In order for the “Good News” to be good, there has to be “bad news” that it is countering. At least that’s the case with the gospel. The gospel is the greatest news ever to be proclaimed. That’s precisely because it’s the answer to the really, really bad news. Yet it seems we live in a world that increasingly either denies or doesn’t realize that sin exists, and that it can potentially lead our souls to eternal damnation. For many people, there is no right or wrong. Just “your truth” and “my truth.” Until each individual personally recognizes that he or she is sinful and in need of a savior, the good news will not be effective in their lives. It’s like telling a medical patient that there is a cure for his or her ailment. No cure is needed unless there is the knowledge of the malady and how serious it is. So, what can we do to help a world that has lost almost any sense of sin rediscover the “bad news,” so that it will wholeheartedly embrace the “good news?” Share your take with Jerry and Debbie on Friday.
The Christian faith teaches us all about humility. Everything good thing we do begins with God’s grace and inspiration and reaches completion with His help. So, can we take credit for any of our good works? Don’t we have to cooperate with God’s grace in order for Him to work in and through us? What about the gifts God gives us? Surely, they’re gifts from His hand to us. But they’re still ours, in a certain sense. When someone tells you you did a great job on this or that task, are you able to receive that praise, knowing that your talents ultimately come from God? So many people completely reject praise and honor for their achievements out a sense of unworthiness, or even a false humility. Let’s talk about this on Tuesday with Jerry and Debbie.
You know God is merciful. We all do. Intellectually, we know that God can have mercy on anyone. Is there someone you pray for who is or was especially sinful? While we can’t judge souls, we can see the need for God’s mercy on the part of many people. Do you hold out hope for someone, living or deceased? Do you know of an example of God’s mercy turning a hard heart toward Him, perhaps even at death’s door for someone? Let’s discuss this with your takes on Monday.
All through life, we have important decisions to make. We pray. We seek the advice of others. We ask God for guidance. There comes a time when we have to just decide which way we’re going to go. Some decisions work out beautifully. Others don’t go as we had planned or wished. Has there ever been an occasion when you made a choice, then spent time wondering, “What have I done?” How did it turn out for you? It might have even been a great decision, one that led you to go beyond your comfort zone. Describe that feeling of amazement, or dismay, when you’ve done this. That’s Friday with Jerry and Debbie.
Marriage is supposed to be until death. That can often mean staying by the side of your spouse in spite of him or her betraying you in one way or another. Some choose to leave the marriage, perhaps very justifiably. No one is called to remain with their spouse when there are serious reasons to leave the marriage. Others choose to hold out to the end, praying for their husband or wife to turn from their harmful ways. What is your experience with this? On Thursday, share with Jerry and Debbie how you have remained faithful to your marriage vows – and your spouse – in spite of some difficult circumstances.
We should always be prepared for our death from a spiritual standpoint. But there also comes a point in everyone’s life when we should put in place the plans for our death. Creating a will. Medical instructions. Funeral and burial arrangements. Is this something you have done? If not, have you even thought about it yet? Some people get caught off guard by a sudden illness or accident, and have to scramble to take care of matters after a loved one passes. Others are quite well prepared years in advance. Share your take on this important topic on Tuesday.
As Catholic Christians, we’re called to convert the culture for Jesus. Too often, however, that works in reverse: The culture converts us. You often hear the term, “Cultural Catholics.” What does that mean? Is it a reference to people who may “punch the clock” on Sunday and warm a pew for an hour, but who really don’t incorporate their faith into their everyday lives? On Monday, share with us your suggestions and tips for how we can lovingly and joyfully make our world more Catholic.