Weekly News Flash from the Universal Living Rosary Association of Saint Philomena – Wednesday January 15, 2014

Dear Apostle of the Immaculate Heart of Mary,We are keeping you in our thoughts and prayers during the season of Advent and through the Christmas Octave. This is truly a time of hope and joy. Yet, so many of us have clouds of worry and fear that hang over our heads. We worry about many things and fear what might happen in the future. All this uncertainty robs us of our joy and hope. Much of what we worry about never comes to pass, and the worry robs us of our present moment which is the only one we actually possess. When we are fearful, we fail to realize the love God has for us: He is so Caring, so Good and so Almighty! God is deeply concerned about our every need and longing. Nothing can happen to us that is so bad as to produce more harm than good.

Faith is a soothing balm to our wounds: Faith in God! We must really believe and, if we do, our fears will be healed. Faith gives us courage even during the gravest hardships. Fear is not of God. It is completely out of place in a Christian’s life. Neither is worry, because worry is the fear we feel when we are trying to trust God, but we doubt that He cares enough about us to make a difference. We doubt that He sees our sufferings or hears our prayers.

Trusting God will heal our anxiety and we will have hope. Hope produces courage. Our courage may sag when we get distracted by trials and hardships, and focus on our weakness and inability to cope. Courage grows when we remember to gaze upon the Loveliness of God and meditate on His awesome Power, Promises and Love.

Like the Magi, we must keep our eyes focused on the brilliant star that led them across deserts, through great dangers and months of isolated travel in foreign lands, until finally they reached the humble cave of Bethlehem where the Christ Child and His Holy Mother awaited them.

Let us place our trust in HIM!

I remain, one with you in the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
Patti Melvin


FAITH – The First Pathway

If we lived by faith, we should also live in peace. Faith teaches that God loves us, each one, in a personal way, individually: He knows my name; He has my image graven in His Heart. Moreover, I can be sure that His Heart is ALL MINE, because Our Lord does not love as we do, by half measures. When He loves, He loves with His whole Heart, He loves in an infinite manner. At times, with a mixture of love and ignorance, we may say: “I wish that Our Lord would love me more.” But, is that possible? He cannot love you more than He loves you now – infinitely more than we could ever dream or imagine. Some will say: “God loves me too much, I don’t deserve His Love.” It is an excess! Infinite love must ever be so. How difficult it is for souls to be convinced that God loves them! If they would but be convinced how many inquietudes would be calmed! His Love for us is not sterile; on the contrary, it is a Love that is active, provident, watchful and solicitous; it is a Love that never for a moment forgets us, that protects us without ceasing, disposing minutely every detail, every happening of our life, from the most important to the smallest and most insignificant detail. I do not exaggerate – Jesus Himself affirmed it: “Not a single hair of your head shall fall without the Will of your Father. (Matt. 10:29). There is not a moment of our life in which Our Lord withdraws His Eyes from us, not an instant in our life in which His Hand does not guide us, in which His power does not overshadow or His Love envelop us! If a child knows that it is in the arms of its mother who loves, cares for and protects – why would it fear? Why, then, the strange phenomenon, the inexplicable illusion that we, Christians, knowing as we do that God bears us in His Arms and envelops us with His Divine tenderness, should lose heart!

With earthly eyes, we focus on ourselves – our troubles, our infidelities, our ill health, our poverty, our sorrows and future insecurity: SELF – past, present and future! Can it be possible that one of these events is foreign to the Will of God and Providence? Was Our Lord distracted when He determined such a thing should happen to us? Did His Love suffer an eclipse? NO! A THOUSAND TIMES, NO! There is not one event in our lives unknown to God. Our entire life is governed by Him. When we are disturbed with what has happened, is it because we are unwilling to accept it and to resign ourselves to His Divine Will? We forget that we are not alone. We forget that we are borne in Divine Arms and that those Arms not only protect us in all that may happen, but that they are the very Arms that manage the whole world. It is so strange that Christians should be filled with disquietude. Above all, we should believe in the consoling dogma of the Love of God and of His solicitous and constant Providence. We should need nothing more. If I become ill, if I am persecuted, if my children turn to hate me, if I die … these are incidents without importance! At their depth, all these things shall contribute to consolidate my peace and to augment my happiness while I continue to rest tranquilly in the Arms and in the Heart of Jesus. An active, living faith, in the consoling and most sweet dogma of the Love Our Lord has for us, is one of the straight and sure paths for arriving at peace. Does the Love of God and His Providence REALLY influence ALL the details of our lives?

Is not sin and the persecution of the Church contrary to the Love of God? Is it possible that one can sin in the Arms and in the Heart of God? Persecutions from without and struggles from within, dangers and temptations, our defects and our very falls: Everything works together for the good of those who love God! If this is true, then, absolutely nothing should disturb me. If I am persecuted, blessed be God! It will shake off my lukewarmness. If I am ill, blessed be God! This infirmity will sanctify me. If I am cured, blessed be God! My health shall be a means of doing good. From this, it follows that to know what the future will bring is very secondary; for I already know beforehand that whatever its nature, all events to come will lead me to God. To be allowed to choose the means of our going to Heaven would be the worst thing that could happen to us. We would choose desolation when we need consolation and consolation when desolation would be more salutary; we would choose work when it would be better that we rest, and rest when it is necessary to labor. We are too short-sighted to know ourselves and God’s designs, and the way of perfection. St. Paul tells us that we do not even know the simplest thing we should ask and that is why the Holy Spirit asks for us with unspeakable groanings. God sends us, at every step, what is for our best. It may not be to our liking but, if it sanctifies us, what does it matter! If it is sent by God, He sent it for a purpose; He loves us more than we love ourselves; He loves us more than anyone else loves us and He is solicitous for our good. If we could but comprehend these truths, what could make us lose our peace? I may suffer and weep but, in the depths of my heart, I will not lose my peace.

History clearly shows us that God draws good from evil. The tyranny of the Caesars during the first three centuries of the Church gave rise to innumerable multitude of martyrs in whom we glory. The heresies following these persecutions gave occasion for the Fathers and Doctors to explain doctrine and confirm dogma. Invariably, God always draws good from evil. Our faults and sins humble us and make us realize our own nothingness. Unfortunate, indeed, would be our soul if it had no misery, for it would be in imminent danger of falling from grace.

Whatever may be our faults and our wanderings, we have no right to lose either our hope or our peace. We are Christians and, as Christians, we have received the Seal of Jesus Christ: the PEACE that the world cannot give and still less take away. Oh, if we but understood! If we but knew how much God loves us and watches over us, all fear would vanish from our souls and, on the wings of hope, we would rise above the miseries of life and the Kingdom of God would be established in our souls.

Faith is walking to the Edge of all you have …
and taking One more Step!

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