The Compassionate Centurion

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When He (Jesus) entered Capernaum, a centurion approached him and appealed to Him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”   Matthew 8:5-6

11.7.19 The Compassionate Centurion Wikimedia Commons

Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

In this story of the centurion asking Jesus to cure his servant, our focus is typically on the centurion’s faith that Jesus need “only say the word and his servant will be healed.” Without a doubt, the centurion’s faith is noble and inspiring, something we all need to aspire to as we echo these words right before receiving Communion.

However, upon closer inspection, we learn the centurion is noble in other ways too, Despite the fact that his servants must obey his orders, this centurion is compassionate and caring for those under his command. He doesn’t ask: “Cure my servant so he can do more work for me.” He asks Jesus to cure his servant because his servant is “suffering dreadfully.”

For those of us who are parents, supervisors, or managers, we could learn a thing or two about leadership from this man. Although he demands respect and obedience from those under him, he also demands compassion and respect from himself. Continue reading

Just More Curriculum

And let people learn to devote themselves to good works in order to meet urgent needs, so that they may not be unproductive.   Titus 3:14

10.31.19 Just More CurriculumMy in-laws came to visit a few weeks ago. That Sunday morning, we made last minute plans that had us scurrying to get to an earlier Mass. In the chaos, I was the last one down to the car.

To my sheer and utter horror, I saw my thirteen-year-old son, Mason, bucked into the front passenger seat, while his 82-year-old grandfather was making his way to another spot. In my mortification, I tried to hustle Mason out of the front seat to make room for my father-in-law, but the damage had been done. My father-in-law had already side-shuffled through that little space between all the buckets of outdoor toys stored next to the garage wall and the mini-van to get to the middle row. Getting him to shuffle back was too much to ask.

On the drive to church, I kept asking myself where I went wrong, and what other lessons and manners I’d failed to teach my kids. I really thought I’d covered all the bases and taught my kids well. A wave of overwhelming defeat washed over me.

There’s no better place to bring your sense of failure than to God in church. As I prayed my way through the scenario, again and again, He helped me see things differently. Continue reading

What We Lean On

On God rests my deliverance and my honor; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God. Psalm 62:7

10.24.19 What We Lean OnOver the summer, Mason saved up his birthday money, and even ran a lemonade stand, to buy a virtual reality gaming system (VR). He’s been pestering me to try it ever since.

I am SO not a video game girl. Plus, I feared getting vertigo from having a screen strapped to my face with intense images flashing just inches from my eyes. But motherhood means moving beyond ourselves and being interested in what our kids are interested in, or at least pretending to be. I finally bit the bullet and let him suite me up. Continue reading

Changing Our Approach

You were taught to put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to clothe yourselves with the new self, created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.   Ephesians 4:22-24

10.17.19 Changing Our ApproachWhile on vacation this summer, amidst our very busy itinerary, there was one morning when I was able to take some time to myself and recharge. As I sat on the balcony of our hotel, sipping coffee, reading my Bible and looking out at the mountains of Wyoming, peace settled in.

Then I looked right and saw a dead bee trapped in the screen of our hotel window.  Continue reading

Being Clear

“In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.”  Romans 8:26

10.10.19 Being ClearAsk anyone who knows me, and they’ll confirm that I resisted getting an iPhone with all my might! Up until a year ago, I had a fancy, blue, slide-out phone that I loved and showed off with pride, regardless of everyone who laughed at me. But wanting to further my writing career meant I had to join the social media game, and the rest is history.

Now that I have a new fangled iPhone, I recently discovered GIFs. And, oh what fun they are! I decided using them was going to be my “thing,” my signature response to text messages, instead of words. It’s proving to be more complicated than I thought. Continue reading

Redefining Success

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Remember then the Lord, your God, for He is the one who gives you the power to get wealth…   Deuteronomy 8:18

10.2.19 Redefining Success Pixabay

Photo Courtesy of Pixabay.

It’s so hard to measure our progress in motherhood, especially when our kids are young. That’s one of the major reasons I’m so to-do list oriented: It gives me some sense of achievement in an otherwise chaotic day.

But as I spiral down into the state of too-much-on-my-plate between work and home, I’m having to redefine my definition of success. Continue reading

Not Our Agenda

But Herod said, “John I beheaded. Who then is this about whom I hear such things?” And he kept trying to see him.   Luke 9:9

Gospel-Reflections-800x800-gold-outline-400x400My husband was showing my kids some Bugs Bunny episodes on YouTube recently. When he showed them the one about the man who finds a singing frog, I was transported back to childhood, but not in a good way. The extreme frustration I’d felt then came back in full force as I watched the man try to show others how the frog could sing. Anytime anyone but the man was around, the frog would just “ribbit.” Yet the second they left, the frog would stand up and belt out a show tune. Over and over again this happened; Over and over again, my frustration grew right along with the man’s. Continue reading