Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Mk 4:26-34 Looking For Him

Mk 4:26-34  Looking For Him
Mary said, “Son, why have you done this to us?  Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.”  And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me?  Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” 
Be yourself!  And you can be anything. 
Yep!  I know.  Here I go again.  I’m sorry to say this but I also have a problem with this saying.  I know what you are thinking?  Why so much time on such useless things?  Believe me, I wish I didn't think so much!!!  But I do.  And I think it is important that we, as Christians, begin to speak a language that is different from our secular brothers and sisters.  We have much more to offer than they do.  But before we can offer anything, we need to understand some things. 
What's wrong with this?  Of course it makes sense Father!  It means be true to yourself and you can be anything you want to be!  But how can I be anything other than myself, especially if I am demanded to be true to myself?  It would make more sense to say, “Be yourself!  And you will be… yourself!” 
Father!  If you set your mind to it, you can be a great singer!  Really?  I can?  But doesn’t that take training, correction, changing or mastering?  Doesn't that open us up to criticism, to correction?
Alfonse!!! If you are true to yourself, you can be a priest!  Really?  But doesn’t that mean being like others, like the Lord’s disciples?  Like Jesus Christ?  Yes, but you can be unique!  Oh…like Judas, right?
Enough!  Yes, enough!
Be yourself!  And you can be anything.  I looked around but could not find a single ancient author that said something like this.  What I did find instead were artists like Oscar Wilde, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry, Judy Garland, Jim Morrison, Frank Zappa, Marilyn Monroe, Marilyn Manson, etc… that did.  Isn’t that interesting…
My question is “Why now, but not then?” 
Why were you looking for me?  Now this is something new and refreshing!  This is what I found among the ancients.  Why are you looking at me?  Plato said, “Don’t look at me.  I’m just the messenger; Socrates was the teacher.”  Buddha said, “Don’t look at me; look at my philosophy.”   John the Baptist said, “I’m not Him; I’m just a prophet.”  Only Christ said, “Believe in me.  I AM”. 
I AM who I AM.  How can any mere man say something like this and be honest?  I am not myself and I never will be!  I am the product of so many things, good and bad.  I am a product of the genes given to me by my family.  I am the product of the upbringing that I received; the schools I attended; the neighbors I hung out with; the faith that I received or did not receive.  My past may haunt me, enlighten me, disturb me, move me, encourage me or discourage me.  To say “Be yourself” is insane and insulting!  How can I “be myself” if someone never let me be? 
To say, “Be yourself!” is like saying “Be your own god”.
Not even William Shakespeare had the courage to encourage Hamlet “to be himself!”  How could his tragic protagonist do so with his world collapsing around him?  Instead, he asked a question, “To be or not to be?”, for he knew, that by being ‘himself’ he could end up killing himself. 

Shakespeare only gave Hamlet two choices.  Maybe there's another choice:  To be someone else and true to thyself.
In my Father’s house.  Mary was a young teenager in her Father’s house.  She heard the voice of an angel because she was in her Father’s house.  She could give her yes to God because she lived inside her Father’s heart.  Mary was true to herself because she was full of grace!  She was someone else by being true to herself. 

Why does the ‘modern girl’ have to be a sick little girl?  Why does she experience so much pain, sadness, depression and anxiety?  Why do she hurt herself, abuse herself and offer herself for so little?  I truly believe it’s because we don’t give them a chance to be true to themselves; to be “full of grace.” 

So many children are over taxed.  We expect so much from them.  We demand that they grow up and that they do it quickly.  We expect them to be thin.  We tell a child, “Be yourself!” and quickly airbrush over them, paint them, cover-girl them or hide them under a ton secular expectations.  We encourage them to “get noticed” in elementary school, have a boyfriend in middle school, dye their hair and wear fake nails in High School.  We’re shocked to learn their still adjusting after a divorce or when a stranger moves in.  We expect them to settle just fine with two moms or two dads.  We expect so much from them except to be full of grace.  We expect them to be successful in any home, except in their Father’s home.
Mary’s goal in life was not so much to be herself; but rather, to be full of God’s grace.  St. Paul's was similar when he wrote, “It is no longer I who live in me but Christ who lives in me.” 

Everyone:  Be true to yourself by being open to God's grace.


  1. Your words bring to mind the Spirit of the Living God prayer to the Holy Spirit: "Spirit of the Living God, fall afresh on me...melt me, mold me, fill me, use me..."

    Melting implies becoming something other than what existed before, becoming something different than what I was once was.

    And today's meditation from St. Franics de Sales touches on the continuous nature of growth in holiness:

    "When man shall have finished, says Scripture, then he will begin. All that we have done so far is good, but what we are about to begin is better. And when we have finished that, we will begin something else which will be better still, and then the next thing will seem even more fruitful..."

    1. I get what you are saying… I think.
      I have thought about this before too. If I am me due to all these other influences that I didn’t choose, how can I truly be me, with my own thoughts, dreams, visions, etc.
      To me this is the beauty of being human. God made us on this earth in separate bodies who may think we are separate from others, but in reality, we are not separate. We have such potential to be one with each other in Christ. This is precisely why the wise were never able to say "those words". I do agree with you about this current age in lacking wisdom. I just don’t think that analyzing these things trumps doing something, like loving our neighbors, instead of trying to think through it.
      I understand your problem. I do. I wish I could just love one another without analyzing everything. I know that I inherited my Dad's brain and not my Mom's. Every time I get in this mode, I remind myself of Augustine and Thomas Aquinus. After they each had their beautific vision, Augustine said “Love and do what you want.” Aquinus said, “all I have written… it is all grass”. He never wrote anything more, b/c he knew there was no comparison if put up against Love. It’s terribly hard to cut from, I've experienced this myself, but it is really all about loving. All the analyzing, all the thinking helped me to separate thoughts out in my brain, but it did nothing for increasing my virtues.
      A very wise woman wrote: love brings light. The more you love, the more you see God’s light, God’s wisdom: “ I will manifest Myself to those who love me…..” It was in loving Jesus in each person who presented themselves to me in each present moment that I did discover more, more of what God wanted for me to understand about Him. It’s just that it wasn’t logic, it was Love.

  2. Really thinking about the world today and how words have been twisted to have meanings other than what they used to mean or started out meaning is a ploy of the devil.

    Look at how being gay used to mean happy and now it means homosexual.

    How God's beautiful rainbow has been stolen by the 'gays' to promote their agenda and make it look...I don't know what they're trying to make it look like.

    How did Planned Parenthood actually mean NO parenthood?

    The word transparent means opaque.

    Change means worse.

    Choice means killing, selfishness, freedom....

    Sin and morality are completely removed.

    Tolerance means accepting any behavior no matter how bad it is.

    Racist means...lets take our eyes off the real issue and make 'them' look bad.

    Judgmental means you are addressing a wrong.

    Lies are truth.

    And the list goes on and on.

    How does anyone make any sense out of anything?

    It's not possible without God, trust and faith in God to set us straight.

  3. This meditation reminded me of my favorite prayer:

    Dear Jesus, help me to spread your fragrance everywhere I go. Flood my soul with your spirit and life. Penetrate and possess my whole being so utterly that my life may be only a radiance of yours. Shine through me, and be so in me that every soul I come in contact with may feel your presence in my soul. Let them look up and see no longer me but only you, dear Jesus! Stay with me, and then I shall begin to shine as you shine; so to shine as to be a light to others. The light, O Lord, will be all from you; none of it will be mine. It will be you shining on others through me. Let me thus praise you in the way you love best: by shining on those around me. Let me preach you without preaching, not by words but by my example, by the catching force, the sympathetic influence of what I do, the evident fullness of the love my heart bears to you. Amen.
    -John Henry Cardinal Newman


  4. Well off the subject ( your meditation) And your Meditation is always wonderful to read ! :)

    WELL ! Father Alfonse just wanted to say: HAPPY Father Day :)
    Well with my bad luck in life. This will top it off My Father was run to the hopital this pass Friday and found out recently he will have his first BYPASS heart surgery sometime early next week. Please Father pray for him. My children are so scared and very sad

  5. Father Alfonse - I can so much relate to thinking way too much!!! A product of our analytical brains! Gosh only knows how many sleepless nights I've endured over an issue, dwelling on the fine little details. Sometimes thinking useless thoughts results in those little "ah ha" moments at inopportune times. :)

    "Be yourself and you can do anything" probably didn't enter the minds of the ancient writers because (what I call "celebrity's theory") is related to individualism and egotism. These concepts developed later in history.

    A quote from St. Augustine intrigues me: "You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless till they find their rest in you." Yourself being Christ! Instead of being immersed in ourselves we need to be blending into God's self. I think of kenosis - "the emptying of oneself" of one's own will and following God's Divine will. With this concept in mind, we cannot possibly "be yourself" because that goes against what Christ wants for each one of his children. We will continue to feel restless, off-center, and maintain "our own God" thinking without faith & belief in the Truth.

    I think many modern women suffer the same plight as modern girls. You are so right when you remark they are not allowed to be true to themselves or "full of Grace" like the Blessed Virgin Mary.

    I love reading your useless thoughts. They keep my mind churning. :)




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