LIFE AS I KNOW IT

30 and Enjoying Life

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Un-purified Hearts

It’s been a while, nothing has really changed. The motion within my heart continues to stir as I climb the mountain, striving to cling and make my way to the top. I’m in motion, that is what counts. Which brings me to my post today. I recently went to confession and the priest finally said something that has been an on going theme and reflection for me this week and last week. He said “Continue the struggle, it is in the struggle that we continue to grow”

To be honest, I have not been able to shake it off, the phrase ever beating my chest and ripping me from the inside out. But i’ve continued to fight. I’ve continued to turn away and keep my mind at ease. My shoulders increase in tension but  my eyes on the goal, to be a man destined to pursue God even the in the lesser moments of defeat.  I have I mentioned in previous post that conversion is a long, long, I mean long process. If you haven’t figured it out for yourself, prepare, and I mean prepare yourself to be challenged and be prepared to face whatever it is you struggle with and prepare yourself to frequent the sacrament as often as possible. Why…because

God removes the sin of the one who makes humble confession, and thereby the devil loses the sovereignty he had gained over the human heart.

– Saint Bernard

Confession is a humbling experience and it is in the confessional that I find myself the most vulnerable. Nothing to hide but to put all before the confessor who listens patiently behind the screen. Then I kneel patiently waiting for him to recite the words.

God the Father of mercies, through the death and resurrection of His Son, has reconciled the world to Himself and sent the Holy Spirit among us for the forgiveness of sins. Through the ministry of the Church, may God give you pardon and peace. I absolve you from your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

What a gift and what a reminder to become fully humbled before God the father. To be aware of our sinfulness and struggle. It is in that confessional that we, I ,  kneel and truly reunite my, our, un-purified hearts with Christ in order to make it pure once more. So my challenge to you today is to find time to go to confession. To not turn your back on the one who desire to make you great, to make you whole.

Lost in Transition

It’s pretty late. My brain won’t stop thinking and I have to get up in 3.5 hours to get my ass to the gym. Now, what I’m writing about today. What do I need to vent, what do I need to process. Well for beginners, it’s been a little under a year since my last post and I seriously need to make it a point to write, I mean type, something every day. I must. I will.

Anyway, I guess I wanted to focus my thoughts on what it means to be the older brother. What is my role as an older brother, my responsibility. When do I push and when do I let go? This is very difficult for me because as an older brother, I see nothing but potential in every man I come across, sometimes it’s even my inner self looking at me and saying; Wow, that guy has so much potential, but he’s throwing it all away. If only he listened, if only he stepped up to the plate, if only. Seriously, wake up already.

As a brother, i’m going to protect you. I’m going to fight. I’m going to give 100% till have nothing left but often times if not many of the times, that little guy does not deliver. It’s failure after failure, disappointment after disappointment and finally it just comes to a complete stop, I hit a wall and their nowhere left to go. I”m completely blocked in from any voice I have left. Every time I have to say is now buried deep within the creases of the walls surrounding me. I’ve been blocked in and I stand waiting patiently for the next move, good or bad.

So what next, what is their left to do but to pray. To pray that everything will work out. Pray that the next time I give advice it  does not hit me upside the head and really hope that just something, if not one thing would just sink in.

 

To be continued. the first set of words are out but not the tiredness has finally hit me.

Here We Go

My brain has been in a little bit of a whirlwind lately. Non-stop thoughts of what this year could look like. As I learn to surrender, I have to continue to remind to live each and everyday to the fullest. To stay focused and to keep my eye on the ball and my faith in God. This january will mark five years living in Saint Paul. I still can’t believe how fast or slow it has gone. So many great relationships, friends, and families that have truly become a blessing in my life. It will be hard to say goodbye to this place when the time comes that I leave or God implements a greater plan for me. One of the things I’m slowly learning is that it can be so easy to get caught up on the thought of, Oh I”m in my 30’s and its to late, I can’t change careers now, change paths, I’m sure i’m not the only 32 year old who thinks that, but isn’t that what its all about, going into to the unknown, following your dreams and continuing to pursue them, failing or not. I think I know what I need to do this year and its going to require a lot of change. So with this quick thought, I ask you for your prayers, thoughts, and I pray for a clear path, a clear direction to follow. Let’s roll. 

Discipline

Just like every other blog ive posted, I wait several months to update Life as I know it and realize its been way to long. So here we go, time to write. For those who follow me, God Bless you.

I took some time this morning to reflect, it wasn’t a long reflection but just long enough to slap me across the face or even more so for God to say, “wake up dude” (Cuz Jeaus is a surfer) and all it took was him to say was discipline. For the last two nights I’ve had the honor to stay with two youth ministers and a music teacher, each night they gather as men and pray night prayer. What I appreciate is that these men are in their mid to late twenties. It gave me great joy to pray with them, to kneel and offer the sins and thoughts of the the day to my Lord. It reminded me of still the high amount of discipline it takes to pursue The Lord, to be in relationship with him and so far I’ve been reminded of this ever since the election Pope Francis especially when he highlights forgiveness. It’s not that he’s left us but we’ve, I have stopped seeking him. I sat in Adoration for an hour yesterday and yet again I was reminded of how present God is in my life everyday. The thought that he died for me and All I have to do is come back to him and sit before him and be still. Nothing more and nothing less. Yea I can read 100 books on the life of Jesus but none it matters if I’m not speaking with God personally. So that’s all for now. I’m sitting outside of a Starbucks with the sun hitting my face. I’ve never worn green shorts before so I thought I give those a shot. That’s the most hipster I will ever get. Ha. Peace for now. See you in a couple weeks.

Priceless

Today and really over this weekend I was reminded of how precious life is. One could only imagine how many human beings live long enough to say, you know, I woke up today and I lived my day to its fullest. Sometimes I sit at my desk and stare at the screen for endless of hours, I sit there and wonder, is this where I am suppose to be, is this was makes me happy, but more important than that, I’m giving my all, I”m using my gifts and talents to the fullest potential, or I’m just throwing it all away. I continue to realize how much of a sinner I really I’m. I realize how much I have to rely on Gods grace. I don’t have much to say other than, life, its worth something, and it shouldn’t be thrown away. 

Checked Out

Sometimes I can’t think straight. My mind so overwhelmed by work and having no one to talk to really sucks. I feel like nobody gets me nobody understands me, people listen, but that’s all I get is a listening ear, I wish I had someone outside my house I can relate to , but I can’t think of anyone exactly. Each person facing their inner sin, I walk into a room and all I get is silence. I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve separated myself, I’m not better than any of these men, I still continue to seek truth in the Lord and the people I speak to but here in this house, I’m alone. I know that if I open up about this Ill get no real answer, just a blank stare, nothing to reflect on, no wisdom to rely on, my heart sinks, it’s heavy.

HOW NOT FOCUSING CAN REALLY MESS WITH YOUR DAY

So for the past two weeks I’ve been having  a real hard time focusing. To tell you the truth, I can’t focus at all. I have a huge project due for work tomorrow and I can’t get my brain to think or focus at all. I feel as I have ADHD or something, I think that’s what it is. Anyway. I thought I type away and get my thoughts now out of my head.

The Cathedral Within Me

I’ve spent the last two days on retreat. Overwhelmed by all the work I had ahead of me, I geared what the Lord might say to me in the last 24 hours of silence. I didn’t pursue him as I thought I should, my mentality, my mind was set on, well, if God has something to tell me, I’m right here. Yea, not quite the right attitude, I wanted to come up with excuses but the reality is, I decided to set up a wrestling match with God. I gave up some fighting words and in return, i found myself wrestling alone. Just me and an empty mat. I sat there waiting for an answer, reasons to to leave and not wait. Then finally, the image of a cathedral came to my mind, I was sitting in the back, a light glow over me, the tabernacle slightly in focus. Intimidating? Maybe. Fear, I would think so, a coward, I am many of times. I had an opportunity to speak and stayed quiet, I had an opportunity to see clearer, I closed my eyes. I had an opportunity to surrender, instead, my pride got in the way. Yet in the mists of all of this, he still waits for me. Today’s the feast of St Paul none the less. I listened to his conversion story as I sat in the back of the Cathedral during mass, again I was reminded of all the past matches I had with God, the endless battles within me, then i was reminded that I need to continue to seek him more often, I need to continue fight and wrestle in my own trials with the expectation that I would be converted into s better man. A Better servant, a man fully given of himself and stripped of his old ways. I ask myself, when will that day come? it’s here, it’s now, am I willing.

Re-Check and Focus

It’s hard for me to understand what really makes a man a strong man. Do you have tough, soft spoken, weak, in control, patient, loving, a jerk, well built, overweight, or simply be simple. I can’t wrap my thoughts around it. I understand what my identity is, I get that, but what I do t get is if I’m truly living that out, is their a type of strength that I don’t see. Im I blinded by my own weaknesses and strength, or I’m I just a jerk as some people have already placed me in that bucket. So other than Christ being the ultimate example of what is real man, I have yet to put myself in that category. I think about the sacrifices I’ve made, does that make me man, I think about the men I try to push day and day out, but I get silent response. I think about the failed relationships that are planted in the back of my head and although I would like to share this with the men I surround myself with, they just don’t get it. Believe me, this is probably some of my pride just speaking and I’m definitely not better than anyone else, I just want the truth to finally overtake the things I don’t see. So leave these thoughts here, still choosing to strive for something greater, to become a real man of virtue. To become man who has let all his walls crash down. Humble and at Peace.

Talk talk talk

Ive taken a breath, Ive listened to all the words people have to say and it’s all beginning to sound like white noise. As I continue to seek this deeper truth, the deeper I allow my heart to be pierced by Gods love, the more it hurts. Although it hurts, I know it’s a right hurt, I know that the pain I feel is of the Lord. I can’t ignore it, the true reason is, I don’t know what to do with it. I don’t know what to do with this overwhelming love God has for me. Its taken me some time recognize this and I have to pray.