However, our finite ears do not hear this incredibly melodic symphony. Not that we are incapable of hearing Heaven's song, for we are. If we were still within, in the core of our soul, in the beat of our heart, and constant churning of our brains, we would hear this symphony-we would hear God's voice.
In this last week I have meditated and contemplated on the "why" of our inability to hear the song of Heaven, so that we are then motivated to join in the symphony through our own joys, and more particularly, through our daily sorrows.
It has been given me to understand that we are not an "advanced" civilization as we pride ourselves on being. Rather, we are more ignorant, more distant from God, than our ancestors, than the men and women of other centuries who did not have the benefit of all the modern conveniences that we have at our command today.
Our soul is the breath, the life of God. Without the soul, we would not live. We live and move and think and speak and walk, feel, and every other emotion you can name, because we are alive! Now, whether we are alive with God, or without realizing that it is He who gives life, we are literally living, breathing "computers", for that is the very likeness of our human brain. The more that the brain is occupied, the greater the drain on the soul's life and harmony with Almighty God. If we occupy ourselves day and night with TV, newspapers, motion pictures, videos, video games, computers, telephones, fax machines, cellular phones and the like, then we put a mighty drain on the brain which needs to be recharged.
Think of a great big 8 cylinder car whose battery is being drained because its occupants are using the air conditioning, running the radio, the CD player or the like, but the car's in park, and the key points to accessories. If you keep the power going to all of those things for too long, the battery is going to sputter and die if it is not recharged. The battery needs to be plugged into another electrical source to regain its full potential. We are so much more than a battery, but we act as if that is all we are. We let the modern "toys" of our day and age drain our spiritual life out of us, because our soul, the very life of our body, cannot be re-charged since we've blocked off the door for God to reach into our souls.
Eventually, my dear friends, the life of grace, God's life, drains away and there's nothing left but a walking, talking computer run amok. We are the victims of our own technology, and we are much worse off for it than those who lived a century or more before us. We "believe" we're so progressive, but in reality we've lost touch with the purpose we are on this earth - we've lost God.
You think not? This goes far, far beyond the fact that the present crisis in the White House, the bombings of embassies, the bombs we've used against terrorist camps in the Mid-East and Africa, are a concern only if they threaten our good economy. Certainly, the polls (if one puts any credence in those things) indicate that the vast majority of Americans prefer the status quo as long as their pocketbook, checking account, savings account, etc., is humming along with profit.
This is about doing what our Blessed Mother wants us to do, and that is to turn off the world and turn on God. It's about that battery/computer of a brain we all have, and the thousands of things that drain it every day, with no thought whatsoever for re-charging our soul's level of grace to offset the evils of the world. It's this drain of soul-energy that is the real crisis, and the fact that we are faced with numerous crises around the globe only underscores this fact. Were we in tune with God, with His Most Holy Will, we would not be in the mess we are in. In fact, I strongly believe that Our Lady's Immaculate Heart would have already triumphed, and we would be in a totally different situation-one of holiness on earth, where all men have "good will" toward God, and not the protestant version of that line referring to God's "good will" toward men. God's will is always Good. Ours is not.
In short, what we've done is put ourselves into satan's trap by numbing our minds and enticing our brains to think up newer and more clever devices that are supposed to save lives, give us more leisure time to do what we want, while our cash flow just goes on and on in an endless line of plastic credit. What good does any of this do? None!
We need to go back to Sacred Scripture, to the messages given by our Blessed Mother over many centuries, and take them to heart. We need to take our toys away from ourselves, and quit draining the energy that God gives to us, and wants to give in even more abundance. How do we do this? Fasting, prayer, frequent Confession, frequent Holy Mass and the reception of the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion. Everything Our Lady asks at Medjugorje and elsewhere. We need to think seriously about the fact that many of the youth in the Church today are not Confirmed, and there's so much emphasis put on the "social" aspect of the Sacrament, that it has lost any trace of being a Second Pentecost for the candidate. We let our youth spin out their teenage years without benefit of this sacrament, which brings to fulfillment the fruits and gifts of the Holy Spirit we received at Baptism.
We are left, then, with a decreasing population of men and women who are old enough to know better than to fall for the silly modernism that is so often spouted from pulpits. We are left with more than two generations that are ignorant of the tenets of their faith, and if they are ignorant, how can they, in teaching in our Catholic schools and RCIA programs, properly instruct the youth? We are blind, we are leading the blind, and the generations coming up now are blind, deaf, and dumb to the truths of the Roman Catholic Church.
Ask a Catholic child who does not attend a parochial school to recite the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be. Ask that same child to say the Ten Commandments. Ask the child to recite the Beatitudes, the Cardinal Virtues, the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit. Odds are that the child can't do one of the above, and if pressed to say why, wouldn't even have a reason. We are a sorry lot today and God is not pleased.
It would do the world so much good if we were to turn off the TV, the radio, the CD, the tape machines, stop all the presses, and listen to God. We need to go into the desert of rejecting the world, to fast and pray as Christ prayed for forty days and nights, to purge ourselves of the need we have, the addiction we have, for our technology, and then we would hear God speak, we would hear that Heavenly symphony, and having heard it, we would join with it in our daily life in a way that would bring us to Heaven in a heartbeat!
It would be difficult to do this. There's no doubt about that. Still, isn't it worth a try? In this next week, I will be cutting down on the amount of TV I watch, (which is very little now, that's true), and I will seek, through prayer from the heart, to go deeper into the mystic life where God speaks, and the symphony is ecstasy, and the sufferings that we all have can be made into a most beautiful melody, all of which will bring the Triumph of our Blessed Mother's Immaculate Heart all the sooner to this poor, befuddled world caught in satan's lies and snares.
Bill Clinton and his lies, the terrorist camp bombings, the embassy bombings are perhaps nothing more than "Wag the Dog", but even if they are fabricated, that in itself is a very sad commentary on this society. Let us join in prayer that shouts to God, "Enough" of this sinful world filled with lies and manipulation, terrorism and its ilk. "Enough" of being deceived by our fellow men. Let us seek to live in harmony with His Will, let us be His best friend, for dog spelled backward is GOD!
Her column, along with columns by Father John Hampsch, C.M.F. and Father Stephen Valenta, OFM Conv., provide effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www.heartofmaryministry.com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy@aol.com by e-mail.
I concur that everyone has a right to a certain amount of privacy, however, when circumstances include lying under oath, obstructing justice, looking the American people straight in the eye (via reporters) and lying to the whole world, the breakdown of trust to the American people, and YEARS of sexual predatoriousness, then the matter becomes my business - our business - the business of the American people, who voted him into the highest office of the land. (I didn’t vote for him either time, but I’m stuck with him. I could not in conscience vote for a man that could see nothing wrong with killing an unborn, (even full-term) baby by literally having its brains vacuumed out of its head.)
I think it is wrong for Americans not to give a “hoot” about Clinton’s grave unfaithfulness. Somehow it doesn’t seem that his personal betrayal of his wife (for years, as he did finally admit to having an affair with Jennifer Flowers that lasted 12 years, by the way), can be overlooked by a nation whose top leader can justify such evil. Remember last week I wrote that a person has ONE conscience which operates for him in both his public actions as well as his private actions.
If a President of the United States can cheat on his wife so very many times, could he not also cheat on his country? Think about it! His wife should be the most important earthly person in his life. If he can “betray” her, could he not betray his country? If he can lie, looking the country square in the eye, could he not lie the same way in other matters? If his conscience is so calloused that he could commit these acts in private, then beware! The “lapse of judgment” which he acknowledged in his “regret” speech, is very capable of “lapsing in matters regarding the leading of our nation.
The Italians have a saying. It’s a little gross, but a lot of things Italians say can be categorized that way. (I’m of Italian descent, so I’m including myself.) The saying is: “The fish smells from the head.”
In other words, catch a fish, lay it on the ground, and in its death, it begins to smell from the head first.
The leader of any organization sets the tone. I’ve seen this over and again in Religious life. Jesus was right when he called us “sheep,” because sheep are very good at following, not leading.
IF the majority of people in our country have adopted the attitude that "Well, everyone lies about sex!" and thereby excuses the President for his actions, then I think our country is in a worse moral state than I had thought.
In his “regret” speech, the President said the matter was “private.” I think he really meant that he wanted it to be SECRET. Because once a President deliberately lies to Americans, the matter becomes their business and therefore cannot be personal to him and his family alone.
God help us. And God bless you, the reader.
Father, all-powerful and ever-living God, we do well always and everywhere to give You thanks, and to praise You on this feast of Saint Augustine. His life was a constant quest to know You and rejoice in You, and in finding You to seek You with ever greater love. By his teaching he enlightened Your Church. Moved by love for You and by zeal for Your glory, he established communities of religious, setting before them the ideal of sharing all things in common. Tireless in proclaiming the good news of salvation by preaching and writing, he fostered unity and peace and built up the fellowship of the Church.
We praise Your greatness as we honor the prophet who prepared the way before Your Son. You set John the Baptist apart from other men, marking him out with special favor. His birth brought great rejoicing: even in the womb he leaped for joy, so near was man's salvation. You chose John the Baptist from all the prophets to show the world its Redeemer, the Lamb of sacrifice. He baptized Christ, the Giver of Baptism, in waters made holy by the One Who was baptized. You found John worthy of a martyr's death, his last and greatest act of witness to Your Son.