The Next Right Counterstep to Being Offended

In the last month, I’ve been rereading the archives of this site for there is a trove of wisdom tucked into Charlie’s posts, replies and the NRSteppers’ comments which follow. These gems deserve to be remembered, providing encouragement as well as gentle prodding to stay awake and be ready, for the events and circumstances in which we find ourselves bespeak that, sooner rather than later, this Storm will hit its heights.

As we paddle and pray in the ubiquitous division of this phase, a recent piece by Fr. Dwight Longenecker caught my attention. Disunity seems present in every layer of life and Father writes about one division driver:

Maybe I’ve spent too much time on Facebook, but why is everybody so darned offended all the time? Traditionalist Catholics are constantly getting on their high horse. Then it’s the feminist and homosexualists who are stomping off in high dudgeon. Next it is the Liberals or the Eastern Orthodox or the Lutherans or the college students or the environmentalists.

You name it. Everybody everywhere seems to be the hurt, offended victim. Why is this? It’s because of the dictatorship of relativism. You see, if there is no such thing as truth, then the only “truth” you have is “your truth” and, of course, if the only truth you have is “your truth” then you’re going to feel threatened by other people’s “truth.”

Father, then, addresses the root and solution:

This presents the next problem with the dictatorship of relativism. If there is no such thing as truth and there is only “your truth” then what is that “truth” based on? It can only be based on two things: sentimentality and ideology.

Sentimentality means your truth is based on your feelings. I feel like this is bad and I feel like that is good. I feel like this is nice. I feel like this is not nice. There is no logic, no reasoning, no discussion. There is nothing to base the truth on but raw emotion.

Of course people can’t live like that for long. Its too exhausting. One needs some sort of structure or belief system in order to survive. We must live in a world we believe to be rational.

The only answer to this is the One who said he is the Way, the Truth and the Life.

True allegiance to Christ the King puts everything else into perspective. Most of all it puts each one of us in perspective. With a touch of grace we see ourselves as we really are and we see our place in the wider plan and we realize that we do not need to be offended all the time.

We have confidence in Christ the Lord, and in him we can start to live with a bit of dignity, a sense of humor–a softer heart and a tougher skin.

This brought to mind another precipitator of division which our dear Mother Ellen Neufeld wrote about in Betrayal or Trust. If you find yourself, or those with whom you share life, beset with feeling betrayed, misunderstood, or rebuffed, Mother Ellen’s article is well worth a read and share. She reminds us:

Only forgiveness can stop the whirlwind of betrayal and vengeance; only forgiveness can extinguish the flaming tree of rage. Peter was able to trust the forgiveness of God after he denied Jesus at His trial, while Judas rejected the possibility of forgiveness and restoration due to his lack of trust. Only if we truly trust in God’s love and healing can we begin to forgive and let go of our hurt and anger.

Charlie introduced Mother Ellen’s piece by recounting this event, bearing gospel wisdom:

Late in the 90’s, in one of my little visions – a stylized type that always ends with a pithy angelic comment – I was told, “Betrayal comes from one you love and trust. Begin to offer reparation for him now.” It was striking to me I was not told to defend myself against it, but to pray for the one from whom it would come.

SO much and SO many for whom to pray in these days of loving while we serve as sherpas, living the ordinary way, acknowledging God and taking those next right steps while allowing God to make of us a sign of His Hope as we wait in great and blessed expectation for Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart to fully triumph.

About Beckita

Beckita, widow, mother and grandmother, lives in Missoula, Montana. After more than thirty years of service, she retired from two careers: elementary school educator and director of liturgical music ministry in a local parish. Serving the Catholic Church in many capacities since early childhood, she now provides care for a nearly 90 year old priest of Chinese origin and collaborates with him in evangelizing the Chinese people. For more than twenty-five years, she has welcomed words from heaven concerning these sobering times in which we live and, like so many, takes seriously Our Lord and Our Lady’s call to intercede for the return of souls to God. Responding to heaven’s call for prayer, for her, included making pilgrimages to shrines in Europe, Asia and South America. She says these travels, added to her years as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa in the mid-seventies, have expanded her heart to hold dear all peoples of the world. She is a longtime member of TNRS community and when she began reading Charlie’s posts, immediately, she found that his mission and message harmonize well with Church approved private revelation of our times. In September 2015, she accepted an invitation to become part of TNRS Answers Team. As events of the Storm evolved, last fall (2016), she accepted Charlie’s invitation to become managing editor of TNRS should he need to leave the site. With great gratitude to and for Charlie, founder of TNRS, and with great respect and admiration for the lifelong experiences and God-given gifts he brought to bear on his work at this site - she knows we all know he’s irreplaceable – still, she considers it a great privilege to serve the TNRS community.
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76 Responses to The Next Right Counterstep to Being Offended

  1. just a sojourner says:

    In reading this posting, I realize I had learned years ago now to have confidence in the truth I had been taught by the Church and I should not look to anyone to agree with me in order to validate myself. It is so freeing. I also saw that often it is not so much that people give unintended offence but too many are looking to take offence at any opportunity and it has grown much worse in the last year. Why take offence at others errors. I also looked at myself some years ago and wondered why I got upset at some attacks and not others, we all make mistakes. My reactions seemed not to be dependent on the degree of intensity of the attack. What I came to realize was that it would get to me if I saw some truth in their accusations. I hope that some of these these observations may be useful. May God bless and guide us all.

    Liked by 9 people

    • joanne1950 says:

      Thanks for this. I was recently on the Patheos site replying to multiple attacks on the church’s pro life position. It was heart wrenching because of the things being said by obvious anti life respondents who were trolling the site. In one case a women equated the baby to any animal of your choice I.e. a dog, a cat, etc. This had their intended effect on me – it had me weeping at the intended blindness of it all. It made me think all was hopeless. Not good. Relying on my minuscule importance to wax elegant and change minds in stead of in the power and love of Christ himself. At the beginning of this post by Beckita, she wrote that “sooner rather than later, the Storm will hit its heights”. It made me think, Good Lord, it hasn’t yet? Time to hunker down in prayer and reset my resolve and trust in God’s plan.

      Liked by 8 people

  2. Thanks for sharing Fr. Longnecker’s piece. I tried reading this on his blog late last night, but ended up scanning it briefly through drooping eyes. Exhausted! I hardly know anyone who isn’t exhausted on some level these days. Seems like a great battle is raging to determine who gives into exhaustion first. I pray that as many as possible –– all –– are consumed only by Love and not the hate that is burning so many to ashes fruitlessly.

    May 30. Even though the Don Bosco Adventure Club kids are either scattered today or merely exhausted, I’ve still got a special date to keep with a peak in the McDowells. Ah, going it alone… but not going it alone! With a touch of grace…

    Liked by 13 people

    • Beckita says:

      “I pray that as many as possible –– all –– are consumed only by Love and not the hate that is burning so many to ashes fruitlessly.” Amen and Amen.

      Liked by 8 people

    • vkmir3 says:

      “I pray that as many as possible –– all –– are consumed only by Love and not the hate that is burning so many to ashes fruitlessly.” MP….I join you and all here in this prayer. I see exhaustion in myself and so many I know. And sadness. But, even more troubling, I see so much hatred in the news and social media and, for me, it exhausts and saddens me. I think I am going to have to really limit the social media aspect and immerse myself in scripture and prayer. I always lift all the prayer requests and intentions noted here and those unspoken daily, at Mass and at Adoration.

      Thank you, Beckita, for continuing to supply us with wonderful reflections and, also, to the team that monitors and shares the comments. It is so wonderful to have an oasis to come to with all that is going on in the world. It was so good to be able to read Charlie’s post and it came at the right time! Thank you, Charlie!
      God bless all here!
      Vicki

      Liked by 10 people

  3. madkatmomma says:

    Lovely post Beckita.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. justsayin392 says:

    Oh Beckita, During Lent Dear Holy Spirit allowed me to stumble across paragraph 31 of St. Faustina’s Diary. I hear it echoed in your quote from Charlie’s introduction:

    “Late in the 90’s, in one of my little visions – a stylized type that always ends with a pithy angelic comment – I was told, “Betrayal comes from one you love and trust. Begin to offer reparation for him now.” It was striking to me I was not told to defend myself against it, but to pray for the one from whom it would come.”
    Thank you for bringing this passage back into the light.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Joe Crozier says:

    Good article Becks
    For me, from an experiential perspective, truth, as opposed to an emotional or ideological construct, although I suppose I have experienced truthful feelings, (while still acknowledging feelings per se are not facts) relates to resentment, acceptance and forgiveness. (My tongue may have become somewhat stuck in my cheek just then.) So speaking as one who is more touchy than sensitive (so I have been told) I have to take great care not to offend others with my truth. Ahhh here we touch on the tyranny of political correctness. And it is all so simple. Not what is truth but who is truth. That is the question. “Let your yes be yes and your no be no.” Then you shall know. “I am the alpha and the omega.” In the search for truth the starting point is all important. If we start and end with Jesus who has given us this big clue in himself – then we will not go far wrong. Seek and we will find. Moving on – if someone says there is no such thing as truth they are saying that it is true to say there is no such thing as truth. They are thus contradicting their own statement. There is no getting away from it…..they are wrong and I am right. Again. (oops tongue stuck again.) But sometimes it helps to admit out loud in a heated debate that I am not claiming to know the whole truth about something and that I am only expressing my understanding so far attained about the subject matter. What a conundrum. ‘Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” No wonder we need Our Lady Untier of Knots. “Keep it simple” has been suggested to me many times as a solution to my dilemma. So there we have have it – Jesus is Truth and Mary is full of Truth (Grace) and that is my truth and my faith. Now I just have to put it into better practice. Then the Truth will indeed set me free. “If you love me, keep my commandments” (do what I say). “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper….that is the Spirit of Truth.” John 14. In this quest for truth it is becoming more and more clear to me that my duty to work hard and well and persevere in discipline in the everyday tasks is very important. For me. (I think Charlie also once touched on sense duty)

    Liked by 6 people

    • Beckita says:

      As ever, lots of great thoughts here, Joe. Your comment got me thinking of how there’s a need to manage feelings for God created them to be part of how we process our lives. They *are* part of our God-given nature. The Master surely showed His: “And Jesus wept.” and “When the Lord saw her, He felt compassion for her, and said to her, ‘Do not weep.'” and “When He approached Jerusalem, He saw the city and wept over it…” and “When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” and the oft’ told time of the Lord’s anger “Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves.” But then, “…we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet he did not sin.” All that noted, every good gift can be used for good or abused.

      Amen to this: “But sometimes it helps to admit out loud in a heated debate that I am not claiming to know the whole truth about something and that I am only expressing my understanding so far attained about the subject matter.” I can only imagine how discussions would go if everyone had this attitude.

      I also appreciate your closing. Those everyday tasks and duties are exactly next right steps, whatever they may be for each and every one of us. Thanks for the reminder.

      Liked by 10 people

  6. MaryT says:

    Beckita, this is the best! Love it and will rely on this, now, and in the future! I love and admire your stronghold. You are what makes this boat stay afloat with all of your wisdom knowing when to post things and the right type of things to post. You have certainly gained my trust and your knowledge and FAITH shine through ALL of your posts.

    Liked by 9 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thank you for your kindness, Mary. My ardent desire is that we continue building trust in solidarity at TNRS as we move forward. God Alone knows what all lies ahead, but to navigate those waters knowing we are in union of prayer and stand ready to encourage and support one another, in any way possible, is a great comfort as we strive to BE Christ to each other. God bless you and all who visit TNRS, making this site another home.

      Liked by 8 people

  7. Joe Crozier says:

    Thanks Becks – very stimulating comment – I paused in reading your second sentence and arrived at a different revelation than you perhaps intended. “there’s a need to manage feelings for God.” How do we feel about God? How do we best put our feelings at God’s disposal? How do we manage them according to God’s will? How do feelings well managed bring us closer to the truth?

    Once again I think Of my old director and other friends who have helped me through life. Feelings are funny – funny ha ha and funny strange. When people recover from emotional trauma the good news is that they are in touch with their feelings when they are in harmony with truth and often the bad news is that they are in touch with their feelings but only when their feelings are discordant with truth. Prayer is the raising up of the mind and heart to God. Thoughts and feelings and so much more. Emotional dishonesty – motives under motives – is perhaps the least detected in an examination of conscience but has perhaps also the most potential to maintain our distance us from the truth, to keep us out of touch with reality and render our lives unmanageable.

    So the key is surrender and the only way to surrender is prayer. The thoughts, words, deeds and omissions, prayers, works, joys and sufferings of our morning offering. This provides a way to help us stay in touch with the truth no matter how we feel. This is how we manage feelings for God. We offer them to God and he manages them. All of them; the good feelings, the bad and the ugly. So there seems to be a difference between feelings and emotions that parallels the difference between feelings and faith. When our thoughts are influenced by prayer it is much safer to express our emotions. Only then are we truly free to feel. Only then is there no need to censor our emotions.

    Thomas was invited to put his hands into the wounds but his faith was enough and I daresay his feelings of love and joy at seeing the risen Lord confirmed his faith and fueled his expression of faith – “My Lord and my God.” Faith without works is dead and like love, faith needs expression. Once my old director confided in me that when some said “let me tell you how I feel” his unspoken reaction was “Do you really have to?” But he always listened. He said it was no coincidence that we have two ears but only one mouth. Prayer (speaking) and meditation (listening) are the keys. These lead us to the truth.

    So having come full circle we see there is a case for truth that is personal to each one of us because the relationship that Christ has with each one of us is unique. And that, I believe, is true.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Beckita says:

      Great pondering here, Joecro. So much to be said about recovering from emotional trauma, both wounds inflicted on us by others and wounds we inflict on ourselves through our sins (so grateful for the graces of confession which not only forgive but also heal and strengthen us). But God is not magical in granting grace; we each have work to do with Him; He expects us to do our part in the process of healing. In the way He created us, we all have blind spots so thanks be to God when we have a faithful friend who gently reflects what we cannot see because without that forthright yet gentle feedback, it is very easy to get stuck in discordant or difficult feelings.

      I love this: “When our thoughts are influenced by prayer it is much safer to express our emotions. Only then are we truly free to feel. Only then is there no need to censor our emotions.” I am so grateful for the time I spent working with a psychologist (good Christian man who based resolution of issues in the Scriptures) in my early years as I traversed the journey of reconciling the angst and wounds of growing up in a struggling family. At the same time, it was coupling those sessions with prayer – particularly silence before the Blessed Sacrament (and it never ceases to amaze me how Jesus has such opportunity to free us when we grant Him the freedom to do so in mere silence before His Presence) – that brought such progress in healing.

      It’s amazing, too, how repentance and forgiveness move one through the process of healing… including repentance for holding grudges against the one who freshly inflicts yet more wounding remarks and actions. And the cycle continues… throughout life we are wounded and we forgive and repent and receive graces through the Mediatrix from her Beloved Son Who carried all our human misery to Calvary, blunting every sorrow through His Passion and Death.

      I’ve been pondering much about the many who will need sherpas to walk with them through the journey of repentance and forgiveness in the height of the Storm as the people of God make a return to the Source of All Goodness, Love and Life. As Fr. Longenecker said: The only answer to the current division and misery “…is the One who said He is the Way, the Truth and the Life.” Sometimes, I think I should have thousands of copies of St. Faustina’s Diary to dispense as people embrace the Persons of the Trinity.

      Liked by 8 people

    • This sentence really spoke to me. “Thomas was invited to put his hands into the wounds but his faith was enough and I daresay his feelings of love and joy at seeing the risen Lord confirmed his faith and fueled his expression of faith – “My Lord and my God.” ”

      I had never thought of St. Thomas in that way before. Thanks for writing that.

      Liked by 4 people

    • singingjuls says:

      Joe, I love this observation, “He said it was no coincidence that we have two ears but only one mouth. Prayer (speaking) and meditation (listening) are the keys. These lead us to the truth.”

      Sometimes I am so busy trying to get everything I want God to hear out that I become ‘deaf’ to what He is trying to tell me. If only I had a set of teeth to bite the imaginary tongue in my brain so I stop thinking so much and start listening when I am praying. It’s funny though, because I know He knows what I am asking before I ask. My prayer life has been kind of like a traffic signal lately, love the green light (prayer) because we can keep going on our way always asking for what we need, we don’t like the yellow light because we don’t want to slow down (meditate), and often we try to speed through it so we don’t have to stop. And then there is the that red light (listen), the one that we have to sit at and wait patiently before we can continue on our merry way.

      Now I know I’m going to have to work with that red light some more!

      Liked by 2 people

  8. Phillip Frank says:

    A relative if mine started a controversy on FB over hard feelings for another relative. It quickly escalated into more and more negative comments by others. Trying to diffuse the situation, I write the following:
    This situation reminds me of two scripture passages
    The first,
    A young woman is fleeing from a crowd as she was caught in the act of adultery,  (a crime of passion).  Now Jesus ask the crowd what the woman has done and He is told what she did and that it is the law that such an offense is punishable with death by stoning. Now Jesus does not refute the law or the punishment nore does He suggest that she is not a sinner, but he puts it to the crowd that they may cast a stone IF they have commited no sin themselves!
    Once the crowd leaves Jesus asks the woman if anyone is there to condem her?, She replies “no one”. He then tells her “Than neither do I condem you, go, and sin no more”.
    The point here is we are all guilty in some way, (he who is without sin cast the first stone…nobody does).  Jesus makes the claim that justice is His alone (neither do I condemn you, (but I could!) because we are all guilty of sin in one form or another. Our Lord shows that He forgives us but demands that we “sin no more”, after doing so.
    The second,
    Jesus told the Scribes and Pharisees that harlots and tax collectors would be judging them on the day of judgement. He did not imply that the harlots and tax collectors were right and that they were wrong but that they were guilty and sinful just like them and that they would stand as witnesses to their injustices on judgement day just as they were standing in judgement and witness on them right then!
    It is necessary that we remember not to judge too harshly despite others misbehaviour as we ourselves are in need of mercy and understanding too especially when sins of passion, misunderstanding , frustration and anxiety get the better of us.

    End of FB comment.

    *On another thought*

    “Late in the 90’s, in one of my little visions – a stylized type that always ends with a pithy angelic comment – I was told, “Betrayal comes from one you love and trust. Begin to offer reparation for him now.” It was striking to me I was not told to defend myself against it, but to pray for the one from whom it would come.”
    The above quote from Charlie reminds me of a line from a Christian movie were the main actor, who is a pastor, tells the people in his church that the man he felt hate for became HIS teacher by helping him see the major faults in himself which were causing him to hate. These struggles within himself were HIS problems and God was using the other man to bring them to the surface to be recognized by him in a bold way, admit his weakness and turn away from them-but not from those who are in need of prayers and evangelization.
    I always tell my children when we see someone that we either really like or really dislike it is God wanting us to notice and pray for them.

    Liked by 9 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thanks for sharing your wisdom, Phil. Amen to: “I always tell my children when we see someone that we either really like or really dislike it is God wanting us to notice and pray for them.”

      Liked by 5 people

  9. Joe Crozier says:

    Just a silly thought from your wonderful contribution – “as we paddle and pray” no joining hands here – those who speak French will get this nonsense joke “pas d’elle yeux Rhone que nous.” The translation means nothing. The sound of the spoken words gives meaning. Where’s Yong Duk?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Beckita says:

      YD is as busy as ever with much traveling to boot. His prayers for us continue as we continue to pray for him.

      Liked by 5 people

    • Karen says:

      Hilarious Joe! You actually helped me tighten up my long-since-lost French pronunciation in the process!!

      Liked by 3 people

      • Karen says:

        By the way Joe, I think it was you who first brought to my attention the gesture of the Holy Father to allow the relic (9th rib?) of Saint Nicholas to leave Bari, Italy, for a tour of Russia. I really do believe this is a grand event that could have extraordinary ramifications in this Fatima Centennial.

        Somebody! certainly doesn’t approve of the gesture: http://nypost.com/2017/05/30/death-toll-reaches-16-in-massive-russian-thunderstorm/

        The mayor of Bari is hopeful: “Bari has shown once again that it can be a bridge between East and West,” said Antonio Decaro, the mayor of the port city. “At a time when selfishness seems to prevail in the world, this is a message of peace.”

        What could be the connection with Pope Francis’ gift of the touring relic to the Russian Orthodox Church and the Fatima Message which explicitly mentions Russia?

        Nicholas (the Wonder Worker) was the Bishop of Myra, which is now the city of Demre in southern Turkey. His reputed habit of giving gifts, often in secret, gave rise to the legend of Santa Claus – a variant of Saint Nicholas. He is said to have provided gold coins as dowries to three daughters of a poor man who worried that they would be sold into slavery if they could not marry. The coins were thrown through a window and landed in stockings hanging up to dry – a fable that gave rise to the Christmas tradition of children hanging out socks or stockings to receive gifts.

        Perhaps Our Blessed Mother has orchestrated this event as Her Gift towards unity of the Church in response to one hundred years of the prayers that She requested in 1917!

        And as you say Joe, there is the Garabandal connection – perhaps Patriarch Kirill will respond in kind by inviting Pope Francis to come to Moscow and collect the relic in a grand Closing Ceremony! The Reception of the Relic was certainly grand: https://mospat.ru/en/2017/05/21/news146215/

        We will have to watch and see, and maybe catalogue the result.

        Liked by 4 people

      • Joe Crozier says:

        Hi Karen
        Here’s another silly phonetic joke – repeat these words one after the other.
        Air
        Hair
        Lair
        You should sound like the queen greeting her friends.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Mick says:

      Ha! Love the pun, JoeCro! I’m going to have to remember that one.:)

      Liked by 2 people

  10. katherine says:

    Outrage has always been used as a tool for control. It divides people and creates a shortcut around any deeper thought by creating what we know of as “triggers”. It’s not terrible to be triggered, we’re all conditioned in one way or another, but it’s what we do with those feelings that matters, not the feelings themselves so much. When I get mad about something that I know I either can’t do anything about or I know that it’s misplaced, I hand it all to Mary. I tell her that I don’t know what to do with these feelings of frustration, anger, sadness, etc., and ask that she do something useful with my emotional suffering, because I can’t. It is so much easier to hand these things over to Jesus or Mary . . . a real person with infinitely greater authority on these things . . . than it is to try and become some kind of Zen master or something. Sharing our feelings with God or Mary is also much more effective at toughening our own skin, because we have recourse to a very helpful friend, not just an ideology or just our logic or something. We’re so much better off than a Vulcan or a Bhuddist. Anger is a direct response to a perceived injustice. The world at the moment is awash with things that are intentionally spun so as to violate our sense of justice, creating anger and outrage and then political motion and political tools fueled by popular emotion. Everyone thinks that their anger is justified and reasonable when they are angry. The remedy is not to try to never get angry, because that’s impossible and probably really unhealthy, the remedy is to offer up these feelings to a higher authority and humble our feelings before the truth before we allow the feeling to drive our actions. We don’t have to divide the world into different categories of jerks and idiots, even when we know we are right and others are dead wrong. People generally want the same thing: peace, happiness, love and justice for all. The problem is that their understanding about how to go about obtaining those things is faulty. I hate seeing videos of conservatives laughing at some Liberal making an utter fool of themselves . . . videos of ‘snowflakes’, over the top bizarre protesters, completely illogical loud-mouths with poster boards on street corners . . . because at this point, it feels like we’re laughing at disabled people or something. Truth disabled. We should not let our disgust for Liberal ideology cloud our judgement about many of the people to adopt it. On a smaller scale, too, it is easy to make create chasms and distance between friends and family through perceived injustices and insults if we never humble our emotional capacity. Our emotional capacity is a gift, not a curse, but we are kind of disordered because of sin, so the best thing we can do is offer it back to the Creator, who will know what to do and guide us.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Beckita says:

      Love this wisdom, Katherine. Amen: “It’s not terrible to be triggered, we’re all conditioned in one way or another, but it’s what we do with those feelings that matters, not the feelings themselves so much.” And Amen: “Our emotional capacity is a gift, not a curse, but we are kind of disordered because of sin, so the best thing we can do is offer it back to the Creator, who will know what to do and guide us.”

      Liked by 5 people

    • Well said Kathy.

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Maribel says:

    Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit this is how I see people who are angry with me because of my belief:
    Every angry or hurtful word that they utter against me is a cry for help. So I pray for them, and respond to them with kindness and love that only Jesus can give. Then I reflect on the encounter and make it an opportunity for forgiveness, compassion, and building (or rebuilding) friendship with them.
    Of course, I cannot do this all the time. That is why I always pray for supernatural strength and courage, because my human flesh cannot do this alone.

    Liked by 7 people

  12. Beckita, the Holy Spirit is so active and bringing all us sinners and pilgrims to similar conclusions. To combat my ego and vanity, I often will make a fast from Facebook and any form of contact that is not face-to-face or voice-to-voice (this column excepted because it’s the one that brings the most light.) One close member of my family recently used texting to wound me so deeply; even with my “tough skin.” If I may, I’d like to share a link to Bishop Barron’s latest video that touches on this topic, too. Peace and blessings to all who remain here.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thanks for sharing this video, Marisa. Bishop Barron is another great voice crying in the wilderness of our times.

      Liked by 5 people

    • Anne says:

      Absolutely fantastic. So brilliantly expressed!!
      So real….. Just get in to life and be real…. Be your true self. A baby is such a perfect example…. A baby is not interested in image…. Baby grounds you!
      I am smiling so much re this video. Yesterday I had an afternoon in 2 grade one classes for music. I really am just a big kid. I’ve so much fun getting in with them. The time flew. The kids were gorgeous. We were in it together. This is when I am at a real happy spot.
      May I ask for prayers….. I need to work but just so many relief teachers around. I am so grateful when I get a day or two. I know it is God giving me the opportunity. Please pray He is generous to me this way.
      I met a mum yesterday… Pregnant with her third. I was stunned that she opened up in a matter of minutes when she bought her 6 yr old in she told me her husband is needing counselling for mental issues. I suggested he hold the baby for healing!!! So this video was amazingly timed for me.Thank you Marisa …. You were meant to share it.

      Liked by 4 people

  13. Judy Bonish says:

    Great article & so true

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Kris R. says:

    So much wisdom in these comments. I have friends and family on both sides of today’s political issues. I am very much a “right-is-right and wrong-is-wrong” person. I am terrible at realizing how my comments will come across to those listening. I know what is in my head and heart and I assume ( often falsely) that others understand my perspective.
    This has gotten me into trouble more than once. I cause a defensive reaction which divides when unity is my goal. I find myself in need of going back to basics to find common ground. I have found that praying the Creed brings me back to a good re- start point. I can then pull back from the “issue” causing trouble and refocus.
    I believe in God the Father Almighty …

    Liked by 4 people

  15. Annie W. says:

    After reading all this, including your words, Beckita, about the storm increasing, I had a flashback. Probably almost 20 yrs. ago, our prayer group hosted the Confirmation class at the parish to give them a talk. As I prayed and prepared my part, this is what the Lord gave me. I wanted them to close their eyes to visualize what I said. The Lord gave me such a clear picture that I can see it to this day. There was a large, beautiful house with lights on inside giving a warm glow. However it was dark outside and a huge STORM was brewing. At the front door stood the Blessed Mother asking the kids (Confirmation class) to come inside, to be with Jesus and herself. Then I expanded on this. I had not thought of this vision and talk in years until I read the word “storm” again today!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Beckita says:

      Beautiful, Annie. Jesus and Mary: our Shelter in the Storm.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Karen says:

      Yes Annie, as Beckita says, it was a truly beautiful image that you provided the class. They would be 30something now and I pray that they too will recall that image in their busy and stormy adult lives today because it is so true and life-giving.

      Speaking of ’20 years’ I realized yesterday that is how long I have been praying for (with the occasional letter and/or petition to the Popes) the proclamation of the Fifth Marian Dogma on each May 31 as it comes around. This Dogma will announce to the whole world that everyone, not just Catholics, can call Her “Mother”: a mother who listens, loves and acts for ALL of her children. Will today pass just like the others? Don’t worry – I have as my model ‘the persistent widow’!

      Liked by 6 people

  16. singingjuls says:

    I put this in the prayer requests, but am trying to get as many people praying as I can so am repeating it here. I know I haven’t been on for a while and I can’t wait until I can take the time to read what’s happening in all your lives, but know my heart and prayers are still with everyone.

    The storm continues to rage…

    I really need to ask for prayer for this from all the prayer warriors I know, and you all are the special forces that I know can do the job!

    There is going to be a black lives matter protest tomorrow night across the street from the store I work at. It will be outside the municiple building behind the police station from 5-8pm. The police will be blocking off a two block radius around the protest from 4-9pm. I am asking for prayers for all involved and that it be a peaceful one. I especially ask for healing pray for the young man who was shot (Kaleel, fighting for his life in the hospital last I read), his mother, and the police officers involved.

    My boss was thinking about closing the store during the protest but am not sure. I will know more tomorrow after my shift ends at 11am but in the meantime, thank you for your prayers and I will let you know next chance I get how things are going. ~juls

    Liked by 3 people

  17. PrayerPartner says:

    Thanks Beckita and all of our colleagues who have commented here. Such thoughtfulness in every post-I am grateful. Feeling particularly exhausted this week, so I am grateful for all of you Sherpas who take up the staff and walk us forward. Our Lord’s blessings to each and every one of you.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. for the sake of ... sorrowful passion says:

    … and then there may be days like this:

    Liked by 4 people

  19. James Ignatius McAuley says:

    Beckita,

    I wasted to much time in my life not forgiving. I am ashamed of that sin. It is ultimately, demonic behavior, that destroys us, brings us down. When we forgive, we engage in Christ like behavior and this in deification/theosis.

    These two quotes from Mother and Charlie are the best:
    “Only forgiveness can stop the whirlwind of betrayal and vengeance; only forgiveness can extinguish the flaming tree of rage. Peter was able to trust the forgiveness of God after he denied Jesus at His trial, while Judas rejected the possibility of forgiveness and restoration due to his lack of trust. Only if we truly trust in God’s love and healing can we begin to forgive and let go of our hurt and anger.”

    “Late in the 90’s, in one of my little visions – a stylized type that always ends with a pithy angelic comment – I was told, “Betrayal comes from one you love and trust. Begin to offer reparation for him now.” It was striking to me I was not told to defend myself against it, but to pray for the one from whom it would come.”

    Prayers for all and I hope Mother is doing well.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Beckita says:

      Amen, James. As sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, surely all have grappled with forgiveness. One of my spiritual mothers, the Servant of God Maria Espreranza, said it best, each time we visited: We all have a history. Working in deliverance and healing ministry, again and again, I have seen that lack of forgiveness, including self-forgiveness, is a barrier to receiving graces of every kind. In striving to grow in any virtue, we can begin – even when we don’t feel like it – by exerting the will to *choose* to forgive, love, deny self, hope, believe, trust, etc. and when we ask Our Lady for the supernatural grace, which her Son procured on the Cross, to persist in the choice and grow in the virtue, I am ever amazed and grateful for the ways our feelings then catch up with the choice.

      As she pastors her flock, Mother Ellen is extremely busy. I miss her presence. Echoing your prayers, James, for her and for all.

      Liked by 2 people

  20. Kris says:

    Hi, I have not been reading regularly but catch up in clumps. I must say the line that the storm will ramp up makes me laugh. I cant imagine, or maybe dont want to, how the storm could get any worse. Saw a photo of Kathy Lee with a bloody head of President Trump. I was shocked to say the least. What are we doing if not being in a storm so strong already that a person of some notoriety would do that? How crazy. I can only pray for the strength to keep moving on as things ramp up more.

    Liked by 3 people

    • jlynnbyrd says:

      Amen! I have read that CNN has fired her and lost advertisers, and that Kathy Griffin has had some of the shows on her tours cancelled by the hosts. I am seeing more and more that people are being actively involved in advocating for good. Hopefully we are praying for conversions with as much zeal. ❤ The wind of change…

      Liked by 3 people

  21. Bob says:

    With Corpus Christi coming up it might be good to share special public events our parishes and diocese are holding in honor of the Real Presence! Our parish is having an event and I will share it when the flyer comes out.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. Bob says:

    This reminds me of one of Charlie’s discussions about smoke and mirrors:
    http://spiritdaily.org/blog/uncategorized/smoke-and-mirrors

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Kim Sevier says:

    Just have to ask…..what is the definition of a traditionalist Catholic? That is likely a category that fits me, but I am never offended or angry. It surprised me that that term was the first used in the article. Is there something offensive or inappropriate about traditions or the enjoyment of them? Are traditionalists often offended?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Beckita says:

      When I first read Fr. Longenecker’s article I thought of Charlie’s piece with this information: “I have been deeply concerned with the visitation I briefly referenced from the early morning hours of December 20. In part of it I saw a great multitude of demons, spewing up as if from a great fountain and spreading across the whole earth. Their primary target in this year, knowing their time is short, are those who are most overtly pious and faithful.”

      I thought, too, about the book, No False Prophet, that Charlie’s friend wrote to which we have a link on the side of this page. There really are some traditionalists online who are easily offended. But that certainly doesn’t mean all are and it doesn’t mean traditions are a problem.

      Great to hear from you, Kim. 😉 God bless you and all here.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Kim Sevier says:

        Hi Beckita—thanks for answering and thanks for taking care of the site! Overtly pious and faithful—I don’t really know what that might look like—it is not possible to know someone’s heart–kind of like the pope says–who am I to judge? The main thing is, I think, to constantly cultivate our relationship with the Trinity and Our Lady, so that we might take the next right step aka, doing God’s will, which engenders peace and joy. One person might be quietly contemplative, and another might be charismatically demonstrative. Everyone prays and lives their faith uniquely. Only God really knows our hearts. Someone may appear too pious, but who knows? Maybe they are just living their faith with no intention of trying to show off or impress others. Anyway—God bless you–you continue to be so generous in the love that you send forth. And also–it sure was an awesome surprise to read Charlie’s piece. Take care!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Beckita says:

          So true, Kim: God alone knows our hearts. When I read about CJ’s vision, I thought it a good prompt for self-examination. Conversion is a lifelong adventure, isn’t it? 😉

          I remember there were quite a few of your grandchildren born around the same time… I think it was in 2015. I’ll bet they’re really growing and gorgeous. God bless you and all your dear family, Kim.

          Liked by 2 people

  24. Kim Sevier says:

    Yes! 3 grandsons almost three years old from 3 of our children, 2 granddaughters one year old…little sisters of two of those boys, and just found out another baby on the way and due in January. All of them added to three older grandsons will bring the total to 9! Love love love! What a good memory you have, Beckita!

    Liked by 2 people

  25. CrewDog says:

    It appears that many SIGNS from Revelation are upon us. It’s good to hope and pray for that new Jerusalem that God has promised us! Like our early Christians, I’m impatient for this old order to pass away ….

    HeartLight Daily Verse – 1 June

    Revelation 21:2-4
    I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride, beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of thing has passed away.

    Thoughts on today’s verse:
    I don’t know about you, but I’m kind of ready for that old order stuff to go away. The end of tears, death, mourning, crying and pain sounds pretty good to me! No wonder the early Christians would say, “Marantha. Come Lord Jesus!” They couldn’t wait.

    Prayer:
    Holy God, please help me as I try to continue serving you faithfully. My desire is to be steadfast in my love and living for you until the glorious day that so many of your children have longed for over the centuries. I long to see you in your glory and to share in your presence and to join with the saints of all ages past praising you around your glorious throne. Through Jesus, I pray. Amen.
    Visit heartlight.org for more

    GOD SAVE ALL HERE!!

    Liked by 2 people

  26. “SO much and SO many for whom to pray in these days of loving while we serve as sherpas, living the ordinary way, acknowledging God and taking those next right steps while allowing God to make of us a sign of His Hope as we wait in great and blessed expectation for Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart to fully triumph.” Indeed. Amen, and Amen!

    I’ve been so spent lately, that I had nothing more than a quick pork n’ beans story, but luckily saw this gem from my little bro (Brother Gideon) and thought you might enjoy. This is his latest animal rescue, Houdini:

    Here’s what he had to say about it:

    The first clue that we were dealing with an extraordinary animal was the nickname her owner had given her: Houdini. “Leashes, collars, fences…you name it,” he told us while dropping her off in late October, “if you’re not careful, she can get out of pretty much anything or anywhere. She opens windows…climbs trees.” But some lessons must be learned the hard way and it took the oh-so-close escapes of several of our chickens to realize that the man was neither kidding nor exaggerating. By the time we noticed that deer herds were migrating higher up the mountain, bears were hibernating earlier, neighboring communities were reporting influxes of fleeing rodents and geese had stopped flying over the Monastery, we wondered what we had gotten ourselves into.

    She was brought to us after her owners learned that during her clandestine forays out of the yard, she had secretly organized several dogs in her neighborhood into a efficient pack of cat-harassing, mayhem-causing ne’er do wells. According to the owner, the 2-year old Jack Russell terrier’s pack was getting bigger and bolder each week and in such cases, if you take the leader out, the dogs that follow him or her usually disperse, and that seems to have been the case here.

    In the first Jurassic Park movie, there’s a scene where the island’s gamekeeper, Muldoon, is grousing about the presence of the velociraptors, which he feels are too dangerous. In dramatic language that’s equal parts fear and admiration, the crusty old South African describes how the seemingly diminutive dinosaurs are always watching, always probing for any weaknesses in their enclosure, as well as in those who are guarding them. It’s the same with ‘Houdini.’ Although she’s only 11″ tall and weighs about 15 pounds, we’ve taken to yelling, “Fire in the hole!” when transferring her from her leash to the dog run or when opening the refectory door when she’s in the building during mealtimes.

    After reading all of this, one might wonder if she has any saving graces, and the answer to that question would be, “Yes.”
    Despite all her past skullduggery, she’s incredibly sweet with people.

    And what might Jurassic’s Muldoon have said to this in his world-wise South African accent?
    “Don’t believe that rubbish for a minute, mate. She’s just playing yeh.”

    And here’s the other rascal on the far left:

    They’re praying for all NRS’ers here. Please remember them in your prayers too.

    B, I think they’ve got that paragraph that I quoted of yours down pat. Oh, it’s always the little things that lift me up.

    God Bless.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thanks for this sharing, MP. As always, the way you lift us up in simplicity and love is no little thing, TNRS Sage in the Desert. Great photos! Praying for the ones who are praying for us.

      Liked by 3 people

    • moreen67 says:

      I just said a prayer for the. Houdini is a cutie……Mo

      Liked by 3 people

    • Mick says:

      MP, thanks for the update on your brother. He sounds just like you when he writes. 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

      • Ha! Yes, probably because we shared the same comic books and paperbacks growing up. My ma tells me that he maintains their site which you can visit at https://www.monksofmttabor.com/

        You may have noticed from the pic that they’re an Eastern Orthodox Catholic Monastery.

        Like others, I think it is very important at this time –– especially for those little lights feeling so isolated and scattered far afield from their brothers and sisters –– to really see the connections. Like looking up at the stars singing in the vault at night, but so much better.

        Liked by 3 people

        • Beckita says:

          What a georgeous setting! Loved the pics, MP. Have you ever been able to visit? Wait ’til James McAuley sees the icons. He’ll be doing cartwheels.

          Liked by 3 people

          • Mick says:

            I know, B… aren’t the icons amazing?

            MP, thanks for the link to your brother’s monastery. Turns out that they were in my neck of the woods for a while in the ’70s. I don’t blame them for heading west to sunny CA; the winters here are brutal.

            Liked by 2 people

    • audiemarie2014 says:

      MP, your comment truly made me smile, as I have rescue dogs and one, that has since passed, was an escape artist. The other one we had at the time, and still do, would tattle on the other. We’d ask her, “Where did Tiki go?”, and she’d run to the part of the fence she had squeezed under so we knew where to plug after we found her. I already love Houdini, cuz of her spunk and sense of adventure. God bless your brother and, of course, you and yours also.

      Liked by 3 people

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