surrender884

compassion, confession, faith

Category: faith

Not Home Yet

I thought  I was experiencing writers block. After contemplating why, I came to a conclusion. When I first started there was so much to write, mostly my story of redemption. Now there is more to the story.

This life of mine now is not the final chapter but, a life living in the light. The past was filled with uncertainty. I have found purpose and have joy that only God could give .The choice to retire was to two fold. One was to rest from years of work, the next was to do His will.

He has instructed to reach out to those who have lost hope. Everyday on the job I saw those who needed a helping hand, encouragement or just someone to talk to.  There was as is now a fire in my heart to do His will.  Waiting for Him to say go was the hardest test of faith.

2017 is the year  to do His work and January 1st, 2017 is the date of retirement from work. Talk about joy, five months to cross off the calendar. No time to look back on failures, only knowing that there is no regrets. The past has led to this time set by Him even before I was born. Every heart ache, every bits of wisdom have made this day possible.

What a story to tell that has not been written because it continues till He calls me home.

Knowing

The email surprised me. My parish priest had invited me to read a book along with he and three others from our church. The book, ” Forming Intentional Disciples” was to be read one chapter at a time and with discussion in between. I for one open a book and read till my eyes need a break. I accepted the invitation to join the group.

The surprise came because I had not attend mass at the Catholic church three city blocks  from our house for more then a month. My wife was not a regular church goer for more then a year. All that time I had attend mass by myself.

Then when I attend the Catholic church across the river from where we lived in the evening she came with me. Those evenings were when our grandchildren returned home before Sunday evening mass.

My wife is old school Catholic, compared to my liberal Catholic beliefs. The best way to explain it is, after Vatican II many Catholics didn’t like the changes the church had made. So she disagrees with the church’s changes after Vatican II.

To get back to the subject at hand. There is a growing concern that mass attendance is low among Catholics, that they are leaving to other Christian denominations, that millennials leave the church in their late teens and others are non denominational.

As I read the introduction in our group’s book something struck me that never occurred to me before. That is that many Catholics have no personal relationship with God. I for one didn’t either until this year. How could I have when the Church didn’t ever as far as I could remember suggest that we have one. When reciting the creed we speak of beliefs. We adhere to those beliefs. We are taught that God loves us from an early age, that we obey the ten commandments, follow the precepts of the church.

See there is something missing. A true relationship with our savior. Before we can be disciples we must have a personal relationship with Jesus. He became my friend, my confessor, my teacher.

I can see now that the path of knowing and following Jesus is what my church needs more then anything. My personal relationship with God came about through a non denominational Jesus movement. I Am Second convinced me through personal stories that I too could have that personal relationship with Jesus. A day doesn’t go by when I am called to read God’s Word, to pray, to reach out to those searching for His love, to give testimony how He saved me.

I can see a great conversion happen within my home parish. A conversion need long ago.

Faith renewed

I had agreed to take my father in law to an appointment today. He was under the assumption from the instructions given to him when the appointment was made that a procedure would be performed to alleviate his discomfort. Without going into the details I will just say he has discomfort in his groin area.

We were taken to an examination room where the aide took his blood pressure, asked why he was there,  the regular questions asked from medical staff.  The urologist comes in , introduces himself, I explain who I am and the doctor asks my father in.law about his discomfort. He proceeds to tell the urologist his history with this problem.There comes a point when the urologist asks what the date was when a procedure was done. My father in law says, it should be in his medical file history. The urologist says that since records were computerized that record is not searchable. Strike one against medical records being data now instead of a hard copy stored some place. I personally have lost faith in the medical profession over the years because of the slip ups with my wife’s treatment.

The discussion has entered into what the urologist can and cannot due to relieve my father in law’s discomfort . The urologist explains that since my father in law is on blood thinners and would have to stop taking it for so many days that alone would put him at risk for a heart attack before or after the procedure. Then he says that because of this and other heart related issues he will  not operate. The risk is to high and he won’t take the risk.

So my father in law says he can find a doctor who will do the procedure and the urologist agrees that he may find someone who will take the risk. Then he turns to me for my thoughts. I agree that if the risk is there don’t do it. The way to relieve this discomfort was to start wearing boxer briefs and take over the counter pain relievers.

Today my faith in the medical profession was renewed by a doctor who wouldn’t take the risk over profit.