Christian Living

22 posts

Preparing for the Greatest Gift of All

During the lead up to Christmas, we are inundated with numerous things to do. Gifts to be bought, cards to send, cookies and candies to bake, decorations to hang, parties, school pageants, and work celebrations to attend. The reality is that this time leading up to Christmas has become in our culture one of the most stressful and anxious times of the year—rather than being filled with hope and joy and peace! So what is the solution?   Advent.   The Church in her wisdom gives us the perfect solution to the craziness of the world because Advent is designed […]

The Power of the Communion of Saints

A few days ago, I wrote about how much I love November, and how this is a truly special time in the life of the Catholic Church. Particularly because it is a month when we celebrate the fullness of the Communion of Saints. We begin by celebrating all who have completed their journey and are in heaven with God on All Saints Day, and then we commemorate all the holy souls who have gone before us on All Souls Day, before spending the remainder of the month praying for those same souls. I have to admit, with the shortening of […]

7 Practices of the Saints That Are Possible For You Too

Many times when people hear stories about people who are saints, like Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Pope John Paul II, or Maximillian Kolbe, the response tends to be, “Well, that’s great, but I could never be like them.” The reality is actually quite the opposite, as all the people throughout history who eventually became saints share 7 common characteristics that we can incorporate and practice in our own lives, too. Practice #1   Daily Prayer and Meditation “A soulthat does not practice the exercise of prayer is very like a paralyzed body which, though posessing feet and hands, makes no use of […]

3 Reasons I Believe Dumbledore’s Sexuality Will NOT Be a Highlight of the Fantastic Beasts Movie Franchise

Recently, I was sharing with a friend my excitement about the upcoming November 16th release of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. His response was very subdued, and when I queried him as to why, he responded, “I’m just not interested in seeing the whole Dumbledore-Grindelwald love story on screen.” I quickly assured him that I highly doubted that such a thing would happen, particularly since J.K. Rowling is the one writing the screenplay. Although my comments seemed to mollify my friend enough that he was willing to go see the movie, his reaction caused me to reflect that perhaps […]

“Can’t Judge Success By The Number of Warm Bodies”

Today I continue sharing insights from a conversation that I recently had with Everett Fritz, author of the recently released book, The Art of Forming Young Disciples: Why Youth Ministries Aren’t Working And What To Do About It. Everett and I had spoken about the reality occurring in the Church regarding the loss of young adults, and why that was happening—primarily, because the pastoral needs of young people are not being met within the current structures and practices of the Church, especially in how the Good News is being shared in youth ministry and catechetical programs. Religious education-based ministries—like a […]

One Simple Way to Guarantee Your Children Find Happiness

Here in Alabama, another school year has begun. (Yes, you read that properly) Anyway, the last two days I have seen a flurry of photos posted on social media by many friends who are parents of school age children. There are lots of smiles amongst the nice, crisp school uniforms or new outfits that capture the moment when all things are possible during the upcoming academic year. New beginnings are like that–lots of potential and possibilities, and great hope tends to surround those moments. But as parents, we also tend to worry a bit. Is our son or daughter going […]

Courageously Simple

Today, I had the “joy” of dealing with moving stuff out of our basement crawl space in anticipation of workers coming on Monday to take care of some water issues. As I was moving FAR too many boxes of Christmas decorations, storage trunks, bike gear, and other assorted flotsam of life, I reflected that it was apparently time for me to simplify again. I say again, because part of the spiritual battle is to constantly be checking to make sure that my priorities are in order and that the things of this world are not distracting me from what is […]

How Clear Is Your Vision?

Today, I received an ENORMOUS gift from God. What was it? He clarified my vision. What do I mean by that? Well, throughout my day, God continued to send me signs that made it clear that I was on the path that He was desiring for me to walk in my life right now. I know that can seem a bit crazy for someone who is not a person of faith, but it’s actually not. It’s really as simple as having the proper eyeglass prescription. For anyone who has had an eye exam, you know what I mean. Part of […]

Finding Your Place in The Story

Today I had the great joy of reconnecting with an old friend. We shared what we had been up to, everything from the big highlights and current challenges to the small joys found in the midst of walking the journey with God. It was a beautiful grace and consolation in the midst of my day, but what has stayed with me the most from that conversation was not what we said, but how. For in the midst of our sharing, I felt us quickly slip into the easy give and take and playful banter that has always been the nature […]

Easy Ways to Grow in Virtue Every Day

Several posts ago, I shared the 4 Simple Steps to Holiness. Today, I am going to focus upon Step 3–Growing in Virtue each Day. The beginning of growth in virtue comes from a place of humility and understanding of oneself. This self-knowledge needs to be well-formed in light of Scripture and Church teaching so that we may honestly see our predominant weaknesses and then be able to cultivate the virtues necessary to overcome those weaknesses. The struggle to know oneself is a great challenge, but there are two parts that we need to be attentive–both our human formation and our […]