Thursday, March 2, 2017

Deuteronomy, Chapter 10, Verse 12-13
12 Now, therefore, Israel, what does the LORD, your God, ask of you but to fear the LORD, your God, to follow in all his ways, to love and serve the LORD, your God, with your whole heart and with your whole being, 13 to keep the commandments and statutes of the LORD that I am commanding you today for your own well-being?

What is meant by serving God?

Doing the will of God in all things which He requires of us, in whatever state of life we may be placed, and doing this with fidelity, with unwearied zeal, and out of love for Him. (Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896)

When we are bored and familiar with routine work, let us generously offer ourselves to the Lord for He indeed knows our needs and will take care of our well-being.

Preparing for Battle[2]
Know Your Enemy

God allows evil because He’s powerful enough to bring out of even the greatest evil a much greater good. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ provides a vivid illustration of this reality. Meanwhile, our days in this life provide a season for God to test, purify, strengthen, and perfect us, making us fit to live with Him forever in heaven. To that end, the demons serve as useful tools for Him as they constantly test us by tempting us, so that we become purer and stronger and closer to perfection every time we resist the temptation. In this sense, we might say, quoting St. Augustine: “As an artist, God makes use even of the Devil.”

International Women's Day[3]

International Women’s Day celebrates women’s achievements throughout the world.  Its purpose is to promote women’s equality, encourage support for repressed women and promote appreciation toward women everywhere.  Many organizations, including the United Nations, use this day to also celebrate extraordinary achievements of ordinary women. International Women's Day was initially promoted by the Socialist Party of America.  In 1909, it designated this day in remembrance of a major strike by the International Ladies’ Garment Workers Union.  The holiday is now recognized internationally and is an Official National Holiday for many countries, including: China, Russia and Ukraine.  It is observed annually on March 8th.

International Women's Day Facts & Quotes

·         In 2016, the theme for International Women's Day as promoted by the United Nations was Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality.
·         On the eve of World War I, women across Europe and Russia celebrated the holiday by protesting the war and campaigning for peace.
·         On this day, the US Dept. of State and the First Lady award the International Women of Courage Awards.  Ten women, are given the award - who have exemplified exceptional courage and leadership in advocating for human rights, women’s equality, and social progress, often at great personal risk
·         I am an example of what is possible when girls from the very beginning of their lives are loved and nurtured by people around them.  I was surrounded by extraordinary women in my life, grandmothers, teachers, aunts, cousins, neighbors, who taught me about quiet strength and dignity. -Michelle Obama
·         There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable. -  UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

International Women's Day Top Events and Things to Do

·         Organize a sporting event for women.  Numerous studies have shown many benefits for women that play sports.  A recent study by the EY Women Athletes Business Network even found that women that play sports were more likely to excel in business.
·         If you're a woman, try learning a task that is typically done by men.  Such a chore may be: changing the oil on your car, computer programming, mowing the lawn, painting, and any home improvement project.
·         If you’re a man, show appreciation by performing a chore for your special lady that is typically done by her.   This may include cooking, cleaning, child care or anything that the special woman in your life does.
·         Watch a movie that portrays strong empowered women.  Our favorites:  Bend It Like Beckham (2002), Elizabeth (1998), Erin Brockovich (2000), The Help (2011), A League of Their Own (1992), Mulan (1998), My Fair Lady (1964), Norma Rae (1979), Volver (2006).

The Church gives thanks for all the manifestations of the feminine "genius" which have appeared in the course of history, in the midst of all peoples and nations; she gives thanks for all the charisms which the Holy Spirit distributes to women in the history of the People of God, for all the victories which she owes to their faith, hope and charity: she gives thanks for all the fruits of feminine holiness.
-John Paul II, Apostolic Letter

Each one should judge his own conduct without having to compare it with what someone else has done. (Gal. 6:4)

In the twilight of life, God will not judge us on our earthly possessions and human successes, but on how well we have loved. (St. John of the Cross)[4]

Let us remember Christ’s words to us on service, “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it.” (Mk. 8:34-35) Life seen as mere self-centered earthly existence and lived in denial of Christ ends in destruction, but when lived in loyalty to Christ, despite earthly death, it arrives at fullness of life. True discipleship is total commitment to Christ through self-renunciation and acceptance of the cross of suffering, even to the sacrifice of life itself.

Daily Devotions/Prayers

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

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