Peace Prayer

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace:

            where there is hatred let me sow love,

            where there is injury, pardon,

            where there is doubt, faith,

            where there is despair, hope,

            where there is sadness, joy.

 

O Divine Master grant that I may no so

            much seek to be comforted as to comfort,

            to be understood as to understand,

            to be loved as to love.

 

Because it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

 

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

Franciscan Short Way Of The Cross (7-9)

Seventh Station

The Second Fall of Jesus

 

By Thy second fall, preserve me, dear Lord, from relapse into sin.

 

Eighth Station

Jesus Consoles the Women of Jerusalem

 

My greatest consolation would be to hear Thee say: “Many sins are forgiven thee, because thou hast loved much.”

 

Ninth Station

Third Fall of Jesus

 

O Jesus!  When weary upon life’s long journey, be Thou my strength and my perseverance.

 

 

 

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

 

 

 

Get Lost In Love

Warmth, a touch, a hug, sunrise, smile, a wave, Saying Hello, a wink, a glance, a helping hand, train whistle, a toot! A bark, squirming, toes, being alone, fire in our hearts, Our Lord, a helping hand, a moment to listen to someone, talking to the lonely, holding the door for someone, a thank you, I love you, Sorry Please pardon me, back of the line, being stealth, a veteran, children, an old man, scars, wounds, Casting Crowns, Bee Gee’s, an outstretch hand, scraped knee, not afraid, humility, understanding, Believing, Life, Doing the right thing, Family, friendship, prayer, Lighting Bugs! and

Silence!

 

Just a sampling!  Carry it with you always.

 

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

Prayer of Abandonment

Father,

I abandon myself into your hands;

Do with me what you will.

Whatever you may do, I thank you:

I am ready for all, I accept all.

 

Let only your will be done in me,

And in all your creatures –

I wish no more than this, O Lord.

 

Into your hands I commend my soul;

I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,

For I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,

To surrender myself into your hands without reserve, and with boundless confidence.,

For you are my Father.

 

Charles de Foucauld

  

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

 

Franciscan Short Way Of The Cross (10-12)

Tenth Station

Jesus Stripped of His Garments

 

My soul has been robbed of its robe of innocence; clothe me, dear Jesus with the garb of penance and contrition.

 

Eleventh Station

Jesus Nailed to the Cross

 

Thou didst forgive Thy enemies; my God, teach me to forgive injuries and FORGET them.

 

Twelfth Station

Jesus Dies on the Cross

 

Thou art dying, my Jesus, but Thy Sacred Heart still throbs with love for Thy sinful children.

 

 

 

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

 

 

 

Reflection On Forgiveness

  • “The first to apologize

is always the bravest.

  • The first to forgive

is the strongest.

  • The first to forget

is the happiest.

 

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

 

 

Lack of Love

It seems in today’s world, those simple words maybe be lost, and may be gone in so many life situations. And, when one reflects on all the meanings of Love, one can see how integral it is in all parts of our life.

We see the lack of love every day manifested in road rage and in our political arena, but more importantly, in our own dialogue with others. Difference of opinions are no longer acceptable or tolerated, and discussions with compromise are virtually nonexistent. One’s Selfishness and I know it all attitudes, becomes the answer and the end to the discussions.

We see hatred taking front and center in many situations attacking people’s looks and physical handicaps. Why and how has it gotten to that point in our world today. Some blame it on the internet and obscurity it provides, which allows one to say what is really in their heart. The saying “what is in one’s hearts are the words that come across our lips.”  It’s that person in their pajamas in the basement of their own house or their parent’s house, and also “in the name of comedy.” Oh yes, freedom of speech.

 

” Whatever you did for one of these least of my brothers of mine, you did for me.” (Mt 25:40). We’ve heard this quote quite often as it pertains to the poor and the homeless. We all have driven by the hungry begging for food, or one standing out in the cold and wondering should we have stopped? Do they really need help or are they just looking for handouts? Sometimes we drive by for no known reason, or not even thinking or seeing them. Sometimes we don’t want to go near them for “fear” of what we may get. So how do we change this, and again, why do we think that way?  Lack of Love!

One easy answer is the person who lost everything and landed on the streets. He is the one forced to beg to eat; to survive. He has no place to clean up and no money in his pockets for anything. Yes, and they cannot go home for a variety of reasons for which we should not judge.  But, by the grace of God and reasons unknown, some were chosen or helped and blessed, to be able pull up his boot straps and climb back; never to forget the one’s still out there trying to get out. The focus of me, money, success and “my needs” blinds one eyes to the others around us. Again, this can be some of the reasons for the hatred in our discussions and dialogue.  Does any of this apply to you? Yes, is the probable answer for most everyone, and for me sometimes.

 I would offer up to you to make time, even 5-10 minutes a day, and talk to the Lord. He doesn’t ask. He waits for us to start the dialogue. It’s hard to start, finding the words and not knowing if it will make a difference. Speak with the love in your heart and then be quiet and listen. Be patient, and your life will change. Peace and happiness will find a home in you. The thirst will be overwhelming. And with these changes, hopefully 5-10 minutes is not enough time.

 

Years can be shorter than days!  Just start and trust. Let the love grow in your heart and be sure to share it!

 

 Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

https://www.tasteofloveblog.com/

@TheeConor(Twitter)

 

Let your heart speak today!

What kind of shape is the spirituality of your heart in?  How can we tell and really know for sure?  So many unknowns, endless questions and “things” I cannot fully understand. How do I change it?

I believe the adage is true which goes like this, “The words you speak, reflects what is in your heart.” We see today the bad, the ugly, or simply stated, the lack of love in many individuals today. Many today that are highlighted in the  public spot light go from politicians to Fake News and to Hollywood stars.  However, we can all see the good and kindness from people from all walks of life. You can hear their words of love and kindness and see it in the actions, and yes, on their face. You may grant me these points, but the overarching questions is “What about me?”

What if I gave you everything? What if I stopped holding back from you? What if I went out of my safety zone; that uncomfortable space that is not mine? What if I truly had to test my trust? No half-baked trust, but the real thing, of giving your all with no turning back or taking it back? Trusting with your all!

Words like trust, love, a God who relentlessly pursues you and forgives you for all your wrongs. Intimacy with God, knowing His presence, experiencing His overwhelming love, all needs to be reflected on. Knowing your nothingness and giving all nothingness to Him, leads the way for you. This is your start!

It may be a time of silence, prayer or music that touches you. Find that time, hopefully in the morning, if even for just 5-10 minutes. Talk to God before you open the day to the world, news, or other people. It is your private quite time. It is your protected space and time. Make the commitment and with patience, hold on and you will know. Make it yours and own it. Remember God doesn’t ask you; you need to ask Him!  Let it go, because now you have turned it over to God. Trust Him. It is up to God now. He will not fail you. And yes, keep that dialogue going. 

You and your heart will never be alone again. You may even experience a heart that never stops speaking and that is ok, in fact, that is what you want. You may find a smile on your face without even knowing it, or a skip in your step, and an overwhelming feeling of love. And yes, others will notice.

Be happy. Be thankful. Ask God to guide your every step! Embrace “For all You are.”

Finally, for those important people in your life, always share your love, and don’t miss an opportunity to tell them “you love them.”

Conor

Keep Smiling!

 

“What if I gave everything?”

” Am I afraid of the cost to follow?

Why am I still standing here?

What if I gave everything to you?

I need to stop holding back!

Are you calling me out to deeper waters?

Why am I still standing here?

What of I gave everything

I am tired of standing here

I want to see some mountains moved.

You have given the faith needed to move mountains and more.

Ready to give everything.

Good-Bye to standing here.”

https://castingcrowns.com/


O my Lord, I am ready to say good-bye. I am ready to move forward, but where do I start. How do I know this is the way; the way to you. As you know there were many paths before that I took. And yes, I knew best only to quickly find out the opposite. Hard to admit, but when you at the end of nowhere, you know are totally lost and don’t know what to do. No idea to how to get back, or do I go forward hoping for that off ramp. How do I find you Lord? I know it is you want. My heart tell me to keep searching; don’t give up, but how do I know that I will not repeat mistakes of the past. I’m tired Lord and do not want to end up nowhere again.

Why did I not see the obvious? How could I be so wrong, when the answer was in front of me all the time. Why did I let myself get in front of myself? Yes, did  I put myself in front of the answer?

It is like looking at a painting of words that is black and white. It appears all jumble up; means nothing. You stare and stare and it always looks the same. And yes, I finally see what it says. And ever time I look again, I can only see it this way now. Never will see it as it was before.

And yes Lord, I abandoned my soul to you through faith and trust. I took myself out of always knowing the way or the best answer. As I walk now on a new path, I know and feel, it is the correct way. The picture is clear. It is the only way I can see it now. With my soul abandoned to you, it is clear Lord.

“All of me, for all You are.

 

Conor

 

 

 

 

Trust

Trust was a word that was a large part of our actions and relationships, but today that word has seemed to vanished. It was, and is, a necessary part of ourselves and how we deal and interact with those around us.  We can relate to many examples of trust from the young child standing by the swimming pool and the mother saying, “Just jump, I’ll catch you.” A friend saying, “Don’t worry,  I always got your back,”  and a spouse saying “Honey, don’t worry everything is going to be alright. Just trust me.”  Yes, that lost friend, saying nothing, not even a word, ……and just doing something. Forgive, forget and repair the distance that has come between you.

We may not realize it , but the days are getting longer, and the years are getting shorter. And what are we doing for our part? Are we struggling to get it organized and not knowing where to start. Repairing and dealing with “stuff” on so many fronts: all from neglect and not making the time, (Rock and Sand.)  But most importantly, filling the thirst within us that is so dry. The thirst that evades us. The thirst that is part of all of us. How do I do it? That feeling of not being satisfied, frustrated, always something coming at me. No Peace!  Please help me!

It’s that something that was in our society that now is gone, and the guardians of its void, are always there to thwart its return. Quickly making sure it does not enter back into our society as it once was. What is needed is having and knowing the presence of  our God in our lives, our Creator, as the center of our life. This time of the passing of Billy Graham, and seeing his history, the crowds and the examples of the many looking to quench their thirst,  shows us the different world we live in today.

So I am going to ask that questions again, what are you going to do about it?  It starts with you, and me, realizing the void, the thirst we are looking to quench, and it starts with trust. It is what we were made for. Trusting in the Lord and knowing that He knew and loved us before we were made. Knowing that He loves us more than we can comprehend. You do not have to go to Him for that Love;  He will come to you. Trust and know the Love and the peace that comes with it.  Take 5 with Him everyday. “Friend Him.” Watch and be patient.  And yes, you might see Him if the person crying out for help on that street corner or underneath that overpass, when you stop and see what you can do.  And maybe, its just listening  to him. You may be his only friend.  Thank him before you leave (he has not heard anyone thank him in years), tell him to keep smiling, as God loves you! And yes, the thirst you’re looking for, will be filled many times over. Cherish and protect it. Let it fill you up until you feel your chest is about to explode.

Show them who you are!

” Joy is unspeakable.  Faith is unsinkable. Love is unstoppable.”

Anything is possible!  “We were made to thrive.” Fill that heart with Love.

 

Conor

Fathers with Daughters

Fathers with Daughters

Dad,

“A father holds his
daughter’s hand for a
short while, but he
holds her heart forever.

Today a bride,
Tomorrow a wife,
Always your little girl.”

With Love,

Erin

Conor
Find A way!

For the willing and unafraid

Prayer of Abandonment.

Father:

I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.

Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures –
I wish no more than this, O Lord.

Into your hands I commend my soul:
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.

Charles de Foucauld

Conor
“Find A Way”
________________________________________

Emily the Elephant (MY Christmas Wish)

Emily was a couple of years older than Edward. She knew so much more than Edward and told Edward that every day. I mean everyday! That did not bother Edward though, as he really liked his sister. He loved her and liked following her all around the fields looking for food. He liked meeting all of her friends too. They were so nice to him. Sometimes better than Emily. She could be a mean sister!

One day as Emily was supposed to be watching Edward, she got involved with her elephant friends and lost sight of Edward. He must have wandered away, she thought. She looked around and did not see him. All of a sudden she got scared, as Edward was too young to be out here in the fields all by himself. She thought, “What am I going to do? Where do I start looking for Edward? Oh No! What have I done?

Emily was having so much fun with her friends; she had no idea how long Edward was gone. As often as she told Edward how much more she knew than him, she felt real bad about losing Edward. She became real sad! She was worried! She knows the danger with other animals here in the jungle.

Edward was off running around, and guess what! He found a bunch of puddles and could not wait to get in them. He was having so much fun just rolling around and getting muddy. Boy, did he love being muddy!

Edward did not realize that Emily was not around, because all he was thinking about was rolling in the water and dirt. He loved doing that and he liked filling up his trunk, again and again with water! But then Edward looked around and realized what he did—He walked away from Emily and got so involved with the puddles, that now he doesn’t know where Emily is. He cannot see her anywhere. Oh no! Where am I?

As Edward got up from the mud, he heard noises from other animals that he did not know. It sounded like quite a few animals. He heard elephant yelling too! They were yelling at each other and at the other animals too. What was going on? That is Emily and her friends!! I hear Emily screaming! I got to find her!
Edward started walking slowly towards all the noise he heard in the distance. He then started to run, because he was worried about his sister. What am I’m going to do? I’m scared! Then he remembered what his mother told him after he got in trouble last time with the puddles. She said, “It is ok to be scared. We all get scared sometimes, but we must be brave and always do the right thing. We must always help family and friends, and other animals too that need help. And yes, you always need to listen to what Mom and Dad tell you.”

Edward then started to run even faster now. The noises were louder and he could not stop thinking about Emily. She’s my sister! My sometimes mean sister! He got behind the trees and he could see 3 young lions running around the elephants trying to get one of them alone. They were much faster than the elephants, but the elephants were bigger. It looked like they were trying to get Arnold, my friend, one of the smaller elephants like me.

Edward just watch them trying to figure out what they were going to do next. Edward slipped around the side where there were more trees, so he could get even closer. He knew he had to surprise the lions, so the other elephants could help him chase the lions away.
Edward thought and knew what to do. He was so glad he did what he always loved doing in the puddles. He had filled his trunk up to the top with water. Now, he was ready!

Edward waited for the right moment and then charged the lions. Emily saw Edward, so she charged from the other side towards Edward. The lions were caught in the middle! The lions saw elephants coming at them from all sides. They knew they had to run and get away or they would be hurt.

It worked! The lions left. Emily could not wait to get to Edward and say how sorry she was for not looking after him. She promised that it would never happen again. And she told Edward she was sorry for always telling him she knew more than him. She was wrong. Emily also told Edward, that because of what he did, he saved everyone from getting hurt. Yes Edward, you knew more than me today. I am so proud of you! Thank you for helping and I want you to know, I love my little brother. She put her trunk around his head and gave him a hug!

The elephants all gathered together and started a line to go back home. Edward was feeling pretty good for helping, but it meant so much to him, to hear his sister tell him how much she loves him. Emily means so much to me and I love her too!

Edward now couldn’t wait to get home and tell Mom and Dad what he did.

“Find a way.”
_Conor

The Daffodil Principle

There is a story called, “The Daffodil Principle” that some of you may have heard. A daughter phoned her mother to come and see the daffodils while they were in bloom. Though reluctant to drive two hours, she nevertheless drove through the rain and fog, but was ready to go right back home as soon as it cleared. She relates this story saying, “My daughter asked if I would drive her to the garage to get her car before I left her, but her motive was to take me to see the daffodils, though it irritated me when I realized it.

We reached a small road near a church and when we turned around a bend in the road, there before me, was the most glorious sight I have ever seen. It was if someone had taken a vat and poured it over the mountainside in a cascade of colors. “Who did this?” I asked her. My daughter pointed to a modest house nearby, and on reaching it we saw a poster on the patio headlined—answers to the questions I know you are asking. The first answer is 50,000 bulbs—the second answer—one at a time by one woman, two hands, two feet and the third—began in 1958. This was the daffodil principle.

I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who for fifty years had brought her vision of beauty to an obscure mountainside, one bulb at a time. She had created something of ineffable beauty and inspiration. The “principle” taught me that learning to move toward our goals one step at a time—to love the doing of it, and to use the accumulation of time by multiplying small pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too can accomplish magnificent things and change the world. It makes me sad I said to my daughter, what I might have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and worked at it one bulb at a time. Just think of what I might have achieved. My daughter in her usual practical way said, “Start tomorrow. It’s so pointless to think of lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make it a lesson of celebration, instead of regrets, is to ask yourself, “How can I put this to use today?”

You all know of Blessed Mother Theresa’s famous words, “God doesn’t ask for success. He asks for faithfulness.” It isn’t necessary to perform great heroic deeds or accomplishments because nothing impresses God. However, God does ask us to use the wonderful gifts and graces He has given us to plant the Kingdom of God within ourselves, others, and the world. One bulb at a time. And these things can be accomplished without great effort on our part in three ways: First, by remembering to give thanks to God every day for the gift of life, and many other gifts of His creation, in some form of prayer. Second, to let our gifts of Faith, Hope and Love—especially Love, be manifested at home, in the workplace and in the world by our thoughts, words, and actions. And finally, never give in to fear, discouragement, or despair for these are the Devil’s tools, and we are children of God who need to understand, that we have to go through Calvary to arrive at Easter, for there is surely no person here who hasn’t or won’t go through some form of Calvary in their life in imitation of our divine Lord.

There is one last thing of which we must be conscious that tie together all of these things and that is TRUST. Placing all our trust in God. He will dispose of all things He sees fit, yet it is His will to dispose them to our benefit. We have to place trust in our loved ones, and in each other, else faith, hope and love become simply words in our vocabulary.

Not everything is always as it seems, and so it is here that trust comes into play. Remember, when our life is completed, there will remain in the end only these three – Faith, Hope, and Love, and the greatest of these is Love. Increase these gifts, place your trust in them and the Kingdom of God is already within you.
From excerpts of Deacon Bob.

Conor
“Find a Way!”

The World and The Church Today

As I sat in church last week, I happened to look up into the balcony, and then around to the side pews of the church, and it struck me how empty they were this day. My mind immediately drifted off to Christmas when there was standing room only. I have seen this many times before, but then it hit me why I was bothered.

Like most people today, regardless of one’s political beliefs, all are greatly moved by the scenes and stories of the persecutions of Christians and the other minority religious groups in the Mid-East. The genocide started last year in Syria, where 1.2 million Christians have been displaced and 130,000 people have been killed for failing to covert to Islam. Now this violence has spread to Iraq, with the continuation of genocide happening now for Iraq Christians’ and a fairly large religious group called the Yazidis.

The Christians and the Yazidis all have been forced to leave their homes with only what was on their back because of their refusal to convert. The other option facing them if they were unwilling to leave, was death by mass grave killings (either alive or dead), nailed to a cross or beheaded by the sword.

Their churches are being destroyed; papers, books and manuscripts dating back 2000 years are all being burned. Crosses are torned downed and burned, while others are used for crucifixions, while others head’s of those failing to give up their beliefs are paraded around town, photographed and put on the internet for all to see and witness.

Readers of history and those who study the bible could take these current events, and if the time line is unknown to them, could very easily think they were reading something happening 2000 years ago. But no, it is now!

We know how small the world is today, but how does one begin to understand what is happening a plane ride 7-8 hours away? How do we balance those situations with our own situations and our faith and daily lives? How do we reconcile those forced to die, as well as those willing to die for their faith, against the empty pews in church I witnessed last week? Where is the disconnect? Why such an expansive gulf? What don’t we understand, but just as important, what can we do?

“For all those suffering persecution for their faith and the love of you, our hope is in you Lord to find the answers to bring those people to safety and rest in your loving care.

Hear our prayer O Lord.”

Conor
Find a Way!

Through the narrow door

“Strive to enter through the narrow door.”
_Luke 13:24

Striving requires contending with whatever comes our way. Making good out of bad, and becoming a better person. Choosing encouragement instead of criticism. Choosing love rather than disrespect or hatred. We are all challenged with choices, hardships, disappointments, pain and suffering and the weight of our cross. How do we choose to manage this, and what decisions are we making to control all of this in our lives? But also, how do we manage this so we can put the beauty of life in front of our challenges, and enjoy and share the love around us?

It is hard to find those answers when you in the valley rather than on top of the mountain. But being in the valley allows us to get to the mountain as we learn, grow, and develop ourselves by the experiences of the valley. It is in the valley where we learn the important lessons of life.

Prayer should be part of our daily life, but even more so during those difficult times. Prayer, along with our quiet time with God talking from the heart, is the best way to get to the waiting love, strength and understanding of Our Lord.

Reflect on this, as you deal with all the challenges of the narrow door.

_Conor

“Find a Way.”