Anger Can Kill Your Connection With God

Let me share with you some words I picked up from a blog post I read this morning titled, “Whoever is Angry with his Brother:” “Our relationship with God cannot be separated from our relationship with one another. Put simply, if we are on bad terms with each other, we can not approach God with an open and loving heart.” I found these words to be a very good source of reflection. They made me realize that anger can kill your connection with God.

Anger is one of the seven deadly sins, however anger too is human nature. So how can we keep ourselves from committing this grave sin when for a fact being angry is a natural human emotion? Well, I’d like to answer this according to what I heard from a homily a while ago. When someone does something bad to you and you feel the emotion of anger, this is not a sinful act. However, what you do with these emotions can be the source of sin–for example hitting the person that has wronged you.

Anger, although seemingly trivial can separate us from God. As a matter of fact, it has the power to consume us and kill our love for God. Let us pray everyday that we remain in control of our emotions that we may keep our connection with God strong. Anger can kill your connection with God, but don’t let it.

God is Always Listening to You

Do you ever think God isn’t paying attention?” I was doing my morning readings when I came across this question and it made quite an impression on me. Do I ever think that God isn’t paying attention? Hmmmm. Well, I’ll admit that there have been times when I felt as if God was nowhere to be found–that God was not paying attention to me and my supplications. However, God is always listening to you.

As I look back at my life, I believe that all the things that happened to me–both the good and the bad–happened for a very good reason. They have all contributed to making me what and who I am today.

Things can happen in our lives that can lead us to question God’s watch-care and providence, but we must always remember that God is paying attention to our lives. In fact, he is concerned with every little detail of it. So whenever you feel as if God has forgotten you, remind yourself of all the wonderful things that he has done for you and how he has blessed you all through the years.

In his perfect timing and ways, he will give us exactly what is best for us. God is always listening to you, it is more a matter of when he will act. Trust in God.

Clear a Path for God to Enter Your Life

A blog entry at Joe Catholic titled “Making Room to be Still,” brought me a wonderful reminder today. From the very basic task of cleaning her house, the author was able to make some very inspiring insights and realizations. In her own words, she said: “…physical-material things in your life can take up more space in your life than you are aware of. There is so much unseen maintenance that goes with having material things, it can almost be suffocating…”

Have you ever looked at the routine act of cleaning this way? Have you ever thought of it as something that can help better your relationship with God? To be honest with you, I haven’t. So this post is quite an eye-opener for me. You need to clear a path for God to enter your life.

Clutter can significantly affect the quality of our lives–not only physically and mentally but spiritually too. Having an accumulation of unnecessary possessions can be debilitating as it can take up a great deal of space not only in our homes but also in our hearts and minds. With much of our lives focused on these material things, we may end up having very little left for Jesus.

Today, let us take the time to evaluate our lives and see whether clutter is blocking our path towards God. Figure out what all the clutter is and clear a path for God to enter your life.

Feeling Close to God in Nature

Reading an article written by Archbishop Charles J. Chapu, titled “The Evidential Power of Beauty,” reminded me of the sad reality that some people are able to see the wonders of nature and yet fail to see God through it. I cannot comprehend how one can gaze at the magnificence of the entire Universe yet fail to see God’s fingerprints in all of it. Feeling close to God in nature is something that I have never struggled with.

As Romans 1:20, “For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.”

I have always felt close to God through nature. Some of the most deepest and closest encounters I have with God happened while walking through the woods, viewing snow-capped mountains, witnessing the beauty of a sunset by the shore or gazing at the skies on a clear starry night. I have always been overcome with a deep sense of reverence and connection to God whenever I look at the beauty around me. Feeling close to God in nature is just easy for me, I feel surrounded by his love.

How about you? Does you see God’s greatness through his creations?

God’s Presence is Everywhere: Find God in All Things

I felt blessed after reading this post today,”Finding God In All Things.” It reminded me of how I need to not look hard to find God.  I especially loved these words from the post, “God’s presence dwells in everything. God gives life and being and existence to everything, so finding God in all things is just a matter of opening your eyes!” God’s presence is everywhere, and you will come to realize this in time if you haven’t already.

If you recall, the phrase “finding God in all things,” is one of the very core ideals of the Ignatian spirituality. St. Ignatius encouraged Christians to search for and find God in every circumstance of life, and not just in spiritual activities like attending mass, receiving the Eucharist and praying. He counsels that we live each day with “eyes of faith”–eyes that see the Maker in all creation.

Isn’t it wonderful to have a God who desires to be known? A God who makes himself visible in all things so that we do not feel lonely and alienated from him? God’s presence is everywhere in our lives. Take the time today to look around you and experience God’s presence in all of his creations.

Nothing Should Supersede Our Love for God

I believe that we all want to live a life of comfort–a life that is free from worry about finances. Pope Francis in one of his homilies tells us that this very, culture of economic comfort deprives us of closeness to the Lord.”

Of course there is nothing wrong about wanting to live comfortably. Are we allowing our love for comfort supersede our love for God? Nothing should supersede our love for God. We can wish for a good life, but we must be careful that we do not wish for more than we actually need. More so, we must see to it that we do not become so engrossed with gaining financial freedom that we lose sight of God’s love.

We must not allow ourselves to be too attached and obsessed with gaining comforts in this world that we miss out on gaining heavenly treasures.

Do not let the economic turmoil of the world pull you away from God. As He said in Hebrews 13:5, “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Just remember that nothing should supersede our love for God, and that’s that.

Ask and It Will Be Given to You

Reading the post, “Knock and It Shall Be Opened,” prompted me to reflect on the encouraging words of Jesus in Matthew 7:7-8, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find;  knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Reading this text makes me feel very blessed. Imagine how privileged we are to have the maker of the entire Universe tell us how we can have all that we need–ask, seek and knock. Yes, this is a three-step process. Ask and it will be given to you if you take the necessary steps.

Step 1. Ask. We need to humbly come to God in prayer and acknowledge that we are in need of his help.

Step 2. Seek. Asking is not enough. You need to add diligence, determination and action to asking. Seeking in prayer means

God’s Loving and Gentle Correction

I’d like to share with you a very beautiful and inspiring line I read from article on Catholic.org titled, “Receiving the Eucharist: I Have Decided to Kneel For Jesus.” It has to do with God’s loving and gentle correction, and how it makes the author feel.

It never ceases to amaze me how patient and gentle God is with me. The perfect Father, He knows just how and when to reach me. Never impetuous, like me, He redirects and corrects a little here and a bit there as the gardener who sets out to straighten a bent tree.

A lot of people think that God uses physical, emotional, or financial trials and adversities to correct his children. I beg to differ though. I don’t think that our loving Heavenly Father could afford to send us sickness and disease, trials and tribulations just to teach us a lesson–to correct us when we go astray. Instead of chastising us with hard blows to make us realize our wrongs, I believe that God lets us see the direction that we are heading, illuminate the dangers in front of us and gently guide us back to the right course. God’s loving and gentle correction is Him showing us the path to salvation.

Ways to Give Thanks to God

A post I read titled, “God, Forgive Me If I Don’t Thank You Enough,” reminded me of my own doubts of whether I am thanking God enough. There are many ways to give thanks to God, but do any of us do them frequently enough? Do you ever have these kind of thoughts? Do you ever feel as if you are not giving God the gratitude that is due him? On the other hand, is there really a way for us to thank God enough? Even the great psalmist King David has this to say about expressing gratitude towards God, “Who can list the glorious miracles of the Lord? Who can ever praise him enough.” (Psalm 106: 2) So while there are many ways to give thanks to God, I’m not certain any of them will ever be enough. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try our best though!

We can exhaust ourselves in radical thanksgiving and it still won’t be enough to thank God for all that he has done for us. So what do we do? Honestly, I don’t know, just keep trying. I find this quote from William A. Ward enlightening, “God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today.  Have you used one to say “thank you?”.  Saying thank you to God, sounds like a good start to me.

Figuring Out God’s Will For Your Life

A post I read this morning titled “Mystery of God’s Will” had some statements that reminded me of a time in my life when I was searching for the presence of God in my life–when I was struggling and figuring out God’s plan for me. For example these questions in the post seemed like questions that I personally mouthed a few years ago: “Lord, what’s wrong with me? Why are you not using me? Does your will even have a plan for my life?”  These are all questions that you will wonder on the road to figuring out God’s will for you life.

Figuring out God’s will for your life is not easy–it is confusing and worrisome. You may even think that God is hiding from you–that he does not want you to understand what he wants you to do. During my struggle, I have come to realize that God wants us to know his will even more than we want to know it.

While I had a really tough time understanding his will for me then, I would say that it was an experience I would still be willing to go through again if I had to.

If you are at a point in your life where you are struggling to understand the will of God for you, keeping in mind these promises will greatly help you:

“I know the plans that I have for you, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

“We know that in everything God works for good for those who love him, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28).