Saturday, 09 November 2019 01:50

Remembering God

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Possible solutions to my forgetting the Creator:

1) Many prayer prompts. Ok, so, I am distracted, confused, and in need of redirection. How about some prayer prompts? Why? Because how can I love someone I

do not know? I need to become a great communicator with the Divine. This means a continual conversation, a continual prayer with my Maker. It is then, that, with time, the great relationship

starts unfolding, offering me the opportunity to glimpse and experience God’s sacred love for me and the whole world. So, what about some prayer prompts to keep reminding me to do

what is the most important activity of my life, a life full of prayer? 

a. For instance, what is the artwork hanging on the walls at home? Is it a rock and roll poster I bought and had signed by lead singer Chris Martin at the last Coldplay concert? Or, is the poster on the wall one of Our Lady of Guadalupe? Maybe Our Lady can be more prominently displayed than Chris Martin, leading me to ask her more often for intercession and protection. On occasion, it might even lead me to pray for Chris Martin and many other intentions. Who knows? 

b. How about a coffee-stained copy of the New American Bible sitting upon the kitchen table in such a way I cannot miss it? The Bible, at first, annoyingly positioned to be in my way, to slow me down, might very well lead me to following His way, the way. This is assuming, of course, that I open the Bible, read a bit, reflect and pray for divine insights into what I just read.

c. Or, how about putting in my pocket a holy rosary; how about the rosary being the only item in my right front pocket? Its pocket weight might remind me not only of its presence in the pants pocket, but also remind me to pray the rosary daily. All of these ideas and many more might set me on the path of glorifying God daily, honoring the first commandment, and remembering who I really am, His child.

2) Detachment. I have just got to change my environment. It’s consuming me; I am becoming the environment, the culture. It’s totally empty. Lord, help me. 

a. How about no more TV? If I watch enough Game of Thrones episodes on Netflix, I become disordered. The show’s violence and sex are so very fallen. Even worse, I become what I watch. Watching this and most other shows, I am now, at least, more likely to sin, if not already actively sinning. Can I pull this off - no TV? With God’s grace, of course. Now, what if I get some serious pushback from my wife? From my kids? Well, this is a family conversation to have. I will make my case before the family, to make a change, but, before I do this, I will ask the family to pray together, asking for the Lord’s will to be done, so that this is what happens and not just what we want, when we want it.

b. Or what about the smartphone? I need it, in a way. I need it for work or to communicate with friends in faraway places. So, I’ll keep the smartphone. But what about changing the bandwidth, the data plan? What if I change my plan so it is not so data, streaming driven? This might prevent me from staying on the device for too long. No longer will I be able to stream the latest Prime shows. Initially, this might make me a bit nervous and anxious, as I’m correcting my addiction to watching too much media content. Without the streaming, I might feel lost. But this is only temporary, only a feeling. Over time, without this distraction of oodles and oodles of media content, I might find I have ample time for what God wants me to do: to pray more, to spend more time with my family and teach them the faith, and perhaps to take care of my elderly neighbor next door.

3) Study. OK, so I am not in school anymore, and, honestly, I was never really a great student. The ‘study’ thing sounds like a drag. After all, study is going to require some time, energy, concentration, and effort. Boo hoo! But, what if I just started studying God, just a little bit? How about His love for me? By studying God, might I find out how He loves me? This really is a quintessential question for me to answer. After all, what is the purpose of my life, anyways? Is it a big six figure salary? Or, maybe, is my purpose to be ‘nice’ but uncommitted to anything? If I see the poor person coming my way, will I just smile and walk an ‘avoiding walk’ around him as quickly as possible? Or, is it God’s love; is my purpose to love? If I believe that God is who He says He is, then shouldn’t I pay particular attention to Him through study? After all, wouldn’t everything be much better in this life if I can experience the highest form of love, the love of the Creator? A definite maybe. So, what should I do? Well, I know I have a limited attention span and multiple daily responsibilities. Time management is important, but, at some level, I know that giving God a chance makes sense. How?

a. Catechism. For me, if too much time passes in between moments where I open, read and ponder the teachings of the Catechism, I start missing it. There’s just so much ‘meat’ in our Catechism. I really enjoy learning about the faith, its beauty and how it may form and lead my life (if I let it!). And shouldn’t I strive to become something like what the Catechism offers up? After all, it presents the deep love of Christ for me, the Trinity, the Blessed Mother, the saints in bite-sized, savory chunks. Its paragraph format offers deep faith-based inspiration for the day. What I can read in a minute profoundly impacts my day and re-steers me to pondering and enacting Christ’s love for me and everyone.

b. Bible. At times, when I think of the Bible, I think, OK, the words, they’re old! A part of me wants to be modern, a contemporary of the times. But, at a second glance, the Bible’s words are the words that are held on high. As the Mass begins, and the Deacon or Lector processes into the church with the gospels, these words are held high. Physically, the deacon lifts his arms as high as they can go, up in the air so that we all focus on them. Why? Well, they are not ordinary words. They are either the direct, divine words of our Lord, Jesus, as transcribed into the gospels or they were inspired by the Holy Spirit, as spoken through the prophets. By studying ‘high’ words, will they lift my spirit? Yes, the Holy Spirit will always lift my spirit, if I only study Him.

Lord, help me. Help me to remember You.

DaneBairdDane Baird has been a witness member of the Home of the Mother for over 3 years. He has two daughters, Jean and Susannah. The newest addition to the family is Halo, wonder-dog! His profession is teaching autistic children and he enjoys acting in several parish and diocesan ministries, as well as supporting the Home of the Mother.

His blog is called "Fathers Floreat!" Floreat is a word he heard on retreat, it is latin for to flourish, to bloom. Men should be blossoming according to God's plan.

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