Friday, November 9, 2012
+ JMJ +
From Franciscan University Catechetics Professor, Bob Rice:
Well, about 48% of the country is unhappy right now. Consider me one of them.
Like many, I’ve been invested in this election. Read numerous stories and blogs on the Internet. Followed the debates. Talked about it a lot. Prayed. Voted. And yet the same guy who was elected President four years ago is the same guy who got voted in today. Once again he’s talking about “hope” in front of a cheering Chicago audience. After the speech they played Bruce Springsteen’s “We Take Care Of Our Own.”
I would have rather had an election result that ended with Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.”
I’m not the only one who prayed and fasted for this day. At Church every Sunday (and daily), we’ve been praying or our country and for the election. Though the prayers never specifically said, “We pray Mitt Romney wins,” that seemed like an easy connection to make. We prayed for a president that respects the dignity of the unborn. We prayed for a president that respects religious freedom.
And yet we now have a president who seems to not care about either of those two important issues. He is more concerned with the rights of same sex couples to be married than the rights of unborn children to live. He is more concerned with the “rights” to free contraceptives than the rights of religious freedom.
So… were our prayers unanswered? Our novenas wasted? On the surface, it seems to be that way.
But God isn’t done yet. He just rarely answers prayers the way we think He will.
God isn’t into democracy. Jesus said, “Follow me,” not, “vote for me.” Though we might feel that our prayers for the election weren’t heard, God is bigger than an election. He’s about saving souls and changing hearts.
Abortions in this country are down. Why? Because abortion centers are closing due to movements such as “40 Days for Life.” This is the most pro-life generation the country has ever seen. Hearts are changing. That’s the work of God, not man. Man can create a law to make something “legal” or “illegal.” But only God makes things “right” or “wrong.” The law is external, the Spirit is internal. God is more concerned about the heart.
Same-sex marriage? Yes, it’s disappointing that same sex marriage won a popular vote in Maine and Maryland. Proponents say this is the beginning of a national trend (as if the 30 previous states who voted against same sex marriage don’t matter.) That may be true. But I think we need to do better in talking about what marriage really is. We’ve been hoping for a vote to “protect marriage,” but perhaps we’ve been too focused in “out-voting” the issue than explaining it. Now we have to be more articulate. I can’t see that as a bad thing.
Religious freedom? That battle is far from over. More lawsuits have been leveled toward the Federal Government on this matter than any other in American history, and most of lower court results have been respecting religious rights. Obama’s re-election doesn’t make the HHS mandate a slam dunk, though that would have been nice—just as it would have been a non-issue if Obamacare was flipped by the Supreme Court. But it seems we’re just not going to get any short cuts on this: the issue of religious freedom will need to be directly addressed by the Supreme Court. And that could be a great thing.
One “positive” thing you can say about Obama is that he’s done more to unite the Catholic Church in America than anyone in the past 50 years. He got every Catholic bishop to stand against him. He also did a lot to unite the Christian Church — remember Mike Huckabee saying, “Today, I’m Catholic!” Heck, he even got evangelical Christians to back a Mormon for president.
Mitt Romney [Source]
If we had woken up this morning with the headline, “Romney is the President,” we might have gone back to sleep feeling secure in one nation under God. We could be thankful that this HHS nonsense is over and we can go back to our lives. We could be hopeful that abortions would be reduced thanks to government intervention. That’s how I hoped to start the day.
But God does not want us asleep. He wants us awake. He wants us to do the same thing we’ve been doing: pray, work, and fast for our country.
If we thought we could wake up and feel safe about these issues because Romney got elected then we’d be as foolish as those on the other side of these issues who think Obama is the “savior.” We can’t depend on the government for our spiritual “welfare.” We’ve got to go out and proclaim God’s truth with our lips and share His love from our hearts.
I’m bummed that Obama won. I know a lot of people who worked really hard during this election and I can’t imagine how devastated they feel: any time you spend work on a “failed” effort it’s always heart-breaking.
But I still have hope, and not the “hope” that Obama talked about to a cheering crowd this morning. His “hope” was optimism based on the human spirit; our hope is rooted in Jesus Christ and in His saving power. The hope Obama offered four years ago hasn’t materialized, but our hope in Christ is “an anchor for the soul, firm and secure” (Heb 6:19.)
The re-election of Barack Obama means that Christians in the United States have to stay united and actively proclaim the truth of the Gospel if we are to protect the values we believe were given to us from God. It means we have to pray more, work harder, and be more active in sharing our faith. If we do that, it would be a more important “result” than any political office we could ever vote for.
I’ll end with what we prayed in Mass this morning: ”The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)
Posted by Sweetums5 at 5:22 AM
+ JMJ +
Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life.
Beautiful flower hubby photographed at Ida Lee Park, where Muddee's NOVA AC Invitational Cross Country Meet was held on Saturday, October 27, 2012.
Ida Lee Park in the Fall
Muddee is awarded a medal for finishing in the Top 10 at
the NOVA AC Invitational Cross Country Meet on October 27, 2012.
Not sure why hubby took a picture of his feet, but I thought it fit the bill for this portion of the post. =) (September 8, 2012)
The Potomac River the day after Hurricane Sandy (October 30, 2012)
By the Potomac River the Day after Hurricane Sandy.
The park walkways were strewn with leaves from trees shaken by Sandy's strong winds.
The Potomac River after Hurricane Sandy (October 30, 2012).
Thank you, Lord, for sparing us from the brunt of the storm!
Thank you, Lord, for sparing us from the brunt of the storm!
Visit Like Mother, Like Daughter for more pictures of contentment.
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
+ JMJ +
From Live Action President, Lila Rose:
“Our work to defend the lives of the most vulnerable and to promote human dignity is not dependent on an election. This is a fight for each person, one person at a time. We will only work harder, hope and trust more, and ask God to make our lives a reflection of His love which never disappoints.” [Source]
From Marjorie Dannenfelser, the President of the Susan B. Anthony List:
From Tom Crowe of Catholic Vote.org:
We are children of God before we are citizens of any nation or subjects of any sovereign. We fight the good fight in the politics of the world to bring about the good and true in the world precisely because we are first children of God, and we have been called to affect the good in the world, so that more of us might end up in heaven with God in eternity.
Let us forge ahead with full hope in the promise of God’s love, anchored in God’s Church, affecting the world for the good and the true.
In the end, God has already won anyhow. [Source]
From Susan Michelle Tyrrell in LifeSite News:
Never have we needed to pray as we do in this critical hour. No man is our answer apart from Jesus, and He wasn’t the least bit surprised. Before the foundation of the world, He knew we’d re-elect President Obama tonight. We absolutely cannot forget the word of the Lord in Romans which says:
13 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.Did you catch that? Rulers are not a terror to good works. As we do the will of the Lord, no man, pro-abortion or not, should be a Christian’s terror. Jesus wants abortion to end. We have the Man of all men on our side. We cannot be in the wrong when we do right, but we can be wrong even in being right if we lash out and live from anger. As you take in the news tonight, please don’t forget the mandate to pray, not only to end abortion but for the rulers of this land, whether we wanted them to be elected or not—because that’s actually irrelevant to our prayers.
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men,for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. I Tim. 2:1-2We’ll have more response for you Wednesday, but we want to encourage you and remind you of the truth and hope that has not left. The president may not be on our side with LIFE, but the true King of the earth is. What we must do now is pray for our president, even as we pray for abortion to end. We must remember that being a Christian means we are to display Christ-like behavior. This is the time to respond in love and prayer. Its’ a time to stand for truth in love. This will change a culture far more than an election.
Many of us go to bed disappointed tonight. But it’s time to remember the hope that does not disappoint (Romans 5). Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, and His desire for LIFE has never changed.
Take a day, feel sad about the loss, cry a bit, and then get up and stand on your knees. We have a battle to fight. And every day that we don’t, close to 4000 babies will suffer. This isn’t time to get fruitlessly angry but to channel that anger to the hope we have in Jesus. [Source]
Posted by Sweetums5 at 4:43 AM