Friday, October 26, 2012

Seeing the positive- traffic edition

Earlier this week I had the (un)fortunate opportunity to sit in stand still traffic for over an hour on my way to work.  Given this extra time I got to thinking why I was really lucky to have this opportunity.  Here are my 7 reasons why I should be happy to spend my morning sitting in stand still traffic.

--- 1 ---

I was not in one of the 5 cars or the tracker trailer about a mile ahead that was causing all 3 lanes to be shut down.

--- 2 ---

I was not in the car next to me with the two young children who seemed to be almost as unhappy as their mother.  I'm sure my hour in traffic was much more peaceful than hers.  She really must have some patients.

--- 3 ---

I did not have to go pee.  That would have made for an uncomfortable morning.
Your text here.

--- 4 ---

I work with some awesome people who were able to cover my classes until I arrived.

--- 5 ---

I had enough work in my car to keep me occupied.  (Actually it would have kept me occupied a lot longer)  I was able to get some quizzes graded and would have gotten a lot more done but eventually the traffic started moving again.

--- 6 ---

I was not on my way to the airport.  That would have been a very nerve wracking experience which probably would have ended in rescheduling a flight.

--- 7 ---

It was a beautiful sunny day which I was able to enjoy (if only from my car) since I usually get into work before the sun is really up.

Hope the weekend is just as enjoyable as my Monday morning was.

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Monday, October 22, 2012

Could you imagine saying that to your father?!?

Mark 10:35
Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” 

"Dad, I want you to do whatever I ask you to do."

Could you ever imagine saying that you your father?  I know that I would never think of telling my father that.  I don't even want to imagine what his response would be.

Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.”

But this is exactly what James and John asked of Jesus.  I had to read this line twice to make sure I got it right.  After the first read I assumed that I had read it wrong and it was really Jesus who was telling James and John to do whatever he asks.  That would make more sense.  So I read it again.  I had it right the first time.  James and John were really bossing around Jesus.  I'm really not sure what they were thinking right then.

So, this is something that I wouldn't even think about saying to my earthly father, I am appalled when James and John say it to Jesus but yet I do the same thing to my heavenly father very often without even realizing it.

How often while, I am praying I tell God exactly what I need him to do and exactly how he should solve my problems or other problems of the world.  Do I really do that?  Do I really tell the Lord what to do?  Yeah, I do.  Almost every time that I pray.  It sounds pretty ridiculous when you look at it like that doesn't it?  How could I (just me), tell Him (the maker of creation) what to do?

Instead of telling Him what to do we should be asking him what we should do.  When we pray we should be giving ourselves and our problems to the Lord.  Putting our problems in his hands then listening for what he wants us to do.

This is so hard.  It goes against everything that I want to do.  I want to be in control.  I want to have the power.  I want to fix things.  But that is not the way it is with the Lord.  With him we are not in charge.  We do not tell him what to do, he tells us what to do.

Dear Lord, What do you want me to do?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

What is causing you to sin?

Mark 9:43
If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.
It is better for you to enter into life maimed
than with two hands to go into Gehenna,
into the unquenchable fire.

I know it has taken me a whole week to sit down and write about this but it has been something that I have been thinking about it all week after hearing it in the Gospel and hearing my priest speak about it last Sunday at mass.  
Plenty of the sins that I commit involve my hands (as well as other body parts), but I know that Jesus it not literally telling us to all go out and cut off our hands.  Last week my priest spoke about how we need to cut out the parts of our life and our way of thinking that cause us to sin.  But this is hard.  I really like many of the things that lead me into sin.  I enjoy watching tv.  But many of the tv shows that I watch are not helping me have a pure heart and mind, most of them are pushing me the other way.  So now that I realize this I can make sure I don't let these tv shows influence my behaviors or thoughts, but God couldn't possibly want me to stop watching tv.  That would be to harsh.  I need to relax sometimes.  The sinning is really not that bad.  This is what I say to myself to convince myself I an following God's will.
But then I think back to last weeks gospel.  

If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.
It is better for you to enter into life maimed
than with two hands to go into Gehenna,
into the unquenchable fire.

This is harsh.  We should be harsh when it comes to sin.  We do have to take drastic measures to avoid sin.  While Jesus is not telling us all to go cut off our hands, I do believe that he is instructing us that it would be better to do something this drastic then to continue to sin.  It would be worth it!  Anything would be worth it to get to spend eternal life with our Lords. 

This got me thinking about how I struggle to avoid sin everyday.  I know it will always be a struggle but are there things that I could do to avoid it.  Yes they may be drastic but they are definitely worth it. 
What are some ways that we could avoid sin?
(something to think long and hard about)
 Dear Lord, Help me to all that I can to avoid sin.  Help to show me what I need to do to avoid sin.