"Standing by the cross of Jesus were His mother...
When Jesus saw His mother there
and the disciple there whom He loved
He said to His mother,
"Woman, behold your son."
Then He said to the disciple,
"Behold, your mother."
And from that hour the disciple
took her into his home." John 19:25-27
Can we imagine how Mary felt
seeing her son on the cross?
Even if there were so many times
that she had to accept
God's inconceivable will for her life,
I don't think it can ever be enough
to cushion her from this last agonizing pain!
Perhaps she couldn't think anymore.
She could only be aware of her heart
breaking into a million pieces.
Elizabeth Stone said, "Making the decision
to have a child-it is momentous.
It is to decide forever to have your heart
walking around outside your body."
That must have been true of Mary
more than of any other mother!
From the moment she conceived,
there was so much hinging on the way
she would love this child, nurture Him,
teach Him, protect Him, and then
surrender Him to the world to do with as we pleased!
"Behold, your mother."
Before Jesus died, He made sure
His mother would be cared for.
I think He would also want us
to honor her and love her.
Just as there is a place in
Jesus' heart for His mother,
we should also find a place in our hearts
to honor a woman who gave up her heart
to lodge in her son's body,
and allowed it to be trampled on
so God's plan would be accomplished!
"If you listen to my words and act on it,
you will be like a man building a house,
who dug deeply and laid foundation on rock..."
When I was 12 years old,
I clearly remember listening to the news
about a 6-storey apartment building
that collapsed after an Intensity 7 earthquake.
The name will stick forever in my memory. Ruby Towers.
More than 200 survived this tragedy
but many more were not found even
after a mammoth rescue effort
involving more than 6000 volunteers.
The Arellano High school in front of the site
was like a morgue,
with body parts strewn all over and the
smell of dead bodies permeating the air.
Many people were charged for this disaster,
from city officials who approved and
were supposed to inspect the plans and require
tests to be done on the soil,
to the architect and structural engineer
who made a poor design,
the owners who used substandard materials
to save money and deviated from the approved design.
In Luke chapter 6, Jesus warns us
that if we do not listen to Him,
and act on His words,
this is what will happen to our life!
God has a wonderful plan and purpose for our life.
If we deviate from that blueprint
which takes into consideration our gifts and talents,
our natural inclinations,
our passions and interests,
we will be a disaster waiting to happen.
Our "house" will crumble.
Whether we like it or not,
we are all building a house.
It is our decision whether to
make it a hodgepodge of styles,
choosing whom to follow, doing it our way,
or always going to the Master Architect and consulting Him.
Where will we get the materials to build our house?
Do we go to the source of wisdom?
Or will we choose to listen to an easier gospel,
one that is more comfortable,
one that does not require us
to examine our life and change?
Let us build our house on the sure foundation!
"We have sinned in complaining against the Lord..."
How hard should it be to cultivate an attitude of gratitude?
We are soooo rich!
Consider how much a blind man
would pay to have even one eye?
How much a paraplegic would give
to be able to move around and not have
others help him do what we take for granted every day?
How much for a kidney, a heart, a leg or a hand?
We are billionaires!
If you can read this,
you have access to a computer or a cellphone.
842 million people in the world don't even have enough to eat!
A few years ago I had so many
canker sores in my mouth for months at a time.
I couldn't eat, I couldn't talk, I couldn't sing!
But sometimes I would get respite and
it felt so good to be able to sing songs
during mass and in my community.
Do we have to wait to lose things
before we can praise God for what we have?
There was a time I had difficulty walking.
It turned out I had some
compressed discs in my spine.
So now I have resolved to praise God
for the "ordinary, every day things" I can do.
I can walk, I can talk, I can breathe,
I can paint, I see colors, I can read...
So much to praise God for! COUNTLESS!!!
What other ordinary, everyday things
should we be grateful for?
I find a lot of inspiration
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