I Do Not Tweet

cardinals

By Charlie Johnston

I will post regularly for the next few days, as I go into the mountains this afternoon for a retreat. Yes, I have internet access there. A few things quickly:

A friend who has a website today notified me that one of their readers had contacted them with a concern about someone I am following on my Twitter account. That came as an enormous surprise to me, because I was not aware I had a Twitter account. But I followed the link – and sure enough, there it was. Problem was, I could not log on. I tried all five of the various passwords I use and none worked. Thankfully, however this was done, it used my actual email address, so I was able to set up a new password to get on. To my greater surprise, I discovered I have five followers and am following 37 people. One of those was tagged as “Shemale.” Fortunately, I was able to unfollow her. The rest are people I actually know or can see some connection to.

I am not interested in Twitter. I really don’t like the idea of trying to communicate in sound bites. I want to delete the account entirely, but can’t find the place to do that. If someone here who knows how that works could send me an email, I would much appreciate it. Second, I am worried about how it got created in the first place, using my actual email. Don’t they have to have a password to confirm it? Have I been hacked or can you just set up an account with an email but without the corresponding password? It has mildly irritated me to see, in some publications, myself being cited occasionally as saying things I have never said and do not believe…but I was in media long enough to know that comes with the territory. It incenses – and alarms – me to think that someone could set up an account pretending to be me that is NOT me. I am puzzled, because it does not seem overly malicious. As I said, most of the people it shows me to be following are actually people I know. But how do I protect against this sort of thing? If someone has some tech savvy out there, I sure would appreciate you dropping me an email giving me some tips on 1) how to completely eliminate the existing account and 2) how to protect against such things in the future.

*********

We will be having another of our “Go Forth” prayer meetings in Arvada, Colorado on Saturday, Jan. 31 at 6:30 p.m. If any of you would like details and to attend, drop me an email at chrljhnstn@gmail.com and I will give you details. I know I struggle sometime to keep up with emails, but if you head it “Prayer Meeting” I will prioritize it and send you info right away (well, beginning tomorrow).

*********

And now for a few links I have found worthy of consideration in the last week…

Elizabeth Scalia over at Patheos sometimes has some stuff that does not much interest me much, but often she hits it out of the park. I think she laid the groundwork for some important conversation in this piece.

If you are making vacation plans, this secular piece on the 10 most dangerous places in the world to be a Christian might be helpful to you.

This piece on the execution and the ongoing genocide against Christians in swaths of North Africa and across the Middle East is over a month old. Seems it took the murder of a bunch of western cartoonists to even get the west to officially notice – and officials are still trying to explain away why we need to “understand” the savages on rampage rather than confront and defeat them.

Cardinal Raymond Burke did a marvelous interview on the need for manly virtues to be re-ignited in the Church. I am coming to think his appointment to head the Knights of Malta may ultimately come to be seen as an inspired move at just the right time, whether the reasons for it were right or not. He speaks to the virtues we need.

As a convert myself, I could relate to much in this humorous piece about the 10 Things not to Say to a Catholic Convert. When I was going through my conversion, quietly I hoped, it annoyed me to no end when people asked me if I was getting re-married. At a meeting with the then minority leader of the Illinois House, he said with a sly smile that he had heard I was in RCIA classes in his town. I irritably told him I was not getting married. In honest astonishment, he said, “Oh, Charlie, I know you would not do something like this for anything but the most profound intellectual and spiritual reasons.” He was actually hurt that I would have thought otherwise of him. He made a great friend and ally that day.

Okay, this should keep you busy until I get into the mountains. Catch you later!

 

About charliej373

Charlie Johnston is a former newspaper editor, radio talk show host and political consultant. From Feb. 11, 2011 to Aug. 21, 2012, he walked 3,200 miles across the country, sleeping in the woods, meeting people and praying as he went. He has received prophetic visitation all his life, which he has vetted through a trio of priests over the last 20 years, and now speaks publicly about on this site. Yet he emphasizes that we find God most surely through the ordinary, doing the little things we should with faith and fidelity. Hence the name, The Next Right Step. The visitations inform his work, but are not the focus of it. He lives in the Archdiocese of Denver in the United States.
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72 Responses to I Do Not Tweet

  1. Debra says:

    Ah, the enemy never sleeps. I think someone is trying to discredit you, Charlie. We all gave up Tweeting ages ago, though I have never figured out how to close my account either. We are all keeping you in prayer! All the best. Debra

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      I think I have figured out what happened. I think I was hacked by someone who figured out my password for the email account – so I have changed it to something I have not used before. I hope that will end it, but I would rather just have the account removed entirely. If any of you see anything else weird ever pop up, PLEASE let me know right away. I use email, Facebook, and do have an account on Linked In that I almost never use. Obviously I have the WordPress account and a Gravatar Account I am pretty sure that is all social media accounts I am linked to. But I do have a few cyberstalkers that you (fortunately) never see. In the end, nothing has any power over any of us that God does not allow – but sometimes it can be aggravating.

      Once a woman I was dating accused me, in public, of having an affair with a very homely bartender. She was a little tipsy, so I tried to defuse it and was patient, When she persisted, I finally burst out with, “For crying out loud, I can live with you accusing me of cheating,,,but I will not tolerate your accusing me of having such poor taste!”

      Liked by 2 people

      • CrewDog says:

        In the Air Force the A-10 Warthog is considered to be an “homely” airplane and the pilots flying them have adopted the motto “Go Ugly Early” ………….. thus avoiding the worry of “Midnight Minimums” 😉
        GOD BLESS US ……………. EVERYONE!!

        Like

      • Ryan says:

        Hi Charlie, I casually use Twitter. I think you’re right about your email account being hacked. I would imagine that the perpetrator gained access to your account, then used your contacts from that account for illicit Tweeting purposes. That would explain why you know of the people you’re “following”. Sometimes people set up accounts specifically for spam reasons to act as “bots” to send out solicitations, scams etc…

        It might be helpful for you to actually use the account and link back to your blog whenever you post. To my knowledge, taking ownership of the account, is the only way to fight back against those that would impersonate you. Also, it’s obviously another way to get your message out to a ton of people(if it fits your mission).

        Aside from your Twitter troubles, I never thanked you for responding to my email awhile back, so I’ll take the opportunity now…Thanks and God Bless!

        Like

        • charliej373 says:

          Thanks Ryan, I may consider that. The only thing is that I am up to my ears in work on this right now…while I am glad to use any means to help spread the message, I don’t want anything else that is going to send more waves of work at me. Any advice or counsel on that?

          Like

      • Judy says:

        Talking about conversion, have you all seen the conversion story of Char Vance? “No phones in Medjugorje ” (I probably spelled that wrong). She was looking at Catholicism from the eyes of a Protestant, and she was a weak Protestant at that. It is so, so funny.
        I return to it at least once a year. And, yes, there are miracles. She has at least 2 others out which are also very, very funny. Once my aunt and uncle were visiting and I decided to put it on. They laughed so hard that they wanted to borrow it for the next time they had company over. There is something on youtube, but it is not as funny as the CD……Louis Saia’s story is also inspiring and funny. However, it is hard to find his tape. He was a lapsed Catholic and his story is quite amazing. The actual result of the legal battles he fought was published in Business Week. But the most awesome part was happening behind the scenes. Louis Saia’s trucking company has a huge picture of Saint Michael painted on all his trucks. He is based in Louisiana.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. SteveBC says:

    Charlie, indeed that is very strange. Are you a sleepwalker? 🙂

    Here are Twitter’s instructions for deactivating an account, which will delete all data after 30 days. Note the final section on changing your email first to allow you to resurrect this account later if you wish.
    https://support.twitter.com/articles/15358-deactivating-your-account

    I suggest that you do what I have done with a Twitter account, and that is not to deactivate it but make it unused and private. I deleted all the followings and followers, checked the settings to make sure they were as I wanted them to be, and then I placed the account status to Private or locked, so that it could not be accessed by anyone even searching for it. Doing this reserves the account permanently to you so that someone cannot later resurrect it for malicious purposes without knowing your username and password. Once you do this, you can (as far as I can tell) ignore it forever. In your case I would simply check it every 12 months to verify no followings or followers and that the account is still Private.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Mary-Louise says:

    Charlie, have you tried the support people at Twitter?
    https://support.twitter.com/articles/185703#
    https://support.twitter.com/forms/signin

    Like

  4. anne ovari says:

    Praying that your time in the mountains will renew you,bring you peace and refresh your soul.God bless you Charlie and everyone here who reads and comments.Fiat!

    Like

  5. vkmir3 says:

    I found this link at Twitter.com for deactivating your account, Charlie. https://support.twitter.com/articles/15358-deactivating-your-account

    I hope this helps.
    Vicki

    Like

  6. Just had to quickly say that I love the photo you used for this post. Perfect. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • charliej373 says:

      As soon as I saw it, I thought, Yeah…that’s the ticket.

      Like

      • Judy says:

        Yes, I thought it was a great photo as well.

        Like

      • DanSouthChicago says:

        I like the picture, as well. However, having spent some time at Wrigley, I also react differently to those birds – heh heh. May you be rested and revitalized by our Lord! Thank you for your work. God bless, Dan

        Like

        • charliej373 says:

          Ha Dan! I lived in Belleville, Illinois for six years, maybe 15 miles from the Arch in St. Louis. The first time I went to a Cardinals game it was with the Cubs. As we waited for the game to start I was chatting with a fellow next to me. Once it started, when one of the Cubs hit a double, I jumped up and cheer. Then I turned to me new friend and told him I meant no harm, but I had lived most of my life in Chicago and was a diehard Cubs fan. He chuckled and said, “Ah, we don’t mind…as long as you’re not a Mets fan.” I laughed in astonishment and told him that is exactly how we Cub fans feel – then we chatted about all the ways the Mets are miserable excuses for a team and human beings!

          I love the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry. It is not bitter like the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry, but more like two brawling cousins competing against each other. I was in Belleville in 2002 when Cardinal pitcher Darryl Kile died in his sleep before a game on the road. Did you know all the Cardinal fans I knew, stunned by it, were glad that, if it had to be on the road, it was in Chicago. If you have to suffer a tragedy, it is good to be among family.

          Like

        • Mick says:

          Go Cubbies!

          Like

    • MMBev says:

      I spent a long time gazing at the picture, and it seems that I am not the only one who loves it. I have never seen a cardinal, although my daughter-in-law, who lived in Michigan is familiar with them. Richard is down in the hospital for his two week or so stint, and when he comes back, I am hoping that he can make it into a screen saver for me.

      I hope your retreat brings many blessings as well as the rest you so dearly need–and consolation to your heart.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Another social media question: How on earth did I acquire about 50 contacts on Facebook and 1 on Skype that I never heard of? I haven’t figured out how to clear them from my “People” group. Any info would be appreciated. Also, Charlie, how do I change my username for my comments?
    Thanks.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      This one I know, Nancy. I originally started my Facebook Account as a tool for mobilizing college students in campaigns…so I used to just automatically approve anyone who requested – because I didn’t actually know most of the people who sent me a friend request. Most hoped to make a connection with a political insider. That was fine with me, as the larger the pool I had to mobilize, the better it worked. But about a year and a half ago I had to become more careful…as far more “Russian Brides” and “Argentine Princesses” started popping up. To get rid of someone, pull up their profile. Click on the arrow at the icon near the top right that says “Friends.” A dropdown menu will appear giving you the option to unfriend them. If they are harassing you, at the far right of that bar are three dots. Click on that for another dropdown menu. From there you can block them entirely.

      Now as to changing your user name, I am not sure, but several readers have, in fact, changed their screen names, so I bet one will tell you. If all else fails, I will ask SteveBC – who if I ask much more I will have to give the official title of technical consultant.

      Like

      • MMBev says:

        My stomach is sore. I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time. Come one, Charlie. Where’s your sporting nature. You could have at least told the “Russian Brides” and “Argentine Princesses” to first apply through the Vatican before you could friend them. Oh the fun you could have had with this one!

        Like

      • SteveBC says:

        Hunh. I think I’ve been complimented. Hey, does an official title come with a salary? I’ve already got the official title of “Ponderous Ponderer” so I guess I should also ask if that one has a salary, too. 😀

        Like

        • charliej373 says:

          Your salary is the same as mine – zero. That makes it easy for me to play at generosity by occasionally doubling it. ON the other hand, it also insulates you from any harm if, in a fit of pique, I were to cut it in half.

          Like

    • CrewDog says:

      Nancy,

      I changed mine by signing up for the WordPress Account … you can also upload a picture for your “Handle” … TAZ is already taken 😉
      CrewDog Out

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I would recommend keeping your Twitter account open in the event someone else were to establish an account in your name claiming to be you & do the work of evil with it. By keeping yours you can easily refute the imposter. I would also say check any computers that you use for virus or adware & change the current passwords to any email accounts that you may have.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      Thanks, R. That is what Steve suggested – and I think I may have to be more careful to keep people from “spoofing” my accounts.

      Like

      • And to Adam he said, “Because you have hearkened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten of the tree, of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it'” cursed is the ground for your sake; in sorrow you shall eat of it all the days of your life. ( I think this may include hacking & spoofing accounts. Fortunately God has an “app” for things like that. We call it grace)

        Liked by 2 people

        • MMBev says:

          Stop, stop you guys! My abdominal muscles are contorting in agony! I get laughing so hard I can’t continue to read the comments! Never mind computers and accounts! I’m convinced that God has a special “app” designed for use on me!

          Like

  9. audiemarie2014 says:

    Love the picture, Charlie. Enjoy the mountains!

    Like

  10. the phoenix says:

    What a nice combination of Cardinals and Doves! Enjoy your retreat in the mountains, Charlie!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Gary says:

    Charlie,

    I wish you well for your retreat in the mountains and hope and pray that you can put together your piece on satan. I look forward to it. I did find it amusing that you posted “the 10 most dangerous places to vacation”. Given the state of the world, our nation, and our economic situation, I find it hard to believe, that anyone who follows you might be planning a vacation. As my wife pointed out to me, “Did I ever read about vacations in the Bible?” Well I had to agree she is right. Realizing that people need time to refresh as this is vital to our well being, Folly (which is found time and again in the Bible) is, in my humble opinion, not in the cards right now. Again, the best to you in the mountains (realizing this is not play but focus, solitude and work). I and my wife will keep you in our prayers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • MMBev says:

      Vacations, eh. Well, now you know the real reason that they ended up in Egypt.

      Like

    • the phoenix says:

      ” Given the state of the world, our nation, and our economic situation, I find it hard to believe, that anyone who follows you might be planning a vacation.”

      * raises hand * Gary, that would be me.

      Several years ago, with Obama in office and me in between jobs, and being an artist, I decided to go on a short trip to do landscape photography. Precisely because of the state of the world, our nation, and my economic situation. I’d saved money in the bank all my life for a rainy day. I was young enough and healthy enough to travel, and wanted to see America before Obama could wreck it all, was my feeling. And so I went … having prayed about it for inspiration as to where and when I should go … and apparently ended up exactly where I was supposed to be. Because one of the photos I took during that trip has ended up being exhibited in an art gallery and accepted by a museum for a special anniversary celebration … there’s far more to the story, but if I were to explain then my anonymity might wear a bit thin.

      This year, some of my artwork has been accepted for a show out of state, so I will be traveling to deliver the photos and then again to pick them up when the exhibit ends after about a month, and maybe I’ll attend the reception. It is also possible that I will once again travel to do more landscape photography this year … if it seems like that’s what the Lord wants.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Charlie. Obama just this moment said “Be assured: The crisis is over. The State of the Union is strong.” I guess you’ll have to re-think your stance that a storm is coming! All is well! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • charliej373 says:

      Hilarious. He is beginning to sound like Baghdad Bob. (For those of you who are too young, Baghdad Bob was Saddam Hussein’s spokesman who cheerily did taped TV propaganda pieces extolling Iraq’s great, overwhelming military dominance of “the great satan” even as, in the background, you could clearly see U.S. troops pounding through and sweeping all in their wake. I did NOT watch the State of the Union. If I wanted comedy, the three stooges are so much funnier (and more credible, at this point, too).

      Liked by 6 people

      • MMBev says:

        Stop it, stop it all of you! I just can’t take any more. My neighbours are very inquisitive, and they will soon be over here because of the loud, shirking laughter!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Barbara Dore says:

        oh, yes, I still remember him. I could not remember his name. He spoke English beautifully. I think he was very popular with English people. I recall that a man from England had set up something like website or facebook about him…I am not so sure because it was a long time ago..I had a soft spot for him. I felt a bit sorry for him. i am still wondering about his current whereabouts.

        Like

    • E. Allison says:

      Sorry, I couldn’t help it.

      Liked by 3 people

      • charliej373 says:

        Love it! Classic movie!

        Like

      • Mick says:

        OK, I’m going to look really stupid, but… What movie is that? I think I’m going to have to get it on Netflix.

        Like

        • charliej373 says:

          Animal House. It is from the early 80s…a classic Reagan-era flick starring John Belushi.

          Like

          • JB says:

            Hi- Charlie and Mick, Sometimes our memories get a little fuzzy and things that are such an ingrained part of our culture seem OK because we ALL did it- like see this movie- it was like a right of passage- a right of passage that should actually be repented of. It might sound prudish- but I like to say that if the Blessed Mother couldn’t sit next to me in a movie- I shouldn’t watch it. And She sure couldn’t see Animal House. It is not a gray area in this case- if you look at the Parents Guide IMDb as to why this is rated R- you will see a long, long list that I actually couldn’t post it was so scandalous,of specifics to it’s R rating for sex and nudity (around 40+ incidents listed) and drug and alcohol glorification- not to mention severe profanity. Including a count of 5 RELIGIOUS profanities. Mick – if you are serious about growing in your faith- you will not view this movie. I felt it right to warn you. I wish that I hadn’t seen all the bad movies that I did that seemed harmless- but really never are.

            Like

          • charliej373 says:

            On second thought, while the movie is not on any banned list from the Vatican, it sure would not be in line to get an imprimatur anytime soon – like ever. I looked up some memorable quotes from it…and was a bit startled to see it was a tad more coarse than I remembered. Probably because I was a tad more coarse, myself. The quotes I read persuaded me that while I will still chuckle at my memory of what it was, it actually is not one I care to revisit.

            Liked by 1 person

        • E. Allison says:

          I don’t think it’s a move I would choose to watch again today. It certainly earns its R rating. However, Belushi is a comedic genius, and the film has plenty great one liners…….. “Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son.”
          The cadet in the short video is Kevin Bacon…. a REALLY young, Kevin Bacon.

          Like

          • charliej373 says:

            It might be fun to watch it again today to see how it holds up. It certainly has to be 20 years since I last saw it. Originally I saw it in the theatre at Lake Geneva, Wisconsin – and I nearly cried laughing. My favorite quote – from Otter: “…this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody’s part!” To which Bluto (John Belushi) responds, “We’re just the guys to do it.”

            Liked by 1 person

          • MMBev says:

            Yah, sure. I’ll watch the movie and be dead at the end.

            Like

          • Mick says:

            I thought that guy looked like Kevin Bacon, so I figured the movie was old-ish.

            Like

          • charliej373 says:

            Hey, watch it, Mick! That movie and I were young together!

            Like

        • Mick says:

          JB, there’s no “reply” option under your post so that I can reply to you directly, so I’m hoping you see this response to your very thoughtful post about Animal House. First, let me thank you for your concern for my soul. Your charitable and fraternal admonition really touched me. Next, let me reassure you that once I found out that the funny Kevin Bacon clip was from Animal House, I was kind of on my guard. My husband has talked about how awesome that movie seemed to him he was a kid; and since I know what kind of movies my husband liked as a kid, I made up my mind years ago that Animal House was one I’d rather not see. And once somebody (Nancy?) pointed out that it’s a Rated R movie, that clinched it for me because I don’t watch Rated R movies. In fact, I rarely even watch PG-13 movies anymore. You and I must both be prudes because I don’t see how I can morally justify filling my mind with inappropriate stuff like that. I’m not trying to judge people who go to Rated R or PG-13 movies; I just know that I’m too weak to resist the allure of that type of “entertainment”; so I avoid it entirely. Thanks again for going out on a limb to warn me. 🙂

          Like

          • MMBev says:

            Mick, just remember that Animal House is yeeeeeeeeeeeeeears old. An “R” rating then was probably like a “PG” today. Charlie, having seen it, would know.

            Like

          • charliej373 says:

            Yeah, but I was young and foolish then, Bev (though my moving parts worked MUCH better then). Now I need an oil can to get out of bed and I am older and marginally less foolish. Still, if I could go back and have the pain gone and very perfect mobility, but had to put up with the angst and foolishness of youth all over again, I would just stick with what I’ve got.

            Liked by 1 person

  13. Thank you so much for posting that picture. I saw it first last fall when one of my friends on Facebook posted it. Supposedly when you see a cardinal it is someone you love come from heaven to watch over you. At the time I thought “what a sweet thought”. At the time though my sweet mother was dying. In her nineties and in failing health she was more than ready and she really missed my father who had been gone for 10 years, they had been married for over 60 years. A day or so after she passed I watched as a beautiful cardinal landed on the bushes in my back yard. As I watched the cardinal’s mate came and joined him, they have been here since then. I watch them almost every day. I think it is just another way that God has to show us how much we are loved. I truly believe that was His way of letting me know they are back together.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Barbara Dore says:

    Charlie, what a beautiful photo!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Barbara Dore says:

    Charlie, I think it may not possible to close the facebook or twitter down. When closing them. they are hiding like wallflowers in the cyperspace! They may pop up if we open them in ten years time. All facbooks etc are in the cyperspace and flying around for ever! Only God can remove them. full stop!

    There will always someone will hack our facebook ( i have no facebook) or twitters. It will continue.

    Like

    • charliej373 says:

      Oh there’s plenty of hackers out there…but usually if you just change your password, it solves the problem. I have had both my Facebook and my email accounts hacked in prior years. After initial panic, I easily solved the problem just by changing passwords. This was the first time I ever had an account I did not even know I had hacked, though.

      Like

  16. ellenchris says:

    Prayers for your refreshment and revitalization, Charlie. You put me in mind of Ezekiel — it often took him days or weeks to recover from one of his visions. Whatever you saw on Dec 20 really knocked you for a loop. Rest in God’s presence so that He can restore you.

    Ezekiel also had to act out some of the lessons that God gave him in ways that were sometimes very odd indeed. Yesterday for the first time I read your posting of Dec. 30 concerning your trip up Mt Meeker toward the end of your big hike. Honestly, it rather upset me, and I had to ponder it for quite a while. Of course we know that God did not change His mind concerning the sacrifice of Isaac: He never intended Abraham to sacrifice his son in the first place. This was an acting-out of God’s sacrifice of His own Son — a prefigurement that would make great sense in the future. God’s granting of His Mercy did not depend at all on whether or not you reached the summit — He was showing you (and us by extension) a lesson in concrete terms.

    I live a little over an hour from the National Divine Mercy Shrine in Stockbridge, MA. My husband and I went over there on Monday, and I prayed for your intentions and for everyone who visits this blog. I recommended all of you into the care of St. Faustina at the chapel of her relics. About 2 — 3 years ago I was at the Shrine praying for Mercy for this country and the world. I was worried about something Mark Mallett had written about the ending of the “Time of Mercy.” (This would have been around the same time of your trip up Mt. Meeker?) I believe I heard — and it was quite clear and forceful — “My Mercy will never come to an end!” Mercy is one of God’s attributes, and He cannot change His nature. I think maybe God put you through the whole test trying to get up Mt Meeker not in order to test your obedience but to show you, and us all, how impossible it is for Him to refuse His mercy to anyone who asks for it. We can strive and climb, but we can never reach a place where His mercy is no longer available. The only people who will be forced to “go through the door of justice,” in St. Faustina’s terms, are those who themselves refuse to “enter into His Mercy.” We can harden out hearts to the point where it is very unlikely that we will change, but God is always ready to forgive and heal.

    Yes, Charlie, you have been called to a very demanding ministry, and you are working to be faithful to the call. But, rest in Him and He will be all your strength. with love and prayers.

    Like

  17. mjcjocds says:

    Hi Charlie,
    I am new to your site. I have been reading your posts for a month or so, and can see the truth in them. I have been hesitating to ask a question, but I think now is the time. I could best describe my relationship with Jesus as one of “trustful surrender, sharing each moment with Him, focused on living in His Divine Will and consoling Him.” I take each day as it comes, one step at a time, trying to please Him in everything, especially how I react to all the variables (and people) of the day. This is why your message resonates with me. It is a peaceful and loving way to live. My question is this: When I read your posts, I feel myself losing my peace. On the one hand, I wonder if it is a useful thing to contemplate the future and feel anxiety? On the other hand, I think perhaps it is necessary to be made aware of what most likely will occur, and come to some kind of acceptance, so that when it does happen I will have been prepared and not freak out. I do see how my gratitude for even the simplest pleasures has increased since reading your posts. If you have any wisdom to share I’d really appreciate it. May God bless you. You are in my prayers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • charliej373 says:

      You know, MJ, 20 years ago when I first started talking to my priests about these things, it was very scary stuff to all who I shared it with. It had been scary enough dealing with it quietly all my life, even scarier to speak to another about it. I desperately wanted it not to be true. Things were pretty peaceful and prosperous then. I took some different ways to try to keep it all secret – and thought maybe I would be proved wrong by some fundamental error. Now, we live in the early middle stages of those times. I realized sometime ago that the record of what I had seen would now be a great way to build confidence in people who were shaken by the world around them – a world I had been seeing since the early 60s – that I was right when I assured them in the midst of the violent winds that are blowing that this is not the end, that God loves us and is bringing us back to them.

      I remember when I was a little boy, just before I began going to school. On Easter Sunday the neighbor boy, even smaller than I was, pushed over the slide I was on. My left arm broke trying to break my fall when the slide fell on it. AT first it felt like there was a rock in my sleeve. Then it started hurting…oh, how it hurt. I looked and it was broken at a scary 90-degree angle. So I walked back over to my grandparents house, who we were visiting, holding my arm up and crying. My Mother came to the door – and went hysterical when she saw my arm. She started shrieking that we had to get to me to the hospital right away. I panicked…I hurt bad enough. I didn’t know much about hospitals except I had friends who said they cut you open there…which scared me even more. Thankfully, my paternal grandfather, Poppo Johnston, an incredibly strong, but gentle and kind man, was right behind her. He told her to go get some pillows and bent next to me, telling me that he would drive me to the hospital and we would keep my arm resting on the pillows – that at the hospital they might cut something to fix my arm so it would get better, but they would give me something that would take away the pain and they would fix it so my arm would grow big and strong like his. He was so soothing. He talked gently, calming both my mother and me all the way to the hospital. When they got me there, they took me into a room and put a mask on my face (some sort of anaesthetic gas. It was very weird…as I breathed in, Bugs Bunny was twirling in a spiral in front of me asking, “What’s up, doc?” When I came to again, I was in bed with a cast on my arm. Mom and Poppo were there waiting for me to wake.

      The world’s arm is badly broken, MJ. I’m not a doctor. I can’t fix it. But I know the Doctor – and know He will fix it. I am just trying to be like Poppo Johnston, recognizing your pain, telling you the truth, and reassuring you that the Doctor is going to make it better. I can’t lie to you that the world is not broken and that it is not painful. All you have to do is look around you to know better than that. But I can tell you with certainty that it is your reclamation that God intends, not your destruction. So I come to give peace in the midst of pain that did not come from me…but thankfully, I know the Doctor. He is going to fix us all up. That is all I have to offer.

      Liked by 6 people

      • ellenchris says:

        . . . . and it is what the Lord has given you to share, and that is enough.

        Liked by 1 person

      • BC says:

        Thanks for that story, Charlie. What a beautiful (and helpful) analogy!
        Praying that your time in the mountains continues to be fruitful!

        Liked by 1 person

      • E. Allison says:

        Beautiful story. I couldn’t help but think (jokingly), that we don’t get to see the anesthesiologist first.

        Like

      • Mjcjocds says:

        Thank you Charlie for that inspired answer. Your story about your broken arm and our broken world, and the goals of our great Physician will stay with me through it all. Your role is that of Poppo Johnston, and with God’s grace, once you have prepared us we in turn can be like him for those in our daily lives. I am very grateful to have found such a prayerful community. May God reward you.

        Like

    • vkmir3 says:

      This site and Mark Mallett’s postings have most definitely been instrumental in helping me to not have a feeling of hopelessness in dealing with what is transpiring in the storm that we are in. They have kept me focused on God’s mercy and love, to take the next step and to be a sign of hope in the midst of chaos, praying for the salvation of souls, especially within my family, the members of which have fallen away from their faith. In the past, I have been more of an alarmist, constantly worrying about the events as they have been unfolding and future events, what was going to happen to me and to my loved ones, with no clear cut idea of how to deal with all of this. Charlie’s postings and the wonderful community here have both been a wake up call and a soothing balm that God has got this and He is communicating to us an idea of what to expect and how to persevere each day through this storm. It has been here that I have been introduced to many helpful steps such as the Surrender Novena and many other sharing of ideas to cope with the days ahead and what possibly to expect. We have been brought us here together for a reason and I am so thankful, both to our Merciful God and for Charlie for his sacrifices to communicate as much as he is able to share of what has been communicated to him on our behalf. I keep all of us here in my prayers/rosaries daily in thanksgiving and for the day’s going forward. I look forward each day to postings and comments to keep me on somewhat of a sane path. God bless your time of retreat, Charlie. Thank you.

      Liked by 3 people

  18. anne ovari says:

    Yes! vkmir3 and Marie , Amen! FIAT!

    Like

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