Thursday, January 2, 2014

A Diehard Bears Fan

There are so many wonderful things Jay has brought to our relationship . . . faith, trust, love, and the Chicago Bears. He is a diehard Bears fan. Every Sunday after Mass this year, I opened my Bears iPhone app to find kickoff time. Unless it was Monday Night Football or they were playing an east coast team, the radio was all we had. In Fort Myers, there are two restaurants/sports bars boasting Home of the Chicago Bears. We chose to watch the game this time at a place called The Edison. This was a big game determining if the Bears were going to the playoffs. And, they were playing the Packers. The place was packed inside and out. We fit right in with our Bears gear on in a sea of orange and blue (there were a few brave sorts wearing green and gold . . .). After a very exciting but disappointing game, Jay solemnly said as we walked to our car, "Bears fans have broad shoulders and we are used to this. It was another rebuilding year." Gotta love a fan!

Todays Gospel (John 1:19-28) brought to mind the commitment we must all make to Christ despite the random disappointments or difficulties in life:

This is the testimony of John.  When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to him
to ask him, “Who are you?” He admitted and did not deny it, but admitted, “I am not the Christ.”  So they asked him, “What are you then? Are you Elijah?”  And he said, “I am not.” “Are you the Prophet?” He answered, “No.”  So they said to him, “Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us?  What do you have to say for yourself?” He said: “I am the voice of one crying out in the desert, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as Isaiah the prophet said.”  Some Pharisees were also sent.  They asked him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet?”  John answered them, “I baptize with water; but there is one among you whom you do not recognize, the one who is coming after me, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie.”  This happened in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

In Anne a lay apostle's book The Mist of Mercy, Jesus explains how our commitment to Him allows His Kingdom to grow:

"Dear apostles, during this time  I send you great graces. Everything you need comes from Me. Do not hesitate to answer My call because you feel you are not holy enough. You are called to holiness, it is true, but all genuine holiness comes from Me. If you ask Me I will send it to you in great abundance. I notice that many souls fear a commitment to Me because they see only their flaws and weaknesses. At this time I want you to stop thinking that it is your humanity that gives Me glory. Souls in heaven give Me praise, it is true. And I return their love. But when a soul on earth, acting from faith, makes even the smallest act of love or fidelity to Me, I am given great glory and the family of God is given power. Yes, each time a soul on earth steps out for God in any way, the Kingdom grows. Do not put a limit on the importance of each little act and each little prayer." 

Lay apostles, think about something you are deeply committed to. Is it football? Shopping? Exercise? Whatever it is, are you as committed to Jesus? If yes, keep climbing the mountain! If no, 2014 is the year to begin. 

Thank you, Lord, for Jay, the Bears and our commitment to You! Help us to continue to improve our prayer life and shine Your Light to all we meet.

God bless,

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