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The Tense of Life – Future Perfect


GearsIndeed, time is a fickle thing, albeit a creation of our feeble human minds as a result of our inability to comprehend and understand the vastness and pervasiveness of God, the Universe and Eternity. Endless phrases have been captured (over time) characterizing and lamenting its stronghold over our human lives:

“Time is of the Essence”

“Can’t seem to find the Time”

“No Time like the present”

“I don’t have Time for this”

“There’s never Time to do it right, but always Time to do it over”

“Time waits for no man”

“Time heals all wounds”

“Use your Time wisely”

“Having the Time of your life”

the_time_machine_large_01In truth, time is but a fabrication and rationalization of our minds in an attempt to avoid confusion and chaos.  Simply, time helps us comprehend our existence within the limits of our knowledge. Now, let’s shift our perspective and view time from a spiritual perspective. As Christians, one of the tenets of our faith is the awareness and acceptance that each of us are born as imperfect beings, having inherited that imperfection as a result of the Original Sin committed by Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. The true beauty of Christianity, however, is that by being born again via Baptism, we are cleansed from sin’s blemish on our soul and are blessed to have the opportunity to live this earthly life in God’s Light, striving to become like Him, understanding that at times, we will falter and sin.  And in the wisdom of our Creator, He provided a mechanism for us to redeem ourselves of sins via repentance, along with his Grace via forgiveness.

“Yes, faith is a peculiar construct, however, those that possess it do not perceive it to be peculiar at all.  For you see, the expectation of faith is the realization that a life lived in God’s Light, following His Word, supported by love, kindness, humility, forgiveness and goodwill/intent, will be rewarded by the Perfect and eternal life in heaven, at some Future moment.”

Paradox_of_TimeThus, the Future Perfect tense of life; My Life.  I have but one breathtaking, awe-inspiring, profound, loving and Blessed word to describe this expectation in my life….  Hallelujah!  Be well my friends. Watch and Listen….  and be brought to tears in the Joy of knowing Christ.  God Bless You.

And for you “boomers”, let’s take a walk back in Time and relive another memory.

And something for the more mellow of us.

Lastly, how much Time do you have left?

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Resurrecting The Forgotten Family – Check It Out


Family ConceptNever in the recent history of the world, have we witnessed the unprecedented destruction of society, culture and security, as we do now.  Religious and Ethnic persecution, Politically-motivated violence, social media attacks, Suppression of Freedom of Speech, Corruption in our Government.  Seemingly unrelated issues, however, share a common thread of substance; the Core Family Unit.

At the dawn of civilization, the family unit was the basis for survival of self as well as the species.  It was characterized by rules, heterosexual reproduction and safety (food, shelter and clothing).  Enamored with nurturing, albeit crude, the family also served to educate the young, much like animals educate their offspring.Family_Caveman

Progressing throughout recorded history, the family unit, let’s just call it the family, has evolved in function, form and features; yet, regardless of the changes, always served as the bedrock of social and cultural life and was revered, sought and protected because people understood the critical nature of the family to survival, legacy and individual reputation.

Toward the Industrial Age, families became larger, primarily due to the functional need to support the family farm in agricultural pursuits.  Once again, survival was paramount and acknowledged by all.  Love, not a subject of casual conversation in the public at the time, remained at the core of the family as it was considered to be the “X” Factor of sorts and the “right thing to do” with respect to how adults were expected to behave and interact with each other.  What a concept, yes?

Let’s fast-forward to today.  The traditional “family” is disrespected, ridiculed, demonized and undermined at every crossroad including television, media, government and education.  Make no mistake, the destruction of the family as the core instrument of society and culture, has consequences; significant consequences.

“At the heart of the dismantling of the family, are sexual deviance/perversion, violence, and Godlessness.  Together, these behaviors have become hallmark mindsets of our generation that collectively serve to undermine the family as the core and biblical unit of our species as human beings.  They serve to impact our future in the most adverse scenario.  Continuing to follow this path, we will ultimately lose our identity as children of God and only recognize ourselves as physical and mortal organisms.”

Family_ChristianTo combat this trend and destructive energy, we must change the way we think about the family.  We must restore its reverence and meaning and we must painstakingly strive to protect and secure its future.  And the way we will accomplish this goal is to change our personal thinking and bring back God into our lives.  God and faith in Him are the antidote and foundation to the elimination of immorality and the downfall of society.  Sin is our enemy, not God!  God is the cure.

Any person with a logical mind that has studied the Scientific Method, knows about simple Cause and Effect and Root Cause Analysis, as the basis of effective problem solving.  What we face now in America can be objectively and logically identified and understood, if we are willing to acknowledge and accept the responsibility to understand that each of us are a part of the proPower_of_Prayer_1blem.  Most importantly, that each of us are equally the key to addressing and resolving the problem.  It is not the job of other people to fix it, but rather, it is everyone’s job; it is Your job and it is My job.  WE MUST OWN THAT RESPONSIBILITY AND MINDSET.

And the way we approach this problem aligns with the way we approach our lives.  Invite God into your life.  Submit to His Presence as the Divine Father.  Learn how to live in His Light, Obey His Instructions for mankind and promote that mindset to others.  Let your actions serve as testimony to the Truth.  Let the Light of God shine in your life and permeate the world.

Economic bondage, SSpiritual-Journeypiritual Decay, Health Issues and Decaying/Toxic Relationships, along with all of the afflictions of this world that have plagued our species, originate and are manifested, as sin in direct relation to our ability (or inability) to think, act, behave and consciously choose God’s way of life.  We must deliberately decide to follow God and rebuke sin.  It is clearly an All or Nothing scenario.

The tools to accomplish this transformation include prayer, role model emulation, love and compassion for others.  The visible by-products of these efforts will be enhanced self-esteem, dignity, integrity, respect and inner peace.  I call these things our Spiritual DNA.  Over time, the adoption of this new mindset will cleanse our minds, spirits and souls and will demonstrate to the world around us that we choose God as our savior and redeemer.

Only then will things begin to get better.

Only then will the quality of our lives improve.

Only then will eternal life and salvation be once again within our reach.

Only then will we be saved.

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The Exit Interview With God


Autumn_Leaves_FallingThere are few things in life that last forever, yes?  Friends come and go, material wealth graces and eludes us, that incredible ’69 Camaro SS that made my heart “race” as a teenager…  Gone!  The perfect job we thought was immortal, well yes, that’s history too, baby.  Even that hand-painting your 3 year-old child presented you for Christmas; oh yes, do you know where it is today?  Take heed, my friend.Camaro_69_SS_Mikes

“You see, temporary is the nature of the world, with the exception of; the world.  We are but leaves falling to the ground in the context of layers of soil.  That’s not to say, however, that our lives are meaningless; to the contrary, our spirit/soul is indeed eternal, yet our physical “mechanism” that ingests and decodes the world around us, is but a layer of sorts that merely provides us some definition to others.”


Most of uChildrens_Drawings have seen and/or heard the classic “Interview with God“.  It speaks of the conversation one creative mind cleverly coined and shared to enable us to imagine what a one-on-one with the “Big Guy” might entail.  And, without hesitation in saying, it is superb in its ability to transport each of us at the speed of light into crystal clear imagery as if we were Walter Cronkite on the set of the CBS Evening News.

And so it will likewise be for each of us upon our admittedly inevitable physical deWalter_Cronkiteath, as if leaving the “job of a lifetime“, ultimately parting ways with our Boss.  Imagine, if you will, yourself in the Hot Seat, facing God.  There is no film crew, no producer, no-one else, and certainly and ironically, no exit.

Let’s be very, very candid, here, shall we?  Much like “A Christmas Carol“, each of us knows deep within our hearts that this “Exit Interview” is by nature, completely and exclusively binary.  In other words, it will either go very well or very badly.  And it will be wholly and duly upon each of us, to a person, to determine which outcome will become our “reality check”.

I envision a dialogue that goes something like this:

God: “Well, Michael, the fact that you and I are here means your earthly life has reached its pre-destined conclusion.  Do you know who I am?”

Me: “Yes, Lord. You are God.”

God: “And Michael, because you were born, raised and lived a Catholic, do you know Why you are here?”

Me: “Yes, Lord. This is my Judgment Day, to account for my life on earth, accept your assessment of my life, and receive your judgment for the good, the bad I did in my life and to what degree I utilized the gifts you gave me at birth”.

God: “Very good, Michael.  Let’s get started, shall we?”

Me:  “Yes Lord, I am yours”.

God: “Michael, although everyone experiences their own personal and detailed assessment of their life, this review is not focused solely on you.  Do you understand?”

Me: “No, not really, Lord.  Can you explain?”

God: “You see, Michael, the totality and significance of your life, most assuredly includes every thought, action and reaction you created while on earth.  It also reflects, however, the impact, good and bad, your actions and words had on every person whose presence and light you touched during your life.”

Me: “Every person, Lord?”

God: “Indeed, every living thing that I have created on earth, whether it be animal, plant, and most certainly, people.  It is precisely and inclusively, the collective impact of these interactions, that define your existence on earth and importantly, work together to become your judgment now.  Everyone’s, precisely, your words and actions, influenced others thoughts, decisions, actions and reactions.  The earthly experience is truly a dynamic, interactive and causal environment.  Empirically, one you are responsible and accountable for at present.  May I proceed?”

Me: “Yes, Lord.  This is amazing, I had no idea how many and whose lives I have affected during my lifetime.  I only wish I would have realized this during my life on earth.”

God: “Surprisingly, many others share your wonderment, Michael, yet, will still be accountable for their lives as you are now.  Every spirit you elevated, every one you helped, ridiculed, harmed, supported, nurtured and prayed for, indeed, every emotion that resulted from your words and actions, even unknown to you then, have been recorded in reservation for this moment.  Make no mistake, Michael, yours and everyone’s lives have immense value and significance; to me and to everyone whose life you touched.”

Me (stunned): “Please continue, Lord.”

And so it continued, until every facet and impact of my life upon others was reviewed and accounted for, and my collective judgment was given by God, and acknowledged and accepted by me; for eternity.  The incredible relevance and context of this scenario is that each/every person’s life has tremendous and immeasurable value, meaning and most assuredly, consequence.  Let this awareness guide you in your journey, cause you to emphasize and demonstrate kindness, forgiveness, humility, empathy, compassion and gratitude; and let it begin this instant.  Be well, and most importantly, just Believe.

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The Everyday Christian


GoldenGateBridgeThere is a term in business that serves as a “how to” approach to problem solving and it focuses on the difference between a desired state and current state.  In other words, this is the vision of where we want to be versus where we are.  It is appropriately called a “Gap Analysis” and it defines and measures the gap between present reality and a desired future reality.

One might wonder, “What does a Gap Analysis have to do with being a Christian?”  At face value, perhaps not much.  If you view and contrast, however, the vision of humanity and life that Jesus aspires each of us to achieve in the Bible versus our reality as sinners struggling to behave Christ-like; amazingly, a Gap Analysis approach may be very apropos.

Part of the struggle to live as  a Christian, walking in Jesus’s path, is being able to visualize Bibleand encapsulate our thoughts, actions and behaviors in a way that emulates the “rules” of God as Jesus lived.  At the foundation of Christianity lie the “Ten Commandments”.  Let’s begin by labeling them as the desired or future state.  Aligning our lives with this desired state constitutes compliance and fulfills the requirements of Christianity, albeit a perfect existence, virtually impossible to achieve as we are imperfect by definition.

As the Golden Gate Bridge was created (constructed) in 1937, it served one monumental and macroscopic purpose, to bridge the gap between San Francisco and Marin County in California.  Prior to its existence, traveling 4,200 ft over water to reach a destination (desired state) may have been considered impossible to achieve; much like living the perfect Christian life in accordance to the Bible.

Helen_Keller_Quote_3And much like the Golden Gate Bridge transforms a perceived impossibility into reality, Christians can benefit from this example to effectively move toward the desired state (living in accordance to the Ten Commandments as defined in the Bible).  This can be accomplished by adopting a perspective of maintaining focus on the end-goal or destination, and not becoming overwhelmed or preoccupied with other things, while progressing toward it.

We are many times distracted in life by seemingly monumental issues and goals, that when placed in proper perspective, are in reality, insignificant.  Issues like technology, social norms, leisure, peer pressure, group-think, etc. which over time, unguarded, become false gods in and of themselves.

“The bridge that can effectively transform this perceived impossibility into reality for Christians, is realistically, a collective set of practices that work together to create the necessary synergy to overcome hurdles, face failure, recognize success and realize Christian principles.  As the Golden Gate bridge is constructed of many materials, each serving a specific function, the Everyday Christian must likewise employ several approaches to yield the desired state.”

Integral to this end are Prayer, Reflection, Forgiveness, Humility, Kindness, Obedience, Respect, Discipline, Faith and above all, Love.  As the Gospel of Thomas indicates, “the Kingdom of God is inside of you, and it is outside of you.  When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living Father.  But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty, and it is you who are that poverty.”

A life of humble, authentic and sincere means can easily become a more significant presence and example of Christianity, than one of importance, recognition, fame and financial means.  It is always intent that is paramount as opposed to method.  What matters most is what dwells within your heart.  Indeed, these are the “Living Years”.  Be well.

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The Truth Of The Matter is…


Destiny_1Ah yes, Truth.  It is, in all reality, the most elusive word, concept and most coveted item in the universe, only second to Love. And invisible as it may seem, you can recognize it in the tears of a baby, the facial expressions and wrinkles of an elderly person, indeed, in the smile and glow of a newly married couple.

Such was this writer’s privilege to witness this past weekend, as an eldest son was married to his high school sweetheart.  There was an avalanche of Truth, Love, Honesty, Sincerity and Commitment; and it was good and welcomed.  It was refreshing and emboldening, it was humbling and peaceful.  It was grace and beauty in full force.  Dare I say, it was Angelic.

As the groom’s father, I had the distinctive privilege and task to create “the talk” to be presented/delivered at the reception, shortly after dinner commences.  The “talk” to express deeply seated emotions of caring and love, heartfelt advice for that elusive “Happily Ever After”, and bits of interjected humor to prevent a flood of tears from dispensing from those in attendance, and me (even though it happened anyway).

In contemplating the theme, duration, flow and context of this “talk”, I had to boil down and It_Comes_from_the_Heartdistill the essence of what would be my most important message for my son and his new bride.  And, manage to spew forth wisdom, humor, integrity and wit; all in about five minutes or less.  No pressure, right?

Well, I’d like to share with you that “talk”, not only because it causes tears to well up inside me every time I read it, but moreover, because I believe it is an incredibly important message for everyone to hear and contemplate as each of us regularly reviews our own lives and relationships.

Father of the Groom

THE “TALK”

Brandon and Courtney, I called these words, “Wisdom of an Old Fart”, because listening to me sometimes stinks and I seem to hang around forever, so let me just tell you.  I’ve condensed your more than quarter century of life to one page.  And Yes, I know it’s really on more than one page, but you earn and need that LARGER font when you become an “Old Fart”.

And, I’ve always been a “Big Picture” guy, so here are some Big Picture thoughts… 

Brandon and Courtney, when I look at the two of you today, as a father and now, father-in-law, I’m overjoyed and excited beyond imagination; because I see two Souls, but only one Heart.

IMG_0052_RI see two young, vibrant and intelligent people here today, and as much as that makes for a Sound Foundation; it is not enough for either or both of you, to survive or to thrive, together.

Brandon, I want to tell you today that about 10 years ago I seriously considered selling you…  on the notion that Life is something to be protected & cherished above all else.  But I did not, because in Truth, Life is something to be Experienced, Shared, and Given Up; in exchange for Compassion, Humility, Understanding and Love.  Did I mention Humility?  So Brandon, soften the edges a bit and allow yourself to enjoy every moment of your life with Courtney.  I’m proud to see the man you’ve become.

Courtney, I want to tell you today that as much as a Marriage is valued and worth, it is my 2nd Priority in life.  Number one is and has always been, my Faith, because without faith and the Presence of God in my life, I am nothing, and therefore, my Marriage is nothing.  So, Keep the Faith, and by that I mean, be patient with Brandon.  I’m overjoyed to welcome you into our family.

Brandon & Courtney, Happiness and Peace also come in behind Fulfillment...  Fulfillment of Dreams, Fulfillment of Hope, Fulfillment of Obligation & Commitment; to God, to yourself, and most importantly, to each other.  Love is Not something to be wished for, or upon someone…  Rather, it is Cultivated and Sought; It is Offered and Grown.

Reality tells us that each of us is imperfect and we all know we don’t live in a perfect world… yet as Parents, that is precisely what we wish for our children, because we Love you more than we love Life itself. 

Faith tells us that each of us are unique as children of God and we hope that our children grow up to live our values, yet as imperfect parents, we tell and teach you, “Do as I say, not as I do”.  Bottom line, just know we Love you.

Brandon and Courtney, I’m here to tell you that today… at this moment, you may well be experiencing life’s best, and my only wish is that you realize and embrace it, demonstrate gratitude for it, and work with all your heart and souls to earn the right to hang on to it.         

And speaking about children, all I can say is to let them live to at least sixteen before selling them…  on the notion that Life is something to be Experienced, Shared, and Given Up; in exchange for Compassion, Humility, Understanding and Love.  Did I say Humility?

Lastly; I want to share two words with you… Compromise and Tolerance.   These words, if lived by you, will take you far in your relationship and Marriage; but always, they must be preceded and accompanied by FAITH and LOVE.  And it’s worked for Kathy and me for 37 years.

Brandon & Courtney, may God Bless you as you begin your Married Life together.  You really have no idea how much you are loved.

So, Let’s Raise our glasses in a TOAST!  To Brandon & Courtney, two Souls with one Heart, forever in Love.

And now, it’s time for this Old Fart to sit down.

In the Big Picture, we truly need to be regularly reminded of life’s fleeting presence, the delicate balance between love and friendship, the incredibly important need for responsibility and integrity in all facets of life.  And, most critically, the role and fragility of Love.

Love is indeed a precious Melody.  Let each of us sing it from the very fabric of our being and let it flow from our hearts and souls.  Be well.

Enjoy these Melodies of Love:

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Expectations Resurrected – The Answers Lie Within


Mother Bear & CubsThe world which surrounds us as a mother bear protecting her cubs, has cyclical and seemingly, eternal patterns of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats; all revolving around life and death.

And so it is with each of us.  As we grow, learn and experience our environment, including other people, we amass an intellectual, emotional and psychological inventory of memories that together, form our core values, help us set goals and create and manage our expectations of ourselves and the world in which we are immersed.

In testimony to this truth, many of us annually set New Year Resolutions that serve to guide and mold our behaviors throughout the coming year.  More than resolutions, they in fact, more closely resemble expectations of the future; expectations of Our future.God

As healthy as it is to set and strive to achieve these earthly and mortal expectations, it is likewise, foolhardy to ignore other forces that similarly impact and influence our life on the Rock.

My beliefs include the existence of God, Angels and the Divine nature of coincidence.  To be sure, every “Corrective Action” we experience masquerades as a stumble in life.  Every chance interaction we encounter with another person serves some fundamental purpose for learning, about ourselves.

Many times, we fail to understand or comprehend the meaning of the encounter until at some point later in our life; when we are finally able to “connect the dots”.

“In perfect alignment with the season of Passover, each of us must resurrect our expectations of ourselves, our behavior, and specifically, our future.  Like the Earth, we must revisit our presence in this world, our purpose as spiritual children of God and commit to taking the appropriate actions that will enable and empower us to reach toward the stars in an attempt to align our behavior with our inner spirit, toward the realization of our potential as human beings.”

Conceptual Space Time VortexMost importantly, this focus and disciplined effort does not and will not go unrewarded.  To the contrary, any time we search within ourselves for answers in life, we grow, learn, attain wisdom and spiritually mature.  In essence, we travel to a dimensional point in our consciousness which is closer to what we are to become, than to what we presently are.

Being is much more difficult than one might perceive at first glance.  It requires patience, intent, humility, sacrifice and pureness of heart.  Critically, it requires love and forgiveness.

And it yields so much more than that.  Always know that the Answers Lie Within yourself; if only we make the effort to seek them out, and equally recognize our role in this world along with the presence of the Supreme Being.  Be well.

 

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Your Life – Vibrant Testimony or Empty Ritual?


golden_waves.jpgWithout question, our time here on Earth is extremely precious, not to mention equally finite.  And if you’ve ever pondered about the hereafter, whether it will be pleasant or “as advertised”; indeed, whether you will even hopefully “be” there, then most assuredly, your present life, physical being and presence is absolutely significant, impactful and relevant.

Admittedly, none of us spend an adequate amount of time reflecting on our earthly lives, much less, our eternal one.  Even more ironic is the fact, that in the larger picture of consciousness, faith and salvation, our eternal lives are infinitely more critical (pun intended) than our physical or mortal lives.moonlight_night-wallpaper-1366x768

Why is it then, that we dedicate so little time to nurturing, evaluating and working toward the improvement of our inevitable future?  Daily reflection is a habit I have seriously, deliberately and successfully, expended energy to create in an effort to better prepare for the transformation of my spirit and soul at my moment of death.  Yes, I think about death on a very regular basis, yet, not in the morbid or morose sense that most people picture it as a subject.

Death, is as an important an event in our lives as is our birth.  Accordingly, it is an equally important event in everyone’s life; yet we have come to jubilantly celebrate birth while we mourn, block out and avoid thinking about death.

The Irish have gotten death correct more than most.  If you’ve ever been to an Irish funeral or wake, it is anything but sullen, reserved, sad or quiet.  In reality, it is treated in its proper context; death is the passageway to eternity and is truly cause for a Celebration!

As mysterious, unknown and feared as death has become for most of us, it should be preceded by an equally important and meaningful life.  How would you respond if someone approached you and posed this question to you; “Is your life a vibrant testimony of your faith and values, or is it an empty ritual of routine daily tasks that only serve your physical and present life?”

“Have you grown and progressed in the refinement of spiritual being or have you simply become a very good Hunter and Gatherer?  Indeed, if your soul could speak, would it whisper of eternal life and redemption, or would it boast of xBox, the NFL, Friday Night out with the boys, and weekends at the beach?”

compass_mapIf we are to make it to the next level of existence and spirituality, our present lives must be dominated by the Primal Force of Conscience, a continuous reminder of what is right and what is wrong, conscious and deliberate behaviors and actions that support and align with our core values, and regular evaluation of those behaviors that deviate and/or distract us from our ultimate goal; to live in harmony and more importantly, to live forever.

At the moment of your death, will you be unanimously convicted of being a Christian, living a noble and obedient life, or will your life have been a continuous rerun of “going through the motions” and have become a hung jury?  Furthermore, if values, behaviors and memories represent spiritual “currency”, what’s in your wallet?

Look not to your habits, but rather, deep within your heart to live a life full of testimony as you ponder your future in the Empty Sky.  Be well.

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The Seed Whence Blossoms Human Morality


ShakespeareIn all of humanity, there lies a hidden goal, an invisible track up0n which our lives tread.  Sometimes lightly, other times ever so hard, we strive to be just, to be fair, to do unto others in a golden fashion.

We spend our youth watching others while learning to be, we emulate the movements and transform into “me”.  The essence of life is taught in fleeting moments, its lessons branded in our souls for an eternal tomorrow.  Many of us “get it” quickly and habits are formed that direct our conscious thoughts as breathing.  We think, we act and we react in a programmed sense of reality, at times forgetting about the foundation of our thoughts.

As adults we remember the lessons, the good times and bad, while wondering what it means to “be”.  The Wisdom_Mark_Twainlargest crime, being we forget that our lives haven’t yet been lived and indeed it is our own volition that will paint and resonate our unique presence to the rest of the world; and ourselves.

When maturity comes home to roost, the world indeed; a different shade and color casts upon us.  We forget many of life’s details, however, the morality of our being and purpose crystalize into a focus so intense it is nearly impossible to avoid.  The way of the world is now child’s play, yet no other besides us can comprehend and understand the melody; or the rhyme.

Sunrise_Above_CloudsThe circle of life and the rules of the universe needn’t be like mixing oil and water, discrete upon each other, closer than close, yet never to blend.   And whence does blossom human morality?  It can only be from one source, that which was first, and always will be.  Man’s law and God’s law, by intent, should mix together seamlessly, aligned in unison, moving forth in one direction, in harmony.

“In the greater sense of humanity and existence, our collective lives should not be testimony, so much as promise.  Indeed, our lives must be the evidence of moral thought, noble deeds and imparted wisdom earned by the time of being and granted by the Divine.  Man’s law is but a cheap imitation that mimics God’s law, and by no means whatsoever, could replace it.”

Life is a singular path in search of Salvation.  Waste not, want not.  Live it with zest, determination, deliberately and compassionately and seek the Truth of all that is seen and unseen.  Be well.

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Are You the Shadow or the Light?


Sunrise_Above_CloudsAs darkness is truly and simply the absence of light, it follows that the evidence of light is revealed in the shadow(s) it creates upon its presence, when set with a background.  In much the same way of thinking, the evidence of God is revealed in the behaviors of others upon His presence, with the world as a backdrop.  As with light and God, it is difficult to view both directly as they are piercingly brilliant and vanquish all darkness around them.

Many individuals find comfort in being the shadow, believing in their hearts that their Shadow_Loveefforts are noble, and hence, their salvation secure.  As with any and most conventions, however, the genuine truth lies somewhere beneath the surface and beyond the image.  Artificial light is precisely that; not real and only reflective of true light.

“What, then, is true light?  It begins with pure intent and robust knowledge, and is complemented with action.”

It is a fervent desire to learn as much as possible about God, the Trinity, and perhaps most practical, how to apply that knowledge to everyday life.  Amazingly, it is the resulting change in us as human beings, once affected by God’s love.  Bottom line, it is the ability to positively impact those around us by sharing our thoughts, words, lives and actions (key word; action).

Easter_CrucifixI’d like to profoundly modify the historic quote by Lao Tzu from “To Know and Not Do is to Not Know”, to “To Know God and Not Do is to Not Know God”.  As spiritual beings, we are compelled by our heritage to “Do” the work of God and not simply know about it.  To Do God’s work inherently enlightens us as Christians and positively impacts those around us with whom we have contact and interaction.

Importantly, there is a distinct and meaningful difference between being the shadow and being the light.  If we were made to live and walk in God’s image, then it is incumbent upon us to strive to become the light and not be content to be merely the shadow.

The Light is warmth, peace, illumination, clarity, awareness, calm, joy, beauty and confirmation.  Most of all, it is Love.  It is the presence of all that is good and righteous.  Be the Light, become eternal and dare I say, become Inspired!

Living On A Prayer – The Ultimate Conversation


Prayer_LightAs cliche’ as it sounds, chances are that most of us, at some point in our lives, survived on little more than a prayer.  Whether it occurred shortly after college, after losing someone close or having survived some kind of accident, it doesn’t take a genius to learn that life is so very precious.  And no, you needn’t be a religious person, or even a Christian, to pray.

But pray we do, sometimes as if it were a survival instinct.  And what exactly is Prayer, anyway?  Pragmatically, prayer is a form of communication, however, everyone knows that communication, by its very nature, represents a duality; meaning, there needs to be a sender as well as a receiver of the message.  So, who or what is the receiver of a prayer?

More importantly, does the simple act of praying imply that God is real and exists?  Or prayerperhaps, we are all just very ignorant and/or naive individuals possessing little to no clue about life; its beginning, or end?

For me, prayer is simply the “connection” with the creator.  It may very well be a plea for help, or intercession, or clarity, or for forgiveness.  Regardless what “it” is, prayer purifies our being and spirit, and represents a self-medicating sort of healing process.  Not all prayer, however, is offered as a result of need; prayer can be, in its purest form, a simple “thank you” for being alive, for being able to experience life with all of our senses, for having been given the privilege of being alive.  Make no mistake, Prayer is Powerful.

Prayer is the act of acknowledging the existence of, or attempting to summon the energy and power of God toward some end.   Atheists spend their lifetime and energy arguing and attempting to prove that God does not exist.  If they truly believe there is no God, why do they feel the need to convince others to likewise believe?  Logically, by simply participating in that hypothesis, they, by default and reality, prove to the contrary that God does indeed exist.

Prayer_KeyIn fact, there have been scientific studies conducted that prove that prayer is real as a result of a measured and desired cause/effect difference in some state of human life.  For being a society that is inundated with the gamut of science “fiction” from Hollywood about Zombies, Demons and Aliens, we hypocritically and largely, contend there is no God, that science is the ultimate “source” of knowledge and that death is a finality with no exceptions.  So, we are conditioned to believe in the creations of Hollywood but not of a Divine nature.  For me, that is a truly absurd hypothesis.

“Prayer is as real as a baby’s cry, the smell of a fresh spring rain, the beauty of a golden sunset and the warmth of being embraced by a loved one.   Like life itself, prayer is what you make of it.  Believe in it and it will become reality.”

This is the Secret to life.

My suggestion to you is to not wait to pray until an obvious need is present in your life.  Rather, pray in a forward-looking fashion; pray for the well-being of those you love, for those you don’t even know, for the absence of violence and the intangible characteristic of world peace, and kindness of people toward one another.  By all means, pray with a sense of gratitude, humility and pure intent.

Prayer is indeed all about creating and raising the awareness of positive energy, the acknowledgement of a higher power and the improvement in the quality of this 24/7 blessing we call “Life”.

“Take my hand, we’ll make it I swear.”   Be well.

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