of nothing or of another substance or essence, who say the Son of God or the Holy Spirit is liable to change or to becoming different, these people the Catholic and Apostolic Church, your Mother and ours, anathematizes; and again we anathematize those who do not confess the resurrection of the dead, and all heresies which are not consistent with this, the true faith.
It is for this that I am a bishop, and not to write books, still less to pay court to the great, or to waste my time among the rich. Indeed he gives more than what we ask of Him. Faithfulness to the inspirations of the Holy Spirit — that is the shortest route. These gifts are merely ornaments of the soul, but constitute neither its essence nor its perfection. My sanctity and perfection consist in the close union of my will with the will of God.
Inflame my heart with love for You, that my spirit may not grow weary amidst the storms, the sufferings and the trials. And when the Last Day comes, we shall be judged from this, and on this basis we shall receive the eternal verdict.
It unites the creature with the Creator. Neither does it depend on arms and human industries, but on Jesus alone. A sinner can fast, pray, weep, mortify his flesh. But this he cannot do: We should often visit the churches, and venerate and reverence all ecclesiastics on account of their office, and because they distribute the Sacred Body and Blood of Christ, which they offer in sacrifice, receive themselves, and administer to others.
And let everyone know and hold for certain that we cannot be saved except through the sacred Words and the Precious Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which priests preach, announce, and distribute, and of which they are the sole ministers. Let us have charity and humility. Let us give alms because these cleanse our souls from the stains of sin. Men lose all the material things they leave behind them in this world, but they carry with them the reward of their charity and the alms they give.
For these they will receive from the Lord the reward and recompense they deserve. Then ask yourself if you would have any of this without God's permission and aid? Give credit where credit is due; praise and thank Him, not yourself. If God can work through me, he can work through anyone. What they do, I do before the Eucharistic God. Where there is patience and humility, there is neither anger nor vexation.
Where there is poverty and joy, there is neither greed nor avarice. Where there is peace and meditation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt. Peace is a precious treasure to be sought with great zeal. You are well aware that our sins arouse God's anger. You must change your life, therefore, so that God in his mercy will pardon you. What we conceal from men is known to God. Be converted, then, with a sincere heart. Live your life that you may receive the blessing of the Lord. Then the peace of God our Father will be with you always.
Inflamed with love for us, he came down from heaven to redeem us. For our sake he endured every torment of body and soul and shrank from no bodily pain. He himself gave us an example of perfect patience and love. We, then, are to be patient in adversity. Then same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day.
Either He will shield you from suffering or he will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace then and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations. The workman loves not that his work should be despised in his presence. Now God is present everywhere, and every person is His work. Enrich yourselves with these treasures, which nobody can take away from you and which cannot be destroyed. I am accustomed to say that we will not spend Lent well unless we are determined to make the most of it.
Let us, therefore, spend this Lent as if it were our last, and we will make it well. Listen to the sermons, because holy words are pearls; they are ships of infinite mercy — the true ocean of the East. Faith points out the way to the land of promise as a pillar of fire hope feeds us with its manna of sweetness, but charity actually introduces us into the Promised Land. As soon as you feel the slightest resentment, gather together your powers, not hastily or impetuously, but gently and seriously.
For as in some law courts, the criers make more noise in their efforts to preserve quiet than those they seek to still, so, if we are impetuous in our attempts to restrain our anger, we cause greater discomposure in our hearts than before; and once thrown off its balance, the heart is no longer its own master. All those who think to learn in any other way deceive themselves. Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections but instantly set about remedying them — every day begin the task anew.
If you find that you have wandered away from the shelter of God, lead your heart back to Him quietly and simply. Does anyone fail to see that the world is an unjust judge, gracious and well disposed to its own children but harsh and rigorous towards the children of God?
Do as much as you can as well as you can. Strive to see God in all things without exception, and consent to His will joyously. Do everything for God, uniting yourself to him in word and deed. Walk very simply with the Cross of the Lord and be at peace with yourself. I conscientiously made the rounds of the villages. I bathed in the sacred waters all the children who had not yet been baptized.
This means that I have purified a very large number of children so young that, as the saying goes, they could not tell their right hand from their left. The older children would not let me say my Office or eat or sleep until I taught them one prayer or another. Then I began to understand: I want to do God's Holy Will, not my own!
She will never let herself be outdone in love, but will ever remain supreme. If you are in danger, she will hasten to free you. If you are troubled, she will console you. If you are sick, she will bring you relief. If you are in need, she will help you.
Images: stop dating the church quotes
In Casablanca I am master of my fate! I also hope more donations will be coming your way.
It just turned out that, as would be expected, insulting one member of the Trinity insults all three. Well, I'm also a human being.
She has stop dating the church quotes herself above the human race, she has made herself the executor over life and death. And yet we refuse to cry over the evil we have done! To see Christ in them! Today they're the "Honored Dead". There is a meaning and purpose to life. It only comes through prolonged experience with God.