Suffering is a part of life. In fact, Our Lord Jesus Christ makes it clear that without suffering (“Take up your cross daily and follow me…”), we cannot be His disciples. The goal of discipleship is eternity in Heaven with Jesus. On Tuesday, Jerry and Debbie invite you to call with your take about someone you know and love who is suffering, and, perhaps, even dying. Would you take that individual’s place if somehow you could be given the opportunity? Maybe it’s your spouse, one of your children, a good friend, a neighbor, a co-worker or a fellow parishioner. This would be the ultimate sign of true love. Let’s all learn from each other.
While we should never do anything in order to be seen by others and applauded for our efforts. still, it’s a fact of life that we work harder and flourish more when we have a sense of accomplishment that is partly due to others expressing their appreciation. Every one of us has experienced being unappreciated – or worse – when we’ve poured ourselves into a task. This could range anywhere from the workplace to the home, from your volunteer work to going out of your way to help a friend or a neighbor. On Monday, let’s talk about this idea of feeling unappreciated, and how we can use it to draw closer to Jesus and increase our dependence on Him alone.
OK, so it’s an easy question to answer. We all love many people unconditionally. But here’s the twist for Thursday’s show: Is there someone in your life – relative, friend, neighbor, co-worker – who is living in a manner objectively contrary to the gospel? It may be a living arrangement. A lifestyle choice. Someone who had an abortion and thinks that’s just fine. Perhaps an individual who hurt you badly in some way. Have you managed to cultivate or maintain a deep love for that person in spite of the choices they’ve made. Let’s face it. We all act in ways that are in opposition to the gospel at times. God never stops loving us unconditionally. How can we best do the same for the people in our lives?
Have you ever felt like you were pushed to your absolute human limit? Physically, emotionally, psychologically, financially, spiritually. Everyone experiences it at some point in their lives. The Bible says God will not allow us to be tested beyond our ability to receive it. Yet, how many times do we feel like we are literally on the edge of what we can take? How have you handled such situations in your life? To whom did you turn for support? Let’s talk about this on Wednesday’s show.
Here is the poem that a listener named Kevin wrote about managing and emerging from a period of darkness in one’s life. It’s beautiful!
Steps of Prayer
Inspired by Jerry Usher
In this dark night stillness, a screaming silence, a pain unexplained
A despair so deep my hope is slowly drained
The hours tick slowly, alone my silent tears flowing
My struggle rages on without anyone knowing
I’m being pressed on all sides, the demons are winning
And a peek at the clock reveals the night is just beginning
After another sleepless night I resolve once again
To confront this fight, to conquer this pain
But even the thought of moving is more than I can bear
Am I alone on this journey I cry out in prayer
Then gently so gently God whispers to my heart
“I’m with you my son, just take my hand and we’ll start
Slowly a new sense of hope fills the air
As me and my God take my first steps of prayer
St. Augustine’s famous quote, “Late have I loved you,” is a reference to the fact that it took several decades for him to respond to God’s invitation to believe in His Son Jesus. As we know, it was largely the result of his mother, St. Monica’s, fervent prayers for her wayward son. While many of us are baptized as infants, and are raised to embrace a relationship with Jesus and His Church from an early age, others have come to believe somewhat later in life. Does this describe your personal faith journey? We want to talk about it on Monday, and, as always, be inspired by how God’s grace is alive and working in the hearts of everyone He has created.
We’ve all lost loved ones. It happens to lots of people every day. Their memories live on in our minds and hearts. And sometimes we decide to do something special to keep their memory alive for others as well. It may be a scholarship you fund in someone’s memory. It could be contributing to your parish, hospital or school and naming part of it after them. Some people get very creative and honor loved ones’ memories in unique ways. Have you done this for someone who was close to you? Let’s talk about it on Friday, and discover how close we still are to those who have gone before us.
It’s going to happen to just about everyone. You’ll see something, read something or experience something, and all of a sudden you realize that you’re not twenty-one anymore. It could be when your last child graduated from college. Or when your first grandchild arrived. Or when you’re coaching Little League and the son or daughter of one of your former players is now on your team. You get the idea. On Thursday, let’s talk about these eye-opening moments in our lives, and come away with a better sense of who we are, and an appreciation for all of God’s lifelong gifts to us.