Friday, May 29, 2015

Believe In Your Prayers

Most of us pray we'll win the lottery. Come on, admit it! But do we really believe we will win? No, not really. It's all about luck of the draw and we know the odds. And, will winning the lottery help you glorify the Lord? For some people, absolutely. For most people, it means bigger houses and more material "things." So what about real prayers? For example, healings, financial concerns, or broken relationships. When you pray for healing, do you trust God with all your heart you will be healed? Do you stop worrying about the future and what it holds? If deep down you have doubts, you are not trusting God. No matter what you are facing, know, with every fiber of your being, He will take care of you. And when you put all your trust in the Lord, your prayers will be answered in some way, shape or form. All you have to do is believe.

In reading todays Gospel (Mark 11:11-26), Jesus assures us if we chase away doubt, He can move mountains for us:

Early in the morning, as they were walking along, they saw the fig tree withered to its roots. Peter remembered and said to him, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered." Jesus said to them in reply, "Have faith in God. Amen, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it shall be done for him. Therefore I tell you, all that you ask for in prayer, believe that you will receive it and it shall be yours. When you stand to pray, forgive anyone against whom you have a grievance, so that your heavenly Father may in turn forgive you your transgressions.'

Wow, huh? Sounds so easy. But we are only human and must practice letting go of doubt. Let Him deal with your worries and concerns. Because when you do, the answers to your prayers are much better than winning the lottery!

In Volume One, our Blessed Mother assures us our prayers are heard:

“Jesus is waiting for you, my little one. I will help you and show you the way. Pray more, even when you do not feel like praying. Pray always, even if it is just a simple sentence, a simple thought. We are slaves to your prayers, my dear little struggling souls. We hear a plea from you and we hasten to provide every assistance. Look closely for the answers to your prayers and you will find them. Never be fooled into thinking your prayers fall on deaf ears. We work quietly and sometimes our time is not like earthly time. But we hear your pleas and share in your concerns. Be certain that we have the answers. They are here for you and we will not leave you without guidance.”

Practice, lay apostles. Practice trust in every situation you encounter. Evil lurks about everywhere. Evil will condemn your beliefs, our Church, this apostolate, trying to draw you away from Christ. Trust Jesus knows what He is doing. If something brings you closer to Him, you know in your heart it is from Him.

Thank you, Lord, for showing me what trusting You completely feels like. Continue to help me eradicate doubt from my mind and believe in my prayers.

God bless,

Thursday, May 28, 2015

A Walking Miracle

Jay is a walking miracle. Two-time cancer survivor (Stage 4 metastatic testicular cancer in his late 30s and melanoma in 2007), I tell Jay all the time God cured him for me . . . the future me 15 years later. He is perpetually positive and happy, a man after my own heart. I know his attitude after surgery and chemo saved him, but most importantly, his faith never wavered. He believed God had a plan, and boy, what a grand plan it was and is! Offer up your suffering for Jesus . . . you never know what miracle is waiting around the corner.

In todays Gospel (Mark 10:46-52), Jesus shows us that with great faith, miracles are possible:

As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, “Jesus, son of David, have pity on me.” And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, “Son of David, have pity on me.” Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called the blind man, saying to him, “Take courage; get up, Jesus is calling you.” He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus. Jesus said to him in reply, “What do you want me to do for you?” The blind man replied to him, “Master, I want to see.” Jesus told him, ‘Go your way; your faith has saved you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way.

In Volume Four, Jesus Speaks to Sinners, Jesus tells us to remember He walked this earth just as we do:

"I saw the failings of mankind as you see them. I was grieved at the injustices, in the same way that you are grieved when you see things that are not fair. Did I grow bitter? No. I did not. Why was that? Because I am God? No. I was God on earth but I was God trapped in man’s body and constrained by the limitations of the body. I did this so that when it came time for you to follow Me you could not say that it was easy for Me because I was God. I did not use My divinity except during the last three years and then only to heal, cure, and otherwise support My claim that I was the King of Heaven, come down to lead all back to the Father. I did not waste miracles on those who would reject Me, regardless of proof of My divinity. Do you intend to reject Me? You are Mine, dearest soul. Come back to Me that I may introduce you to love and joy."

Lay apostles, we all pray for miracles at one time or another in our lives, right? But, when they don't materialize right away or never seem to occur even years down the road, do you trust there is a different purpose for the outcome? God's plan is the only plan. Be grateful for the path He has placed you on. Although it may not make sense now, it will eventually.

Thank you, Lord, for the grace to see why my struggles throughout life were meant to be. I am so thankful for every one of them, because you have made me the woman I am today.

God bless,

Friday, May 15, 2015

Pain Today, Gone Tomorrow

About three weeks before my oldest daughter gave birth to our first grandson over 3 years ago, she frantically called me one night worried she might be in labor. I asked all the appropriate questions a nurse would ask . . . what did the pain feel like, how long did it last, etc. Her answers? It was a sharp pain in her lower abdomen which lasted a few seconds. It was so intense it doubled her over, but it only occurred once. When I assured her she wasn't in labor, she painstakingly inquired, "labor can't be worse than this, right?" (I see all you moms smiling right now). My response to her? "Do you want me to tell you the truth or what you want to hear?" How do you describe the pain of childbirth? It's unimaginable until you experience it. Natural childbirth is rough and my daughter has a very low pain tolerance. All I could tell her was that once he was out, she would immediately forget the pain (of course, this was after I told her to take the pain she just experienced, multiply it by 1,000, and it lasting for many hours). She endured a very long labor (thank you Lord for epidurals) like a champ. And when they placed her son in her arms, labor pain became a distant memory. Well, at least the labor pain part of it . . . she had not anticipated the healing needed when pushing an 8 lb baby out! I am happy to report her second son was much quicker (and maybe a little more painful!) almost 9 months ago . . . the pain is long gone . . . but if you ask Mal, NOT forgotten!

Todays Gospel (John 16:20-23) immediately made me think of my own babies coming into this world! Labor does resemble Christianity. It can be rough, painful, and exhausting, but the end result is joy. Jesus is so worth the pain and suffering here on earth. Imagine the joy when we are face to Face with Him! 

Jesus said to his disciples: "Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy. When a woman is in labor, she is in anguish because her hour has arrived; but when she has given birth to a child, she no longer remembers the pain because of her joy that a child has been born into the world. So you also are now in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. On that day you will not question me about anything. Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you."

In Volume Two, the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus, He encourages us to pray when we are tired of laboring:

"When you meet Me face to face, you will see clearly every happiness you have caused Me. I need you and so appreciate any fidelity offered to Me. If only for the sake of repayment you should come to Me often, as I reward each prayer, each glance, each petition even, beyond anything you might imagine. Please do not worry if you do not feel like you think you should feel. My child, how does a saint feel when that saint is laboring on earth? Very often, My saintly souls feel tired. They feel tired because they are laboring. But they also feel determined and these saintly souls come back to Me in prayer, even though they do not feel holy every moment. Do not let your feelings dictate your prayer time. Imagine a marriage where the two people only served each other in times of romantic love. I need not tell you that the marriage would be doomed. It is the very same with your relationship to Me. Serve Me always, regardless of how you feel."

Lay apostles, remember this particular passage from the Gospel today. Remember it when life becomes challenging and your labor exhausting. Read Volume Two. If you've read it, read it again. If you haven't, click on the link to the right which says "The Volumes - downloadable online." Jesus is offering His true followers all sorts of solace for this life. How you respond to His guidance and support is up to you. Me? I know He keeps all His promises. I believe Him, so I serve Him.

Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to labor not only for my children, but for You. The hard times draw me closer to You . . . just where I belong.

God bless,

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Graces Are For The Asking

Times they are a changin!  My stamina is not what it used to be. I am exhausted at the end of a long work day but can't seem to fall asleep right away (not a problem my husband suffers from . . . within 10 seconds of hitting the pillow, he is out!). Challenges have occurred over the past few days and when my energy level is low, so is my ability to remain completely peaceful. Let's just say the Litany of Humility has come in handy a few times. Yesterday, when I needed an extra dose of graces, I summoned Jesus, Our Lady, and all the saints and angels for assistance. Within minutes, my peace returned. It's so easy to get caught up in the drama, but I find it even easier to distance myself assured heaven will assist at a moments notice!

Todays Gospel (Mark 16:15-20) is clear as a sunny day . . . shout the name of Jesus from the rooftops! Let everyone in on the Good News:

Jesus appeared to the Eleven and said to them: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned. These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons, they will speak new languages. They will pick up serpents with their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God. But they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs.

In Volume One, Anne a lay apostle leads us to Jesus when we are in pain. There are so many graces available if we would only ask:

"He is within every soul. If a soul would take the time to converse with Jesus, Jesus would guide that soul personally, with love and wisdom. How sublime is the relationship with our Christ. That said, I do not want people to think it is something mysterious and beyond the reach of each simple soul. It is instinctive, within us. The call to our God comes from our center, and when we are in pain, it becomes louder and more insistent. Instead of answering the call and dropping to their knees saying, 'God, God, make haste to help me,' people go to health food stores, fortune tellers, Reiki practitioners, and all manner of holders of empty promises. The anguish, the groaning, is the soul, saying, 'Please, dear person, I am starving. Feed me with spiritual food that I may begin to flourish again, thereby granting you the peace you find so elusive.' This was not always a problem, but it is a problem today. Jesus has graces but nobody is collecting them. Hmm. More for me? That was a joke but Jesus answered, 'Yes. Exactly. An abundance of graces awaits any soul wanting them. My mother offers them to her children with such hope and tenderness. You must make this known to souls, particularly those souls who are in pain and feel unloved and forgotten. Such souls often accept My graces willingly. Go out and speak the name of Jesus Christ. Go out and preach the Gospel. Make My name known to all, that all may be loved and be saved. I am asking this of you today, and if you look for the answer, the answer will come to you. Look closely into your daily life. Where can you evangelize? Where am I asking you to evangelize? You will be given the answer in your heart, dear one. I will put it there. Truly, you will overflow with these answers, if only you will heed the sound of My voice.'"

Lay apostles, is something or someone bothering you today? Were you hurt by the actions or words of another? If your answer is yes, and it's still bugging you, stop right now and ask for some of those graces Jesus has available. Go ahead. Right now say this prayer with me: Jesus, I trust in You. Please send the graces I need to get me through this situation. You are so merciful, please allow me heavenly assistance to move forward in peace and love. Amen.

Thank you, Lord, for quick turnarounds when I pray for peace within.

God bless,

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Remaining in the Present

A daredevil in the making. Our grandson Colton likes everything faster, higher, and whatever verb describes a thrill seeker. And he is only a 2 ¾  year old! Watching him being thrown back and forth in the ocean between his Daddy and his Papa this past Sunday sent my mind to future broken legs, fractured collarbones. Here is a pic I captured as Whitney, Savannah and I sat on shore:

This tossing back and forth went on at least 10 more throws! The tendency is to begin worrying about how to handle any harm this active little boy may see in the future. Worst case scenarios form cautionary thoughts on how to prepare him (and the impact on Mommy, Daddy, Mimi and Papa) to be a safer daredevil, so to speak. Personally, it is overwhelming to think of our little bubba getting injured. But if I believe what Jesus tells us in Scripture and in the Volumes (and I do!), I will stay focused on the present. I will take each day as it comes, bumps on the head and all. I will have faith the Lord is protecting Colton at all times. Where I need a little help is in graces to bear when injuries may occur!

Todays Gospel (John 16:12-15) tells us sometimes we need to stay away from worrying about the future, remaining in the present:

Jesus said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.”

In Volume One, Anne a lay apostle describes how too much thinking can turn into using your own will instead of God's:

"I have been dutifully asking God to send me His gifts, the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Next Sunday is Pentecost Sunday, which is perhaps the reason for all of this focus on the gifts of the Holy Spirit. I turned all of this around in my head as I prayed and I began to get myself confused. Finally, I prayed, 'God, send me whatever gifts You choose to send me. My only prayer to You is that I not interfere with Your will because of my flaws. Beyond that, I don’t care what You do, so long as I am serving You.' It can get confusing because you don’t want to err in humility or desire great lofty gifts. On the other hand, you don’t want to have a weak will and cloak it in false humility. I am not worthy, therefore keep your gifts so it doesn’t cost me anything. There is also such a thing as thinking too much about it all, as though it were up to you and as though it were dependent on your own will. That’s where I was tumbling around when I finally said, 'Enough. I don’t care what happens and I leave it all to You.' He responded, 'Your prayer pleases Me. It is the evidence that you are ready for the gifts I intend to bestow on you.'"

Lay apostles, we can choose to continue strengthening our character and abilities, or throw in the towel. We can choose to live in the present or worry about the "what ifs." Life can be overwhelming at times, but we can't let it control us. If we stay focused on Christ, and doing the best we can with our situations, we can't fail.

Thank you, Lord, for the grace of living life for today and especially for patience with myself when worry peaks out it's ugly head!

God bless,

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

If I Can't Have You

Do you remember the movie Saturday Night Fever? Well, if you were around during the disco era, no doubt you know every song from this movie, word for word. One of my favorites is If I Can't Have You by Yvonne Elliman. Here are a few of the lyrics:

Don't know why I'm surviving every lonely day
When there's got to be no chance for me
My life would end and it doesn't matter how I cry
My tears of love are a waste of time
If I turn away am I strong enough to see it through
Go crazy is what I will do

If I can't have you, I don't want nobody baby
If I can't have you ah ah, I can't have you
I don't want nobody baby, if I can't have you ah ah

What human being hasn't loved someone, hoping for the same love in return? Who hasn't felt the grief or pain of loneliness when something seemingly secure goes away? Fear of the unknown washes over us. How will we cope? Alas, with time all wounds heal. Fear of the unknown becomes acceptance. So we shouldn't be surprised in todays Gospel (John 16:5-11) when the disciples hear of Jesus' impending departure. I think they were beginning to feel a little separation anxiety:

Jesus said to his disciples: “Now I am going to the one who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I told you this, grief has filled your hearts. But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation: sin, because they do not believe in me; righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.

In Volume Four, God the Father asks us to trust Him. And, when we trust fully, He can move mountains:

"You see, My children in the world, I use each one of you to bring Me and present Me to others. If you are respectful of Me, if you acknowledge My dominion over you and your world, I am with you. In this way, I can be brought everywhere. I can be present to any soul who is with you. I can manifest Myself in many ways. I manifest Myself in your patience. I manifest Myself in your love for another when you ordinarily would find it difficult to love that person. I am present in your smile, in your speech, and I am present in your decisions, which is very important. So you do not see Me, it is true, but you will feel the difference if you go either from serving Me to not serving Me, or from not serving Me to serving Me. Serve Me now and let us no longer have any lapses in service. Remain with Me, your heavenly Father, who seeks to direct all that has an impact on you. I will bring every event in your life and turn it into something that benefits your soul and gives you eternal satisfaction and joy. But not all in my life is good, you are thinking. I know that, My child. That is why you need Me. I can turn the pain, the anguish, the mistakes and grief, into strength, wisdom, patience, and joy."

Lay apostles, we are in a time of great graces flowing from heaven. God is giving us specific ways to ignite the fire of the Holy Spirit within our hearts in the Volume Four quote above. He's asking for our service. He's asking us to love others in words and actions, emanating His Love for all His children. Let's work toward the goal of being able to see Him Face to face one day. And grateful we did the best we could for Him. Because, if I can't have Him, I don't want nobody!

Thank you, Lord, for reassurance I can have You 24/7, knowing any outcome is Your Will.

God bless,

Friday, May 8, 2015

Love Thy Neighbor . . . Even When Love Is Not Your First Thought!

A little over 3 years ago I wrote a blog post called Grace Under Fire. That day was a rough one for me. On the other hand, it was the day I knew, without a doubt, I was a true Lay Apostle of Jesus Christ the Returning King. It was a day where I responded to a verbal attack with humility and most importantly, I didn't respond emotionally. The old Bonnie would have come out swinging. Since that day, I haven't stopped praying for this person. I knew he was under a lot of stress and pressure, and taking it out on me would be safe considering I have a  pretty high tolerance for bad behavior. I am happy to say Jay and I  are friends with he and his wife today. When we respond with love of neighbor instead of reacting to an outburst hurled our way, it is amazing what God can do with that love! 

Todays Gospel (John 15:12-17) provides the key ingredient of a true Christian:

Jesus said to his disciples: “This is my commandment: love one another as I love you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. This I command you: love one another.”

Todays quote from Anne a lay apostle's book Climbing the Mountain is a little on the long side, but so critical in understanding those who lash out at us and how important our prayers are for their souls: 

"Clearly, the love of Christ is meant to be shared. After the experience of heaven, I can see that the Kingdom of God is made up of souls who love each other. If Christ is in each one of us, and this is of course what we believe as Christians, then we must venerate Christ in every soul. How do we do that? 

We do that with respect and gentleness. Some might say, “Yes, this may be true but I see souls in error, in mortal sin, living far outside of the heavenly Kingdom.” Well, dear fellow apostles, this is when the call to treat them as Christ is at its most profound. If Christ has indeed been driven out of a soul, through serious sin and a spirit of rebellion in that sin, then the call to illustrate our unity with Christ is compelling. How does Christ treat that soul? How does Christ view that soul? I will tell you. 

Christ does not glance at a soul and see the sin, although He is acutely aware of the sin. Christ glances at a soul and sees the wound that both caused the sin and was worsened by the sin. So in order for the Kingdom to come, and it must and it will, we must treat each other as Christ would. 

Sometimes a soul living outside of the Kingdom is bitter. This bitterness is like a sore. When a soul in bitterness views Christ in us, it can be like salt in the wound or sore because our unity with Christ highlights his isolation from Him. This is good. The soul then comes closer to an understanding of what it lacks. Our experience of this may not be pleasant. It may be necessarily painful because in its pain his soul may strike out at us. This can be understood as an almost instinctual lashing out or crying out in the distress of his disconnectedness from Christ. We must accept these strikes as beneficial penance and part of standing with Christ as a companion on the Way of the Cross. 

To clarify, I am driving in traffic and I make a mistake, perhaps, or commit a deed that inconveniences someone else. I give the other driver an apologetic wave. He responds by swearing at me, shouting and threatening. This is shocking for a holy soul. 

We must offer this to Jesus. We must bring that soul to Jesus in prayer and petition. Our prayer will obtain critical graces for that soul. We must look at this person and see the wound, the sore. 

To be more specific to the call to bring Jesus Christ to souls directly, consider a soul who is estranged from the Kingdom. Perhaps it is a family member or neighbor. It is possible that he may be unkind to us because our holiness is an irritant to him and to his wound. Is it then acceptable to be unkind in return? No, this is not acceptable for an apostle of Jesus Christ who seeks to bring His love to them. Remember that it was AFTER the Crucifixion that the Centurion said, “Truly, this was the Son of God.” That soul only saw Christ through the manner in which Jesus accepted suffering from the offender’s hands. Note this parallel. 

A soul may be tormenting us, but for this soul to experience Christ, we must accept it as Christ would. This should be in flashing red lights. 

We may be praying for this soul and beseeching heaven for the conversion of this soul. So we must not complain at a little suffering for this soul, particularly if it comes from the hand of that same soul. 

It helps to examine our motives. Do we want this soul to be saved for the sake of the soul and for the consolation and glory of Jesus Christ? Or do we want this soul to be saved so that the soul will treat us better and make our life easier? I think perhaps it can be a bit of both and this is acceptable. But as we begin to lean more to the benefit of both the soul and the Kingdom, we will become more willing to accept the occasional bad treatment for the purpose of the greater good, which is the salvation of the soul and the consolation of Christ, as well as for the benefit of the Kingdom." 

Lay apostles, choose to love those who seem unloveable. Choose to be the light instead of the darkness. Choose humility over pride. With Jesus, anything can happen!

Thank you, Lord, for the ability to love when faced with adversity. Help me to always keep my focus on You!

God bless,

Thursday, May 7, 2015

How Are You Connected?

Last year our family went to the Broadway Palm dinner theater to see The Music Man. Believe it or not, I was the only one out of the six of us who had seen the movie! Grant it, our girls and son-in-law are all under 30, so no surprise. But my darling husband had no clue what it was about! My mom loved any kind of musical, so I even knew the words to a few of the songs. The song Shipoopi was the biggest hit for my family (see clip here) We had a blast and even sang in the car on the way home. We are connected. Not only by blood, but by love, laughter, and faith. Staying connected with our Father in heaven is what binds us all here on earth. Connect with Him first . . . then everything else falls into place.

Todays Gospel (John 15:9-11) is the starting point in our journey toward heaven . . . live your life connected to God at all times:

Jesus said to his disciples: “As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.

“I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete.”

In Volume Three, God the Father encourages us in our struggles to holiness:

"The coming of My Kingdom is the coming of heaven or the expansion of heaven to earth. This is part of My plan and this is what the future holds for My children. Can you see it, dear ones? True happiness can be found only in the union of a soul’s will to the Divine Will. When your will is united to the Divine Will, there is no conflict, no struggle. Only a very few find such union on earth. The seeking of this union is the path to holiness that you follow in your obedience to My commandments. You are making decisions. You are moving forward along the road. You are making corrections. This is the process. At times in the history of mankind, most souls on earth were moving in the general direction of heaven. At this time, most souls are languishing along the way. Many are wasting their time on earth and are not coming in this direction at all. In this way, souls are lost. As a God of mercy, I send all manner of signs and warnings. In this time, however, most of My signs are being ignored. Such is the level of distraction, that My souls no sooner see a sign and experience My call, then they allow themselves to be distracted and pulled back into the world. Children, pay attention. You must focus on Me and on your path. You must be disciplined if you are to remain on the path to salvation. And believe Me when I say that all other roads lead nowhere. My children belong with each other, loving Me. Hear My call of love, now, while I can offer you a soft and gentle transition to holiness."

Lay apostles, take a moment to look at your life so far. Are you estranged from your parents? Your children? An old friend? If you answered yes, then take a look at your connection with Christ. Is it first and foremost? Probably not. Choose to be connected with Him today. Then think about those other relationships. Love as He loves us.

Thank you, Lord, for the gift of faith and the amazing connection I have with my family. The closer I get to You, the more connected I feel to others.

God bless,

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

What Are You Afraid Of?

As I sit here pondering the question above, I decided to Google the word 'fear.' Here is the definition from

Fear: a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.

Hmmmm, "whether the threat is real or imagined." How many times do we react to situations only imagined? How many disagreements are started because of an insecurity? I'm sure the answer to the above questions are the same . . . MANY! In reality, if we believe everything we read in Sacred Scripture, the Volumes, and all of the books Anne a lay apostle has written, the answer should be NONE. Just as we need to feel the safety and comfort from those who love us, our Heavenly Father wants us to feel the safety and comfort of His Love every second of every day. So, what are you afraid of?

In todays Gospel (John 14:27-31A), Jesus wants us to understand there is nothing to fear in the world as long as we believe:

Jesus said to his disciples: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe. I will no longer speak much with you, for the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over me, but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me.”

In Volume Two, Jesus encourages us to always remember He will always be there to protect us:

"I tell you that you are destined for great holiness and you will achieve this holiness if you remain united to Me. And you will do so because I will protect you. Children, do not seek to further or advance the opinion others have of you. It is irrelevant. Please spend no time at all wondering or worrying about this. Worldly opinions change with the wind and a person could think well of you one day and slander you the next. You must not rely on these opinions for your peace because, as you have learned, you will be disappointed. Instead, rely on Me, who does not change. My opinion of you remains steady. I will always love you."

Lay apostles, what do you choose today . . . hanging on to the criticism of others (whether real or imagined) and internalizing it or remaining peaceful in the comfort of Our Lord's embrace, allowing Him to handle all the chaos? I choose Him today. I choose Him every day!

Thank you, Lord, for the criticisms, challenges, and lessons You send my way every day. Continue to hold me close to Your Sacred Heart so I can let go of anything bothering me quickly, placing it into Your care!

God bless,

In Need of Reminders

Every morning on our drive to work, I am in charge of the daily readings (well, Jay needs to keep his eyes on the road, right?). Honestly, there are times I am not in the mood. Either I'm tired or something is irritating me and I just want quiet. But routine is routine. And every time, I am reminded of the love, patience, and mercy of the Lord. It never fails . . . I read something from this mission, and Jesus speaks right to my heart. Sulking never solves anything. So I strap on my Christian armor and continue trying to do His Will to the best of my ability!

Monday's Gospel (John 14:21-26) reminds me how important spiritual reading is:

Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever has my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me. Whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to him.” Judas, not the Iscariot, said to him, “Master, then what happened that you will reveal yourself to us and not to the world?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; yet the word you hear is not mine but that of the Father who sent me.

“I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the Holy Spirit  whom the Father will send in my name—he will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you.”

In Anne a lay apostle's book Serving in Clarity, she beautifully (and visually!) teaches us about how faith works:

"A fellow apostle pointed out that much of our reality is invisible. As an example, he said, “Have you ever seen Australia? “No,” I replied. “I have never seen Australia.” “Do you believe it exists?” “Yes,” I said. “I believe Australia exists.” “Are you reasonably certain Australia exists?” “Yes.” “You believe Australia exists, in part, because you are relying on the testimony of those who have been there. Others have told you Australia exists. You have read about Australia, seen pictures of it perhaps, and your belief in its existence is reasonable given the evidence.” This spoke powerfully to me. I realized that if asked, I could give a certain amount of testimony about Australia despite never having been there. I believe there are kangaroos there, different seasons, crocodiles, vast expanses of unsettled land, and a good number of people with Irish ancestry. Additionally, I am aware of the Aborigine people native to that land. I understand, based on what I have seen of the Australians I have met personally, that there is a great sturdiness and resilience in the Australian people. Clearly I am not an expert on Australia. As I said, I have never been there. That fact will be evident to any Australian reading this. My limited knowledge of Australia comes in part from the testimony and information given to me by other people. So it is with heaven. So it is with Jesus and with God’s truth. A good part of the truth, the Invisible Reality that we rely on and believe in, has come to us from others in the Body of Christ, the community of believers. We accept the testimony of others because in our souls, we recognize the truth. This is discernment. In the same way, with the help of the Holy Spirit, we are led to recognize what is false."

Lay apostles, are you beginning your day with Jesus? Even if it's a quick Morning Offering and Allegiance Prayer (see below), start with Him. It really does make the world look a lot less chaotic when we let Him have the control. 

Thank you Lord for all the challenges and lessons you throw my way. But most of all, thank you for loving us so much you chose Anne to deliver Your words of love through this apostolate. 

God bless,


Morning Offering:

Oh Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer You the prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, and for the intentions of the Holy Father. Amen 

Allegiance Prayer:

Dear God in Heaven, I pledge my allegiance to You. I give You my life, my work and my heart. In turn, give me the grace of obeying Your every direction to the fullest possible extent. Amen.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Filling Our Tires

Bicycle pumps. Yes, bicycle pumps. This is what todays Gospel triggered in my brain. Have you ever tried to ride a bike with a tire losing air? I have. At first I thought to myself, "man am I struggling today!" Then, upon further inspection, the tire was losing air quickly. A bicycle wheel is comprised of a tire, rim, spokes, hub and axle (yes, I had to google for correct terminology . . . thingy in the center sounded very elementary!). All must work together to create forward momentum. The hub at the center of the wheel (God) creates stability when everything is connected to it. The spokes (Sacred Scripture) connect the rim (Christians) to the hub to prevent damage from occurring. Now, sometimes that tire goes flat. This is where the bicycle pump (the Volumes, etc.) comes in . . . breathing new life into the tire empowering our journey to the final destination (heaven) smoothly. Before I became involved with this mission, I was a mediocre Catholic. Since then my tires remain full 99% of the time. Every once in a while I need a little extra air, a little extra peace. All I have to do is log on to this blog and begin writing. I am at 100% every time I log off.

Jesus gives us the air we need to make it home (John 14:1-6):

Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If there were not, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back again and take you to myself, so that where I am you also may be. Where I am going you know the way.” Thomas said to him, “Master, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

In Volume Nine, our Blessed Mother urges us to be peaceful, even when things aren't going our way:

"Children, your Jesus has asked that you walk in peace. He needs this from you, as His plan cannot be realized unless you cooperate with that request. Only through each one of you will peace flow into your troubled world. So, because this is so important, I am going to make a suggestion. Whenever you are troubled, and feel your peace has fled, you must speak to your angel guardian. Ask your little heavenly soldier to hasten to your assistance and obtain the graces you need to recover your peace. This is the perfect request from you because there is nothing heaven likes better than to help a soul in the world be at peace. You see, we know how important it is and you might say that these graces are easily obtained when the request comes from you. So say this when you are losing your spiritual balance and your peace, “Dearest angel guardian, I desire to serve Jesus by remaining at peace. Please obtain for me the graces necessary to maintain His divine peace in my heart.” You will not be disappointed, little ones. The graces will come to you."

Lay apostles, how are you filling your tires? With spiritual reading or activities bringing you closer to Christ? Or, with worldly things like food, alcohol or (you fill in the blank) driving you farther away? Choose Jesus and things leading you to Him. I guarantee your tires will be perfectly inflated for quite a while!

Thank you, Lord, for filling me with Your Words and Love on a daily basis. I am so blessed I have You to turn to when I am in need of heavenly air!

God bless,

Choosing the Best

Our grandson Colton is a car-aholic. He can never have enough Hot Wheels and is overjoyed to come to Mimi and Papa's house knowing he will get to pick a few new ones to add to his abundant collection. And it is not a quick, pick two cars, and go play kind of thing. He literally digs to the bottom, then the sides, picks a car and then decides against it, tossing it back into the mix. But once he decides on the perfect car(s), he happily runs to the table and places them in line with his plethora of mini automobiles circling our dining table. The Word of God is like those spectacular cars to Colt . . . they are perfect and just what we need for the day. 

Colton and Papa the morning after a recent sleepover!

In the Gospel yesterday (John 13:16-20), Jesus tries to prepare His disciples ahead of time:

When Jesus had washed the disciples’ feet, he said to them: “Amen, amen, I say to you, no slave is greater than his master nor any messenger greater than the one who sent him. If you understand this, blessed are you if you do it. I am not speaking of all of you. I know those whom I have chosen. But so that the Scripture might be fulfilled,

The one who ate my food has raised his heel against me.

From now on I am telling you before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe that I AM.  Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me.”

In Volume Two, our loving Jesus assures us by choosing Him, we are choosing the Best:

"I have come to cleanse souls. Much as a mother cleans her house, My child, I am cleaning and organizing your soul. If you have been away from Me, We must be busy. Events in your life, from your past, must be looked at now in a different way. This is an important task, and that is why I am spending time on it with you. Events can leave marks on your heart when you are not praying. Hence, My goal. To clean these marks and leave a heart that gives and receives love freely. When you pray, My child, I help you to sift through the experiences occurring in your life. Perhaps you have a disappointment today. Taken alone, without My assistance, you might feel down, sad and discouraged. If pride is a problem for you, and many suffer from pride, you might not share your sadness and disappointment with even another soul. It remains on your poor heart and, after a time, this turns to bitterness. Now, earthly life being what it is, and human beings being flawed, as they are in their search for perfection, you encounter yet another disappointment or betrayal. Pride asserts itself and again you do not adequately share your grief. Another patch of disappointment turns to bitterness and covers another area of your poor little heart. My child, when this process continues, you have a heart enclosed in bitterness. A heart needs love, in the same way your lungs need oxygen. Your heart was designed this way, dearest, and if your heart is enclosed, the love is blocked off. How handicapped you are in the spiritual sense. How it grieves Me to see you so disturbed and unhappy. My little one, I am coming to clean every mark from your heart so that you will love freely, as I love. Do not think this is an impossible task. I am Jesus. I am God. I can cleanse your heart in no time at all if you are willing to let Me. I will restore order to your soul, I will adjust your thinking, and I will place the kind of love in your heart that is so genuine and abundant that this love reaches your eyes. All who see you will experience this love and know it is from Me."

Lay apostles, what choices are you making? Do they center around the Word of God? It's easy to make choices based on our woundedness and what makes us feel better in a worldly view. Consider what the Gospels and messages in the Volumes are trying to teach us . . . choosing the best is choosing Christ.

Thank you Lord for leading me to choose YOU 98% of the time . . . please help me over the fence to make that 100%!

God bless,

Monthly Message for May 1, 2015

We continue our cycle of monthly messages for 2015 with the message from May 1, 2007 for our prayer groups and personal reflection.  


My apostles, I speak to you with such hope. Why do I feel hope when I speak these words? I, Jesus, feel hope because you are reading these words and listening to Me.  In your soul, you are interested in My plan. In your soul you are willing to make the changes which will bring about My plan. In your soul you receive a foretaste of heaven which provides you with the joy that I wish to make available to others. My heavenly plan is truly rooted in your soul and for this reason I have hope. The times in which you live provide you with opportunities to practice hope, even while much of the world feels dismay and fear. My apostles see that the world is changing and this is the message, a message of hope, which flows through them. You are precious to Me, both because of the unique love I have for you and for the unique plan I have for you. Allow Me to rest in your soul each day and I will fill you with My love. Where can you find more silence? How can you give Me  just a few more minutes of time to be with you and sanctify you even further? My beloved apostle, please be disciplined about your time with Me in each day. I do not want you to be distracted. I do not want the world to take your hope from you. If you do not spend time with Me, you are vulnerable to the fears sown by the enemy of hope. I rely on my beloved ones. In them I find rest and solace. You see, dear apostle, if I can change you and fill you with My great spiritual blessings, I can change others. Is there even one life that you can say you affected by your faith in Me and by My presence in you? Do not limit My plan in your mind. My plan is vast and it is working. Be joyful today as I am joyful. Hope in Me, dear one, as I hope in you. Trust in Me as I trust in you. Be with Me as I long to be with you and together we will fill the world with hope, drawing many wounded souls back into our family of love.

Have you been blessed through the Volumes? Please help others receive these words by donating a dollar a day. Your donation makes a big difference. 


Direction for Our Times (DFOT) is a 501(C)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to spreading God's messages as revealed in the Volumes.