Thursday, February 28, 2013

February 28, 2013 – Proverbs 3

For the most part, this just continues lessons. There are some saying not to do and some saying do this. They are broken into parts, but some are right next to each other. I can picture a classroom where these are being taught. You could almost treat them like learning the alphabet. Each day you look at one in detail, learn, decide how to do it, then the next day, get another proverb to learn. Maybe next time, if nothing comes to mind to write about I will just pick a few favorite proverbs and why I like them.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

February 27, 2013 – Ezekiel 28

I thought that this is one of the chapters that was used in the book predicting the end times, but there wasn’t a lot of destruction in this one. There is briefly talk of fire coming down from heaven, but that seems to be it as far as destruction. Maybe it will be in future chapters.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

February 26, 2013 – 1 Kings 19

It is interesting how you know these stories but didn’t know where they were at in the Bible. Last time Elijah was teasing the prophets of Baal. No we have the story of God in the whispering wind. Two lessons can be gleamed from this. First, God isn’t always in what you expect and, Second, you have to listen very carefully for God because it can be very difficult to hear a whisper in the wind. God could have been in the fire, lightning or any form He wants. He chse to be in the gentle breeze.

We are introduce to Elisha, Elijah’s replacement. He ask to say good bye to his family and I think Elijah’s answer is unusual. He pretty much says “I haven’t asked you to come with me yet so you can do whatever you like.” A very similar situation comes in the New Testament when the man’s ask Jesus if he can buried his dead first. Christ doesn’t say go ahead but says “Let the dead buried the dead”. I have never really understood what is meant by that. If it means that you need to focus on what you are doing and not about others I would think a better example could be thought up.

Monday, February 25, 2013

February 25, 2013 – Catechism 2168 – 2179

I have heard people say that they don’t go to church because they pray at home and that is all they need. But that is simply not true. God never intended for us to pray on our own. Everything about God involves community. Man and woman, He created them for community. The Trinity is 3 in 1, formed in a community. The Lord’s prayer starts off “Our”, not my or me or I, the prayer taught by Jesus starts off “Our”. Jesus spoke to the crowds. There were some private revelations, the woman at the well, Peter feed my sheep, the discussion with Nichodemus, but for the most part, Christ was in a crowd because we need community. How can you pray as well by yourself when you are missing the fellowship.

This isn’t to say that personal reflection is unnecessary. Absolutely not. It is essential to learn and grow in your faith and increase your personal relationship with God. But to think that this is enough is just wrong. Christ spent time alone, but He spent a lot of time in groups, in crowds, joining the people, building community. If you are not coming to Church and being a member of the community, you are missing out on a vital part of God’s lesson on what it means to follow Him. Community is a huge part of God’s message on how to live and how to become closer to God.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

February 24, 2013 – Proverbs 2

I think it is so interesting when the talk about a characteristic like Wisdom as a person. I don’t know why, but it makes it more tangible. What the “person” of Wisdom does is supposed to be what we do. In the Old Testament, they didn’t have this personification of these different characteristics in any real way. It was all imagery. We have Christ, who is perfect Wisdom, personified in Himself. You can see god sending Jesus to us, God and Man, personification of all that is perfect, is a fulfilling of what Solomon is describing here. You could not have a real and physical personification of perfect wisdom unless God somehow became man, because only God has perfect Wisdom. Thus it can be used in the personification or love, justice, knowledge, all of these Old Testament images are fulfilled in Christ being both God, perfections of all these characteristics, and man, physical and able for us to see, feel, taste, and imitate. We see Solomon describe what Wisdom does and we hear Christ say, “what I have done, you must also do” and there is a connection there.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

February 23, 2013 – Ezekiel 27

I really couldn’t think of anything to write about Tyre until I started thinking about its destruction. God describes it as a place that was very wealthy and popular, where all merchants gathered and traded. What interest me is the way it is described as being destroyed. It isn’t attacked by another nation, it is destroyed like a ship, in other words, it sinks. That got me wondering if this is a Biblical reference to Atlantis, the famous city that sank beneath the waves. I don’t know much about Atlantis or when it was supposed to have been around, but I have heard that it was supposed to be in the Mediterranean, so that makes sense it would be in the Bible. When you read about a city that sinks into the sea like a ship wreck, the first thing that comes to mind is Atlantis, but I haven’t heard anything about Atlantis being in the Bible before.

Friday, February 22, 2013

February 22, 2013 – 1 Kings 18

This has always been a favorite story of mine. You don’t often see goading in the Bible, but you do here. Elijah is toying with the prophets of Baal. “Get louder, maybe your god is asleep”. And so they get louder and louder and nothing happens. I was trying to think how this relates to our “gods”. Take money. We can call out to it, seek it for help, get as much as we can, but it never truly gives us what we need. Power can call out to us and we seek it and raise our voice to achieve it, but it will leave us looking for more. There is only one God, He is the only one there listening, He is the only one that can bring us satisfaction. Everything that we seek that is not from God is screaming into the sky for a god that is not there, has never been there, and will never be there. We are the prophets of Baal trying to bring down fire. We will not get the results we want until we call out to the God that is there and waiting for us to call on Him.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

February 21, 2013 – Catechism 2160 – 2167

This section is a review of the previous paragraphs. We talked about images of saints, God’s name, and the sacredness of our own name. When you look at how names are used in the Bible, they have an even greater importance. It has been described to me that the name of a person is their essence. When God changes a name, it means something significant to that person and who they are supposed to be. Abram to Abraham, Jacob to Israel, Simon to Peter. This last one, Peter becomes the rock, the foundation of the church. It was not just his name, but his vocation, his duty, his mission that changed. Saul to Paul, although I have been told that his name might not have changed as much as they were the same, just one was his Roman name and one his Jewish name and he used the Roman Paul because he went to evangelize the Gentiles. Still, the name had influence and showed a change in direction. Never forget that a name means t

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

February 20, 2013 – Proverbs 1

The beginning of Proverbs tells us about why Solomon is writing these down. It is to teach and protect us. The first group is about what not to do. It is about the evil that comes to those that do not listen and obey God. I am always drawn to the notion that those that do evil are setting the trap for themselves. That has been a recurring thing throughout the Bible. God allows us to make our own choices and when we begin to choose the wrong path, it will lead us to bad things. God allows it to teach us and more times than not, the bad thing is a direct result of our choosing the wrong.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

February 19, 2013 – Ezekiel 25 - 26

A lot of people see disasters and ask why God allowed it to happen. We see people suffering in countries ruled by dictators and ask why. But, God uses those things to punish people’s acts. God says over and over again that when you witness something horrible and devastating, you will know that I am the Lord. What are we suppose to take from this? You can go the normal route and stop having faith in God because no God that allows something like that to happen is a God I want to be a part of or you can take the route of trusting that God is beyond our understanding and that as human beings, we deserve punishment for our wrongs.

I will be the first to say I don’t understand the evils of the world, but it isn’t my job to understand them. We have to tell Paul all the time that it isn’t his job to protect Noah. He tries to protect him by following so close that he knocks Noah down or bothers Noah or gets him hurt trying to help. We have to say over and over that Paul’s job is to listen to mom and dad and do what he is told. It is mom and dad’s job to worry about Noah. We have the same issue. We worry about the universe and all the evil and why it is this way and why would God create this and if it is this bad there must not be a God. We have to remind ourselves it isn’t our job to understand the world. Our job is to listen to our Father, do what we are told and trust in His wisdom. Moments like that are truly a teaching moment to help me understand what it means to be a child of God.

Monday, February 18, 2013

February 18, 2013 – 1 Kings 17

That is why Ahab sounds familiar, because he is that king during the time of Elijah.  The story of the widow is one that Christ brings up when talking about the lack of faith in Israel during His time and is almost thrown from a hill saying it.  It also comes up in our children’s Bibles.  It is not a story I would consider so popular that I expected it in a children’s Bible, but there it is.  We see the devotion of Elijah to God and that this devotion motivates those that don’t even follow Elijah’s God.  The woman does have her doubts and questions God when the son stops breathing, but for the most part, follows through because of her faith in Elijah’s faith.  Have you ever believed something based solely on someone else’s strong belief that it was true.  I think that is how all of our faith in God starts.  Paul sees his mother and father believing in something and so he believes.  It is not based in anything he has really experienced, but in the faith he has in his parents.  We see this example in other people such as Naman (sp) the leper, Rahab, from Jericho.  It shows how important it is for a person to live a life in God and also shows how influential we can really be on others.  It brings the sin of scandal to a whole new level when you realize people’s faith might be totally relying on how they view your faith.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

February 17, 2013 – Catechism 2150 – 2159

“It must be refused when it is required for purpose contrary to the dignity of persons or to ecclesial communion.”  Paragraph 2155.  I wonder if Joe Biden, claiming to be Catholic, should have denied taking the oath of office for vice president because, for his purposes, it is contrary to the dignity of persons.  He swears, on the Bible, to uphold the Constitution, which he believes allows for the killing of unborn children.  He could have given another form of an oath to the Constitution, but to make an oath, invoking God, and then to know that you are not following God’s commands is a clear violation of the second commandment as I see it written in these paragraphs.

We are given a name when we are born and that name marks us and sticks with us.  It is unique to us because we are the only one of us.  Many may have that same name, but God sees the difference.  My father-in-law and his family go by their middle names.  I never really understood that.  Your name is what it is.  Paul has started calling Noah, John, his middle name.  I don’t know where that is coming from.  I wonder if God will call me MILK in some form because that is a name that has been given to me and done in a very Godly setting and been an identity that has brought good to a lot of people.  Our names are important, they are special, and they are a gift from God, not to be taken lightly.  That is not something we think about a lot.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

February 16, 2013 – Psalms 145 – 146

These two psalms speak of the praises of God and all that He does for us.  The part I found interesting was the sections where it talks about everyone knowing the great acts of God.  That just struck me because of the growing attitude of many that God didn’t do anything and doesn’t exist at all.  It doesn’t take away that they know the many acts of God, they see the things He has done every day they exist in the world around them, they just do not acknowledge the He did them.  Our eyes cannot be open without recognizing the world around us as something that is beyond our comprehension and created by a designer that is beyond our furthest imagination.  How can anyone doubt a Creator I will never understand.  Too many times I have looked up at the sky and known that we know so very little and wondered how anyone can make the judgment that God doesn’t exist because humans are such a superior being.  You only have to look at the mess we are making of our own country, even with it being the most free, with our attitudes and understanding.  We are not gods.  How could we ever hope to prove a fraction of things God has done.  We are an arrogant being, from the very beginning, with Adam and Eve seeking to be like gods.  But we are not and we should humbly admit it and bow in adoration to the creator of all.

Friday, February 15, 2013

February 15, 2013 – Ezekiel 24

I may be missing the real meaning of the imagery, but I see a meaning in putting the choice meats in boiling water to cook. Anyone that knows anything about cooking will understand what a waste that is. It does cook the meat, but when you have the choice pieces, those need to be cooked in a much better way than boiling it. The way I see it is Israel is the choice piece, or the gifts God has given them are the choice pieces. They have thrown them into the water to boil instead of nurturing them and cooking them properly. What they bring out of the water is filth, which I think would be fair to call a prime rib steak that was cooked in boiling water.

As Ezekiel is a prophet, you can look to this as a message about our time and a warning to us as well. Not a specific warning like “the world will end on 12/12/12” but a warning on how we live our life and what we do with the “choice meats” God has given us. What do we do with our gifts and what do they bring to fruition. Do we produce good fruit or are we pulling filth out of the pot. And not only on an individual level, but as a nation. What have we done with the gifts we have been given as a nation What did we do with the choice meat of freedom, gave mothers the right to kill their babies. What did we do with the freedom of religion. Create a culture where you must accept everyone else’s belief as true or be labeled a bigot. What did we do with the choice meat of marriage but trample on it with homosexuality and divorce. And we appear to now be pulling our filth as a result.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

February 14, 2013 – 1 Kings 16

We have a very quick run through of some very quick kings, one for only 7 days. One seems worse than the next and it states as much when it says king so and so did worse against the Lord than all other ones. We have come to King Ahab, which is about the first name that sounds familiar. Even though he does worse than all those before him, he still seems to have a long reign, relatively speaking, of 22 years. I don’t know why his name seems to be familiar and we will see if we get a longer story about him and what evil he does or if I am just remembering it for some other reason.

You get a brief snippet here about the rebuilding of Jericho. If you remember, Jericho was never supposed to be rebuilt after God brought down its walls. It appears that Ahab took on that task and because he did, his sons were taken from him.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

February 13, 2013 – Catechism 2142 – 2149

I was trying to think if the first or second commandment is broken more often. I was first thinking that using the name of the Lord in vain has to be the most violated one. It is used all the time, it is just part of the lexicon and no one seems to care at all. But then you think of the talk of what we have turned into gods in our life and what we “worship” on a daily basis and I think that one is broken more often. Some people basically break one 24 hours a day with their lifestyle. (that made me wonder if you can sin while you sleep, question for another day)

The paragraphs make it very clear, the name of God is to be adored. I am writing this in the adoration chapel. I am trying to picture a way to help me understand that to utter the name of God is to be like adoring the True Presence in front of me right now. The respect, honor, reverence that I show this chapel and what it contains is the same I should have every time I utter the name of God. And that can only be done if you are using it while in prayer, praise, or a holy act.

However, it is just thrown around like any other word. Why is that and when did that start to happen. And if it started to happen when less and less people began to actually believe in God, why is it such an important part of their vocabulary. If it doesn’t mean anything to them, why does it seem to be such a prominent word for them to use. I think that this use and lack of respect for the word itself helps lead to the disbelief. Just as respect for the word and saving it only for times of prayer and great blessing will increase your faith, using it all the time and inappropriately will weaken your faith and make God into something less than He is, even to a believer.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

February 12, 2013 – Psalms 142 – 144

These Psalms mention a lot about seeking help from an enemy. What first caught my attention is the understanding that they were stronger than himself. He tells God that the enemy is stronger than he is, so he needs God’s help. It is so important for us to understand that we are not strong enough to defeat evil on our own. It is something that is a very dangerous thing to take on, on your own. We need God’s help and we need to know and believe that He has already defeated it and it has no power over Him.

The second thing I thought of was the idea of an enemy and how many people want to see the world as having no enemies. That is what moral relativism does. If everything that you think is right is right and everything that the other person thinks is right is right, then you cannot be angry with them about their beliefs and you will not be enemies. This, at first glance, would seem to end all war and create a blessed world. It is the opposite. An example I heard on the radio is a person who was interviewed about self defense. She said that she didn’t believe self-defense was ever an option. She believed that if someone was going to kill her or her family, she should allow them to without any type of fight. This is extreme, but shows what a world without Truth and Moral Truth leads to. What would that person say about Hitler, he had the right to do what he did, the Jews shouldn’t have fought back. There are enemies and they are strong. We MUST fight back, but we cannot get anywhere without God.

Monday, February 11, 2013

February 11, 2013 – Ezekiel 23

Very erotic images of the two sisters. This represents Israel and Judah. Israel is taken into exile and instead of turning to God, Judah turns all the more to other nations, is more adulterous than its sister. I guess you could wonder why god used such erotic images to set the stage for His message, but when you think about our world today, the idea that sex sells is very obvious. God using this type of graphic imagery just shows that He wanted the attention of those listening and He wants our attention. He wants to make it clear that seeking something or someone that is not Him is only going to lead you astray. He is telling us that it has been done many times before, it will continue to happen, but we are called to be with Him and Him alone and any “prostituting” of ourselves will lead us to exactly what we want. God gave Israel and Judah what they wanted. They wanted to be like and with the other nations, God made it happen.

I think there is also a lesson about going back to our sins we have left behind. God uses Egypt to show that Judah fell back to old ways. God wants us to change and come to Him and He wants us to know that when we leave that old way of life behind, it will not give up on us so easily. It will try everything it can to pull us back in and make us fall.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

February 10, 2013 – 1 Kings 15

When you go through the genealogies of Matthew and Luke, you will see that they are a lot different. I actually called “Catholic Answers” about this. Part of the explanation was that “father” was used not only as a direct father, but as grandfather, great grandfather, and so on. There could be many generations between two in the line, but the term father might still be used to show their relationship. Here we see it played out and I would have missed it if I hadn’t been told the thing on genealogies. Abijam is the son of Rehoboam (14:31) But when it talks about his reign it says “as was the heart of David HIS FATHER”. We know that it was Rehoboam that was his father and David was actually his great grandfather I believe, but there were no words for great grandfather, just like there were no words for cousin.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

February 9, 2013 – Catechism 2129 – 2141

I write this as I am surrounded by images that help me transcend and take my thoughts towards God. I am looking at a beautiful image of Christ after being scourged, with the crown on Head. He looks sad is the easiest word to describe it. It makes you wonder what He was thinking during His last moments on Earth, during His trial, while they beat Him. Next to that, an image of the Resurrection. There are parts of it I still don’t understand and I feel the artist brought modern soldiers from his era into the painting, but Christ radiance is the focus and you feel the awh that accompanied that moment. To my right is a window of St. Juan and the image of our lady and above me a beautiful rendering of her coronation in Heaven.

There is not a single ounce of my being that understands these to be images that I worship. I don’t understand the leap to that conclusion. They help me reflect on Christ, His life, His mother, those followers that came before me. There is no idol worship in these images, it is encouragement and thoughtful prayer that they bring. I pity those that require bare walls in order to feel they are not worshipping idols. There is beauty to be brought in the art of God and it can significantly improve your prayer. When you walk into St. Peter’s and stand in awh of the art and the beauty, you will quickly understand that there is no worshipping of idols but a constant pointing to God. The beauty and the art brings you to God in a very special way.

Friday, February 08, 2013

February 8, 2013 – Psalms 139 – 141

It never stops amazing me when I am asking for something or praying for something, the Scripture that I read pertains to that. I was asking God to put the right words in my mouth for something very important I am going to have to say and what do I read, “Even before a word is on my tongue, Lord you know it all”. Then, “Set guard, Lord, before my mouth, keep watch over the door of my lips.” How much I needed to hear those words and ponder them and let them sink in. How much peace is brought by God when He talks to us in such a real way. “Set guard, Lord, before my mouth, keep watch over the door of my lips.” This might be my new favorite verse. Psalm 141:3

The writer ask God to probe him. He must understand that God knows his thoughts better and before he knows them, yet it is an openness to God that allows him to surrender to God. There is a difference between being probed voluntarily and involuntarily and God challenges us to allow Him to probe us.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

February 7, 2013 – Ezekiel 22

I thought it was interesting that with the blood shed they became guilty, but it was with the making of idols that they became defiled.  Defiled seems so much worse that mere guilt alone.  A guilty person can be redeemed and we are all guilty of sin.  Defiled seems to have a permanence to it.  I know that God can wipe any defilement away, but it just had a sense of something more than just guilt, and it came not from blood shed, but idol worship. 

Dross – Something regarded as worthless.  “house of Israel has become dross to me.” 

“violate my law and desecrate what I consider holy; they do not distinguish between what is holy and common”.  I read that  and immediately thought about the way the world treats sex.  Catholic teaching is that this act is a holy and special thing shared between a married couple in a very unique way.  The world sees it as common, treats it as unholy, tramples on it and uses it do degrade and promote a life of sin.  Is there a better example of treating something holy as common.  And the sinners in the chapter are the priest that do this to the holy thing.  There could be something said about the priest and the sex abuse scandal and how they made something unholy that was sacred to God.  I was thinking more along the lines of who the priest of the world are that promote the commonality of sex in our lives.  Those that promote pornography, celebrities who sell themselves as sex objects, those that promote the less restrictions on abortions so the sex is even more common.  These are the “priest” of the world who are making something holy common. 

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

February 6, 2013 – 1 Kings 14

Our first two kings are setting the bar very high. Both do evil in the sight of the Lord, building alters to false Gods and leading the people astray. I was surprised that the Temple was already sacked of its treasure this soon. I didn’t think that happened until Babylon comes. Obviously it wasn’t the destruction of the Temple that comes with the exile, but for them to attack enough that they were able to take the Temple treasure is pretty significant. Then again, maybe it wasn’t as guarded because the king wasn’t worshipping in the Temple but had moved to worshipping at the other high places he made.

The first king is told by the prophet that his line would be finished because of his acts, but then at the end of the story, his son takes over as king. I thought that was a little confusing. Perhaps it meant that it wouldn’t be a long succession and maybe we will see what happens to his son’s reign.

And why would she have to go to the prophet in disguise. I understand that he has set up his own high places, but that wouldn’t mean that people would think anything of him going to see the prophet, or maybe it would mean something. I just thought it was odd. I would have thought if she went to a soothsayer she would disguise herself, but maybe that was the open practice during his reign where seeing the prophet was not publicly acceptable.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

February 5, 2013 – Catechism 2118 – 2128

Simony is trying to purchase spiritual things. When I was reading the paragraphs on that, I was wondering if a form of simony was when you do a kind act with the expectation of something in return. It talks about ministers are not suppose to do things for something but hope to receive nothing and especially make sure that the poor are not without services, but what about when you give your time to a project or go and help on a retreat. I know I struggle sometimes with my real motivation for doing things. I can catch myself much easier now thinking about it and try to stop those motivations, but I know they are still there and something I struggle against. Even doing this post I catch myself longing for some sort of praise from those that read them. That cannot be the motivation. You receive without pay, you must give without expecting pay, of any kind. That is the struggle.

I think it is interesting to think that Christian believers might be one of the biggest causes in the rise of atheism. I have talked about it before and what the disunity of the Christian faith means to someone on the outside looking in. Also, what does it do to someone who is in the Christian folds, but struggling with the idea of Truth and sees so many different truths? How confusing and frustrating that is and promotes a understanding that there is no truth and ultimately that there is no God.

Monday, February 04, 2013

February 4, 2013 – Psalms 136 – 138

I sometimes catch myself thinking “how boring” when I see a Psalm like this. “His mercy endures forever” must be repeated about 30 times. You have to catch yourself from not skipping over it while you are reading and just going to the different parts. But ask yourself why it is repeated. What is God trying to show us by making a statement or saying an event and following it by “His mercy endures forever”? Obviously the focus is on His mercy, but do we really understand what that means or do we see His mercy in so many different aspects of our life. God has every right to punish us, to actually stop our very existence, and has the power to end it all and that is probably what we deserve. Every moment we exist is a moment of His great mercy. Because He is merciful, we are here. And we must constantly remind ourselves of this because it is constantly true and will be true until the end of time. When you think about it that way, “His mercy endures forever” isn’t written in the Bible enough.

Sunday, February 03, 2013

February 3, 2013 – Ezekiel 21

The Lord is coming after Israel. I have heard the Ark being used as a weapon, but if I had to pick, I think I might choose the Lord’s sword instead. Yes, it is obviously sharp because it is God’s and it is a sword, but it also shoots forth lightening. What a weapon? And it will not be sheathed until its work is accomplished. Yes, I know it is probably not a literal sword, but that would still be a very cool weapon. It is probably more a prophesy about an army of a nation that the Lord will use to defeat Israel and take Jerusalem. The Lord gives many prophesies about using a nation to teach Israel, the one that is described here must be a very powerful one to be seen as the sword of the Lord.

Saturday, February 02, 2013

February 2, 2013 – 1 Kings 13

I am having a hard time understanding the prophet that goes out and lies to the man of God. Was he sent out there solely to test the man of God. It appears that way because of his actions afterward, he obviously didn’t do it because of malice or hatred for the man. It is sometimes very confusing trying to know who is speaking the Word of God and who is lying. The man of God obviously believed the prophet because he said God had told him, but he was to rely on what God had already told him. This could be seen as a lesson in the Truth of God and God’s teachings. God told the man not to do something. He knew that and turned down the king’s offer for a meal. But when he hears someone else say that God has said something different, he should have questioned it. God cannot be contradictory. He was either not to eat or he could eat, he could not do both. God’s command was to not eat, that should have ended all debate.

When you go to Church and you hear that two contradictory things can be true, it should raise alarms, as it should have with the man of God. Two opposites cannot be true, it simply does not work that way. God cannot function as God if He teaches two contradictory things can both be true. Jesus is God, or He is not. Abortion is wrong, or it is not. Divorce is wrong, or it is not. There is no middle ground with God because Truth has no middle ground. That is what is so unnerving about this movement of moral relativism. The idea that whatever you think is right is right falls apart as soon as you encounter someone that has a different view. The idea that there is not Truth falls apart as soon as you realize they believe that statement is true. There is Truth in the world, God gives us that Truth, and just like the man of God, when we find out the Truth, we need to stick with it. When someone challenges us about what we believe to be Truth, do not brush it off and say that they could be right as well. Two contradictions cannot both be True.

Friday, February 01, 2013

February 1, 2013 – Catechism 2110 – 2117

Superstition is a very tricky issue.  I am not very solid on where the line is drawn.  I wear a crucifix every day and kiss it before I put it on and when I take it off.  Is that superstitious?  I don’t do it for good luck, but as a reminder to me and a graceful protection against sin.  It is a crucifix that has been blessed by the pope.  But I can see some seeing it as a superstition.  We have a guardian angel clip in the van and a crucifix hanging from the rear view mirror.  Where is the difference between that and the person that won’t drive unless they have a certain radio station on (haven’t heard of anyone actually doing that, just what popped into my head).  I sometimes worry that what I do is a superstition instead of a prayer, but I don’t know exactly how to know when it splits from one into the other.  With the big game this weekend, it is something to wonder about and also to monitor for yourself if you are a person who is prone to superstitious actions. 

And we must watch ourselves with horoscopes.  I don’t know if reading them by themselves is sinful, but relying on them in any real sense is and leads to, like it states in the paragraph, us not relying on God.  This comes up in my mind when we go to the Chinese buffet and get the fortune cookies.  Most cookies now don’t actually have a prediction but they are more like life advise type things.  But the last one I had was a very specific prediction, which made me uncomfortable and excited.  It isn’t affecting my life, but has stuck with me, and I don’t know how that actually makes me feel.  It said something like, it will be a good day for you 3 months from today.  Like I said, it was really specific. 

There was also a lot of talk about how Catholics were supposed to handle Harry Potter because of the whole witchcraft aspect of it.  I don’t think it is wrong to read a fictional story about witchcraft (there were others objections based on the actions of the characters that had nothing to do with witchcraft which some also protested).  What a Catholic cannot do is try to practice it for themselves to try and do something supernatural, even good.  I did read the books, but then again I was older.  But, I grew up in the Star Wars era and I remember on more than one occasion trying to move something with the “force” just to see if I could.  I can see a lot of young people trying to experiment with witchcraft because of Harry Potter, but it is a very hard question to answer.  I see arguments on both sides and will not judge anyone for their decision, as long as it is a well thought out one and they are informed.  I would disagree with the parent who gives their child Harry Potter not knowing anything about it just because it is popular.