Tag Archives: belief

Miracles & Mysteries

2 Kings 4:42-44, Psalm 145, Ephesians 4:1-6, John 6:1-15

When Jesus performed the multiplication of food, the people immediately adored Him: “Perceiving then that they were about to come and take him by force to make him king, Jesus withdrew again to the hills by himself.” (Jn 6:15)

Similarly when Jesus walked on water, His Apostles revered Him: “Then they were glad to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat was at the land to which they were going” (Jn 6:21).

However, after Jesus taught about the Eucharist and that we have to eat His flesh, most of his followers deserted Him: “After this many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him.” (Jn 6:66).

It was easy for the people to believe in simple signs and truths, like witnessing the multiplication of food or Jesus walking on water. However, the moment Jesus teaches something seemingly controversial, i.e to eat His flesh, everyone left Him.

This alone speaks volumes of the Hard Truth of the Eucharist. Sometimes, it’s not about what we want, but what Jesus wants. Often times, we pick a church because of the service structure or how charismatic a particular priest or pastor is. We also tend to pick doctrines which we agree with and chuck the rest out.

However, that was never what Jesus wanted for us. Christ clearly established in the scriptures how He wanted to be worshiped and how He wanted His disciples to live. The perennial question is, are we able to assent even though we don’t understand certain mysteries?

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Originally posted on Instagram.

How Do You Know There’s a God?

Often I get asked a few questions:
How do you know there’s a God?
How do you know that Christianity is the right religion?

Faith, of course. But never without reason.

As children, when we see something, we intuitively always inquire about its origins and inner workings.

Where did this table come from? Who made it?Earth
Where did the book come from? How is it made?
How come the telly can switch on with a flick of the button?

It seems reasonable that a child asks such questions. It is after all in our nature to be drawn towards the truth.
Imagine a parent now tells the child that the answer to the above questions is: “Chance”.
Stupid parent at best, lazy parent at worst.

Somehow… when it comes to the biggest questions of the world: “How did the world come to be?”… We seem to be content with the answer “it just happened by CHANCE.”

ABSURDITY? Perhaps.

Quoting Pope St. John Paul II (General Audience of Wed, 10 July 1985) because he has expressed it so concisely:

“To speak of chance for a universe which presents such a complex organization in its elements, and such a marvelous finality in its life would be equivalent to giving up the search for an explanation of the world as it appears to us. In fact, this would be equivalent to admitting effects without a cause. It would be an abdication of human intelligence which would thus refuse to think, to seek a solution for its problems.”

Prayers today for people who find it hard to even conceive of a day where they might believe that there is a creator of this world.

Fides Quaerens Intellectum, faith seeking understanding.

May God grant you the grace to believe so that you may understand.

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Originally posted at Catholic Rambles.

The Treasure in the Field

By guest writer Kimri Thetadig.

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I didn’t know my heart needed to be broken into to be set free.

It makes sense though: ensconced in comforting cold rock lies a humble sparkle of gold that the great Finder knows and sets out to uncover.

I’ve yearned for You a long time. Since before time. And all those countless timeless aches of missing and hungering and begging for the comfort of Your embrace, as I stumbled down thorny dark paths searching for my place, seem now like a fairy-tale but for the fact that most of my life I’ve lived the pain of being utterly and indescribably stuck.

As a child, staring out into Mama’s hilly rock garden behind my favorite blue house, I recall gathering all my friends (which were the rocks and sticks of Mama’s garden, a battered old teddy bear whose eye was about to fall out, shells from the ocean); we’d explore the world that was there and it made me happy to see sunlight on water, rippling down green leaf and ants carrying a predator 10 times their size. But then, the Thought gonged. At first without afterthought, then repeatedly like a death knell in the pit of my young guts: “What if there’s nothing, Nothing, NOTHING, N.O.T.H.I.N.G. after this?”

My first remembered encounter with the true despair of my humanity: “From dust we came and to dust we shall return.” The world is a funny, strange place.

I grew up here, the world, and its thoughts began quickly to set like weeds in my soil. I fed my garden the way I knew how. With the fresh bottled water of pessimism and the choicest fertilizers of discontent, sprinkling her undergrowth with a spritz of faithlessness, that I know now reeks of death. I saw that no matter how much I tried to block out the clamor of hurtful noise from outside, it is a battlefield. and for a young soul who does not know or understand the food of love, to be fed on the food of world is rot to the flesh.

I’d found You though in many guises and forms throughout my wandering on this earth. You appeared in my Mama who’d strengthen me every night with the coconut oil shield of faith and strength as she taught me with her hands and her heart how true love is a daily fight for good, a choice every day to get up and prepare breakfast, walk me to school though her bones would wail and crack with every step, sneak in a roll up and chocolate cookies in my bag for lunch and buy us ice-cream on our bus ride home with her last $5.

Again, You were there in the blaring beauty of the bee that hovered into our apartment window every day around lunch time, visiting me as I offered fake honey from a bottle I took from you, little bee. You didn’t seem to care I was feeding you with the food you fed me. You came back time and again and my heart was elated.

And then You came to me as I recognized for myself the path I would not choose to walk down. That took a lot to be true. You kissed me in the gentle breeze as I walked away from the path I hadn’t willfully chosen but walked down anyway, and gave me a friend so strong and loving to help me believe it ok to desire something off the beaten path.

You were generous Love. You were my loyal unpretentious Friend. You were comfort and hope.

Tonight, in Your holy Silence, I understood, fleetingly, Your presence. I have found the treasure in the field, that neither time nor death can steal.

Pulsing eagerly beneath our caged physical bodies is the beat of all life that finds wonderful expression when the beat drops, the right rhythm pulls and the soul recognizes her spirit’s call in the physical, her Creator birthing in her immense unspoilt joy. All inhibition disappears, limbs dance to the sound of her first love.

You came to bring fire to the earth. But like a gentle breeze, Your love touches my brokenness and i choose surrender over fortification now.

Once, when I was a child and thought like a child, I believed the possibility of there being nothing else after we live this life here on earth. Now, returning to that time before time I recognize again, the reality of where I am, my place, and where I am going.

I am going to my Father’s House, which He has broken open for me when He rolled away the cold rock and allowed me to dance on the dust of death and behold His gentle golden glory.

I am surrendered.

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Originally published at Destillation.
Bio: Kimri Thetadig is a young Samoan Catholic living in Brisbane, Australia. She says: “I don’t know how else to describe who I am other than a desperately weak and constantly sinning daughter of an ever-loving, ever-forgiving Father. My name is Kimri. I write, I eat, I read, I laugh, I live, I ask God daily for the strength to love Him and every creature He created enough and unselfishly. It’s not the easiest, but His Love shows me it’s possible. I pray that my words can contribute to making a well world, by God’s grace.”

Do You Believe?

I have seen it everywhere, in small churches, big churches, city churches, rural churches. Catholics bored or daydreaming at Mass

Often I am guilty of that myself, thinking of what’s for lunch, my to-dos, upcoming work projects, etc.  We complain that we get nothing out of Mass, yet what do we put in? Do our actions at Mass show that we truly believe Jesus is present with us in the Holy Sacrifice? Why don’t we see more miracles in our own lives?

In the Easter season, many of our readings come from the Acts of the Apostles. Throughout the early Church, God was active healing and converting many souls through the Apostles.

Yet our churches often don’t look like the Acts of the Apostles but rather like the people whom Jesus saw when he came back to Nazareth.

“So [Jesus] was not able to perform any mighty deeds there, apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.” (Mark 6:5-6)

With much faith God can do, much yet with little faith, God can do little. In Western culture, we live in a time of little faith. We go through the motions at Mass and wonder why we don’t encounter God. God is not out of our reach, we simply need to turn him, overcome our doubts and choose to believe. Here’s a few ways to do this.

Ask for faith – When struggling to believe, pray to God and ask him to increase your faith. Don’t be afraid to admit to God that your faith is weak, he wants to strengthen it. One of my favorite prayers is “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief”

Read the Lives of the Saints – Throughout time, God has worked many wonders through the Saints, who generously followed him. Their stories remind us that God wants to act in our lives and will do so if we let him.

Memorize Scripture verses about faith and repeat them often – Often, we are bombarded by a world of cynicism, negativity and disbelief. We expect things to fall apart and so they do. Instead let us combat these negative thoughts of the evil one with the words of our Lord. When tempted to disbelieve, speak the truth found in God’s holy word.

I believe that I shall see goodness of the Lord in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13).

Moreover, God is able to make every grace abundant for you, so that in all things, always having all you need, you may have an abundance for every good work (2 Corinthians 9:8)

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13)

Every week in the Creed each of one us says, “I believe in God”. Let us put this belief into action and see how God can change the world through us.

P.S. Here’s a reminder of the Healing Power of the Eucharist.