Monday, April 30, 2012


Women of Faith:

Are there days when you are restless, wandering, uncertain of the path you are on, or even what you are seeking?

Do you open the refrigerator, cupboards, or drawers trying to find the right food, or the right tools to inspire your work?

Do you try to accomplish a task—but nothing seems to quite go right, or you don’t get the satisfaction or results you anticipated?

Do you look to your spouse, coworker or a friend to do something for you and they don’t see what you see, they miss the obvious, or you get impatient and end up doing it yourself?

Are there days when you don’t seem to accomplish anything? When the entertainment you sought doesn’t end up making you happy? When you feel as if what you said really didn’t make a difference or wasn’t even heard?

This is how I sometimes feel when my prayers become prayers for everyone else instead of prayers for myself: when I pray to change others instead of praying to change myself.

I find it is much more important to pray to change my own attitude than it is that I seek to try to make others change their attitudes. I have control of myself, of my attitude with the help of God. I don’t have control of anyone else’s.

And because my own attitude has been changed by God’s grace, I am able to accept more shortcomings, forgive more hurts and sorrows and be more willing to help others reach their own goals.

I pray for a “Christlike” attitude, that I will the Spirit of servitude and gratitude.

And when I feel “right,” it is easier to “do right.” It is easier to encourage those around me, to serve with a smile and to be more patient and tolerant. I have more hope and am able to persevere in overlooking the sacrifices and sufferings of irritations caused by our human inadequacies.

By praying for someone else to change so that they will serve Christ (and me) I am waiting for someone or something that is beyond my control.

But if I pray to change myself, than my heart will be opened to the grace of God’s joy in my own life. When I can be the first to smile, the first to serve and the first to give thanks than I will also be enriched with the knowledge that I have given someone else comfort, someone else hope and maybe even someone else a sense of peace or desire to search for the same joy of Christ they see in me.

Likewise, I am called to remember that when someone does something for me it is important to show my own gratitude for them because than their service will be multiplied for others.

This is how Jesus leads us. This is how a shepherd leads his flock.

“Jesus said: "I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. A hired man, who is not a shepherd and whose sheep are not his own, sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away, and the wolf catches and scatters them.” Jn 10: 11-13

We all sometimes become the lost sheep, seeking peace, love, and comfort. We think we want food in our stomachs, clothes in our closet, and we are looking for a kind word to energize us. We are seeking happiness through “human fame, human fortune, and human love.” It is all too easy to follow something or someone other than Jesus and let the “wolf” scatter us or even catch us.

“It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.” Ps 118: 8-9

Instead my prayer should be: “God change me. Come into my life. Open my heart to you. Be with me today. ‘Lord, you created us for thee. We will always be restless until we rest in thee.’” St. Augustine

“I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep.” Jn 10: 14-15

Heavenly Father: ‘Come be the heartbeat of our lives. Come be our source and breath of life. Gather us in and form us in Christ. May we spread your wisdom through out all the earth. You are the wind that breathes through the field. You are the life that flows through the vine. You are the light that shines in this space.’ Amen. (Words from Spirit and Grace by Ricky Manalo)

Will I wander because I follow someone or something less than God’s truth? Or will I follow Jesus’ path of self-sacrifice and love; to be led by His Church and His truth? Will I be dependent on Him changing others or will I seek Him to change me?

May Christ be your shepherd, your leader this week. Follow Him,

In faith,


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