Guardian Angels, Our Heavenly Companions,
a little booklet that reveals the secrets of angels and how they guide
and govern the world. It explains the many services these blessed spirits
perform for us, mostly without our realizing it -- protecting souls and
bodies in a way that can be both ordinary and miraculous. Fascinating
examples from the lives of our holiest saints: how they defend us, how they
form at Mass, how they defeat demons!
GLIMPSE HEAVEN BY CASTING DARKNESS OUT AND LEARNING THE RHYTHM OF 'RIGHT EXPECTATION'
What you expect is what you will project on the reality of your future. Did you ever contemplate that? Often, we are what we think. It's in the inner recesses of mind that we build or lessen or destroy blessings that God has for us.
The Lord is always the One Who determines what occurs, of course -- it's not like we can program every single thing by positive thinking (see Job) -- nor does He grant us every material whim (especially not selfish ones) -- but most often a "right expectation" (purity of intention) propels us to success in work, health, and other matters that are important to us. Right expectation is expecting the best and takes practice and discipline and rhythm. It's more powerful than you think.
Notice how rhythm works. It has to do with correct habits. First, we have to break the inertia of doing the wrong thing or doing nothing at all and then form the right way into a routine. We have to become accustomed to something new. We have to carve a new groove. We see this especially with work and exercise. It's only a big deal when we sit around thinking about (or dreading) it. Once you simply get up and do it and cut a groove, it henceforth flows smoothly.
Let your groove be the right one. Once you start, you gain momentum quickly. Expect more. Expect the best. Work with diligence. Pray at every chance. Get into the habit of dressing neatly. Rest when you need it. Especially, get into the rhythm of cleansing your thought process. (This is the attire of your spirit.)
Adopt the habit of casting out your own darkness before noting the darkness in others.
Darkness is sin. Darkness is a bad habit. Darkness is pride. Darkness is anger. Darkness is lust. Darkness is antagonism. Darkness is bias. Darkness is sloppiness. Darkness is distortion. Darkness is hate. Darkness is materialism. Darkness is laziness (sloth). Darkness is the wrong rhythm. We sin more than we realize!
Get in the daily rhythm of reading Scripture.
"The Lord answered Job out of the storm and said, 'Now gird up your loins like a man; I will ask you, and you instruct Me. Will you really annul My judgment? Will you condemn Me that you may be justified? Or do you have an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like His? Adorn yourself with eminence and dignity, and clothe yourself with honor and majesty. Pour out the overflowings of your anger" (Job 40:7-11).
Just recently, the Pope referred back to the Roman Empire and how as it fell due to impurity it was plagued by natural disasters as we see disasters unnerving us in our current time. That's because we are in the rhythm of selfishness. Me, me, me. Worldliness is darkness and we could define it as politics, money, and entertainment, when it's not used for the glory of God. It's the wrong rhythm to follow. How many of us do? How many of us have one foot in Christianity and the other in worldliness? The rhythm of right living is His Glory, and His only. This means purity of intention. Do it for Him. There is no better rhythm! Without pure intentions, we are expecting the wrong way (and thus prayer is often unanswered).
Darkness also comes from others:
When we allow people to define us, it distorts who we think we are and throws us off course. It breaks our pace. It brings the wrong expectation. This occurs when we cow-tow to the misguided notions of relatives or friends or those with whom we work or when we allow others to cause us to view ourselves in a way that is negative because they are judging by the standards of the world.
People pile things onto us or we do it to ourselves and when our perspective is distorted we wander from the path set for us. It brings the wrong expectation.
It also happens when we don't forgive ourselves. Forgiving yourself is as important as forgiving others. Otherwise; there is darkness; there's bondage; there is negative expectation.
You recall how Jesus said before focusing on the spot in the eye of another, we should cast the log out of our own (Matthew 7:5)? It's a tremendous metaphor. For a log obscures. A log blocks. A log jams. We have spoken of this before. It limits our eyesight. When we pile up enough logs, it's like the barricade of a fort; there is only a peephole.
To dispel that, we ask the Lord to first search our own spirits for darkness and then pray to build a bubble of protection. Humble yourself, confess any known sin, repent of all transgressions, forgive other people, break with anything lustful or materialistic or occult, and forgive yourself – release yourself from what haunted you in your past, and may still haunt your conscience. Free yourself. Cleanse yourself. Did you know that the elevated Host breaks bonds? Did you know you can "bathe" yourself (wash yourself of the cardinal sins) with the Rosary (and of course Confession)? "From my secret sins cleanse, me, oh Lord."
Take a deep breath and exhale darkness.
Seal yourself with the Holy Spirit.
Breathe in the living waters. Ask the Lord to make your heart as white as the Host.
Surround yourself with angels. "The hope of the righteous is gladness," says Proverbs (10:28).
The great mission of life is to purify and right our spirits as we accomplish the tasks set forth in the course of our lives and it does little good to live a long life unless we are in a constant rhythm of purification! In fact, if, spiritually, we are going nowhere, a long life can be a curse. The same happens when we travel blindly out of step with the Spirit (and expect the negative). Darkness draws darkness.
Get back to the rhythm of God. Get back into who you really are. Flow with the rhythm of who God made you to be -- not the rhythm of the world, not the rhythm of others. You'll find the pace in deep prayer. You'll find it at Mass. You'll find it fasting. Give prayer a chance. Don't rush. That's the wrong rhythm. Expect God to repair past damage (as He did for Job, who, in the end, expected it).
[see also: Michael Brown retreat, Mass in Louisiana and Announcing a retreat, Mass in New Mexico]
[resources: The God of Miracles and Our Lady of Kibeho]
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