One of the facts of life is that it's not fair. Things happen that we're not necessarily responsible for and yet can be affected by deeply. Our first parents, Adam and Eve, sinned and we each carry the burden of that Original Sin, leaving us weakened toward actual sins in our own lives. It’s the reality of the human condition.
Have you ever felt sad and happy at the same time? It’s an odd feeling trying to reconcile two opposite emotions. Feelings can be strange bedfellows at times.
The past couple of days brought sadness at the passing of Mother Angelica but also abundant and deep joy for her to be called home on Easter Sunday. God is so amazingly faithful.
One can readily assert that there are many conditions that are needed to be truly happy. Health, good relationships, satisfying work, and purpose are the first that come to mind. But my own experience and professional observation leads me to conclude that there is one requirement that trumps all others. Without this, it is unlikely you’ll ever be truly happy.
In my recent post I talked about the advantages of single people having good friends of the opposite sex. I believe both men and women can benefit from having such friends and it can set you up for a better future marriage.
But we need to be very careful in discerning when we should pursue or accept such a friendship, when we shouldn’t, and what boundaries can make them not only possible but positive.
It’s that time of year again. Time for penance, almsgiving and fasting as we prepare to celebrate Easter, the great mystery of our redemption.
Many Catholics who are serious about their faith say they actually enjoy lent. It’s like boot camp to get our souls in shape; to slow down the pace a bit, spend more time in prayer and look within with an eye to improving ourselves and deepening our relationship with God.
Age old debate: Can men and women be friends and not wind up in bed together? Will men only befriend women to whom they are attracted with the hopes of a romantic or sexual relationship? This was the big question is the classic comedy When Harry Met Sally. Harry, attracted to Sally, asserted that men and women can’t be friends and will always wind up in bed together. Sally disagreed.
Ask anyone today how they are doing and two out of three will answer with “busy.” It’s a crazy world out there. We’re overwhelmed like never before. There’s little time to focus in and make meaningful changes that will make our lives better. One reason is that it seems like it will be too much work and take too long. Who has the time these days?
As Christmas approaches I find myself thinking more and more about a story I once heard about a little boy named Giacomo. I don’t know where it originated so I can’t give the author their rightful credit. As the story goes, Giacomo was an enthusiastic and delightful child, with a positive attitude but also a mischievous streak that would land him in trouble often.
We all need them. Whether it’s an alert on our smart phone or a photo of a loved one on our desk, reminders serve an important purpose in our lives. As Catholics we rule when it comes to reminders - think statues, icons, and holy pictures. Sometimes we’re criticized for “worshipping idols.” Those who misunderstand think we’re worshipping our statues when they simply serve as reminders of Our Lord and His sacrifice on the cross, Our Lady’s intercessory role, or the heroic virtues of saints who inspire us in our difficulties.
Remember when you were in high school? Once in a great while (at least in my school it was pretty rare) when you did poorly on a test, after much angst and anxiety, you returned to class to learn that nearly everyone had done as poorly as you had and the teacher decided to grade it on a curve. Whew!