Skip to main content

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES

Sirach, Chapter 27, Verse 3
Unless one holds fast to the fear of the Lord, with sudden swiftness will one’s house be thrown down.


This verse alone doesn’t make much sense; it is taken out of context. Verse 1 tells us the lesson: For the sake of profit many sin, and the struggle for wealth blinds the eyes. Sirach tells us that we must daily check ourselves and reflect if we in all our actions of our life’s business have done the will of the Father and acted with love and compassion.

The Root of Wisdom[1]

There’s a little gift from the Lord for each of us.  So many of us have taken this particular gift, kept it neatly wrapped and stuck it high up on a shelf.  We don’t want to even peek inside and see what is in it.  The gift I am referring to is the 7th one the Lord gave to us through the Holy Spirit — after wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge and piety.  That it is mentioned last makes it no less precious.  This gift is fear of the Lord.

Why is fear of the Lord a precious a gift?  We cannot be wise without it.  Psalm 111:10 tells us that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”  And Job 28:28 says “Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom.”  And Sirach 1:18 tells us that “the root of wisdom is fear of the Lord.”  Why do we need wisdom?  Well, according to Psalm 50:21, without wisdom, we would perish like beasts.  “For all their riches if mortals do not have wisdom, they perish like the beasts.”  Fear of the Lord leads to obedience towards Him.  But “those who fear the Lord disobey not his words” (Sirach 2:15).  It is when we find ourselves in disobedience and steeped in sin that we are sure to dismiss or even detest the mere mention of fear of the Lord because “…the fear of the Lord is an abomination to the sinner (Sirach 1:22). It is true that associating fear with God is generally passé in modern times — with a strong preference instead for spreading sweet and sticky messages of “love,” and “God will understand” over everything in order to make us all temporarily feel better.  It is also true that there is an unhealthy and neurotic type fear that God does not want us to have.  This is why Christ tells us in Matthew 6:25:  “…do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?”  But fear of the Lord is a different type of fear than that spoken of in Matthew — a healthy holy fear — a fear born from love.  Our love for God can cause us to fear ever separating ourselves from Him through sin.  Saint Thomas Aquinas tells us in the Summa Theologica that “…love causes fear since it is through his loving a certain good that whatever deprives a man of that good is an evil to him… and… he fears it as an evil.”  Saint Thomas assures us of the validity of this type of fear by teaching that this “fear is… borne of love.”  Saint Paul the Apostle tells us in Philippians 2: “in fear and trembling work out your salvation.”  And fear can even make us more charitable towards others.  It was St. Augustine who said “fear leads to the love of charity.” There is even reason to view fear of the Lord as a spiritual antidote to financial difficulties.  Fear of the Lord keeps us in check, asking God always if our actions are pleasing in His eyes.  If we want to hold onto our finances, it is wise not to let go of our fear of the Lord.  Once we let go of fear of the Lord, it is easy to be blinded by the chance to make a larger profit and by the struggle for ever-greater wealth.  In that blindness we can sometimes make unwise choices.

For the sake of profit many sin, And the struggle for wealth blinds the eyes. Like a peg driven between fitted stones between buying and selling sin is wedged in, unless you earnestly hold fast to fear of the Lord, Suddenly your house will come down… (Sirach 27:1-3).

Blindness can likewise lead to unwise choices in our voting.  Abortion is an intrinsic evil.  No evil in this election can surpass the evil that abortion is.  We must vote with a good and formed conscience, as we ask ourselves: what if I was in the womb and the knife was coming for me?  As U.S. Bishop Rene Gracida stated in a recent radio broadcast:

“A Catholic cannot be said to have voted in this election with a good conscience if they have voted for a pro-abortion candidate.  Barack Hussein Obama is a pro-abortion candidate.”

We will be held accountable to God for our voting.  A vote in support of those who vote for abortion, translates into a vote for abortion.  To vote for abortion is to vote in favor of the shedding of innocent blood by Heaven’s littlest ones whom God most especially loves.  This shedding of blood demands justice and if we continue on our current path it would not be at all unreasonable to expect that God will eventually dispense His punishment in His time and in His way, to us as individuals and to us collectively as a nation. Just as earthly fathers must at times punish children whom they dearly love, so God dispenses punishment on us as His beloved children.  God is love and the dispensation of His just punishment is an act of mercy.  “Justice and mercy appear in the punishment of the just in this world, since by afflictions lesser faults are cleansed in them, and they are more raised up from earthly affections to God…” “The evils that press on us in this world force us to go to God.” (Saint Thomas Aquinas) 

That little box so neatly wrapped still sits upon the shelf holding that precious gift and gathering dust.  Perhaps the time has come to take the box down from the shelf, blow off the dust, untie the bow, peek inside, and receive the precious gift the Lord has waiting for us that is designed to bring us wisdom — the gift of fear of the Lord.  Before we vote, we must pray and ask God for the wisdom to discern His will, and the strength to vote in accord with that.  We must read our Bibles and Catechisms, to better understand His will and pray for the grace to stop offending God through sin.

Today pray for the unborn and for the enemies of God, the Pro-choice Democrats and especially Nancy P. and Chuck S.

Saint Francis de Sales[2]


Today is the traditional start of the January thaw; let us therefore take the advice of St. Francis and prepare ourselves for every communion.


St. Francis de Sales says that Our Savior can never be seen more amiable and more tender, in all that He has done for us, than in Holy Communion, in which He, so to say, annihilates Himself and becomes food, that He may unite Himself to the hearts and bodies of His faithful. Therefore the learned Gerson used also to say, that there was no means more efficacious than Holy Communion whereby to enkindle devotion and the holy love of God in our souls. And, indeed, if we speak of doing something agreeable to God, what can a soul do more agreeable to Him than to receive communion? St. Denis teaches us that love always tends towards perfect union; but how can a soul be more perfectly united with Jesus than in the manner of which He speaks Himself, saying: “He that eateth My flesh, and drinketh My blood, abideth in Me, and I in him” (John vi. 57) St. Augustine says that if every day you receive this sacrament, Jesus will be always with you, and that you will always advance in divine love. Again, if there be question of healing our spiritual infirmities, what more certain remedy can we have than Holy Communion, which is called by the sacred Council of Trent a remedy whereby we may be freed from daily faults, and be preserved from mortal sins? Whence does it come, asks Cardinal Bona, that in so many souls we see so little fruit with such frequent communions, and that they constantly relapse into the same faults? He replies: The fault is not in the food, but in the disposition of him who receives. Can a man, says Solomon, hide fire in his bosom, and his garments not burn? (Prov. vi. 27.) God is a consuming fire. He comes Himself in Holy Communion to enkindle this divine fire; how is it, then, says William of Paris, that we see such a diabolical miracle as that souls should remain cold in divine love, in the midst of such flames? All comes from the want of proper dispositions, and especially from want of preparation. Fire immediately inflames dry but not green wood; for this latter is not disposed to burn. The saints derived great benefit from their communions because they prepared themselves with great care. St. Aloysius Gonzaga devoted three days to his preparation for Holy Communion, and three days he spent in thanksgiving to his Lord. To prepare well for Holy Communion, a soul should be disposed on two main points: it should be detached from creatures and have a great desire to advance in divine love. In the first place, then, a soul should detach itself from all things, and drive everything from its heart which is not God. He that is washed, saith Jesus, needeth not but to wash his feet, but is clean wholly (John xiii. 10); which signifies, as St. Bernard explains it, that in order to receive this sacrament with great fruit, we should not only be cleansed from mortal sins, but that our feet also should be washed, that is, be free from earthly affections; for being in contact with the earth they excite a sort of repugnance in God, and soiling the soul prevent the effects of Holy Communion. St. Gertrude asked Our Lord what preparation He required of her for Holy Communion, and He replied I only ask that thou shouldst come empty of thyself to receive. In the second place, it is necessary in Holy Communion to have a great desire to receive Jesus Christ and His holy love. In this sacred banquet, says Gerson, only those who are famishing receive their fill; and the most Blessed Virgin Mary had already said the same thing: He hath filled the hungry with good things (Luke i. 53). As Jesus, writes the venerable Father Avila, only came into this world after He had been much and long desired, so does He only enter a soul which desires Him; for it is not becoming that such food should be given him who has a loathing for it. Our Lord one day said to St. Matilda: No bee flies with such impetuosity to flowers, to suck their honey, as I fly to souls in Holy Communion, driven by the violence of My love. Since, then, Jesus Christ has so great a desire to come into our souls, it is also right that we also should have a great desire to receive Him and His divine love by Holy Communion. St. Francis de Sales teaches us that the principal object which a soul should have in view in communicating should be to advance in the love of God ; since He Who for love alone gives Himself to us should be received for love.


The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity[3]

Day 7, Building family in household and Church

Scripture
·         Exodus 2:1-10, The Birth of Moses.
·         Psalm 127:1, Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.
·         2 Timothy 1:1-8, Timothy, Paul’s beloved “child.”
·         Matthew 2:13-15, Joseph got up, took the child and his mother and went to Egypt.

Meditation
Families are important for the protection and nurture of children. The births of both Moses and Jesus illustrate how vulnerable children can be to external forces, and how action can be taken to protect them. Matthew offers us a model of fatherhood that is in loving fidelity to the Lord’s command, especially in turbulent times.

Jesus calls us his mother, and his brothers, and his sisters (Matthew 12:48). As Christians, we are called to live as supportive family networks, building strong communities in which children are protected and can flourish.

Prayer
Gracious God, you sent your son to be born in an ordinary family with ancestors who were both faithful and sinful. We ask your blessing upon all families, within households and communities. We especially pray for the unity of the Christian family so that the world may believe, In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Daily Devotions
·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Nineveh 90 Day 24
·         Fitness Friday Week 12
·         Nine Days for Life-day 7
·         Please pray for me and this ministry

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Thursday, May 27, 2021

  Auxilium Christianorum - Praying for Persecuted Priests Monday, May 24 is the Feast of Mary Mother of the Church. It is also the Feast of  Mary Help of Christians  (Auxilium Christianorum). Please consider joining this Auxilium Christianorum family to pray daily for our holy and courageous persecuted priests. The Church teaches us that it is divided into the  Church Triumphant  (which includes the members of the Church in heaven), the  Church Suffering  (this includes the members of the Church in purgatory), and the  Church Militant  (this refers to those members of the Church who are alive in this world). Because we are part of the Church Militant, we are in a spiritual warfare and this spiritual warfare requires that we recognize, as Saint Paul teaches us "For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places." ( Ephesians 6:12 ) The me

Monday, August 12, 2019

Judith, Chapter 10, Verse 16 When you stand before him, have no fear in your heart; give him the report you have given us, and he will treat you well.” Judith prepares for war with prayer and by the enhancement of her beauty. She is so strikingly beautiful that in this verse one of the guards of the Assyrian camp advises her to be confident in the presence of Holofernes. Beauty and the Beast [1] After bathing (during a drought) she uses all the human arts available to her to make herself beautiful and captivating: perfumed ointment, hair, clothing and jewelry. She understands the goodness of her body. She knows physical beauty is good and comes from God. She also knows that the power of her beauty comes from within her, from her holiness, from her faithfulness to God. Since both her exterior and interior beauty come from God, her beauty must be devoted to the service of God. God intends to use her beauty as a weapon to liberate the people. She will wield the weapon t

Thirty Days with Mary-Day 26-September 9

    30 Days of Women and Herbs – Frauendreissiger Mugwort   (Artemisia vulgaris) 2 Maccabees, Chapter 15, Verse 8 He urged his men not to  fear  the attack of the Gentiles, but mindful of the help they had received in the past from Heaven, to expect now the victory that would be given them by the Almighty.   As an old, retired military man it was common for us to say while we were loading our magazines with bullets, “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition." We knew that without faith it is impossible to please God, for whoever would approach him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. Optimists see steppingstones where pessimists see stumbling blocks.   Heavenly Intercession [1] "Stretching out his right hand, Jeremiah presented a gold sword to Judas. As he gave it to him, he said 'Accept this holy sword as a gift from God; with it you shall crush your adversaries.' " —2 Maccabees 15:15-16   Nicanor planned to slaughter the Jews on th

Friday, August 26, 2022

 Switch of Manliness Legacy OUR LADY OF CZESTOCHOWA   Acts, Chapter 10, verse 1-4 1 Now in Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of the Cohort called the Italica, 2 devout and God-fearing along with his whole household, who used to give alms generously to the Jewish people and pray to God constantly. 3 One afternoon about three o’clock, he saw plainly in a vision an angel of God come into him and say to him, “Cornelius.” 4 He looked intently at him and seized with FEAR , said, “What is it, sir?” He said to him, “Your prayers and almsgiving have ascended as a memorial offering before God.   Cornelius’ Cohort was an auxiliary unit of archers, men who are expert at hitting a mark or target.   Sin is the act of violating God's will. Sin can also be viewed as anything that violates the ideal relationship between an individual and God, or as any diversion from the ideal order for human living. To sin has been defined as "to miss the mark" to have a harden

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

  Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Easter PINOT GRIGIO DAY John, Chapter 14, verse 27 Peace, I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or AFRAID .   Shalom, which means peace, is a Hebrew salutation. Yet Christ tells us that HIS shalom is different. It is a gift of salvation a messianic blessing. Through the spirit we are born again, sons and daughters of the eternal. The world and its attractions to sin lose its sparkle to us. Yes, we may fall from time to time, but the spirit and peace of Christ is always with us, and we rise up again. 10 things happy professionals do before 10 a.m. [1]   Success often seems like a visionary goal — a feat in life that’s attempted only after many strides, plenty of pitfalls and a healthy serving of endurance. However, for those who consider themselves fulfilled by their career, it’s not only a sense of accomplishment and an impressive LinkedIn profile that defines

SPREAD THIS NATIONAL 54-DAY NOVENA FOR OUR COUNTRY IN CRISIS.

Dear U.S. Grace Force, I believe we are facing a watershed moment. I am feeling we need to be in intense prayer right now. Today, I received on strong calling that we should do a 54 Day Novena of intense mortification and prayer from All Saints (November 1) to Christmas (December 24).  I don't know where folks are at. For some, this may be overkill since we just finished a 54 Day Novena. For others, they may be sensing what I am sensing, and want to go all in.  Then, after receiving this calling, I was made aware of what of these two blood brothers, Fr. James Blount and Fr. Tony Blount, have already prepared. The Blount Fathers are in exact sync with all of us. LET'S JOIN THEM!! All of the information is here:  https:// queenofpeacemedia.com/54days/ Here is a short video in which the Blount Fathers (brothers) explain this prayer campaign:

Thursday, April 14, 2022

  Holy Thursday   Jeremiah, Chapter 30, verse 10-11 10 But you, my servant Jacob, do not FEAR ! —oracle of the LORD—do not be dismayed, Israel! For I will soon deliver you from places far away, your offspring from the land of their exile; Jacob shall again find rest, secure, with none to frighten him, 11 for I am with you—oracle of the LORD—to save you. I will bring to an end all the nations among whom I have scattered you; but you I will not bring to an end. I will chastise you as you deserve, I will not let you go unpunished.   Secularist and pagans still tremble with fear because of God. Why? People fear what they do not understand or have to compete with. Every person is born with the spirit of God within them; it is the spirit of truth which they have lost or suppressed.   Christ referred to this when he told the parable of the sower. The seed is the spirit of truth (spirit of God) that the sower sows. Christ tells us, “A sower went out to sow. and as he sowed, s

Friday, April 8, 2022

  Fifth Week of Lent Friday of Sorrows HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY   Jeremiah, Chapter 23, Verse 4 I will raise up shepherds for them who will shepherd them so that they need no longer FEAR or be terrified; none shall be missing—oracle of the LORD.   During the season of Lent, we offer our suffering up to Christ to unite with His suffering and as our shepherd, He guides us through this time to bring us into his glory.   The Presence of God [1]   For Jews, there was only one Temple. It was the one place on earth that could truly be called holy. It was the place where God’s Spirit dwelt. The Temple was a place where they could withdraw from the pollutions of the world and know God’s presence in purity. As Christians by the action of Christ we, our bodies, are the temple of God, and He is always with us. No longer was God’s presence and his purifying ritual confined to a single geographic location. No longer were they the exclusive privilege of a single ethnic group. Now the

THE GODLESS AGENDA: From Davos to the Vatican

 

Saturday, April 9, 2022

   Saturday of the Fifth Week of Lent   Jeremiah, Chapter 26, verse 19 Did Hezekiah, king of Judah, and all Judah condemn him to death? Did he not FEAR the Lord and entreat the favor of the Lord, so that the Lord had a change of heart regarding the evil he had spoken against them? We, however, are about to do great evil against ourselves.”   Have you ever been around people who cannot handle the truth! Speaking the truth got Jeremiah in dire straits. Unmoving, the temple officials and elders trashed Jeremiah nonetheless they were too afraid to kill him.   Dire Straits [1]   At the beginning of Jehoiakim's reign, God tells Jeremiah to stand in the court of the temple and speak to all the people and cities of Judah. They're getting another chance to repent. Maybe they'll actually listen this time. If the people don't finally come to their senses, God's going to do the same thing to Jerusalem that he did to Shiloh up north: it'll be devastated, but the