FRIDAY: LOVING GOD’S LAW SPARK TALK

Bethe Hughes speaking on entering into a deeper relationship with God through through come to love His Will and His Law.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Have you in the past, or do you now struggle with God’s laws? Which ones specifically? Why do you think this is? What can you do to overcome this?
  • As we enter into deeper and deeper relationship with God, we should increasingly become aware of the ways we miss the mark in our relationship with Him and with those around us. It is a refining process. How can you see that God is refining you?
  • Do you get frustrated with yourself that you keep committing the same offenses? In addition to taking those things to confession, also pray the following prayer so that those offenses will not continue to have a hold on you. Lord Jesus, you have come to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoner. Come and heal my brokenness right here, Lord; free me from this captivity, release me from all darkness, bring your favor here in my soul and bring your vengeance here against my enemies. Lord, you came to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. I ask you to do this in me—comfort me where I am hurting; bestow on me a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. Come in to my broken humanity and restore my wounds. In your healing hands I trust. Amen.

THURSDAY: LOVING GOD’S LAW SPARK TALK

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Missy Rhodes shares about the slow but steady progression of coming to love God’s law and His pursuit for her.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • What do you find draws you closer to God?
  • Take some time to pray by sitting with the Lord and asking “What do you want me to do with my life?” and allow yourself to just sit with the question and let God work in you.
  • Listen to the song “More Like Falling in Love” by Jason Gray: https://youtu.be/mA9IfB7coKg
  • Do you resonate with the idea that conversion can happen slowly over time, rather than happening all at once? Reflect how the Lord has worked in your heart to accomplish conversion over time.

WEDNESDAY: “FUEL BREAK”

Enjoy the opportunity to encounter God through today’s Wednesday “Fuel Break.” A Fuel Break is a strip of land in the middle of a forest that is cleared out in order to control a burn in the case of a wildfire. Every Wednesday you can enjoy a “Fuel Break” Guided Meditation. Rather than giving you more to think about and process, we’ll be shifting gears so that you can clear your mind and enter into a time of prayer with God. We pray that these encounters with the Lord will help control and focus the burn that God is enkindling in your heart.

(Make sure to click “Listen in Browser”)

DON’T FORGET THAT TODAY IN THE DIOCESE OF ROCKFORD IS “BE RECONCILLED DAY!” YOU CAN COME TO ST. PATRICK IN DIXON ANYTIME FROM 9AM-7PM TO RECEIVE GOD’S LOVING MERCY!

TUESDAY: LOVING GOD’S LAW SPARK TALK

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Dave Lenox speaks of the gift of the sacrament of confession and how it relates with God’s Law.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Dave spoke of the BEAUTY of the gift of confession. Some people don’t see it this way but rather view it as a scary practice of admitting guilt. God is so loving that He gives us His law NOT to have something to hang over our heads but rather to guide us. Proof that He’s not out to get us is the fact that He gives us such a beautiful way to be forgiven. Reflect for a moment on how God’s Mercy works hand in hand with His Law.
  • Do you find that in confession sometimes you try to “tap-dance” around the major issues? Do you find that there are some sins that you don’t confess. I (Fr. Romke) will admit that as a High Schooler I certainly did this, which I was disappointed to learn later on results in an invalid confession. If in the past you’ve skipped over some of the deeper or more embarrassing sins, might you consider the fact that God wants to free you from those sins as well?
  • Consider the following question: “Do you think that you are a better at sinning than God is at forgiving?” Know that God’s forgiveness easily obliterates even your deepest darkest sin.
  • Tomorrow – For those of you who live in the Diocese of Rockford, we will be having “Be Reconciled Day” where confessions will be heard throughout the day at all of the parishes. At St. Patrick’s Church in Dixon we will be hearing confessions from 9am-7pm. Is God calling you to freely receive His mercy in this sacrament?

MONDAY: LOVING GOD’S LAW SPARK TALK

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Craig Dinges speaking on coming to understand the gift of God’s Law.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • When life is out of control, like it can be sometimes, are you willing to consider that God’s laws can provide a comforting source of guidance and direction? Can you see how God’s structure provides life?
  • On a day to day basis do you find that you try to follow God’s Law or do you try to create your own framework in which your life works?
  • Are you willing to step forward and to truth the Lord? To believe that what He asks for will bring about your greatest good through both the ups and the downs of life? Are you willing to let God give you peace as you deepen your relationship with Him?
  • Craig mentioned this quote that he read as he studied the Faith: “A law grounded in god is true and just, a law grounded in itself is merely suggestion, suggestion is not always true.” Consider this in light of times in your life when you tried following your own ideas rather than what God puts forth for our guidance and protection.
  • The Rosary is certainly a prayer that has rules and structure to how it is prayed, but it provides an excellent way to communicate with the Lord. Are you willing to pick up this Spiritual Weapon and to let its rules and structure lead and guide you?

SUNDAY: LOVING GOD’S LAW IGNITION TALK

Many people view God’s commands as burdensome, but there is a way to come to love them. Jennifer Sagel walks through how that transition can be made.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Even if you haven’t necessarily articulated the exact words, have you ever wondered, “What could God possibly want to do with me?” Take some time to pray through this feeling and allow Him to answer the question.
  • This is the link for The Chosen Season One Episode 8 that Jennifer references. The episode itself begins at 11:07, and the scene of the Woman at the Well begins at 51:17. As you watch, see how God’s reaches out to you the same way that He reaches out to her. Also note the freedom, joy, exuberance and thrill that she displays after her conversation with Jesus. https://youtu.be/8lk4yq1f6DY
  • Make a plan to get to reconciliation. Put in on your calendar now and commit to prayerfully reviewing what you need to say as the days lead up to your appointment. Jesus is waiting for you.
  • If you want or need, click on the link below to find an examination of conscience that pertains to your state in life and prayerfully review it. https://www.usccb.org/prayer-and-worship/sacraments-and-sacramentals/penance/examinations-of-conscience

SATURDAY: THE EUCHARIST SPARK TALK

Today’s Spark Talk is given by Jean Spohn, who shares with us a powerful moment she had in receiving peace of mind and heart during her mother’s final moments when she received Communion.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Think about if you have ever had an “intimate and powerful” experience of receiving the Eucharist. If you have, give thanks to God for His generous gift. If you have not, ask the Lord to bless you with an opportunity for such a gift, and then open your heart wide to the possibility that your prayer will be answered.
  • Jean articulated such a beautiful prayer as she received communion that day. This prayer can be said by all of us, even if we don’t have a loved one passing from this life to the next. The next time you go to Mass, think of a specific intention, and as you receive Jesus into your body, say to Him, “As I receive you, please receive __________.” Allow this prayer to bring you comfort, knowing that Jesus receives them and holds them close to His heart.
  • Heaven and earth come together in a particular way at the consecration during Mass. Call to mind all those who have gone before you, and reflect on the beautiful mystery that you are reunited once again with them through the act of receiving the Eucharist.

FRIDAY: THE EUCHARIST SPARK TALK

Today we are blessed with not just one but 2 short testimonies! Natalie and Anthony, two of our recent First Communicants share their experience and thoughts of receiving Jesus in the Eucharist.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Can you recall when you had childlike acceptance of believing that Jesus is who He says He is? Ask the Lord to help you recover some of that childlike trust in Him.
  • Reflect upon how you feel when you receive communion. If you find it to be static and ordinary, think of how you would want the experience to be. Then ask the Lord to lead you to a deeper union with Him in that moment.
  • Do you know someone who no longer believes in the real presence of the Eucharist? Pray the following prayer for them. Therese of the Child Jesus, I come to you, asking that you intercede on my behalf. I believe wholeheartedly that Christ is fully and totally present in the Eucharist, but _____________ no longer believes this. I care for him/her very much, and I wish for him/her to know the deep and abiding love that is there for them in the Eucharist. I desire that they be united to Christ intimately, and that they can once again believe that Jesus desires to be close to them, particularly in this sacrament that is the source and summit of our faith. Please present my request to our Heavenly Father, and in childlike trust I will abandon all fear that he/she will never come to believe. Amen.

THURSDAY: THE EUCHARIST SPARK TALK

Deacon Terry Wagner shares his personal journey of loving the Eucharist in a deeper way.

REFLECTION POINTS:

  • Many of us have spent years learning about the Eucharist, but so often what we know in our head doesn’t translate to our heart. Pray the following prayer to deepen your heartfelt affection for the Eucharist: Lord Jesus Christ, I feel as though I have come to know many things about you, and yet I struggle to feel connected and close to you. My desire is that you reveal to me who you truly are, and what you are truly about, especially in the gift of the Eucharist. I understand the gift of your body and blood is a mystery, but I also understand and trust that your grace will aid my eagerness to know you deeply. Please Lord, hear my prayer.
  • The Eucharist is the fulfillment of many promises of God, just one of which is to be with us always until the end of the age. How do you see the Eucharist as God’s promise to always be with you.
  • The connection between Christ crucified and the consecration during Mass is very real. Take some time to pray with the image below.
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WEDNESDAY: “FUEL BREAK”

Enjoy the opportunity to encounter God through today’s Wednesday “Fuel Break.” A Fuel Break is a strip of land in the middle of a forest that is cleared out in order to control a burn in the case of a wildfire. Every Wednesday you can enjoy a “Fuel Break” Guided Meditation. Rather than giving you more to think about and process, we’ll be shifting gears so that you can clear your mind and enter into a time of prayer with God. We pray that these encounters with the Lord will help control and focus the burn that God is enkindling in your heart.

(Make sure to click “Listen in Browser”)