Hide and Seek

A Rosary Meditation: The Fifth Joyful Mystery, The Finding in the Temple.

“And they did not understand the word he spoke to them.” Luke 2:50.

People all over the world are looking for something they think is hidden. They don’t seem to be able to find it. That’s because, well, that’s because …

Jesus was in the Temple taking care of his Father’s business. He was very much out in the open, he was not hidden, he was right where you’d think he would be if you took the time to give it real thought. But in the panic of searching people often don’t take the time to stop and think. They’re to busy looking. But its their vantage point, its where they are while searching, while looking, that’s the real problem. And I’m not talking about Mary and Joseph here. I’m talking about the rest of us, you and me and everybody else in this world. Because we’ve all been in this situation at some time, regardless where we may be now.

People run here and there, looking underneath piles of philosophies as though the truth were hidden there, searching through religions one after another as though the truth somehow got lost in the jumble, and looking inside them selves for answers when that’s where the problem is. Its that God-size hole in each of us that only God can fill. And we look in all the wrong places because He isn’t the one hidden. WE are.

When Adam and Eve sinned what was the first thing they did? They covered themselves with aprons made of leaves to HIDE their nakedness and then they went to HIDE in the bushes. Why can’t people find God? Its because we’re hiding behind bushes made of human philosophies and man made religions while we look rather than stop and think about the situation. Some honest thought would reveal to us that He isn’t hiding, WE are. And He is exactly where He’s ALWAYS been, exactly where He said He would be. But people don’t understand the word He spoke.

” … behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.” Matthew 28:20b, and, “And taking bread, he gave thanks, and brake; and gave to them, saying: This is my body, which is given for you. Do this for a commemoration of me.” Luke 22:19, Douay-Rheims.

Just a thought … If you’re looking for Jesus, or if you know someone who is, He is not the one in hiding. “God dwells in our midst, in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar.” St. Maximilian Kolbe.

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Lost and Found

A Rosary Meditation: The Fifth Joyful Mystery, The Finding in the Temple.

“And seeing him, they wondered. And his mother said to him: Son, why hast thou done so to us? behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.” Luke 2:48, Douay-Rheims.

You know, I don’t think God has ever gotten himself lost. Jesus wasn’t lost, he knew right where he was and exactly what he was doing. But …

While Mary and Joseph were traveling back home, after having finished their business in Jerusalem and having taken care of their religious duties, they made an assumption about Jesus. They assumed that he was in the group they were traveling with. Because of this they lost sight of him and he was, as a result, “lost”. Lost to them anyway.

The crowd we travel with? It can blot out Jesus if we let it. We can get so caught up in the crush of the crowd, we can get so involved in the journey, that we lose sight of Christ and then, well, we think HE got lost. And the world around us is more than willing to obscure Jesus. Its not necessarily the intent of the people around us, they don’t realize they’re being used for this purpose. But Satan knows who he’s using, and why.

Its so easy to get involved with work, social obligations, family, the crowd we travel with, that most of the time we don’t even realize it. And then? At some point the Catholic will turn around, look around, and ask, “Where did he go?” Then we go hunting. Or at least we hunt if we’re sincere Catholics. And when we find him we do what? We ask him what? “Where did you go, Lord?” When we do find him, bottom line, its really him who’s found us. The sheep almost never realize that they’re lost. Its always the Good Shepherd who goes looking for the sheep. And when he finds the lost sheep it looks at him and says, “Where you been?” Such is the nature of sheep and getting lost.

“Why hast thou done so to us?” Rather than ask Jesus a question like this we need to be asking the world around us while doing a little soul searching. “How did I lose sight of him?” And when we come up with the right answer, like, “I allowed this or that to get in my way, get between me and him, and that’s what blocked my view”, its time to try and either eliminate or get under stricter control what ever was the cause.

I think most people, and this I say based on my own personal experience, could, if they would, delete certain things from their lives and in doing so take certain things out of the way that can easily get in the way, coming between us and Jesus, blocking our view and making us think he’s lost when its us instead. There are parts of the world that, even while we live in the world, we needn’t concern ourselves with. Weeding these things out gives us a clearer view. The clearer the view the less likely we are to lose sight of him and think he’s gotten himself lost.

In dealing with life, the world, and the crush of the crowd, lets just make certain there’s one thing we don’t do. Lets not blame him for getting himself lost. Lets remember that’s our fault, not his.

“Looking on Jesus, the author and finisher of faith … ” Hebrews 12:2a.

Just a thought … If our vision is blurred or limited its not because poor eyesight originates with the Creator of the eye, Who does all things, including creating eyes, well.

P.S . … This is the beginning of about the third week now that I’ve resumed blogging. I just wanted to say thank you for the kind, and most generous, response I’ve received. Honestly, I figured folks would’ve forgotten all about me after a few months. So I say thank you to everyone, and thank you to God for having seen fit to place me on the hearts of so many, both the people who’ve been a blessing to me for some time and all of the new and recent subscribers. Thank you. You are, each of you, a special blessing for me. I just want you to know that.

Looking … Always … Thursday, August 29

Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer

Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer, Peter Gunn, Sam Spade … You don’t need a private eye to find Jesus. But you do need to keep looking. Always.

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. “Because it is not possible to find Jesus outside the Church. The great Paul VI said: ‘Wanting to live with Jesus without the Church, following Jesus outside of the Church, loving Jesus without the Church is an absurd dichotomy.’ And the Mother Church that gives us Jesus gives us our identity that is not only a seal, it is a belonging. Identity means belonging. This belonging to the Church is beautiful.” ~ Pope Francis. There are lots of people looking for Jesus and there are lots of ways to find Him. Each life is a personal journey. But when He is found He is always found in the same place. It’s true that some Christians are what we’ll call “outside the full communion” of the Church, but that doesn’t mean they’re totally separated from it. The fact is that they’ve found Jesus and found Him in the Church, it’s just that they don’t realize this fact. It’s easy to get side tracked when looking and finding. That doesn’t mean the search or the finding aren’t valid. It just means that the puddles some folks waded through while searching got all stirred up and the water was muddied as a result. But what about the folks on the “inside”, the people who are IN the Church, fully, and know it? There is never a time when we can rest from looking. Finding Jesus is a never-ending endeavor. He is the Infinite God. How can we ever find all of the infinite? We can’t. But the more we look the more we find. The more we find the more we grow. And this gives us hope that someday those outside the full communion of the Body of Christ will be in full communion, having found enough of the Infinite Jesus to make the Truth a little brighter, a little easier to see. The closer any of us gets to the Light the better our vision gets.

Today …

St. Sabina


 

 

St. Sabina

We know St. Sabina only through legend, and there is some question as to its trustworthiness. Even the century in which she lived is unknown. Supposedly Sabina was converted to Christianity by her Syrian servant Serapia. During the persecution of Emperor Hadrian, Serapia suffered martyrdom for her Christian Faith. It is believed that St. Sabina was murdered for the Faith about a month later. The renowned basilica on the Aventine in Rome is dedicated to and named after her. Some sources hold that Sabina herself had it constructed in the third or fourth century. In an age when our Faith is ridiculed as being outmoded, we take heart in the lives of so many martyrs, like St. Sabina, who gave their lives under terrible conditions to defend and sustain their Faith. This confers on us a strong desire to persevere in God’s love. And to never stop looking for more of Jesus.

Take this to heart … “When you approach the tabernacle remember that he has been waiting for you for twenty centuries.” – St. Josemaria Escriva.

Sheep hunting … Thursday, July 25

Pope John XXIII's coronation on 4 November 195...

Pope John XXIII’s coronation on 4 November 1958. He was crowned wearing the 1877 Palatine Tiara.

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. “I have looked into your eyes with my eyes. I have put my heart near your heart.
Pope John XXIII

Jesus could easily have made this statement, couldn’t He? God, manifest in the flesh, He saw and felt, He sees and feels, He understands. Mary and Joseph thought they had lost Jesus and so they went looking. To have lost someone who is precious to you, Jesus understands this too. The looking that Mary and Joseph did? Jesus does that everyday, so He knows what its like. Mary and Joseph looked for the Lamb of God. Jesus looks for the little lambs that have gone astray. Mary and Joseph found Jesus in the Temple. Where does Jesus find us? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the lambs made the searching easier? Think about the joy of Mary and Joseph when they found Jesus. Think of the joy in Heaven when Jesus finds a sheep that’s gone astray. Now think about it from another angle for a minute. Think about being away from home, being caught out in the elements, being cold and wet and hungry and scared. Think about being lost. Now think about the joy the lost lamb feels when its been found and, safe in its Masters arms, He carries it home.

Today …

St. Christopher

St. Christopher

St. Christopher. Before the 1969 reform of the Roman calendar, Christopher was listed as a martyr who died under Decius. Nothing else is known about him. There are several legends about him including the one in which he was crossing a river when a child asked to be carried across. When Christopher put the child on his shoulders he found the child was unbelievably heavy. The child, according to the legend, was Christ carrying the weight of the whole world. This was what made Christopher patron saint of travelers and is invoked against storms, plagues, etc..

Consider … The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart. ~ Helen Keller ~

The “I want to be like Jesus” Rosary

Rosary...

Every Christian wants to be like Jesus. He is our Goal. To be like Him, to be with Him. Sometimes we look at ourselves and see how far away we are from our Goal. Sometimes it helps to remember the things we have in common with Jesus, even if they’re just little things. Knowing we have things in common with Him may not make us any more like Him but it does help make Him seem not so far away. He doesn’t want to be far away. He came here, lived with us, walked with us, ate with us, to be close to us. And we can be as close to Him now as our hearts will let us.

I want to be like Jesus …

1st Joyful Mystery, the Annunciation. When it was known that I was on my way into the world there was an announcement too. I am like Jesus.

2nd Joyful Mystery, the Visitation. My mother went visiting, sharing me with others before I was ever born. I am like Jesus.

3rd Joyful Mystery, the Nativity. When I was born folks came to see me, and they were glad to see me. I am like Jesus.

4th Joyful Mystery, the Presentation. After I was born my parents were thankful to God for me. I am like Jesus.

5th Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. When I was little I’d hide away and no one would know where I was. I am like Jesus.

1st Sorrowful Mystery, the Agony in the Garden. I’ve prayed when my heart was heavy and felt like it was about to break. I am like Jesus.

2nd Sorrowful Mystery, the Scourging. I’ve been hurt by people. I am like Jesus.

3rd Sorrowful Mystery, the Crowning with Thorns. People have made fun of me and misused me. I am like Jesus.

4th Sorrowful Mystery, Carrying the Cross. I’ve fallen more than once under a burden to heavy for me to bear alone and God has sent me help. I am like Jesus.

5th Sorrowful Mystery, the Crucifixion. I’ll die someday and I’ve had my heart-broken. I am like Jesus.

1st. Glorious Mystery, the Resurrection. When the priest baptized me I was born new in Jesus, raised up from the death of my sin, my own resurrection. I am like Jesus.

2nd Glorious Mystery, the Ascension. I am with Jesus in His Heart right now, there where He is, so in a way He has already taken me to Heaven. I am like Jesus.

3rd Glorious Mystery, the Decent of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit descended on Jesus, on His Church, and on me too when I was confirmed. I am like Jesus.

4th Glorious Mystery, the Assumption. Jesus’ Mother is in Heaven and she is my Mother so my Mother is in Heaven too. I am like Jesus.

5th Glorious Mystery, the Coronation. Jesus made our Mother Queen and that means she is His Queen and my Queen, she is our Queen. I am like Jesus.

I am human, God is my Father, Mary is my Mother, the Saints (living and dead) are my family, Christ’s Church is His Body and I am a part of all this. I want to be like Jesus. And in being like Jesus I need to remember those things we already have in common and prayerfully work on the rest.

Lost, found, willing … Thursday, June 20

English: Detail of the Rosary Madonna by the T...

English: Detail of the Rosary Madonna by the Tyrolean sculptor Josef Mersa ca 1905 in the parish church in St. Ulrich in Gröden.

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, Finding Jesus in the Temple. ” ‘How is it that you sought me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father’s business?’ ” Luke 2:49. Have you ever prayed and you just KNEW that you knew what was needed? You didn’t even have to ask God for insight, His will was as clear to you as your own. I know I have. “How is it that you sought Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” I don’t know about you, but for all MY “knowing”, for all my seeking Jesus in prayer, I didn’t have a clue. It was only later, in retrospect, that I understood what God’s will was, what the Father’s business was really all about. It’s part of being human. We can’t see around corners, but He can. I think I do well to remember, and maybe you’re not so very different from me, that it isn’t always so much about seeking Jesus as it is about letting Him find me.

Today …

St. John of Pulsano

St. John of Pulsano

St. John of Pulsano

Also known as John of Matera, a hermit and monk. Born in Matera in the Kingdom of Naples, he joined the Benedictines near Taranto, but was disliked because of his austerities. He then joined the community of St. William of Vercelli for a time, leaving to preach at Ban. John spent time as a hermit in Sicily and was imprisoned. Now who puts a hermit in jail and why? He escaped and went to Capua. In his later years, John founded a monastery at Pulsano. He was famous for preaching, prophecy, and miracles. A colorful character. Going from place to place, for various reason, doing what God wanted him to do, not so much seeking God as being found willing by Him.

Willingness … “The world is full of willing people; some willing to work, the rest willing to let them.
~ Robert Frost ~

Traveling on … Monday, June 3

Image taken from en.wiki (Image:Enkhuisen Book...

Mary and Joseph discover Jesus among the doctors in the Temple.

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, Finding Jesus in the Temple. “And Jesus advanced in wisdom and age and grace before God and men.” Luke 2:52. Jesus had been lost in the Temple. Well, some thought Him lost. He knew where He was and what He was doing even if others didn’t understand it all yet. After having been found? Now it’s time to go home. Jesus wasn’t really lost. Everyone of us really has been lost. It was Jesus who found us. He knew what He was doing even when we didn’t know what we were doing and didn’t understand any of it because we didn’t realize there was anything to know and understand. “Any of it” being God’s great love for us. So we were lost but now were found. Hmm. Amazing Grace that found a wretch like me. So what’s next? After Jesus was found they, Mary and Joseph, took Him home. They made a trip. That’s what we’re doing right now. It’s a journey of faith. Do we just trudge along? No, we pay attention to the trip and, if we truly follow Christ, advance in wisdom (learning from the rough spots in the road as we travel forward), we grow in age (from age to age grace moves us on), and we grow in grace (which is an evidence of God’s love for us and also our faithfulness towards Him Who is our Goal). The end of our journey of faith brings us where? Home. “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth. For the first heaven and the first earth was gone, and the sea is now no more.” Revelation 21:1.

Today …

St. Adolphus Ludigo-Mkasa

Saint Adolphus Ludigo-Mkasa, also known as Adolofu Mukasa Ludigo (c. 1861 – June 3, 1886), was a Ugandan Roman Catholic martyred for his faith. He was born in the kingdom of Toro in the western part of the country, and became a companion of Carl Lwanga at the court of King Mwanga II. He was one of many Christians put to death by the king between 1885 and 1887; his day of martyrdom, June 3, is remembered as the feast day of the Uganda Martyrs. He went home.

Think … Every earthly city has cemeteries. There are no cemeteries in Heaven.

MAKE NOISE! … Thursday, May 16

Español: Instalación señales viales en Colombia

Noise, noise, and more noise.

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. “Son, why hast thou done so to us? Behold, in sorrow thy father and I have been seeking thee.” Luke 2:48. Sound familiar? A modern version of the same thing might go like this: “Boy, why would you treat us this way? We’ve been scared to death and looking all over the place for you!” Obviously Mary and Joseph were normal parents. Well, they were both far above normal, but you know what I mean. If you’re a parent I’m sure you can identify. Parenting hasn’t changed that much in 2,000 years. But for now, instead of the joys and heartaches of raising children, let’s think about that last part. The part about seeking Jesus in sorrow. There are a lot of people in the world needing Jesus. They suffer from all sorts of things. Depression, mental illness, addictions, various diseases of the body, vices (which are diseases of the soul), and more. So in sorrow they look for relief, and looking in the wrong places brings about, not the much sought after relief, but more grief. On the day Mary and Joseph found Jesus in the Temple its a pretty good bet that the Temple was a busy place. It probably stayed that way. At the heart of the Temple was a room that the Jews called Kodesh Kodashim. The Holy of Holies. It contained the Ark of the Covenant and God’s Glory rested there. Think about all those people going and coming at the Temple. They were a witness to the presence of God just by being there. People were looking, needing God back then too. If anyone, a seeking anyone, paid attention they would’ve known that they could find God there. Today spiritual Israel goes to the Temple also. A Temple not made by hands. God’s presence rests in the Holy of Holies still, in the Tabernacle. If seeking, hurting people pay attention they’ll know where to find Him. But you know, lots of times people hurt so bad it blurs their eyesight. Tears can do that. And they can be looking sincerely but get so caught up in the search that they miss finding what, Who, they’re looking for. Not being able to see the forest for the trees works like that. So what’s to do? Well, when the Jews went to the Temple they took lambs, bulls, goats, birds, along with flour, oil and other things for worship purposes. “Hey! Mister! A bag of flour fell off your mule!” “Lady! Your goat ate through the rope and went over there!” “Jeremiah! Jeremiah, where are you?!” And moo, and baah, and tweet and noise, noise, noise! You couldn’t miss it. To help people not miss it today maybe we need to try making noise too. Blog, vote, witness, donate, support, MAKE NOISE! Attract attention. If we do it right seeking people won’t notice us so much as they will Him. And then maybe they’ll find Who they’re looking for.

Today …

St. Adam

 
St. Adam

St. Adam

Hermit and abbot, a native of Fermo, Italy, where he began a severe life of recollection in a cave on the slopes of Mount Vissiano. Attracting many followers, Adam was invited to join the Benedictine Order and entered San Sabine Monastery. Within the monastery he maintained his prayer life and rigorous self-discipline. His example led to his election as abbot. All this took place a little over 800 years ago and people still hear about it. Hey, you’re reading about it right now. And his example did more than lead to his being abbot. He made NOISE!

Pope Benedict XVI said … “In a world where there is so much noise, so much bewilderment, there is a need for silent adoration of Jesus concealed in the Host. Be assiduous in the prayer of adoration and teach it to the faithful. It is a source of comfort and light, particularly to those who are suffering.” You see, even in silent prayer we can make a spiritual noise heard by the suffering around the world.

 

Filling in those blank spots between the letters … Saturday, April 27

The Finding of the Saviour in the Temple by Wi...

The Finding of Jesus in the Temple. Who’s listening? Really?

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. “And all who were listening to Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers.” Luke 2:47. The way that’s phrased it sounds like some might not have been paying attention. “All who were listening” sounds like maybe some weren’t. But the rest did. People are much the same today. Some listen, some don’t. Not everyone that listens understands what they hear. People are awfully good at filling in blanks where there are none. When reading a book? It’s best to leave out those blank spots between the letters. While Mary and Joseph sought Jesus others had “found” Him. Again, people are much the same today. Some are seeking, some have found. Sadly, not everyone who finds knows what they’ve got. The people there in the Temple, the ones listening, were with Jesus. But, at this point anyway, none of them knew who or what He was. No one was jumping for joy and shouting, “It’s the Messiah! It’s the Messiah!” Once again, things haven’t changed much. There are a lot of denominations and religions that seem to know Jesus. Some even admit to His having been the Messiah. But they deny His Divinity. So, are they truly listening? Do they honestly know Who it is they’re talking about? Or they deny His death and resurrection. That’s a nice way to pay lip service and take the power away from Him all in one breath. Happily there are those who honestly listen and believe and rest their hope on Him. So what’s to be done with the rest? The ones who listen and don’t understand, or the ones that find but don’t know what they’ve found? Well, words abound. And they’re helpful. But there are those white spaces between the letters that cause some folks problems. Hmm, what to do, what to do?

Today …

St. Zita

St. Zita

St. Zita

St. Zita was born into a poor but holy Christian family. Her older sister became a Cistercian nun and her uncle Graziano was a hermit whom the local people regarded as a saint. Zita herself always tried to do God’s will obediently whenever it was pointed out to her by her mother. (Consider the example of OUR Mother, Mary.) At the age of twelve Zita became a housekeeper in the house of a rich weaver in Lucca, Italy, eight miles from her home at Monte Sagrati. As things turned out, she stayed with that family for the last forty-eight years of her life. She found time every day to attend Mass and to recite many prayers, as well as to carry out her household duties so perfectly that the other servants were jealous of her. Indeed, her work was part of her religion! She use to say: “A servant is not holy if she is not busy; lazy people of our position is fake holiness.” Wonder why the other servants were jealous? At first, her employers were upset by her generous gifts of food to the poor, but in time, they were completely won over by her patience and goodness and she became a very close friend. St. Zita was given a free reign over her working schedule and busied herself with visits to the sick and those in prison. Word spread rapidly in Lucca of her good deeds, which speak louder than words, and the heavenly visions that appeared to her. She was sought out by the important people, and at her death in 1278 the people acclaimed her as a saint. She is the patroness of domestic workers. Now, our saint obviously had a wonderful effect on people, didn’t she? Given what we know about her does it seem to you that she was wordy? Did she preach great sermons? Well, actually she did. And she delivered them with her mouth shut and her hands busy. So we just answered our above question, “What to do, what to do?”, didn’t we? Its found in the word “do”, and not in the white spaces around it.

Think …

“Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words.”―

St. Francis of Assisi

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You’re getting warmer, warmer … Thursday, April 11

English: Finding in the Temple

Finding in the Temple. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Rosary Meditation … The Fifth Joyful Mystery, the Finding in the Temple. ” … after three days, they found Him in the temple … ” Luke 2:46. I lost my glasses once. Well, more than once, but there was this one time that kind of stands out. I went all over the place, retracing steps. Warmer, warmer … Cold. It was like playing a child’s game and being on the losing team. What had I done, where and when? Any clue would help. I couldn’t find them anywhere. And no, they were not setting on top of my head. I’ve never been able to get glasses to do that. It was worse than that anyway. As I looked I suddenly realized that I was having trouble finding them, yes, but I wasn’t having any trouble looking. I was wearing them. Have you ever looked and looked and finally realized that whatever it was you were looking for wasn’t really lost? It was exactly where it should have been all along, but because we think its lost we don’t look there. We look everyplace else instead. People go looking for truth. They go all over the world in search of it. We waste time, three days, five years, it doesn’t matter. Time, energy, resources. All anybody really needs to do is stop and ask one simple question. “Where is the truth supposed to be?” Jesus is the Way, Truth, and Light.  There you go. Everything we need. A Way to get to the Truth and a Light to guide us there. Mary and Joseph were no doubt distraught and rightly so. People looking for something, anything, can easily get that way. There is no reason to be distraught when we’re looking for truth. Where is the truth supposed to be? Go there. Jesus had to be about His Father’s business and so He was in His Father’s house, the temple. Where is the truth supposed to be? Well, where is Jesus? Find Him and you find the Truth and the universe with it. And you don’t need glasses either.

Today … St. Boniface Curitan was an evangelist to the Picts and Scots. Probably a Roman by birth, Boniface was the bishop of Ross, England. He introduced Roman observances into the British territories and founded a vast number of parishes. This saint took people to Jesus. You can’t do that if you don’t know where He is yourself.

Quote … I have read in Plato and Cicero sayings that are very wise and very beautiful; but I never read in either of them:  “Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden.”  ~St Augustine~