Category: contemplative prayer

SIMPLICITY

Sometimes I can’t get to sleep or wake up at night and must use the bathroom then can’t get back to sleep. This is one of those nights. I always get enough rest, but sometimes nothing works, even Melatonin. My thoughts go to Lectio…

PROGRESS

I don’t remember it always being this way, but it seems we have developed a corporate mentality that says results are not good unless they are immediate. There is a time for everything. As Scriptures points out: Ecclesiastes 3 NRSVCE – Everything Has Its…

SPIRITUAL DIRECTOR

I recommend that you consider asking someone to be your spiritual director. This should be a person of great integrity in things spiritual, especially as it pertains to the contemplative approach. One of the reasons that an outside person is helpful to give you…

THE LIFE OF A HERMIT

Read about Sister Mary Beatrice Raphael, a hermit living on the grounds of Our Lady of the Holy Spirit Monastery, Conyers, Georgia. https://georgiabulletin.org/news/2014/10/devout-doctor-chooses-hermitage-focus-just-jesus/ That in all things, God be glorified. –St. Benedict

MAKING SENSE OF THE SACRED

I have discovered four questions that have caused me to sit up and take notice of the world around me. In my Lectio Divina (Philippians 2:5) last week, I thought of how reality fits together, even if I don’t see any connection at the…

WAYS TO LOOK AT SIN

Lent is a time of penance and prayer, a time to examine your collective consciousness to see if you are on the right track or not. Lent is also a time to reflect on how you increase your capacity to love Christ by loving…

FAST AND PRAY

Lent is a time of repentance for our sins of the past, plus asking God for the grace to be more focused on Christ for the future. Ashes are an ancient sign of repentance. Ash Wednesday is a time to remember, O Human, that…

SIC TRANSEAT GLORIA MUNDI

What goes around comes around eventually. Consider this example. We are all born without our consent, alone, from darkness into the light of the world. We live our unique lives at birth confined to a crib and would not exist without the help of…

FIVE TIPS TO HELP WITH PRAYER

There are five things about prayer that I have learned from my time going to Our Lady of the Holy Spirit Monastery (Trappist), Conyers, Georgia. Without editorializing too much, I offer them for your consideration for those times you find yourself approaching the Sacred…

THE CONTEMPLATIVE APPROACH TO SPIRITUALITY

Some people have difficulty relating to a spirituality that is contemplative. Some people have difficulty comprehending the meaning of spiritual versus religion. Not all that is contemplative is Cistercian, but all that is Cistercian is most definitely contemplative. Here are some of my ideas…

THE SIXTY SECOND CATHOLIC

Many people are afraid to recite the Liturgy of the Hours because they find it difficult to master. Like everything else in life, there is a learning curve. We don’t master something in one day. Our impatience sometimes causes us to avoid certain practices…

Lay Cistercian Litany of Praise and Glory

One of the great prayer traditions in the Church Universal is the Liturgy of the Saints. I was thinking, during one of my recent Lectio Divina meditations about how I should praise God for his supreme act of Love to become one of us…

ASSUMPTIONS ABOUT CONTEMPLATIVE SPIRITUALITY

What follows is an exerpt from two of my books, THE PLACE NO ONE WANTS TO LOOK: Six questions all of us must answer before we die, and, SEEKING GOD AT PREMIER GYM IN TALLAHASSEE FLORIDA.What seems like nonsensical titles are actually at the…

CHAPTER 7: Fear of the Lord

In one of my Lectio Divina meditations on Philippians 2:5, I marveled at the key role that humility plays in the divine economy of salvation. Not only does this seem to be the cornerstone of any way of thinking with Jesus as the center,…

SEEKING GOD IN MY BACK YARD

I must share this incident with you. Last week, we replaced an old, wooden deck with a new one. It took a long time to ask three or four contractors to give us estimates (my wife is the brains, I am just old). Last…

MAKE A CONTEMPLATIVE RETREAT

This coming August 19-22, 2019, (Monday through Thursday), there will be an opportunity for you to make a retreat at Our Lady of the Holy Spirit Retreat Center, Conyers, Georgia. If you have been to the Monastery for a retreat, you know that silence…

SEEKING GOD THROUGH YOUTUBE

Like everything else in life, seeking God on Youtube can be authentic or unauthentic. In terms of secular thinking, you determine what is authentic or unauthentic (the knowledge of good and evil in Genesis 2-3). As a Lay Cistercian seeking God in everyday living,…

THE INTIMACY OF GOD

One of my friends (I do still have a few of them) asked me last year how I know that God loves me. In reflecting on my Lectio Divina (Philippians 2:5), I put this question to God. For those who know me, you know…

You Are What You Were, When, Again

If I think back on it, it was at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma in 1979, when I first saw Dr. Morris Massey and listened to his presentation entitled, “You Are What You Were, When.” This will date me, but I watched it on a 16mm…

CHAPTER 4: DO WHAT YOU SAY YOU WILL DO

  It is probably not the most glamorous or notable example from Scripture, but one that I think about a lot. It is about duplicity, Duplicity is saying one thing but thinking or doing something quite different. It is speaking with a forked tongue…

The Covenant

Belonging to God Psalm 62Peace in GodMay God, the source of our hope, fill your hearts with peace as you believe in him (Romans 15:13). In God alone is my soul at rest;my help comes from him.He alone is my rock, my stronghold,my fortress; I…

CHAPTER 4: I USED TO LOOK DOWN ON THE BAPTIST CHURCH

I USED TO LOOK DOWN AT THE BAPTISTS We all are guilty. When we hear something, we process it according to our first impressions. As the saying goes, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression. Perhaps this is because the…

CHAPTER 4: If you have a dispute with someone…

When I first read this admonition of St. Benedict in Chapter 4, #73, “If you have a dispute with someone, make peace with him before the sun goes down,” I remember thinking that I use to tell Pre-Cana classes the same quote. St. Benedict…

Fidelity and Endurance

How does fidelity and endurance help in living the life of Christ? First, what is fidelity and why is it important. As it affects me as a Lay Cistercian, it means an assent of the mind and heart to Christ and then being passionate…

MRS. MURPHY KNOWS

I can remember the Sun slicing through the gigantic, three-feet thick, sandstone window openings of our Second Theology class in Sacramental Theology on the first floor of Major Theology section at Saint Meinrad School of Theology. At the blackboard was the late Father Aiden…

YOU HAVE JUST MADE YOUR PROFESSION OF FAITH. NOW WHAT?

One of the big questions that a new Catholic must answer is, now what? I say that because, as a newly professed, Lay Cistercian, I face that same question, even at the ripe old age of 78 (and believe me, that is ripe). I…

MAKING A CONTEMPLATIVE RETREAT

In February, Lay Cistercians of Our Lady of the Holy Spirit Monastery, Conyers, Georgia, will be making their annual retreat. Retreats are special opportunities to advance the amount of time we spend in the presence of Christ. What follows is an excerpt from my…

RESPECT OUR JEWISH HERITAGE

What follows is an exerpt from my newest book entitled PRESCRIPTIONS    FOR LOVING GOD: A Lay Cistercian reflects  on five sets of laws that      enable us to seek God in everyday living. In going through my daily Lectio Divina, I thought about…

PEACE BEYOND ALL TELLING

It must be Christmas time because the media and commercial stores are plastered with Peace signs. I was reflecting on my Lectio quote (Phil 2:5) and the thought about the meaning of Peace came to mind. The Incarnation, I reasoned, is not just the…

THREE QUESTIONS THAT MAY ESCAPE YOU IN THE SEASON

This is the season to be jolly. It goes without saying (which is why I am saying it) that the search each one of us has to find meaning is much more mysterious than just a surface look at our physical universe (what we…

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