** 1 **
Friends, I have had it. What I mean, of course, is that I’ve had it with the shenanigans passing for life in these United States. Though it may seem as though I like posting incendiary information about how the world is going to hell in a handbasket, I actually hate politics, especially Church politics.
I studied political science for one semester in college, before I realized that if I continued on that trajectory I would probably end up in a K-hole. So I changed majors and kept my sanity.
Nonetheless, I feel like it’s important to understand what’s going on in the world around me. To an extent. Sometimes I spend too much time reading about all the terrible ways our society oppresses people, condones the destruction of life, and the general decline of anything resembling moral standards.
** 2 **
Even some of the Catholic blogs I usually enjoy can do too much of this as well. Something that really agitates me is when people who purport to be ‘faithful’ Catholics tear apart people who are heterodox or opposed to Catholic, with their reason for doing so being — those people are openly opposing the Church from within.
Yet, unfailingly, those same orthodox Catholics who tear down others for challenging the Church for not being liberal enough, inevitably end up challenging the Church for being not conservative enough.
I’ve had it. If you are a Catholic lay person, it’s not your job to try to change the Church from within (to make it either more or less conservative). That’s the holy Spirit’s job, acting through the Church leadership. So publicly and loudly criticizing Church leadership because it doesn’t look the way you want it to is…being Protestant. Private dissent is one thing; there will always be Church teachings that some people with struggle with. But the point is that you struggle in your conscience, and you prayerfully try to come to agreement with the Church.
I’m choosing not to pick on heterodox people right now because there are enough people in the blogosphere who are doing enough of that.
** 3 **
A perfect example of what I am talking about is the whole denying Eucharist to pro-abortion politicians debate. In Chicago this was big; many very orthodox Catholics sharply criticized Cardinal George for not denying communion to pro-abortion politicians. His reason for not denying them?
The Pope doesn’t do it. When a pro-abortion Catholic politician visits the Vatican, he or she is not denied communion. So why should Cardinal George or any other American Bishop or Cardinal do that? In other words, we don’t need to be holier than the Pope.
This is the last thing I’m going to say about Church politics; I am just done with all of it.
** 4 **
So I removed all the blogs from my links page that consistently post things that are about all of society’s declining morality and Church politics. I’ve come to a point where I don’t think these blogs are helping me progress spiritually and grow closer to God. When I finish reading them, often I feel more dejected and anxious about our future, and less like praising God or praying.
There are a handful of blogs which always leave me feeling uplifted, or inspired when I read them. I’m going to keep reading them, and keep on trying to post things that will uplift or inspire others. After all, isn’t that how we really love one another? By lifting each other up and making it easier to grow closer to God?
I’m not trying to offend anyone who writes to reads those blogs; I just can’t anymore. A wise person told me once that every ‘Yes’ to one thing, is a ‘No’ to something else. When I spend time reading those blogs, I can’t spend time reading something really beautiful, or posting a prayer or reflection that could be what someone else needs to read.
That said, it doesn’t mean I’ll NEVER post anything political (though I am doing my best to stay far a-w-a-y from Church politics), but it will have to be something big for me to add it here.
** 5 **
I’m turning the focus back to Jesus. After all, the point of my blog, I think, is for me to share myself with others, and also, to try in a small way, to share God with others through what I have experienced and found.
** 6 **
I just started reading “Ten Prayers God Always Says Yes To” by Anthony DeStefano. It’s really, very good. I have only read the Intro and part of the first chapter — called “I Wish I Could Believe: God Show Me You Exist” — so interesting.
This is a great passage from the introduction talking about how God hears and answers our prayers:
“There are the prayers that God says no to for reasons that are not so obvious, though we may try hard to understand them. There is an old expression that says, “God gives us what we need, not what we want.” What this means is that when God decides to grant a prayer request, He uses a completely different set of criteria than we do. Like a good father, He is not concerned about gratifying our every wish.
Instead, he is concerned only about one thing: our ultimate good, which boils down to whether or not we go to heaven. Every request we make of God is ‘evaluated’ in light of that long-term goal.
When we ask God to grant us something, He says yes or no based on what he knows will happen to us in the future as a result of that decision…Moreover, what will happen to the people around us – those who are affected by what we do and how we act. Will they be more likely to go to heaven or not? ”
I think this is such a great passage — I’ve been thinking about it all week. It really puts prayer requests in perspective.
** 7 **
Tonight Eric and I are having a date night; we’re going for Thai food (which I LOVE) and then we’re going to see the new movie with Jennifer Aniston, Love Happens. Can you tell which of us picked that one out?
I’ll post some thoughts on it afterward (if it warrants any!)
I hope you all have a great weekend — and head over to http://www.conversiondiary.com — to thank Jen for being a great hostess!