We can't always be sure what lies ahead, but we can be sure we're on the right track if we trust in Jesus and do all He asks.
The best-laid plans of mice and men oft go astray. Such is life in the web lane. Following up on our editorial this past weekend, we had beseeched the reader to go to the form entitled WE NEED YOUR HELP and donate whatever you could. Unfortunately, this editor had written the wrong string into the form and all submissions were consequently destroyed somewhere in cyberspace. We have no way of knowing how many submitted a donation because of it. We do know that over 100 people submitted the form, but we do not know who they were. If you were one of them, please drop us an e-mail or resubmit the form by going to WE NEED YOUR HELP. We would be most, most appreciative. Again, we have no idea who might have previously submitted in the last few days and can only depend on your good graces to respond.
You've probably noticed we haven't been running a graphics enhanced front page with photos, illustrations and color type and graphics against the galaxy black background for the issues of May. The reason for this is we need to pare back the meg space in our server because the UNIX server we currently have can only hold so much and we have exceeded that capacity, therefore we had to sacrifice something until we can pare back graphics in archive files. We hope to be able to return to the graphics front page for each day soon and to accommodate this, we will need to drop the archives files for A CALL TO PEACE. It is ashame since many features, articles and messages are continuous and began over two years ago and are contained in the nearly two-year file of the bi-weekly issues that ran from January 1996 until October 1997. In order to also meet our meg level, we are scurrying about in changing the HTML codes of graphics front pages so they will take you directly to the text version for articles you are clicking on to. Background will be the lagoon-like aqua with black type which so many have enthusiastically approved and which the text front page will always be. Naturally, when you print out the articles the background will not appear. We have narrowed the margins in the articles so they will fit on everyone's monitor regardless of size. It can be frustrating having to scroll horizontally to read something whereas scrolling vertically is more a natural reaction for browsers and much easier. However, since the margins are narrower and may read very easily on the screen, if you print them out it will take more paper. The solution and best course to take is to click on the entire text and print that out. These pages will fill the most space on paper - usually four to seven pages in one printing and there is seldom never more than two printings, sometimes all on one printing if the issue is short and you can then read each issue at your leisure later or share them with others.
Sharing is so important in these times when apathy is choking the life out of so many apostolic ministries, including our own. In studying trends over the past ten years, it's interesting to note that the public - or in this case the faithful - are fickle. They'll chase and support those apostolates promoting "current messages" but as soon as those messages stop, they go on to the next "current messenger" leaving the old messages and apostolate promoting them in the dust. More ministries have dried up because of this trend. Many of these people are what have been labeled as "message junkies" - the type who chase the latest messages or messenger, forgetting the messages they had heard prior in search of more "blueprints" of what is in store for them. This can be very, very dangerous. We ran into this in Arkansas when people descended on our ministry from all over smothering Cyndi in trying to coax from the Blessed Mother through Cyndi a personal blueprint for them. Some times Our Lady would convey a message through the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart but most often whenever a message was imparted, if it didn't fit with the preconceived message the person or persons wanted to hear, they would not respond anyway. The Mother of God has said over and over to so many of her children from Medjugorje on that she has said all she can say. That is why she ceased giving messages to the Hidden Flower, to Father Don Stefano Gobbi, to numerous other visionaries and messengers. Even in Medjugorje, where she has said all she can, people are turning away in droves. Why? Because there is nothing spectacular happening! These message junkies or fair-weather faithful rely on phenomena to prove their faith. That is the biggest mistake they make. God does not work that way and neither does His Blessed Mother. Jesus said the way is narrow and few there are who enter. Why? Because they are not willing to carry their cross. Our Lady has been pleading with us to carry our cross by living the messages - Total Commitment to God, Faith, Prayer, Fasting, Frequent reception of the Sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist. Nothing spectacular. In fact, downright routine day in and day out drudgery, but that is the only way to salvation. It is, as Saint Therese the Little Flower said, "not doing extraordinary things, but doing ordinary things in extraordinary ways."
It is truly extraordinary to stay the course and accept the everyday humdrum of living the messages. It's not easy turning one's will over totally to God. It's not easy fasting and praying daily without fail. It's not always easy to have expectant faith when things may look glum, but by living our faith, we can nurture that faith and be confident that God will come through if we're willing to do what He asks through His envoy extraordinaire - His Holy Mother. But because it is "unspectacular," man, being the curious animal he is, searches on, dismissing what he or she already heard. Rather than applying it, they cast their net upon an unknown sea seeking the exact answers that may not be forthcoming except in God's Own time. The great danger here is the lure toward knowing the future. Once they taste just a hint, they want to know more and clamor to personalize it, not just for the world, or the Church, but for them and their family. Evidently they feel they'll be able to make all the changes they need in time if they know when. This is not God's way but rather the scheming wiles of the evil one for Jesus has said "No one knows the day nor the hour except the Father". We look at it very simply: if God wanted us to know more, He would have told us in Sacred Scripture. As it is, which so many message junkies fail to realize, what Our Lady and her Divine Son have been imparting in private revelation is nothing new but just a "rehash" of all that is contained in Scripture and the Doctrines and Traditions of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. Still we don't get it. It's high time we did, or we're all going to be shut out when the real signs manifest themselves because we cried "wolf" one too many times! We're going to miss the boat because we're looking for another sign. It is akin to the story of the man who was caught in a flood on top of his house as it floated down the river, sinking slowly. When they sent a ladder he declined saying "God will provide." When rescuers pulled a life boat up against the sinking structure, he politely told them he'd wait. And, as he was treading water with the house totally engulfed, and a helicopter hovering overhead with a welcome lifeline just a foot from his thrashing hand, he waved them off gluggling "God will..." Well, you know the rest of the story. He drowned and as he came before his Maker he asked the Almighty why He hadn't rescued him in his time of need. We all know God's response, "I sent you a ladder, a boat and a helicopter!" Are we going to be as dense as that poor man? We can wise up by living the messages and take the business of evangelizing seriously, very seriously as the Holy Father entreats. We can't always be sure what lies ahead, but we can be sure we're on the right track if we trust in Jesus and do all He asks.