Thursday, September 30, 2004

are you going to pay for that?

Well I just got back from the UNI library. Oh yes yes, what a lovely place! Four floors of books from floor to ceiling...confusion ensues! I am writing a fifteen page paper for psychology, and my teacher insists that we have twenty-one sources, which is crazy, but that's what he wants. Right now I have sixteen which means I'll need five more! So anyway, I eventually found my way around the library after asking the information desk, and I found some good sources for my paper. So now I have a huge stack of books and I go to check them out when I discover that I am not allowed to check out books at UNI since I don't go to school there. [Even thought I live there and pay them for food and housing.] Whatever. So I had to run back to my dorm and get $5 so I could buy a guest pass for the library. At least I was able to check them out, though, since I need lots of sources! God bless UNI!

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

a fish named neot

So I want to get a beta fish now that my schedule at school has calmed down a bit. The challenge of keeping things alive brings me such joy and I think I would love my aquatic friend very much. I want to name him Neot after St. Neot.

St. Neot visits the Pope
St. Neot visits the Pope

I am so excited! I really hope that I can take care of a fish!

St. Neot, please help me to pick out a hardy fish that will help bring me closer to Jesus by his simple life.

St. Neot, pray for us!

feast of the archangels

I very much like what A Penitent Blogger said about Images of angels today.

Lord, thank you for your angels. May we learn to better appreciate the ways they guide and protect us.

Archangels  Michael, Gabriel & Raphael (Courtesy of the Supreme Council Website)

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

the good kind of change

So today I read about "The Necessity of Tribulation" from C.S. Lewis' The Problem of Pain. Basically, he said that we tend to run to God when we have problems but quickly forget Him when all is well again.

If only we could be like Job when the Lord allowed trials to fall upon him.
Naked I came forth from my mother's womb, and naked shall I go back again. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD!
I remember how much comfort this verse gave me a few years ago during my "vocational crisis." I was on NET and really wanted to be a nun, but one day, God seemed to hide my future from me. Everything I had been so sure about was now in a complete haze. I prayed over and over that I would know my future. I wanted to do God's will in my life, but had gotten to the point where I would only accept one vocation as the answer to His call. So as Jesus was taking away my future, I tried to bless that Lord. [It was not as easy as Job made it sound, but it did help put things in perspective for me.]

My life is not my own. Everything I have is a gift from God, and He who gave such great things to me will never do anything that will harm me. If He calls me to change, it will be for the better.

I like to use leaves as an example of this. Here is one that I found on my way to Mass yesterday:

This leaf, as well as the other leaves on the tree with it, has been called by God to change from green to many different colors. It may have been scared to do this, it may have feared dying, but if only the leaf could partake of the beautiful landscape the the Creator was painting, I imagine that the leaf would gladly give its life for the cause.

It is the same with my life. If I am afraid that God's plans will "mess up" my life, I am stuck in my own, self-centered world. But, if I would trust that He has beautiful plans for me, as he had for my leaf friend, then I would not be able to say no to Him. My life is small and insignificant, but if I let Jesus use me, it can contribute to a beautiful work of art.

As a speaker at last year's Steubenville youth conference said, "What are we so afraid of from Someone who loves us so much?"

Sunday, September 26, 2004

faithfulness to calm the torrents

So God is very faithful, in case any of us had any doubts! He uses me although I am a sinner, and He calls me into His loving arms through the absolution of reconciliation!

Psalm 124:1-8

Had not the LORD been with us, let Israel say,
Had not the LORD been with us, when people rose against us,
They would have swallowed us alive, for their fury blazed against us.
The waters would have engulfed us, the torrent overwhelmed us;
seething waters would have drowned us.
Blessed be the LORD, who did not leave us to be torn by their fangs.
We escaped with our lives like a bird from the fowler's snare; the snare was broken and we escaped.
Our help is the name of the LORD, the maker of heaven and earth.
Oh Lord! You have been so marvelous to me in my life! Despite my pitiful attempts at holiness, You continue to provide me with the graces I need to respond to Your call. If You had not been with me each day of my life, my story would be much different. As it is, You have rescued me constantly, and mostly from my own faults. Thank you for your great love!

Each day may I exclaim as does Psalm 126:1-3

When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion, then we thought we were dreaming.
Our mouths were filled with laughter; our tongues sang for joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD had done great things for them."
The LORD has done great things for us; Oh, how happy we were!
May my life be a joyful song of Your great love! My Jesus, how I love you!

Friday, September 24, 2004

a time for everything

Here is an excerpt from today's readings:

Ecc 3:1-8

There is an appointed time for everything,
and a time for every thing under the heavens.
A time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to uproot the plant.
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to tear down, and a time to build.
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones, and a time to gather them;
a time to embrace, and a time to be far from embraces.
A time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away.
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
a time to be silent, and a time to speak.
A time to love, and a time to hate;
a time of war, and a time of peace.

I just realized that I have been going through life without wanting to face the consequences of my actions. Actually, let me rephrase that: I go through life desiring positive consequences to come out of my actions, both positive and negative.

When I do something right, I am all about receiving recognition and praise. It secretly thrills me and makes me feel special. So, when I think I am right about something, I want it to turn out my way. I do not think about my actions or how others will feel. And if I get a negative reaction, I get flustered, as if some unjustice has been done to me.

If fear that I have done some irreparable damage last night from my selfishness and pride. Yes, I was justified in some of it, but I definately let my emotions take lead. I want things done perfectly my way right now.

It is amazing how many times the words "I" or "my" appear in the paragraphs above.

Lord, I am so concerned with my own feelings and timing, that I forget all about Yours. Indeed, as the first reading today states, You have an appointed time for everything. If some injustice was really being done to me, would not You already have a perfect moment to take it away? Could my suffering not be a gift from You to teach me patience and love? You have already appointed "a time to be silent, and a time to speak." Were my reactions really necessary? Do I even trust You as I claim to?

At the same time I need to look at the other side of things. Lord, you do have a time for everything. "A time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away." Is this the chosen time You have set apart for me to lose, to cast away what if most dear to me? Is that what I really want? When I search the depths of my heart, I seem to become more and more confused. On one hand, I very much do not want that to happen, yet my actions seem to speak otherwise.

Lord, what is it that I want? More importantly, what is it that You want? My life is plagued by sin that clouds the eyes of my soul. Take hold of me and teach me to walk though the fog and mist, for You alone can restore order and peace.

Jesus I trust in You.

Thursday, September 23, 2004

my little "addiction"

One of the sad things about the college I live at is that a lot of people go out to get drunk on Thursdays so they can be sober to drive home for the weekends. Eveidentally people call it "thirsty Thursdays." So, the Student Life Committee has come up with a fun little plan to counteract this called "Thrusdaze." Each Thursday there is a free event to go to such as movies, or concerts, etc. It's really quite nice.

So tonight they had Kwame Jackson from the first season of "The Apprentice" come and give us his "Lessons from the Boardroom." After that they had casino night. I went with my RA, Kacie, and we hit the slots. They also had table games, but we didn't want to wait in line for them. [Not to mention the fact that I don't know how to play the games and that I don't have what you would call a "poker face." Just play a game like UNO of Phase 10 with me and you will soon discover this.] So together, Kacie and I lost $100,000 in our fake token galivant. It was a lot of fun though.

Manuel...never take me gambling with real money. ;)

rainy days

It is amazing how peaceful rain can be. Yes, it has the potential to get us in a bad mood because we left our umbrellas at home or we actually did our hair today, but the fact of the matter is that it's raining....and you're going to get wet. In just accepting this little fact, suddenly the rain becomes fun. You are free to look about and notice the world that God has created for you to see at that moment. It can be a moment of joyful, grateful prayer to the Creator of all.

Rain reminds me of grace. One of my friends once told me that when it rains, we can make it an opportunity to think of the graces that God is constantly pouring down upon us. This is why rain often makes me smile, if only I let myself see beyond my desire to stay dry and "pretty." My favorite times for rain are at weddings and funerals, as it reminds me of His constant faithfulness.

It may rain when we find it inconvenient, but if we let ourselves become lost in prayer, these moments can be amazing. And, after the rain comes a rainbow, reminding us again that our loving Father will never abandon us.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

happiness comsumes my soul

So for the past few days, ever since going to confession, I have been really happy. I'm not exactly sure why, other than the obvious answer of grace. In confession, the priest talked to me about things to do when I get impatient, which is one of hte major things I struggle with. Jesus must be helping me accept His grace, because being patient has seemed a lot easier the past few days.

The thing that really amazes me is how happy I am. When I first got to UNI, I was a bit depressed because making friends wasn't terribly easy and I felt very alone, especially at the school's Catholic Church. Nothing has really happened to improve any of this, but my mood has been cheery. I have been able to accept "bad news" and "hard situations" with joy instead of focusing on the negative aspects of my life and driving myself further into sadness.

Jesus has really been helping me take joy in His words and His will. I know that His way is the only true one, and this consoles me. For instace, last night Manuel and I were discussing the severity of different sins. I had never realized how bad they were until that moment and I didn't want to believe it, but I took comfort in knowing that it was from God. It only saddens me that I have ever committed them.

Jesus, thank you for helping me lift my spirits. You are faithful, my love.

staphylococcus aureus

So I really love microbiology. It makes me so happy every time I go. I love the people in my lab group and the things that we do.

Thank you Jesus!

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

being in love

I love being Catholic so much! I just watched a movie on TV about St. Bernadette, and I feel so in love right now! I have never really felt like this before...except when I watch happy love stories and I feel very in love with Manuel.

Jesus, I love you so much! Thank you for your extraordinary love of me. Help me to love you daily more and more.

one-forth over

So today I was informed of the wonderful news that the semester is one-forth over. Now, to say it in this way may sound a bit pessemistic, but I find saying "three-fourths left" to be more pessimistic, so I am sticking with the way I chose to express it.

I just got done taking a nutrition test. It was actually pretty challenging. I am glad that I studied for it. I know that i missed at least one question, and hopefully I didn't miss too many more than that because I can only miss five and maintain an A. If I get less than 80%, it is an F. (Such is the nursing program's grading scale!) I do love that we got to leave after we were done, though. 'Twas very nice!

Well, I am going to read my developmental psych book now and have a nice little (and nutritious, of course) dinner.

God bless you!

becoming a blogger...

So I became a blogger today after much difficulty. My computer [more specifically, internet explorer] would not let me sign into anything with a password such as email, diarys, and this blog. I was very frustrated all day. Fortunately, my wonderful boyfriend is a computer genious, so he helped me out and told me to get netscape. I didn't think it would work, but it did! *Praise God!*

I know this is a really exciting "first post," but it's all i have to write about at the moment.

Have a great day!

God bless you!