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Happiness equation by Prager University

 

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RembrandtReading The Imitation of Christ, Book II, Chapter 5, as part of my Consecration to Mary. It is so important that we build up our personal relationship with God alone, examine the state of our soul daily, by Examination of Conscience, spend time in conversation with God.  ‘What does it profit a man, if he gains the whole world and suffers the loss of his own soul. Mathew 16:26. Makes sense doesn’t it? If we get involved too much in the affairs of others and of the world, we neglect our own soul. To a certain degree, things around us happen, someone needs help, we need to attend to working a job, paying our bills, cooking our food to sustain us, to clean our homes and care for family around us. But we need to devote some time of the day to God alone, even if it for a few minutes early morning and late night.  If we spend some time examining our day and what happened, how did we respond to certain things, how we felt about it and what feelings it evoked within us, we ask God to shed His Light on that situation and to help us grow and change, so that next time it happens, we will respond in a charitable way, which is good for our souls and the good of other souls. This is how we grow positively and change the world a little at a time!

Ourselves

We must not rely too much upon ourselves, for grace and understanding are often lacking in us. We have but little inborn light, and this we quickly lose through negligence. Often we are not aware that we are so blind in heart. Meanwhile we do wrong, and then do worse in excusing it. At times we are moved by passion, and we think it zeal. We take others to task for small mistakes, and overlook greater ones in ourselves. We are quick enough to feel and brood over the things we suffer from others, but we think nothing of how much others suffer from us. If a man would weigh his own deeds fully and rightly, he would find little cause to pass severe judgment on others.

The interior man puts the care of himself before all other concerns, and he who attends to himself carefully does not find it hard to hold his tongue about others. You will never be devout of heart unless you are thus silent about the affairs of others and pay particular attention to yourself. If you attend wholly to God and yourself, you will be little disturbed by what you see about you.

Where are your thoughts when they are not upon yourself? And after attending to various things, what have you gained if you have neglected self? If you wish to have true peace of mind and unity of purpose, you must cast all else aside and keep only yourself before your eyes.

You will make great progress if you keep yourself free from all temporal cares, for to value anything that is temporal is a great mistake. Consider nothing great, nothing high, nothing pleasing, nothing acceptable, except God Himself or that which is of God. Consider the consolations of creatures as vanity, for the soul that loves God scorns all things that are inferior to Him. God alone, the eternal and infinite, satisfies all, bringing comfort to the soul and true joy to the body.

I wish you God’s peace and may you find God’s Grace to grow from strength to strength in the virtues that God has promised us!

~ Mary

 

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St.-Zita-300x287During this Lenten season, I have been really discerning daily what I really need and what I want – you know all those extra glamorous shiny stuff in shops that are inviting you in to spend, spend, spend! You know all those sweets and tempting food in stores or even to cook on the internet! Are you tempted?

So here we are – half way through Lent and what have we achieved! I am so guilty of breaking my promises to give up all those extras!

Have hope! All is not lost! We are still half way there till Easter and there is still plenty of time to make a new start today. I must confess I had a bowl of icecream the other day, since it is so hot here in Australia. This week I went grocery shopping, was tempted to buy more icecream, had a few tugs of the heart, and then said ‘no’.

What makes me want to do more giving up is when I think of the poverty in the world and the people who are starving or no water or have no clothes or shoes on their feet. I think of them. I think of the spoiled food which I have to throw out, that is unnecessary wastage. Why do we live like kings, when the world around us is in great need.

Since I am the main cook at home, I have changed the way I buy food, so that its not wasted, buy fresh, healthy foods. I appreciate our natural food products, like vegetables, fruits, cereals, herbs. All these foods are easy to cook and are good for your body. I am really pleased that I shop smart now, eliminating excess packaged foods, the packaging, tins, bottles, cardboard. It has reduced my waste bin to a quarter! I have even reduced my utilities bills with electricity, gas, all by changing my mindset on not to live luxuriously.

I have been thinking the past 3 decades the world has gone through our food ingredients and listed every particle of food, down to the calories, energy, etc. But what about our souls? Shouldn’t we look after our souls the same way? Think of what we are feeding our souls with mentally and spiritually, which does affect our souls in a big way and thus affects us as whole human beings. Some people don’t like to be told the list of things that can poison your soul. Yes there are many vices that poison your soul – like greed, lust, laziness, addictions, pride, envy, etc. How do we purify our souls? By feeding our souls with virtue – humility, chastity, love, charity, prayer life.

Jesus gave us 2 Commandments to follow ‘Love God with all your heart, mind and soul and Love thy neighbour’. If we can think of our neighbour as the human race living on this planet, the ones in need, suffering for lack of food, shelter and clothing and try to live more simple lives, we can make a difference one person at a time.

God bless you and yours!

~ Mary

 

 

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Here is a beautiful video recording by Venerable Fulton J. Sheen, on a Message for Youth. Recorded in 1954.

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Happy New Year for 2015 to all my Readers and may the New Year bring you fulfillment in your job and career! 10922483_1070272752998326_1401060083668588795_n

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