Friday, April 27, 2007

Some practical guidance for a Friday

With some inspiration from the cybercell of the imonk and from the Cathedral RCIA class last evening, here are a few things to help keep it simple:

-Use devotional books: Liturgy of the Hours, Magnificat, etc.

-Read meaningful spiritual books (i.e., Merton, Nouwen, Groeschel, Foster, de Montfort, de Caussade, de Sales, Giussani)

-Read these with a group of others who care about the same things

-Turn it all off for a couple of hours every day

-Be quiet

-Chew up, meditate over, digest the scriptures, even if in small portions- use the Mass readings for the day

-Repent (in the sense of turn around, change), especially of things like worrying about the mote in your brother's or sister's eye and neglecting the beam in one's own eye, of undervaluing spirituality and overvaluing being right

Follow the Five Precepts of the Church, which the Catechism tells us, are "meant to guarantee to the faithful the indispensable minimum in the spirit of prayer and moral effort, in the growth in love of God and neighbor" (CCC, 2041). In other words, at least do these five things.

1) Attend Mass and rest from work on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation
2) Go to confession
3) Live in a manner that enables you to receive communion worthily (if you fail see precept 2)
4) Observe days of abstinence (Fridays) and fasting (Ash Wednesday/Good Friday)
5) Contribute to the material support of the Church

Remember spirituality is not something we do in our spare time. It is a manner in which we seek to live all the time. Let us use the circumstances of our everyday lives to acquire virtue, by cultivating good habits

6 comments:

  1. Just want to add a couple of thoughts that came while I was reading this. Funny how the brain works.

    -Turn it all off for a couple of hours every day

    Will fifteen to twenty second intervals achieve desired effect?

    -Be quiet

    I know, this means more than just keeping you're mouth shut. (The biggest challenge on this page)

    -Repent (in the sense of turn around, change), especially of things like worrying about the mote in your brother's or sister's eye and neglecting the beam in one's own eye, of undervaluing spirituality and overvaluing being right

    Sometimes wonder how to go about removing the beam(s) without doing physical harm to an essential body part. Knowing what is right or wrong is mostly valuable as a tool for learning. It's easier to repent when you know you need to. Would also say " intentions matter ".

    All good advise Scott, as always. Have a beautiful Saturday!!

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  2. Fifteen to twenty second intervals will likely not have the desired effect.

    Quiet is that, quiet. It is surprising how uncomfortable and disconcerting many people find being quiet

    I am speaking of metaphorical eyes, or Is, not only will removing beams (i.e., sins) do no harm, it will improve your vision

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  3. "I still only travel by foot and by foot, it's a slow climb,
    But I'm good at being uncomfortable, so
    I can't stop changing all the time
    "

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  4. I should elaborate.

    Change, even knowing how to allow God in (ie: being quiet)is learned behavior just as is the opposite. At least for me it is a daily experience of learning and, as far as the being quiet part, I can't just shut off my brain even through that's exactly what I need to do. So the question is, HOW? (when you haven't even gotten to the fifteen to twenty second intervals yet - maybe five to ten!)

    Probably missing the point entirely, but that is the point don't want to miss.

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  5. Analogy - Out of the Mouths of Babes!

    Sorry for the intrusion, I'm just feeling chatty today.

    Frank and I just returned from a quick trip to the grocery store where a small boy (our guess he was around four) was sitting in the drivers seat of a Jeep.

    I waved, he waved back. I said "Watcha doin"? "Goin' fishin', just waitin' for my dad and my sister to come out. They're in there". (pointing to the store) "Wanna know what"? Sure, What? "This morning when I woke up, my dog who was "THIS" big, was only "this" big!" (he used his little hand to show how the dog went from bigger to smaller).

    The dad came out and said "Oh no, what stories is he telling"? I said, "He just told us about his dog". He said, "Oh yeah, I think HE just got bigger".

    I grinned all the way home. It's an eight mile trip!

    Reverse the story, and I'll bet God gets in however we'll let him.

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  6. Thanks, Tami. You're not intruding at all. Your comments are most welcome. I just finished my first outing of the Spring in the yard. It was beautiful.

    I have a lot to do, but not today. I have to get ready to preach.

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