Then I realized that I was not much better than those pagan voodoo worshipers.
In my head I know that God was the only one worth my worship, but I still found myself turning to so many other relationships, habits, and even sins to save me when I was overwhelmed and in need of help. I knew that Jesus was my Savior, but often I turned anywhere else but towards Him when I needed to be saved from loneliness, hurt, or boredom.
“With all the strength of my soul I urge you young people to approach the Communion table as often as you can. Feed on this bread of angels whence you will draw all the energy you need to fight inner battles. Because true happiness, dear friends, does not consist in the pleasures of the world or in earthly things, but in peace of conscience, which we have only if we are pure in heart and mind.” – Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati Read more [...]
“By Lust I mean that affection of the mind that aims at the enjoyment of one’s self and one’s neighbor without reference to God. Lust indulged became habit, and habit unresisted became necessity. There is no remedy so powerful against the heat of concupiscence as the remembrance of our Savior’s Passion. In all my difficulties I never found anything so efficacious as the wounds of Christ: In them I sleep secure; from them I derive new life.” – Saint Augustine, Father and Doctor of the Read more [...]
Man lives more in the external world, because made from the earth and closest to it; it is his mission to rule over it and subject it. Woman lives more in the internal world, because she was created from an inner, human life.
Man is more interested in the outer world; woman in the inner world. Man talks about things; woman more about persons. Man fashions products of the earth; woman fashions life, having come from life, both Divine and human. Man, more related to the earth, makes sacrifices for things that are in the future and are abstract; woman, more related to the human, is more inclined to make sacrifices for persons and for that which is immediate.
Editor’s Note: Can you see the truth through the Religion vs. Jesus debate? We’re praying for you as you talk about this issue and the viral video with your friends. We loved how well Peter Kreeft articulates this question about “church” in his book Before I Go: Letters to Our Children about what Really Matters. Here is the truth, boiled down to the basics without any fancy distractions. “What’s the Big Deal about Church? Why is she so important? Because she is how we Read more [...]
“Celebrate the feast of Christmas every day, even every moment in the interior temple of your spirit, remaining like a baby in the bosom of the heavenly Father, where you will be reborn each moment in the Divine Word, Jesus Christ.”
If we’re focused on what we can get out of God and not what we can give to Him, then our worship is selfish. Christ is faithful, but when we expect something in return we put Him in a box. Shifting our focus on what we can give Him frees us to receive His love the way He wants to give it.
The Magi did exactly that, and to Christ the true present was their presence.
On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Twelve drummers drumming.
A few years ago I got to attend a drum line competition for one of my teens. I’d say it was pretty much like twelve drummers drumming. Actually, I had no idea that a percussion only band could sound like that. It was pretty cool. Today we come to the end of the song and the end of the Christmas season.
On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Eleven pipers piping.
Have you ever heard bagpipes? They have a distinct and loud sound. When in I was in high school, a family friend was visiting. She was an accomplished musician who played many instruments, including the bagpipe. For whatever reason that afternoon, she actually played the bagpipe in the house. It was so loud. It became my and my brother’s instant opinion that bagpipes are made for outside spaces or very, very large indoor spaces—never inside the house!
On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
The dancing continues today with the lords getting involved. For a better context of lord, think Lord and Lady, Duke and Duchess, Prince and Princess, etc. The United Kingdom has a “House of Lords,” which is part of the Parliament. Of course, I doubt they are physically leaping . . . or playing leap frog, for that matter.
So, let’s just jump (or leap) right in to what the ten leaping lords can represent.
Day 9 On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . . Nine ladies dancing. Adding to the good food from yesterday, we now have dancing. Don’t these dancers evoke images of the great Christmas ballet, the Nutcracker? Not only are there at least nine ballerinas dancing, there are mice and nutcrackers and swords and more dancing. Can’t you hear Tchaikovsky’s music of the Sugar Plum fairies? Whether you like ballet or any kind of dancing, you will like what these nine Read more [...]
On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Today we begin the celebration phase of the song; we have had the perfect number of birds. Now, we have a festive gathering. Let the celebration begin!
We start with food. Have you ever milked a cow? The closest I ever came was visiting a dairy farm as a child. I remember looking at cows and the distinct, unpleasant smell. Moreover, I remember the end of these trips which always resulted in great ice cream. From milk comes a lot of great party food, including nacho cheese.
Whereas there are geese (day six) in my neighborhood, there are not swans. Never fear, though, there is a nearby lake whose owners brought in swans.
Or at least, there were swans. They were picked off and eaten one by one by a river otter who would hunt them from under the water. The swans had no chance of escape because their wings were clipped. The otter was eating a rather expensive supper because swans are not cheap.
On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Today we have reached our half-way point of our 12 Days of Christmas. Are you still celebrating the birth of the Messiah or have you moved back in to your normal routines? Do you still have your nativity scene up, inching the magi closer to the stable each day as we get closer to Epiphany? Are you moving closer to Christ or away from Him?
The six geese-a-laying can represent the six days of creation.
On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Five golden rings.
When we get to day five in the song, the music slows down, and we take a break from birds to focus on something that most everyone finds valuable – gold. It would only make sense for a true love to give golden rings to his beloved. Actually, the five rings is where we see another variation on the lyrics. Sometimes it is golden rings and other times gold rings. Believe it or not, the gold rings actually stand for pheasants.
On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . .
Three French hens.
French fries. French horns. French hens. Today, we have three of them.
Remember, each verse of the song can help us recall an aspect of our faith. We have a lot of options today as the number three is pretty popular in Church-talk; the number seven is, too, but we’ve got four days until we get to seven.