Blessed.

OK everyone…feel free to yell at me for being so horrible at this “post a day” business. But since the pure intention to post once a day is there, you’ll notice I still use the “postaday2011” tag in these posts. It’s the thought that counts, right?

So here’s a brief update on things:

This past Sunday-Tuesday was the Parish Mission at the home parish of St. Anne’s in O-town…missed the first night because I forgot it was that weekend. BUT I went the last two nights and, boy, am I glad I did! Fr. Tom McCarthy from St. Ritah’s was absolutely amazing and it was very cool to talk to him a little bit afterward. The mission was about the seven sacraments broken up into their categories: Initiation, Healing, and Vocation. On the night of healing, he talked about Anointing of the sick and confession…afterward everyone had the opporunity to go to confession. I went to Father Dan (St. Anne’s retired pastor) and my model priest and he said his usual, “I have the seminary application in my pocket in case I see you!” bit. Truly a man of God; truly a moment from God.

This week has been a particularly stressful one as I try to move myself closer to God and continue working toward a genuine sense of holiness within my spirit. This is not easy at North Central since it is not really the most…shall we say, “holy” place on earth. It’s hard to find people around here willing to hear me out and show interest in the thing that is going to keep me in school for 9 more years. I have, however, found more than 1 new person to add to this list…while unfortunately losing one. A friend and I had a falling out over the issue of faith, and it makes me very sad. But I know that this person and I are not meant for the same things, but I know we will both be great and continue to follow the one Lord, Jesus Christ.

Today there was no band, so I got off of work and hopped in the car and drove to the Oswego Village Hall and spent the day doing work for the Character Counts! Coalition of Oswego and Montgomery, of which I am the President. It is stressful to have so many days in a row without downtime, but I know I am working toward something good and everything will pay off in the end.

I am, plainly and simply, emotionally, mentally, and physically pooped tonight. But I don’t let this stuff get me down because I know that God is bigger than all of this and, through that, I can find peace.

Even though days have ups and downs, whether they are caused by the free will of others or the very hand of God, I know that I am blessed and feel so lucky to be. We are all blessed, each and every one of us. I don’t think that anyone is really more blessed than another person, I think it is a matter of recognizing our blessings that God gives us. I’ve been coming upon so many “blessings in disguise” lately and it’s amazing.

So tonight I pray that everyone will take a step back this weekend, perhaps at Mass on Sunday, and examine the blessings in their lives.
I pray for all of the victims of suicide, murder, war, abortion, or any other injustice to life. May all of us, Christians and non-Christians, find respect for the human life, from the moment of conception to natural death.
I pray that I will no longer feel alone in my search for holiness and truth; on my path to the priesthood.
I pray for famililes, mine and yours, that they may look to the Holy Family as a model of respect, love, and generosity.

But most of all, I pray for you. Each one of you who reads this, please know that you are blessed; you are a gift from God; you are not a mistake; and that you and your sould are right here, right now for a reason…take advantage.

In Christ,
RA

4 thoughts on “Blessed.

  1. Nathan Forgille says:

    I have not read much of what you have posted, but I am hoping with confidence that these words are seen as a view point based upon my faith in Christ and the grace given to me by God, because of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross and His rising on the third day after His death.

    Paul wrote in Galatians 5, “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.
    Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be no advantage to you. I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law.” An impossible standard. “You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.” And please continue reading on in the chapter! Paul says further that belief in his teaching is correct. That any being who tries to persuade you from the truth is doing a great evil. Verse 12 states, “I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves!” Paul is very serious about this apparently for we men feel the pain just from reading a statement like that. Paul climbs further on in his letter to the Galatians by encouraging them to walk by the Spirit, and not of any earthly tradition (though tradition, such as sacraments, continuous prayer, and Christ minded deeds are spiritual steroids, so to speak). Hebrews 2-3 give us the foundation of Salvation! Christ became like us humans, flesh and blood, and partook in temptation. He suffered through life in the same way we do, but He did not give in. He remained perfect. Only Him. Not me you who read this, nor anything or any church. Only Christ was and is perfect as a human being. He was able to pay the debt on our souls through death and resurrection. This is the only was to an everlasting life with our Father in Heaven. But acceptance of Christ and the Grace God blesses us with is not to be taken advantage of! Practice your faith in the same way Christ did! That is the reason I talk from Galatians, because Paul teaches that we Walk by the Spirit, our Guide, in order to live a life of faith in Christ. Hebrews 3:1a, “Therefore, holy brothers you who share in a heavenly calling, CONSIDER JESUS,” Fix your thoughts on Christ. It is then by “holding fast in your confidence and boasting in your hope” (Hebrews 3:6b) in Christ, that we consider Christ.

    I hope that flowed well. I was simply led only to express a my belief. I will read your posts further in detail too!

    1. Karly Smith says:

      This is in response to Nathan. Are you agreeing or disagreeing with Ryan? It is wonderful that you can quote scripture so fervently, but what, in plain vernacular, are you trying to say? I believe that scripture, while being the holy word of God, can be taken out of context when we want to support our respective beliefs. I find that I am truly moved when someone can plainly explain what they believe. I am so impressed and heartened that there is dialog such as this between young people today! Thanks to both of you for exploring your faith and having the guts to put the conversation out there! God Bless you both!

      1. Nathan Forgille says:

        Karly–
        Totally see your side to that! Honestly, I believe that there is a single way to gain salvation, and that is through accepting Christ as your Savior; He who died on the cross for our sins. It was brought to my attention by a friend that as good intentioned as Ryan is he brings to light that which is good for us to practice, as an entrance into heaven. However, I did not explore that for myself and referenced that I have not read into Ryan’s writings in order to be fair to him. I believe wholeheartedly that Scripture backs the Gospel as solely believing in Chris, and in doing so you are covered by God’s grace, and mercy.

  2. Adorjan says:

    Thanks to both Nathan and Karly for the posts. It’s good to know that people are moved to reply to what I am posting.

    I must agree with Karly, though, in that I still don’t really understand what Nathan was trying to say. Nathan, you stated that you were referred to the post by a friend that I have may have good intentions but I point out that which is good to practice to get into heaven? I don’t see the “but” aspect as those two things seem to support each other.

    As I’ve told your friend, this blog is not me telling you what is right and what is wrong with and for the world and this Church. This is me telling you about my difficult discernment journey and discovering every day, like you and your friend, the wonders and glorys of God. Because I do not quote or rely fervently on scripture doesn’t mean that my view is wrong and it does not mean that my view is right. It means that it is my view and I rely on the Sacraments combined with the Word to show me the true glory and splendor of He for whom we constantly search.

    Again, both Nathan and Karly, I thank you for your thoughts and level of professionalism you have displayed in this matter. As some of our friends may know, I can be quite candid in expressing my points; if I’ve offended someone long term I would like for them to step forward and let me know because for that I am sorry.

    RA

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