Do the work to think for yourself. If you don’t think for yourself, life is nothing more than a stream of meaningless sensations.
Take full responsibility for the integrity of your life. It is everything, as your experience has shown you again and again.
Life is not easy. But oh, how good it can be when you do what is necessary to put real substance into it.
Give, give, give of yourself, authentically, generously, with enthusiasm, respect, joy. Listen, learn, watch, participate.
Commit to your highest vision, putting action and persistence behind that commitment. Remind yourself to live as though every moment matters, for indeed every moment does.
Do you realize how beautiful and filled with promise this day is? Once you do, nothing will be able to hold you back.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#1EJrpf24BsWFUk0u.99
If you resent the work, you won’t do it very well, and besides, your resentment gains you nothing. What’s the point of that?
If you avoid the work, you make it more difficult when you eventually have to do it. That’s not such a great plan.
When you do the work halfheartedly, you’re using up your time but wasting an opportunity. Instead, put full attention and enthusiasm into it, and seize the opportunity to excel at it.
When you feel like the task is draining you, it’s not the task that’s doing the draining. It’s your attitude.
Improve your attitude, and you immediately improve the way you feel about what you’re doing. Improve your attitude, and the work flows much more smoothly.
No matter what you’re doing, you might as well do it in a positive frame of mind. It’s your time, it’s your work, it’s your life experience, so make the choice to make it your best.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#LLIipkjQDxmGkiEJ.99
God delivers pizza. Yes, you heard that right God delivers pizza. Did you ever crave something so badly that you could taste it or just have this aching longing for something or someone that without it your heart is so low? In your heart of hearts did you just whisper a prayer, O, God I really could use a lift right now and God granted it? Well, that’s happened to me. At the end of a long work packed day, when I was just too tired to cook or even order out, a little whispered prayer went out, “O, Lord I could sure use a pizza right about now.” Very shortly after, the doorbell rang and with pizza in hand was a friend. Not only did I have a pizza, but a friend to share it with.
God delivers pizza. God answers prayers, even the prayers that we don’t know we asked. Why did God answer that prayer for the pizza? Well, was it the pizza I needed or the friend? God wants us to be happy and he knows what we need. He takes a whispered prayer and gives us much more than we asked for. If some catastrophe happens it is not God’s will that sends it. It is just plain old imperfect life happening. Why do we have to endure it? Well, maybe we will become better people by going through the rough time? Think about that too. What positives came out of that catastrophe? Do take some time to think, and when the doorbell rings maybe it will be a friend with a pizza sent by an even more loving friend.
Bible Vs.; Matt. 7:11 “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”
Prayer: Lord help us to recognize those whispered prayers that we send up to you without even knowing and that you answer. Help us to understand and feel your generosity. May we spread your glory by sharing with others the gifts that you give us. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen
Spotlight: Come to Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine located at 21281 Chardon Rd., Euclid, Ohio 44117. We will be having a one-day festival on Sunday, October 1st. There will be the regular 8:00 AM indoor Mass and the 9:30 AM outdoor Mass as well as an 11:00 AM Mass. We will have a bake sale, crafts, and some games. The dining room will be open as usual, but there will be pizza and sausage sold under the pavilion. The gift shop will also be open as usual. Do come!
Life begins again on this day. Now is your chance to do it right, to do it well, to live it with meaning, purpose, genuine love.
Opportunity arrives fresh with this moment. The universe spreads out before your eyes, and you can step into it in whatever direction you choose.
Old, beloved longings, dreams, passions stir within you. New ideas, resources, capabilities enable you to act with more experience and effectiveness than ever.
You are able to focus now on what matters. You are where you can give energy, support, sustenance to all you love.
It can be easy, can appear sophisticated and enlightened to be cynical. Yet you feel a higher calling, led by love to make life the best it can be.
Feel the courage, confidence, assurance of that higher calling, pushing you into this new moment. Create with this day a living substance that flows from and expresses your highest vision.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#fcEx5oyQUrFuEfUZ.99
Maybe difficult is not so bad. Maybe easy is not so desirable.
Easy makes you soft, complacent, vulnerable. Difficult makes you strong, decisive, capable.
Easy puts you in danger of being arrogant, disrespectful and bored. Difficult fills you with a wealth of gratitude that connects you to life’s richest abundance.
The more you must work for something, the more you must invest yourself, the more it means to you, the more value it has. A difficult journey makes the destination all the more appealing.
Wouldn’t it be nice to stop worrying whether the day, the job, the encounter will be difficult? Wouldn’t it be great to just stride right up to the moment and meet it with confidence and joy?
Look back at what you’ve learned from life, and you’ll realize you’ve learned this. What is difficult is nothing to fear.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#VsexULCLHq9AjUJq.99
See the reality of the situation, then see beyond that reality. See what is present, what is happening, then see what is possible.
Being positive about the future is not a matter of denying the difficult realities of the present. Rather, you must envision your path to a more desirable future and then have the courage to follow that path.
Be careful you don’t get lost in empty fantasies about what might happen. Be just as careful to avoid getting mired in dejection about your current difficulties.
Instead, get to work. See clearly where you are, choose specifically where you wish to go, and do what must be done to get you from here to there.
Don’t waste your energy wishing for reality to come to your rescue, or cursing reality as your enemy. Understand that reality is your workplace, and know that from any reality you can craft a beautiful and fulfilling life.
Accept and embrace the reality of what is, here, now, today. In that acceptance feel your own power, and engage that power to push your reality in whatever direction you choose.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#T12yjxxAMpJiQGsT.99
The news is troubling, the weather is unpleasant, people are rude and uncooperative. Even so, especially so, feel great about today.
Feel great that you can be a beacon of hope, of encouragement, of competence, to a world that badly needs it. Feel great about the opportunity you have to make a positive difference.
Feel great that the value of your life does not depend on random circumstance. Feel great because you can decide to do so.
Feel great about what you can get done, right now. Feel great as you experience yourself doing it.
Feel great, and do all you can to make your great feeling highly contagious. Feel great, and be pleasantly surprised at how many other positive people you encounter.
Feel great, and let the positive energy flow into every action you take. Feel great, and discover how much your positive feeling can improve the world around you.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#9QkXYqCoDoIvxVue.99
Patience is a virtue. That is a proverb that most people learn early in life. Whether or not it is followed is a topic for another day. Why should patience even be considered a virtue? How does patience make our lives better? After all, if we have a dishwasher, don’t you dry the dishes rather than wait for the drying agent to work? If you hire a person to clean your house do you clean it up before they come? Do you wait in the drive through line rather than in the fast food restaurant? Don’t forget on line banking? How long do you wait to log on?
All around us we have examples showing us how to save time. What do we do with the few minutes that we save? Go back to all those examples above, do they really save us time? Do they make life convenient? If life is convenient does it become sterile? Is what we are looking for a problem free environment? Patience is a virtue.
Consider a flower. How long does it take to grow? Someone must get dirty and plant the seed. It needs rich soil, just enough water and sunlight. A person needs to take the time to provide for all of this. The flower grows with the seasons. We count down the seasons. For us it is just a way to mark time. Compare the product reaped in the fast food lane and the one, like the flower that is left to follow God’s idea of time. Which one brings us beauty? Which course in our lives solves our problems, the quick fix or the problem that is tackled with a slow methodical approach?
Bible Vs.: 2 Corinthians 12:12 The signs of a true apostle were performed among you in all patience, with signs and wonders of might and works.
Prayer: O, Lord help me to be a worker of your mighty works. Not because of praise, but because it will help others. Let me be an instrument of patience in a world of acceleration and speed. Grant us all your patience and kindness. We ask you this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Spotlight: Come to Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine and take some time to breathe. Pray with us for the Assumption Novena, August 7 thru the 15. Rosary will be at 7:00PM followed by Mass. The address is 21281 Chardon Rd., Euclid, Ohio 44117
Are you not motivated to take action? Then take action to get motivated.
Do some little something. That will make you feel like doing something more.
Motivation is not some esoteric power possessed only by elite achievers. Motivation happens when you mix desire or fear with some common sense, and add a touch of momentum.
To summon the power of motivation, first understand what you truly want. Next, remind yourself that you’ll have to take some action to fulfill that desire.
Finally, go ahead and give yourself a taste of that action, even if it’s just a small one. Once you feel yourself acting to reach a goal you really, truly desire, you’ll want a lot more of that great feeling.
At that point, guess what? You’re motivated, and you can ride that motivation wherever you intend to go.
— Ralph Marston
Read more at http://greatday.com/#I8qoBRGxk443rKPV.99
Just Like Dad
The Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. John 5:19
Isn’t it endearing to see a child mimicking his parents? How often we’ve seen the young boy in a car seat, gripping his imaginary steering wheel intently while keeping a close eye on the driver to see what Daddy does next.
I remember doing the same thing when I was young. Nothing gave me greater pleasure than doing exactly what my dad did—and I’m sure he got an even bigger kick watching me copy his actions.
I would like to think God felt the same way when He saw His dearest Son doing exactly what the Father did—reaching out to the lost, helping the needy, and healing the sick. Jesus said, "the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does" (John 5:19).
We too are called to do the same—to “follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love” (Eph. 5:1–2). As we continue growing to be more like Jesus, may we seek to love like the Father loves, forgive like He forgives, care like He cares, and live in ways that please Him. It is a delight to copy His actions, in the power of the Spirit, knowing that our reward is the affectionate, tender smile of a loving Father.
Jesus, thank You for showing us the way to the Father. Help us to be more and more like You and the Father each day.
~"Our Daily Bread" - writer Leslie Koh
Pretty much anything you can imagine is eventually possible. Yet what you can act upon immediately is whatever is now possible.
Act to transform current possibilities into reality, and you create whole new sets of possibilities. Continue to act on those new possibilities you create, and you can make your way to any result.
By all means, look with determination toward the ultimate goal you seek. Then look around, where you are, and embrace the current possibilities that can move you toward that goal.
When there is just one possibility within reach, then no possibility can continue to stay out of reach. And wherever you are, whatever way you’ve traveled, there is always one possibility within reach.
You don’t have to figure out how to get all the way there. You just have to take one step, available to you right now, that will move you in the direction of your goal.
Take that step, and then the next and the next. By embracing and actualizing your current possibilities, you can achieve whatever you choose.
— Ralph Marston
On the top floor of the building at Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine there is a room with windows on three sides. The view is, needless to say, spectacular. One of the windows faces a bank of very tall trees. It is very reflective to just sit and watch the trees which seem to move at the mercy of the wind. In reality, the trees move, not at the mercy of the wind, but with the wind.
This movement changes with the seasons. Each season brings its own particular force; a pelting rain, a gentle drizzle, a blizzard, the first hint of snow, hail and all that these forces of nature have to offer. If one looks at the uppermost branches of the tree those branches are affected most by the changing of seasons. Those top branches are the spindliest, and look as if in the force of the wind that they might break off, but they don’t. Their movement suggests that the branches are dancing. They might be waltzing with each other, dancing a lively polka or slow dancing in the heat of the afternoon. All in all, it is a beautiful meditation.
These movements of nature serve as a metaphor for life. We too are at the top of the tree. We live our lives in the company of others. Our living is like dancing with other people. We too are fragile, but if we bend when life throws its worst at us we will not break. Sometimes we are graceful, sometimes so quick that we seem frenetic in our movements. If we consider God as the director of the movements and we move with and not against the elements, like the spindly branches, we will not break either. If we allow God to help us in our dance then we will grow just as the branches grow for the next season. Perhaps we will not understand the steps of the dance, but if we let God lead, we too will be a picture of beauty.
Bible Vs.: Psalm 149: 1, 3-4
Praise the Lord! Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of the faithful! Let them praise his name with dancing, making melody to him with timbrel and harp and lyre! For the Lord takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with victory.
Prayer: O, Lord let me allow you to direct my life. Let me praise you for my success and let me find comfort in you for my failures. For when I stiffen at your urgings in my life it is then that I become unhappy and break. You always pick me up and put me back together. Lord, help me to have the courage and faith to follow your lead.
Spotlight: Come to Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine to follow the Lord’s lead in your life. We are located at 21281 Chardon Rd., Euclid, Ohio 44117. Enjoy the beautiful grounds, visit the gift shop open daily. Come to daily Mass Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday at 7:00 AM, Tuesday at 5:00 PM, Saturday at 8:00 AM and Sunday at 8:00 and 9:30 AM, with the 9:30 AM Mass outdoor. On Sundays, May through October have breakfast at St. Ann Dining Room from after the 9:30 AM Mass until 11:30 AM and lunch from noon until 2:30 PM. Let the Lord lead you here.
With the summer weather, almost everyone is planning outdoor activities. At Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine every Sunday, May through October we have a 9:30 AM Mass that is supposed to be outside as well as 4:00 PM rosary devotions that should be held outside.
Of course, the weather doesn’t always lend itself to holding the event outdoors. Sometimes it is too hot, too windy, too cold, too wet. It is rarely “just right.” Most of the time there is a plan B for the event. At the Shrine, it would be to hold the event in chapel. If you have a backyard event perhaps you make a dash for the garage as the rain comes.
Before the event do you ever find yourself obsessing over doppler radar? Do you have weather alerts set for your phone so that you can be prepared? Do you spend the day constantly watching the rain patterns, checking rain percentages and the night before not sleeping because there is a 50% chance of rain? Have you ever changed your event venue because doppler said a 90% chance of rain? What happens when the predicted weather doesn’t come at 10:30 AM, as predicted? Do you panic?
Whatever happened to making plans and just hoping for the best? How about taking what comes when it comes. Even if we keep looking at that radar and checking the “window of opportunity” can we change it?
Is doppler ever wrong? What do we do then? Perhaps a less stressful way to live is to put everything in God’s hands. Can we change the weather? How many other things do we worry about that we really can’t change? After you have been called back for a second interview is worry going to help you get the job? After the CAT scan is worry going to prevent the discovery of a tumor? There are so many things that we can’t do anything about, but there is someone who can do something about it. There is someone that we can share our anxiety with to help us get through the uncertainty. That person is God. How do we speak to Him? We speak to Him through prayer. The next time you find yourself obsessing about something that you couldn’t possibly change put all those worries in God’s hands. Allow God to affect your life. God’s solution is something that will totally astound us. The thing is He is just waiting for us to ask.