Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

Posts Tagged ‘salvation’

The Spiritual Desert…

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on July 31, 2017

Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil… Ps 23:4

Republished: 7/31/17

The Lord has told me I have more that He wants me to write, but I need to cut off all distractions. So I’m looking for that retreat He wants me to take and in the mean time, finding myself entering into a prepatory stage by entering into the Spiritual Desert. Wanna know more? Read on, dear friend, read on…

Updated: 8/16/11  Today I found in my e-mail a wonderful surprise, AND I discovered I can add it directly to this page!  It’s a wonderful confirmation of all this post says: We must do all things in LOVE as we hope to obtain holiness and peace.  The good with the not so good, the triumphs AND the trials.  God IS with us, He will NEVER abandon us.  Embrace His LIFE, His DEATH, and receive HIS RESURRECTION!  You can also go HERE to Recalibrate your Heart…

In my last two writings I’ve made reference to my recent journey into the Spiritual Desert.   In this post, I hope to address what the Spiritual Desert is, it’s purpose, and it’s effect thus far on me in the hopes of helping others who might also be experiencing their own desert wanderings.  In doing so, I also want to refer periodically to this month’s Monthly Message from the Lay Apostleship as it applies brilliantly to my recent desert excursion.

Purification by desert is nothing new to the Christian Life.  Abraham (Gen 12) went through it, Moses (Exodus 2:15 ) went through it, as did many prophets,  and of course Jesus Christ, Himself (Mt 4; Lk 4; Mk 1: 12-13).  And though the afore mentioned desert journeys were merely prefigurations of  Christ’s own desert time, they all had the same theme: PURIFICATION and PREPARATION for greater things to come.  Just think about that…

Father Abraham


Abram, in his wanderings, came to Trust in God so much that God made a holy covenant with him and ALL his descendants right to this very day.  But He was only able to do so by PREPARING Abram to become Abraham, the father of a Great Nation.

Moses

Similarly, Moses had to experience a separation from the world in which he grew up – among the courts of Pharaoh.  In taking Moses out of Egypt God prepared him to return years later to carry out God’s plan of bringing the Hebrew nation back into the land God had promised to Abraham and his descendants. 

Prophet Isaiah


And in all the wanderings of the prophets and their successors, God prepared them to speak to a stiff necked people, and call them back to Himself; but first He had to purify them by separating them from their brethren.

40 Days in the Desert

God did nothing less for Himself.  Retreating to the desert, the second Person in the Holy Trinity, Jesus Christ, sought after the communion He has with His Father so to give witness AND example to those who would follow after Him.  They, too, would come to understand they have a Father in Heaven that they can have communion with because of the Son; which is why He taught us to say, “Our Father who art in Heaven…” And that’s what this journey is all about: COMMUNION with the FATHER through the SON by guidance from the HOLY SPIRIT and a PURIFICATION and PREPARATION for the greater things to come!

MY DAYS IN THE SPIRITUAL DESERT

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.  And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. ~1 Cor 13: 1-3

Did you know that piety and pious actions can get in the way of holiness? 

HUH?  WHAT?…!

Let me explain…prayer, chaplets, novenas…all these are WELL and GOOD in themselves and have GREAT efficacious graces attached to them…BUT if the person determined to do these does them WITHOUT LOVE and with only a sense of obligation, they have become, “A noisy gong or a clanging symbol.”  Their outward appearance seems very spirit-filled, but their hearts are truly empty because they have NOT LOVE with which to fill them up.

Around my heart, O Lord, Your fingers entwine…

In the Spiritual Desert, one is brought to that point where LOVE is the only thing that will sustain them.  Prayers, novenas, chaplets become meaningless and difficult to pray so the soul CRIES OUT for the only ONE who can give them life by His LOVE.

But God shows His love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. ~Romans 5:8

Thus the total relying on Christ becomes the WATER and FOOD during this desert journey, and the times of quiet and solitude are crucial.  It is here where cunning old Satan plans out his attacks by giving the soul not food and water but DISTRACTIONS…!

 

rumors…earthquakes…plagues…nation against nation…

The world is constantly changing, now more so than ever before, but the concern of the servant of Christ is NOT for this changing world BUT for our CHANGING SELVES as we desire more and more to grow in holiness…

Do not be distracted by events around you. Do not be drawn into thinking that many events or big events mean that you can take your eyes off of the process of becoming holier. ~Monthly Message, August 1, 2011.

Daily activities then become the focus.  By this I mean everything I would do during my day I did with LOVE and a clear CONSCIOUS INTENTION of doing, which oddly enough, brought me back in line with the work God is doing in me.  Why?  Because I was DOING HIS WILL without reservation, I was not allowing outside distractions of money, unemployment, anarchy, etc, etc…to get in the way of pursuing the holiness God has called me to…

I speak gravely when I say to you that you must concentrate seriously on becoming holier because your holiness and your commitment to holiness is a crucial part of My plan to bring comfort to others.  Allow Me to see to the world. ~Ibid…

So even though I am aware – very much aware – of the events unfolding daily as I have chosen NOT to bury my head in the sand, and yet at the same time, I have NOT allowed these things to OVERTAKE me and become my soul-focus… Yes, pun intended…

For Christ told us these things would happen…

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars; see that you are not alarmed; for this must take place…For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places; all this is but the beginning of the birth-pangs.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation, and put you to death…for My name’s sake… many will fall away, and betray one another, and hate one another…false prophets will arise and lead many astray.  And because wickedness is multiplied, most men’s love will grow cold. ~Mt 24: 6, 7-8, 9, 10, 11-12

So these things are unavoidable – some sins will not be remitted – and ALL mankind must reap the punishment due for our actions.  But for the individual PERSON seeking out HOLINESS, their endeavor is to focus on the LOVE of CHRIST as found in themselves from birth and SEALED by their BAPTISM having been created in the image and likeness of God (cf Gen 1:26), through their daily activities to which God has called them to.

 

FATHER OF LIES TRIES AGAIN…

Because we are created in God’s image and likeness, it is only NATURAL that we should desire a more complete union with our Creator in Whom we share so much; and yet, satan is ever cunning and watching for those “chinks in the armor” of human LOVE for the divine so he tries yet another tactic – personal failure… This is where my greatest weakness lies, PATIENCE, or rather the lack of patience with myself and patience with God.  Which is why, when this month’s message came to me, I was deeply humbled as all that God had tried to achieve in me came to mind as well as where I had prevented His change because of my impatience.

Perhaps you identify My teachings as good but you feel frustrated because you see that you fall short on some days. This is when you must be truly patient and trust that I AM bringing you along as quickly as is needed.

Remember that you may see very little progress on some days, but your decision to remain with Me in the process of becoming holier creates a disposition for heaven that keeps the light where it should be, that is, on the need to examine yourself for failure…

Yes, patience is necessary, both with oneself and with others. I, Jesus, am patient with you. And so you must be patient with yourself. And then you must be patient with others. ~Monthly Message, August, 2011.

TALK ABOUT A KICK IN THE HEAD!

Knowing that I must rely entirely on LOVE because the task of praying became exactly that, a task.  No LOVE was behind my decision to pray for I did it out of a sense of obligation.  Satan used this- quite brilliantly I might add – in an attempted to make me seem UNFAITHFUL to God or a HYPOCRITE in the living of the Christian Life.  Here’s a little of what ol’ red-boots had to say to me:  You’re not praying in the traditional manner, you’ve set aside all your lofty deeds, you can’t do anything righteous or for the good of mankind…God does not love you.

As someone recently said to me, “If satan spends that much energy attacking you, then you’re on the right path doing EXACTLY what God would want you to do.”  Which is true, satan doesn’t attack those who are NOT following God’s Will for if he did he would essentially attack himself! What would the point of that be?

If you see daily to the condition of your soul and if you love others then you will have fulfilled My plan for you. ~Ibid

Being able to accept my failures and allowing God to work through them requires TRUST that God KNOWS what He’s doing.  He doesn’t choose people arbitrarily, nor does He choose those who are necessarily perfect and well disciplined.  Nope, often times He chooses the weak, the down trodden, those who seem (at least to themselves), to fail over and over again…

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not now how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with sighs to deep for words.

And He who searches the hearts of men knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the Will of God.

We know that in everything God works for good with those who LOVE Him, who are called according to His purpose. ~Romans 8:26-28

So I can join St Paul and rejoice in this present suffering…

I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. ~Romans 8:18

More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope… ~Romans 5: 3-4

For in this hope we were saved.  Now hope that is seen is not hope.  For who hopes for what he sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. ~Romans 8:24

…and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s LOVE has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. ~Romans 5:5, emphasis added

 

The Kingdom of God is at hand! Repent and believe in the Gospel!

And that, my friends, is the WHOLE POINT of the Desert Journey.  To prepare the servants of Christ the Returning King for the Glory that is to come that IS HIS, purifying His people for the service He has called us to in preparation for His return that follows on the evangelization of the world…

And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, as a testimony to all nations; and then the end will come. ~Mt 24:14

Which is in God’s time, not ours, but as His servants are prepared so too will His church be, which will then bring her into that Spiritual Desert as well.  For all of us are called to “Pick up our cross and follow Him”, and as I, and many others who adhere to the teachings of the Church Christ established on the Cross, have shouted from the roof-tops…

Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believersThe persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh. ~CCC§675

Be ready… be prepared… allow Him to take you through your Spiritual Desert so that you may be the instrument of LOVE that God requires to complete His plan for His children’s salvation, the peace which only God can give, and the reign of His Son in the hearts of all men!

God Bless you ENORMOUSLY during your journey!  My prayers are certainly with each and every one of you. 🙂

The below presentation is a BEAUTIFUL confirmation of what this post says. Please take a moment to watch and take to heart it’s continued message of doing all things in the LOVE of Christ FOR the LOVE of Christ.

The Power of the Cross from Mark Mallett on Vimeo.

Recommended Reading:

Landslide

The Coming Passion

The Seven Seals of Revelation

Like a Thief

Paralyzed by Fear

Entering the Prodigal Hour

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Simply Breathtaking!

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on March 19, 2017

Breathtaking!

Monday, March 19, 2018

This is it! The FINAL week before the week that literally changed the world!

EVENING PRAYER:

[Brothers and Sisters], realize that you were delivered from the futile way of life your fathers handed on to you, not by any diminishable sum of silver or gold, but by Christ’s blood beyond all price: the blood of a spotless, unblemished lamb [cf Exod 12:5a] chosen before the world’s foundation and revealed for your sake in these last days.  It is through Him that you are believers in God, the God who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory.  Your faith and hope, then, are CENTERED IN GOD. ~1 Peter 1: 18-21, Evening Prayer, 5th Sunday of Lent.

Our FAITH is CENTERED IN GOD, that is our FAITH revolves around the ONE Who created us; the ONE who bought us at the price of the “spotless [and] unblemished lamb” (cf, Exodus 12:5) He that IS the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world (Jn 1:29), He has GREAT MERCY on us!

Can you hear the trumpet blast?

But for how long?  How long will lawlessness run rampant?  How long will the great Hand of God be held back before justice begins?  We do not know.  But the current world situation seems to indicate that the door of mercy might soon be closed, at least for a time…

Jesus’ words to St. Faustina,

“Let the greatest sinners place their trust in My Mercy… before I come as a Just Judge, I first open wide the door of My Mercy.  He who refuses to pass through the door of My Mercy must pass through the door of My Justice.” ~Diary of St. Faustina, §1146.

Thus it is IMPERATIVE that we come to Jesus in ALL HUMILITY, seeking His Great Mercy, crying out to Him for His GREAT LOVE.  For Jesus also said to St. Faustina,

Souls that make and appeal to My Mercy delight Me.  To such souls I grant even more graces than they ask. I cannot punish even the greatest sinner if he makes an appeal to My compassion, but on the contrary, I justify him in My unfathomable and inscrutable mercy…” ~ Ibid.

DO NOT DELAY, brothers and sisters! For we do not know how much longer we have for this time of mercy.  In a “blink of an eye”, your life could be demanded of you!

You fool! Tonight your life is required of you!

Jesus tells us this parable,

“The land of a rich man brought forth plentifully; and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’  And he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns, and build larger ones’ and there I will store all my grain and my goods.  And I will say to my soul, Soul you have ample good laid up for many years; take your ease, eat, drink, [and] be merry!’

But God said to him, ‘Fool!  This night your soul is required of you; and the things you have prepared, whose will they be? ~Lk 12: 16-20

So many have been caught “unaware” in recent natural disasters.  Good and evil alike.  No one was spared.  You MUST have your heart revolving around GOD, that, if your soul should “be required of you”, you will not be unprepared to meet your Heavenly Father (see Hebrews 9:27).

But here is the GOOD NEWS!  RIGHT NOW we have a GREAT TIME OF GRACE.  It’s Lent!  Forty (40) Days of fasting and prayer, of wrestling with temptation and the great tempter, himself!  Yet, NOT WITHOUT HELP, not without a Heavenly example to guide AND guard us on our way.

We have been given so much, a GREAT EXAMPLE of Obedience, Humility, Wisdom, and LOVE

There is nothing we have to “invent”, all has been done before, all is before us on HOW TO GET IT DONE.  So, why do we resist?

“I am the light of the world, anyone who follows me will not walk in darkness.” [ Jn 8:12] What a magnificent promise.  We walk in the light, a light that enlightens every human being who comes into the world, and that light is perhaps the most precious possession that we have.  Lent is a time to ‘burnish that light, to trim the wicks, to put new oil in our lamps’ [cf Mt 25: 7-9], and begin to glimpse something of the wonder and the magnitude of God.” ~Fr Clifford Stevens, Homily, Monday of the 5th Week of Lent, emphasis added.

God’s Mercy, especially at this time, is unprecedented and should not be taken lightly.  With our world steeped in the Culture of Death, it is a wonder we are all here to “talk about it”.  I thank God DAILY, that I am not He.  You should too!  If I were God, my patience would have worn thin long ago with mankind…and that would include myself…Oh the irony!

“Jesus looked at me and said, ‘Souls perish in spite of My bitter Passion.  I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy.  If they will not adore My Mercy, they will perish for all eternity…tell souls about this great Mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My Justice, is near.”  ~Diary§965

God prunes His Church like a good vinedresser does his vineyard…

Back in 2009, a PROFOUND REFLECTION came upon me as I trimmed a tree that belonged to a friend of mine.  As I trimmed I was impressed with a sense of God and the trimming in His Church and among His people, that, as the vine-dresser (cf John 15:1), He has every right to do.  I highly recommend reading that reflection,  as I have re-read it myself, and made a few aesthetical changes, and noticed how it REALLY REFLECTS today’s world and the work God is doing in it.

As I trimmed I noticed:

Plants are not quite as simple as they seem.  They need water the same as we do but they have something different about parts of the plant that no longer bear any fruit, or in this case, any leaves.

That is, water will continue to be directed to all parts of the plant whether or not they contain leaves or not.  Good water will be sent to dead limbs at the expense of the rest of the plant that have healthy limbs.

This is partly why it is necessary to trim branches from bushes and small trees, to prevent the plant from dehydrating itself.  I immediately set to work to cut free those dead and useless branches that were no longer bearing fruit that is leaves.

As I reflected on this further, a situation came to mind involving a man I know.  He desires holiness, but he cannot obtain it.  He goes through all the motions of piety and prayer, but he remains “dead” inside.  This is proven by the “fruits” his piety bares.  Hardly fit to “eat”, as his behaviors remain the same, bringing stress and heartache to his family.

So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Thus you will know them by their fruits. ~Mt 7:17-20

Forgiven!

It’s that taking of the first steps that are the hardest.  Letting go of oneself and the PRIDE that stands in the way of God POURING OUT HIS LOVE on all that will COME TO HIM IN HUMILITY.

No life is easy or without strife, and I know, dear apostles, that you experience your share of difficulty. These difficulties are important for you because through the suffering of them you gain mastery over yourself.

When you conquer a difficulty, using the holiness you have received from Me, you become stronger spiritually and then when the next difficulty comes, you both view it differently and treat it differently

You treat it differently because you know that I am with you today as I have been with you in the past. ~Monthly Message, April 2011, excerpts.

Well then, IF God is FOR US – and I do believe He IS – then who can be against us?  Why should we fear or live in fear when it comes to desiring and accepting the change we know needs to happen?  We should not fear BECAUSE FEAR IS NOT OF GOD.  GOD IS LOVE.

“God is worshiped in silence – not that we can think or say nothing about Him, but that we should appreciate how far He surpasses our comprehension.” ~St. Thomas Aquinas, quoted by Fr Clifford Stevens, Homily, Ibid, emphasis added.

God IS ALSO MERCY.  This week our focus is: Crying out, relying on, the DIVINE MERCY OF GOD.

Week 5 of Lent, Day 35 of 40 Days of Lent:

This is it, folks!  Last item on THE LIST.  Can you believe it?  It has gone so fast!  But I am confident that YOU ARE READY!  From the beginning of this time of prayer and fasting, you have (hopefully) been practicing your new habits of OBEDIENCE, HUMILITY, WISDOM.  Good for you for every attempt and success that you made!  If you haven’t tried, do not despair, you still have this week to TRY with God’s Help.

This week you are to DEPEND ENTIRELY on the DIVINE MERCY OF GODHow? An excellent question.  This is HOW: When your FIFTH (5th) thing presents itself, close your eyes and see Christ in His Divine Image:

Jesus I TRUST in YOU!

Yes, the head of the dragon is poised to leap out and “devour the child” (cf. Rev 12:4c), for those who notice the head clearly at the ray of Christ’s blood.  But as Revelation continues, “but [the] child was caught up to God and to His throne” telling us that GOD’S VICTORY is SET!  So HAVE NO FEAR!  Speak with WORDs of Love and, cry out:

JESUS, I TRUST IN YOU!  YOU ARE LOVE!

NOT MINE, BUT YOUR WILL BE DONE,

FOR I CAN DO NOTHING WITHOUT YOU!

BLESS ME, AND MAKE ME HOLY!

Your path will be SET, TRUST IN HIM, and in ALL THINGS give GOD THE GLORY!

Courtesy of : www.simplecatholicliving.com Thanks, Carol!

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