Renewed by the Holy Spirit,  by Fr. Robert DeGrandis, testimonies of priests -- nine of them -- touched by the Lord in a direct way:  inspirational, well-written, a booklet that will bring hope and comfort as we see how the Holy Spirit touches our shepherds and can do the same in our lives! CLICK HERE



[adapted from Michael H. Brown's The God of Miracles]

The more we give, the more we get, the message seems to be -- as long as we're not expecting anything in return.

Miracles can be multiplied in our own lives. The trigger is selflessness. When we're positive, the spiritual world is energized for action.

What miracle cannot occur? What can’t God do? There are even cases of people who through prayer have been brought back from the dead. (Did you see this case from our front page Sunday?)

We should ask ourselves in prayer (every day):

What have I done today that was unselfish?

Whom have I helped?

Did I think of God?

Did I add to the dignity of another person?

How was I humble? How was I not humble? Whom did I love? Who didn’t I love?

Ask yourself those questions because when you die they're among the questions you will be asked in eternity as you realize that every single minute of your life bore opportunity for advancement and hidden meaning.

Are you balanced?

Too little water hurts a plant. So does too much.

Do you go to extremes?

By our fruits we will know ourselves, as well as others.

On our way to that balance God sends us signs to point us in the right direction. Most are small – the little miracles. We take full advantage of them (and the rest of His grace) when we go with their flow and let life open up to us.

We have to remember that life on earth should always be viewed “from above” and to do that we have to realize that we are here to learn.

Our mistakes and trials are learning opportunities.

We're spiritual beings having a physical experience.

Instead of letting our mistakes discourage us, we should allow them to energize us.

Be open always to God’s perspective.

"Let go and let God" is the expression, and it's not just a cliché: every day we're faced with a choice between doing things the way we think is best and doing things that flow with the Holy Spirit.

When you have that choice, go with the Spirit.

God wants us to be thinking, rational persons -- but He also wants us to be faithful, fearless, and release things to Him. Too often we set our minds on a plan and attempt to adhere to it so rigidly that we can't hear His small voice within us.

God wants us to approach matters in a freer, more open, and certainly more trustful manner -- which means letting Him put things together.

Time and again I've seen where I'll have a rigid schedule during a trip or other endeavor -- a master plan of how the day should be approached, with detailed plans that I have agonized over. On the other hand, when something unexpected comes up -- and I'm open to it -- it often leads to remarkable results.

The Lord opens up when we open to Him, and this is a lesson that can save us both time and tremendous internal wrangling. Much of our anxiety is caused by trying to hash out everything ourselves, with our own rigid intellects, instead of asking God to do it for us. By just releasing a plan or schedule, by dismissing rigid control, by stepping back, by praying, at Mass, we invite the miraculous. Despite His enormity, all God needs is a little opening!

Make room for God and look for His Mind more than your own. Let Him flow like the Mississippi. And “pray big.” Don’t let the expectations of the world, of the “logical,” limit you. Praying big means praying with openness.

It's only natural to want certain things and to find ourselves striving for them. But it’s a mistake. We become unbalanced. We are at constant war with the flesh, and when we lust after something, even something it seems good, this is enough to cause blockage. Often the Lord holds back because we want something too much.

Our eyes are supposed to be on Heaven, on the Light at the end of the tunnel (this we can’t want too much), and when we turn that focus to something else -- something mundane, and especially something selfish -- we exhaust our grace.

Forcing an issue can burn a hole in what we are seeking. It can break it. There are times that in His mercy, God grants that we can have something we have overly sought (just as we occasionally give in to a child), but usually He puts up roadblocks, especially if something is not in our best interests. If you think back on your life (the career you may have wanted as a teenager, the girlfriends or boyfriends you would have died to have had, the material possessions you so craved), you'll find that having your way would have been to your profound long-term detriment. As the saying goes, God’s greatest grace is in unanswered prayers.

Think back. Go through life and project what would have happened if you had realized some of your fondest desires!

When we die, we will see everything that happened on earth with the clarity of new eyes.

The senseless will make sense. We’ll see that God always changes our plans for the better.

[resources: The God of Miracles]

[Also: Michael Brown retreat in September 29 retreat: Chicago and Northern New Jersey-New York]

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