Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Thursday, July 24, 2008
When two people marry they do so because they love one another, but, very few people realise the cost it will be to themselves. Both sides expect the other to 'make them happy' without realising that happiness and contentment springs from within. No one person can bring you happiness that is something you give to yourself.
If you have low self esteem and feel unworthy to be loved, this abnormal view of yourself will affect not only you, but your partner as you lay the onus on your spouse to provide what is lacking within yourself. This is the heaviest burden one can lay on another and is the quickest way to the divorce courts.
Your spouse is not God, he or she cannot heal your inner wounds and brokeness, only God can do that. To expect your spouse to fill the void that lay within your soul is to expect the impossible. You are setting yourself and your marriage on the road to disaster.
The only Being who can heal your soul is God. Only God can make you whole.
When we look at past generations we wonder why the divorce ratio wasn't as high as it is today, and what made things then so different? Back in earlier times there wasn't the gratuitous sex and lust which the generation of today are inundated with. In days gone by the most popular TV shows were 'I Love Lucy' or 'The Honeymooners', then came 'The Walton's or 'Happy Days'. Television back then promoted the Sanctity of marriage while still being able to gain good ratings, mainly because it was the audience who dictated what was acceptable to them. What has happened between then and now?
The difference between the generations is what we have allowed to occur as the morals we once held dear become passé and promises become conveniently forgotten. What truly lies at the heart of infidelity though is selfishness, as a person seeks their own self gratification and pays no heed to the pain this will cause their entire family unit. The focus has become SELF centered rather than self GIVING and it is this that lay at the heart of the unfaithful spouse.
Through the onslaught of TV and the internet where television serials become more and more graphic leaving nothing to the imagination and where the internet can cause great harm. Still the responsibility over what people watch or do not watch is for each of us to decide. Therefore we are responsible and will be held accountable if we choose to immerse ourselves in activities that we know to be sinful.
In these days of blaming society for everything we leave out personal accountability. No one is holding a gun to the head of those who, despite their religious upbringing, continue to pursue acts which they know to be outside the Law of God. It is way too convenient to simply lay the blame for personal choices on the media or the internet as if the person were not at fault. Though there may be more temptation in the world now than what our grandparents had to endure, does that exonerate an entire generation from choosing to sin? We are responsible for the choices we make and as the Bible says when something causes you to sin then pluck it out. If you cannot resist the temptation to sin on the internet then stop using it. If television serials causes you to sin then turn the TV off.
Be careful of the choices you make lest your children pay the price for YOUR mistakes!
Written by Marie
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
This young girl was diagnosed with cancer. I think the whole country was praying that she would beat this insidious illness. In pics of her with short hair was when she was undergoing chemotherapy.
If you are able. Donate to cancer research in memory of Melissa Hackney.
God's abundant love to you all.
Sunday, July 20, 2008
We know your love for Melissa was so great that You as a Loving Father have brought her into Your Majestic Presence.
Though her loving presence will be missed by her family and friends, yet Melissa is now with You and by the side of our Blessed Mother and the Saints in Heaven.
We pray now Lord great Comforter and Consoler of the sorrowful that You in Your great Mercy will comfort and aid her grieving family and friends.
Thankyou Lord for the wonderful gift of Melissa, a unique, extraodinary and loving human being.
Joy she gave and Joy she has received.
Friday, July 18, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Monday, July 14, 2008
I read this article over at Esthers blog and found it very aspirational. It is when we forget our own private concerns and worries and step outside of our own safe confines that we become true to ourselves and true to God.
We need to be constantly reminded to give from our hearts and not from our largesse. Rather than spend our time whining about life, instead rejoice that we have an opportunity to show God's unfailing Love to those who need to see it and feel it.
It is a paradox that in giving we receive much more in a spiritual sense, and surely that is where our hearts should be and not always on the size of our wallets.
Please do read this excellent article at Esther's blog and ask yourself where can I make a difference in someone else's life?
Friday, July 11, 2008
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
North & South tells the story of John Thornton who is master of Marlborough mills and Margaret Hale who is the daughter of a Minister. What should have been an uncomplicated romance between the two main characters becomes complicated when Margaret witnesses an incident with Mr. Thornton and one of his workers. It begins a journey of misunderstanding as prejudices rule and sides are taken.
What makes this story different is the relationship between John Thornton and his mother, the sensitivity, affection and respect shared between both mother and son is touching to watch.
We see in North and South two sides of the coin between the masters and the workers and how compromise can bring about change.
It is a story of the North with its brutal and gritty realism verses life in the more quiet and easy going South, a clash of cultures ensues.
This is a great love story of a strong willed woman used to speaking her opinion openly played with great confidence by Daniela-Denby-Ashe and a man who finds himself falling inlove with a woman who does not return his affections played with understated brilliance by Richard Armitage.
The story is helped by excellent performances from Sinead Cusack who plays Mrs. Thornton, Brendan Coyle who portrays firebrand union man Nicholas Higgins and Tim Pigott Smith who plays Margarets father.
Good viewing for all.
The Forsyte Saga
This is the modern interpretation of an old classic which played decades ago on the BBC.
In this version Soames Forsyte is played brilliantly by Damian Lewis who portrays the character of Soames so well that one feels both pity and repulsion almost at the same time.
It is the story of unrequited love and how it can destroy both the object of love and the unloved with equal force.
In the background are two sides of the Soames family. One side which is more bohemian, while the other clan is repressingly and hypocritically polite and civil leaving their cruelties unspoken, but nevertheless felt.
There are no heroes in this partcilar drama as both sides are deeply flawed characters. The cold, beautiful yet passionate Irene Forsyte who marries for money and finds herself imprisoned by her husbands obsessive love. The character is played very well by Gina McKee.
But all eyes are fixed on Damian Lewis who actually says very little but can portray so much by a flicker of an eye lid and a small sneer. Soames Forsyte is a man who follows the norms of society, who refuses to break the rules and has little compassion for those who do and yet is undone by his obsessive love for a woman who loves him not. This leaves him to behave in a brutal fashion which haunts his conscience and colours all his relationships.
The tragedy of this will follow the Forsytes into the next generation.
Monday, July 7, 2008
We live in a world that is exploding with information where everything is on the go and almost everyone is in a hurry, too much of a hurry to stop and think in which direction they are going or where they will end up. This 'go go go' attitude to life may work out for adults who can cope with high stress lifestyles but how does it affect the children of today?
In this hectic pace the only time where information stops its cacophony of sound is when we retire to bed, only then do we gain some measure of peace or are our minds still buzzing as we attempt to try and gain some much needed rest for our tired bodies and our minds? If adults find it hard to switch off then how do our children cope? If they are watching the same programmes as their parents or accessing the internet where information comes almost at the speed of light, how are they able to automatically switch off at bed time or are their brains buzzing too? So much so that sleep is elusive and they wake up in the morning still tired and stressed out even before the day truly begins. Is this the most beneficial lifestyle for today's children?
As the debate grows with the ADHD controversy where children as young as five years of age are being given mind altering drugs such as Ritalin which is a stimulant much like methamphetamine or they are being put on a program of anti-depressant drugs in order for them to deal with life. Once again is this the best we can do for our children to drug them into conformity? Do we truly want robotic children who sit in their class rooms like bombed out zombies as their individuality is negated in favour of some 'peace and quiet'. This 'illness' ADHD only seems to have been invented during these past decades, why haven't their been cases of ADHD throughout the centuries?
I remember a few months ago as I waited in the doctors waiting room a young family came in, the parents gave their mobile phone to their eldest daughter to play with while they were waiting to be seen by their Doctor. Their younger daughter then asked if she too could have a mobile, she was told no! Thus ensued a tantrum. The parents then said they wished the doctor would give their youngest daughter ADHD drugs.
Was the youngest daughter throwing things? No! Did she attack her elder sister? No! She simply began crying and insisted it wasn't fair. Common sense alone dictates if you favour one child over another, you are courting disaster.
For those who are in the 40 to 50 age bracket do you remember any child being diagnosed as ADHD when you attended school? Or were boys simply being boys and girls were girls as diversity thrived in the class rooms and where there was always the possibility that one or two children would be naturally pugnacious or irreverent towards those in authority? What has happened in these past few generations that the children who may have these very characteristics are now seen as 'ill' and in need of medication so that they will be able to fit in with all the other children. Who decided what was general normality? Or is there no such thing?
This is not to say that every parent is wrong or that teachers who are often overworked and underpaid are also at fault. What needs to be investigated is who made the decision to categorize what is normal and what is not? We also need to take a long hard look at the foods we digest and what is being put into them, so certain foods will have a longer shelf life. How are these additives affecting the children who eat or drink them? It is a time consuming ordeal but parents may need to list the foods that their children are eating and perhaps re-adjust their lifestyle choices in favour of organically grown fresh fruit and vegetables and less on the fast food, highly sugar dosed cereals and the candy industry which is filled with high doses of additives.
In today's society we are the most sedentary generation mainly due to the conveniences we now take for granted such as automatic washing machines, clothes dryers, microwaves etc. Many families have two cars so that children may now be driven to where they have to go rather than walk or ride bikes. A lot of children's angst is due to the fact that their energy levels have not been used during the day and so high energy levels will soon turn to irritability. This does not mean that a child has suddenly contracted ADHD, and therefore needs to be medicated.
Rather than rely totally on Doctors and the pharmaceutical companies who make their living from the drugs they sell, perhaps it is time for parents to embrace their child's diversity and individualism without trying to make them conform into a set image of robotic behavior based on whose theory? Only the parent can make the decision, of what is the best treatment for their child. Therefore investigate all avenues before deciding what approach to take when treating your child, it's future depends on you.
Written by Marie
Saturday, July 5, 2008
The Bible encourages us all to 'be of good cheer/ take courage,' why is that verse so important that Jesus repeats it over and over?
It is repeated because through all the ages people are people. Frail, faulty, wounded, thoughtless and yet capable of great deeds and heroic acts, but still we are imperfect. Who then do we turn too in times of adversity?
The Holy Spirit is the Great Comforter of the afflicted, the wounded and the broken hearted. All are accepted into God's Heart. There is no litmus test for any of us in order to deserve God's Love. If there were a litmus test then who amongst us would be Saved?
How many times do we pray, 'Lord bring me closer to you,' but do we truly understand what we are saying? Are we not like John and James who requested to be seated at Jesus right and left hand, unkowing of the price for such an honour. Even more unknowingly Jesus tells them what they do not wish to hear, "whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all."
When we ask to become closer to Jesus we must understand that there is only one way and that Way is through The Cross. Why then when adversity strikes us do we balk at what is being asked of us. Is not God answering our prayer? Do we not gain our strength from the partaking of The Churches Sacraments?
Be careful of what you pray, lest you receive it.
Whenever adversity strikes us, whatever form it takes, be it through ill-health, betrayal or loss we must realise that God has already given us the strength to endure it. So endure it with a smile.
We fall into misery and bitterness when we are relying on our own strength. God does not give us misery, He gives us hope. God is our strength, He is our fortress against our greatest folly- the belief that we can go it alone. No we can't.
Trust in God's Goodness. Not your own.
The getting of wisdom is the understanding that in and of ourselves we are miserable, weak, frail creatures. We are needy. Noone is an island unto himself and if adversity strikes we become embittered, miserable a curse to ourselves and to others. We fall into self pity.
Wisdom is to understand the above and as illness makes us vulnerable, rather than close our hearts we open them to The Son's Love. Through God we radiate hope, perseverance, patience in the dreadful understanding that through our suffering we have become...Him to others.
Our Lord did not promise that adversity would not strike us, if anything He warns that if we follow Him we must pick up our Cross. How we carry our cross is our choice whether it be with a smile or a curse.
What do you choose?
"In this world ye shall have tribulations, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world" (John 16:33).
Written by Marie
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Six humans trapped by happenstance
Their dying fire in need of logs,
The next man looking 'cross the way
The third one sat in tattered clothes
The rich man just sat back and thought
The black man's face bespoke revenge
And the last man of this forlorn group
The logs held tight in death's stilled hands
James Patrick Kinney
Why is that dogs love rawhide bones? Its just flour and water, hhmm. We had this dog that loved those bones, she would chew on it for hours on end. And don’t even think about trying to take that bone away, she would let you know that you had better step back. I mean I had given her the bone and she had the audacity to growl at me?!?! I mean if I were trying to take the bone away it was because it was filthy and needed to be thrown out. But I guess she felt threatened and saw it as me trying to steal her bone.
Is it not true that many behave the same way with money. Where does this money come from? God. He gives us the ability to make the money by blessing us with the ability, the jobs and careers that brings the money to the table. Yet when He, be it through the church or those in need, asks for some of it, we grumble, we growl and we hoard our money.
Perhaps maybe the biggest problem is that we fail to realize that everything we have is not our own. It is not our money, it belongs to God who has entrusted us of a certain amount be it big or small. “The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” Psalm 24:1. If we remember this, that the money does not belong to any of us in the first place, it maybe easier to give it back to God. We also have the assurance that He can and will supply all our needs
Bills, bills and more bills. With the rising cost of living it is easy to get side tracked and lose focus of the big picture. It is then that we need to refocus and remember that God really does own it all and is in control and will take care of us. This will not only enable us to give more easily but will make us a cheerful giver. We will develop a peace within our hearts because we know that God is our Father and how much He looks after us. He is not just out to get all our money.
I understand why many find it difficult to give- they probably think that if they give they will not have enough money left to see to their needs. When you give something away you have less, that’s math in a nutshell but God has a different type of math. God math 101 the more you give the more you get, you will not be left with less. “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Luke 6:38 “He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.” 2nd Cor 9:6
God does not ask us to give so that we will get more money, it is good for our spirituality. We learn that it is not all about me and my needs but we learn to think of others and how we can help them. It is good for us to give. When money becomes the king if the castle, everything revolves around money and how we can get more money. When God is the accountant our lives and our world is opened up and we are able to appreciate the things that are really important- our relationship with God, family, friends…
So please don’t grumble and complain when you are giving. Remember it’s not yours to keep in the first place, it will not only be easier to give but you will be eager to give.