Friday, March 30, 2012

Light your Inner Candle

"It seems a natural thing to do in loss and grief, to light even a single candle.

I had done so many times throughout the year.

A miraculous glow spreads around that flame.

It may shine in a chapel, where people leave their silent prayers burning at the feet of the saint, or simply on a windowsill at home.

This must be an old, old desire in us--a necessity in us--to see the surprising power in one small flame of light to dispel the dark."

—Barbara Helen Berger from AN OFFERING OF FLAMES: Lighting a candle, we light the world.

Regardless of where you are in your station in this life, we all must continue to dispel the dark in our lives by seeking the positive - the light - continually.

There is not a soul out there who cannot pinpoint some blessing and positive light in their current life!

The problem is we tend to look past those blessings and focus on what we do not have or on our shortcomings instead!

Take inventory of your blessings right now and do not stop the list until you have at least five blessings listed!

Focus only on these..these are the lights that dispel the darkness in our lives!  And we can always add to this list!

Stay Strong!!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

What are the rules???

"We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."
  - The Buddha

Imagine being invited to participate in a game whereby you don't know the duration of this game.

Not only that, you don't know the exact rules of the game nor do you know the way to win said game or by what criteria you will be judged at the end of the game to know if you won of lost!

The only way to figure out the rules is to either listen to people who are also playing the game and have been playing it longer than you, or just gather information and decide what rules to follow.

So you play this game based on your own judgement of what the rules of the game are and ONLY AFTER the game is over do you find out if you played the game correctly!

Sounds crazy but this is exactly how life works, isn't it?

The rules of this life game are really up to us to choose to follow based on our beliefs, goals, other's input, and data we process.

And only after we play the game out completely will we realize whether or not we played by the right rules.

So choose wisely the rules you want to follow and craft your life around the right principles!

Everyone is playing this same game along side us and operating under different rules and strategies, do not be swayed and follow the wrong ones that will not bring you joy or happiness!

Have faith in the right path and trust you will be ok when the game is finally over!

Stay Strong!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Take a shot today!!

"I have accepted fear as a part of life -specifically the fear of change.
I have gone ahead despite the pounding in the heart that says: turn back."

   - Erica Jong

Fear is a bully!!!!

Make a small list of things today that you would like to do someday if for the fact that they terrify you!

So much of our potential is stuck in the barn because of useless  fear!!

If we could overcome that debilitating fear of the unknown, the fear to take the first step, fear of rejection, failure, success, etc., we would not believe what we could accomplish!!

We need to realize that most of our fears are unfounded, we put more weight and emphasis on the potential failures than the rest of the world does and if we can see that it does not matter we would shock ourselves and the world with what we could do!

Make the list today, small or large, and vow to overcome one of them asap!!!

Overcoming fear and doing it is contagious and will change your life!! 

Stay Strong!!!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Afflicting the Comfortable!

"Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted according to the graces we have received and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work."

- Mother Teresa

I just recently read a passage from a great book by Matthew Kelly that quoted Dorothy Day and the gist of the message was that it is true that Jesus came to comfort the afflicted, but he also came to afflict the comfortable!

It is an interesting quote and it really calls on all of us who are blessed with good health, safety, jobs, family and loved ones who care for us, and nice, comfortable lives, to continue on the path that Jesus set forth - to assist, aid, inspire and help save those in need! In need of love, inspiration, mercy, hope, faith, food, clothing, a shoulder to lean on, an ear to listen, as well as dignity, and compassion.

We do not need to be Mother Teresa or Jesus to take on this role! 
We have the ability and power to make change this very second!!!

Do not become too comfortable in our blessed lives to fulfill our responsibilies to our fellow brothers and sisters.

Take that step today.

Stay Strong!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Beautiful Thought on "Why??"

Your heavenly Father knows. (Matthew 6:32)

A visitor at a school for the deaf was writing questions on the board for the children.

Soon he wrote this sentence:

"Why has God made me able to hear and speak, and made you deaf?"

The shocking sentence hit the children like a cruel slap on the face.

They sat paralyzed, pondering the dreadful word "Why?"

And then a little girl arose.

With her lip trembling and her eyes swimming with tears, she walked straight to the board. Picking up the chalk, she wrote with a steady hand these precious words:

"Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure" (Matt. 11:26).

What a reply!

It reaches up and claims an eternal truth upon with the most mature believer, and even the youngest child of God, may securely rest – the truth that God is your Father.

Can you state that truth with full assurance and faith?

Once you do, your dove of faith will no longer wander the skies in restless flight but will settle forever in its eternal resting place of peace: your Father!

I still believe that a day of understanding will come for each of us, however far away it may be.

We will understand as we see the tragedies that today darken and dampen the presence of heaven for us take their proper place in God's great plan – a plan so overwhelming, magnificent, and joyful, we will laugh with wonder and delight.

----Arthur Christopher Bacon

"Chance has not brought this ill to me;

It's God own hand, so let it be,

For He sees what I cannot see.

There is a purpose for each pain,

And He one day will make it plain

That earthly loss is heavenly gain.

Like as a piece of tapestry

Viewed from the back appears to be

Only threads tangled hopelessly;

But in the front a picture fair

Rewards the worker for his care,

Proving his skill and patience rare.

You are the Workman, I the frame.

Lord, for the glory of Your name,

Perfect Your image on the same."

Many blessings, Stay Strong!

---Text from Streams in the Desert devotional readings by L. B. Cowman

Thank you EP!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Guard your thoughts closely!!

"What we think, we become.
All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world."
   - The Buddha

What we choose to let control our thoughts and minds is what ultimately decides our moods and attitudes!

WE can control what we focus on daily and filter what we let our minds digest and spend time on!

Be diligent and try this today as an experiment.  When you feel down today, or anxious or fearful or worried, consciously halt that thought by thinking of something pleasant. Change to envisioning the better future - focus and visualize what you WANT not what you have today and take note of how often negative thoughts try to creep into our minds!!

Thought by thought we can stop this pattern of negative thoughts and attitudes!!

Start by being aware that it all starts with what we ALLOW to have an audience in our minds.

Stay Strong!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

One more thought before you shove off....

"Disturb us, O Lord when we are too well-pleased with ourselves, when our dreams have come true because we dreamed too little, because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, O Lord when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the water of life when, having fallen in love with time, we have ceased to dream of eternity and in our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of Heaven to grow dim.

Stir us, O Lord to dare more boldly, to venture into wider seas where storms show Thy mastery, where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.

In the name of Him who pushed back the horizons of our hopes and invited the brave to follow.


―Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu adapted from an original prayer by Sir Francis Drake

One more thought before you shove off....

"Disturb us, O Lord when we are too well-pleased with ourselves, when our dreams have come true because we dreamed too little, because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, O Lord when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the water of life when, having fallen in love with time, we have ceased to dream of eternity and in our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of Heaven to grow dim.

Stir us, O Lord to dare more boldly, to venture into wider seas where storms show Thy mastery, where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.

In the name of Him who pushed back the horizons of our hopes and invited the brave to follow.


―Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu adapted from an original prayer by Sir Francis Drake

Gifts aren't just for Christmas season!

"Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing."
- Mother Teresa

There are so many opportunities during our busy day to change the mood of just about anyone we come into contact with, to inspire and encourage someone along their path and journey, to change the direction of their day to the positive!

Mother Teresa had it right. A smile alone to another person is a tremendous gift! 

It does not cost a penny and it really can be effortless if we truly think about it!  It certainly goes a lot further than a scowl does.

Think about Mother Teresa's quote today as we battle with our seemingly insurmountable daily challenges. 

Do not let worry or fear become your guide! Replace it with Faith and Hope and Courage!!

We all have the choice as to which we will honor!  It is really just a matter of choosing and doing!!

Just like a smile versus a frown!

Stay Strong

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A life of Value ?

"Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value."
   - Albert Einstein

What a true and insightful quote, but what do you expect from a genius anyway?? Lol.

We are all chasing that pot of gold and pursuing things that we may not really understand why we are doing so and the effect it has on out lives and those close to us.

We are trying so earnestly to become men and women of success, yet at the same time we tend to abandon all that is truly of value in our lives in this pursuit.

In my Dad's last days on this earth, I got such joy amidst the sadness in seeing that my Dad finally realized his true value on this earth, his deep impact and the people he truly affected and touched just by being a man of  integrity, understanding and love - a man of value.

He was also very successful as a man by the earthly measurements, but there is no comparison to what he felt and realized as his value was recognized by the outpouring of love he witnessed, as opposed to his material possessions and bank account statements.

There is nothing wrong with having both things, don't get me wrong, but looking back as we lay dying in our beds many many years from now, would we trade all we have materially for that realization that we added real value to our friends, family and the world?  That we had that impact on our brothers and sisters lives??

Think about that as you go about your goals and pursuits and your days.  It is quite a question to have answered.

Stay Strong!!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Success is all relative..... And inevitable!!

"To leave the world a bit better ... to know that one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

This amazingly true and famous quote by Emerson strikes on the theme of our true purpose here on this earth - the assist and inspire each other on our journey together!!!

Ask yourself this question:

Who breathes easier knowing you are in this world, has their back, is always there for them when they need a pick me up or words and deeds of encouragement?

We want that list to be the longest list of anything we ever tally!!

If you don't have an answer or a list, the good news is you can start a fresh list today!!!!

If you have a list, that is fantastic but we cannot stop there....add to that list daily!!!!  Grow it like wild fire!!  Make it your mission!!

Our present and our future is up to us!! 

Boldly claim it and take action - Today!!

God bless and Stay Strong!!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Right, TERRIFIC Path

"I believe that everything happens for a reason.

People change so that you can learn to let go.

Things go wrong so that you appreciate them when they're right.

Sometimes good things fall apart just so better things can fall together"

-- Anonymous

Believe that you are on the right path and in exactly the spot you are meant to be at this very moment.

Because you are!

Whether you are flying high on top of the world or you are in a major crisis in your life, it is all meant to be and all we can do is soldier through it all!!!

The true key to getting through crisis is to NEVER lose sight of the fact that whatever your issues may be they too shall pass!!

Never lose Hope!!  As long as you still have an ounce of Hope left in your body, you will weather the storm and be better, stronger, and wiser for it!

Never lose the Faith that from adversity comes wisdom and strength! 

This too shall are doing exactly what is intended so Trust it!!!

And never forget that you are never alone....even if you feel that way all the time - it is not true!!

There is always someone out there thinking about you, caring about you, and/or praying for you!  You may not see it or be aware of it, but it is happening!!

Keep your head up and hopes high and stay on your path!!

Stay Strong!!!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Thanksgiving - it ain't just for Turkeys!

"I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new."
   - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Barry K sang it and he is right - We can't do it alone! 

We need each other to battle life's daily fights and to get to where we are heading!!!

Remember that when you go about your gyrations today...somebody needs your push, your words of encouragement, your prodding, your comfort, your strength, your validation - your Inspiration!!!!  

It can be as simple as a conversation, a text, an email , a phone call or a smile and a pat on the back!!

You want some power? 

You already possess the most extraordinary power available today!! 

Put it to good use and do not lay your head on your pillow tonight, and every night going forward for that matter, until you can say you did one small deed to inspire or encourage one of your brethren or sisters in some manner during the day!!

Give Thanks for your many, many they can be fleeting and sadly taken for granted otherwise!!!

Do not let that happen to you!  Go on the offensive today!!!

Stay Strong!!!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Our Purpose? To inspire each other...

"The Catholic lifestyle, when it is authentically presented and embraced, promotes the integration of every aspect of our daily lives and every aspect of the human person.

And as you journey toward your destiny,  God intertwines your talents with the needs of others to allow you the privilege of touching them, serving them, and inspiring them as they make their own journey."

--Matthew Kelly
"Rediscover Catholicism"

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Poll: Despite it all, the World is getting Happier!


Obstacles? All are welcomed....

"Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven't half the strength you think they have."
- Norman Vincent Peale

There is nothing more exhilarating than facing a true challenge or obstacle and overcoming them!!!

Hurdles, challenges, and obstacles are inevitable in life and we cannot avoid them, so we may as well embrace them and focus on the solutions. 

Take anything that stands in your way to joy, happiness, and fulfillment head on and tackle them with strength, faith and courage!

It is true, you ARE much stronger than you think and there is no challenge on this earth that you cannot overcome!

Stay Strong!!