My hope for you

Poetry speaks to our minds and hearts and is meant to communicate more than the sum of its words. It is an apt expression of our walk with the Lord. I encourage you to forward this link to those you love. I pray this poetry leads you into reflection and prayer but I also want to start a conversation. You, too, have something to share with others-not only in person, but also here. Your experience is yours to give away to build up and learn from others in the Body of Christ. Share the word that you hear, the experiences you have lived. We are all part of the New Evangelization.If you also want to contact me by email, feel free: genefirn@yahoo.com

Table of contents: October 7, 2012

Saturday, December 29, 2012

The Tribulation

from the beginning
the enemy has sought to
ensnare the Father's children by
deception's lure into the
darkness of rebellion's lair
attacking My Gift of  Family Life
idolizing selfish appitites
pursuing conquests of the
opposite sex without
limitations of conscience nor
thoughts of lifelong commitment
draping another with the
wounded mantle of
pride's many colors
tightly fitted with
self-professed adoration or
ensuring confusion's child of a
transitory gender that
crys for acceptance yet
does not accept their own
I Gifted at conception
Redemption's bounty for hearts
paid-for with My Precious Blood
provoked satan's fury
against Me and all who
serve My Kingdom to bring
Love to the loveless
Hope to the hopeless
Life to the dying
Salvation to the lost
My journey traveled the
Via Dolorosa to the Cross as
witness after witness of that
Heavenly Kingdom's Gift
conquered that same darkness
within and without
by mingling
blood with Blood
white and red
heart to Heart
each pierced
throughout time to
encourage the fearful
strengthen the weak
embolden the timid
ushering victories
through losing acceptance
sometimes even life itself
Eternity's battle of tribulation
ebbs and flows and now
it flows for you to
share the Burden
bear Light into darkness
Salt to insipid souls
though many fall away
submit not to coercion nor
threats of prohibition to
speak My Truth in Love
nor be deterred by
false accusations of
hatred and bigotry for
My Word brings Life to
those who hear and receive
but Death to those who
reject and rebel so
embrace your Calling and the
Strength of My Spirit for the
enemy does not rest and
many are succumbing to his
marketing treachery
in this you shall prevail if you
persevere in faith
trust in My faithfulness
love with My Love
forgive your enemies
knowing that
I shall never leave you
nor forsake you
go
it is time

Reflection/Discussion:
-What are some of today's "deception's lures"?
-Describe "Eternity's battle of tribulation". 
-Who are some of past/present "witnesses" who paid the price?
-What signs of persecution are here?
-How do we prepare for the tribulation?
-What areas in your life need shoring-up?
-How are you going to accomplish that?  
-How do you "embrace your calling" in your life?
-Get support, don't be a "lone ranger".

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Son


He was always there for me
our bond like no other
His beginning
shrouded in Mystery
was a blessing
beyond my imagination
a grace finding 
an unworthy home within
He was always a joy
so playful in pleasing me
yet so serious 
with a purpose
far beyond His years
we shared devotion
with memories
treasured to this day
He grew to manhood’s strength
with a wisdom unmatched
and a knowledge Divine
possessing the lively eyes
and character of His father
He graced our family
‘till called into the desert to
begin a mission leading to
a bitter end
signs and wonders followed Him
with words to be hallowed of
a Kingdom that had come
years passed too quickly
then
the sorrow that
I always foresaw
began to claim Him  for
His enemies were many 
despite His tender love
yet
nothing could prepare me for the
horror of His sentence 
so brutal and 
more than I could bear 
my painful watch 
hung on my brokenness
and lingered long after
the meeting of our eyes
as a sword
pierced my heart
binding us in
Passion's embrace
His final request for
my love to bear so many
was beyond 
my infirmity
yet
impossible to refuse
since
I could do no other 
than to honor His wishes
finally finished at last
at rest in my arms 
one last time
we spoke without words
after pain was spent though
I would endure the more
‘till we would meet again 
with wondrous Glory

Reflection/Discussion:
-Describe Mary's relationship with her Son.
-What did you like best about the description? Why?
-Does it make Jesus relationship with His Mother more real? Why/not? 
-How does this description compare with the poem "The Mother Mary"?
-Describe your relationship with Mary.
-Do you want to make her more a part of your life? Why/not?
-How can you grow in your relationship with Mary?

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Focus

the solution of
catechesis is
rationalized
with a  lamented
"if only..."
when the purview of
empty pews or
listless hearts
elicit not a Great
but rather a
faint amen
or when cultural trends
against Church teaching are
publicly championed by
purported disciples
swearing allegiance
to the Faith
while watchmen silently
turn their attention to not
offending sensibilities
thereby not having to make
uncomfortable decisions
though scandalizing
the faithful few 
or worse
validate darkness
in the name of progress      
as the young are led astray
by a system of relative feelings to
decide right and wrong  
turning to self's pleasures
and ego's false idols
buttressed by the
previous generation's
tradition of dissent
all of which is to be mitigated
nay transformed by
classroom presentations
how utterly absurd
when hearts are hardened
unconverted and 
brittle from lacking
caresses from the Cross
unaware of their
Incarnate need for
transcendent embraces
so Personal
so Mystical
from the One who
Created them for a
Supernatural Identity of
Intimate Union and a
Glorious Eternity beyond
their limitations in this
broken world
only then
when their hearts are open to
receive the One for whom
they have been conceived
when Divinity is partaken
as they accept the invitation to
surrender themselves to the
Sacrificed Savior
Risen to New Life as
Lord of their lives
then when the Spirit anoints
Love is consummated and
lives are entwined
person to Person
to become
new citizens of the Kingdom
only then
are they eager to consume the
Banquet of Life
and therein lies
the Focus

Reflection/Discussion:
-What is the place of catechesis?
-What is the focus?
-What is involved in conversion?
-Where do we start?
-Is is gradual or instant or both? Why?
-What can we do to help others in this process? 
-How can we grow in this New Life?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Question

unbelief fosters a
vague uneasiness about life
an anxiousness that
lingers beyond all
logical explinations
coating emtions with the
ground fog of insecurity
that even accompany
protestations of confidence
that all is well like...
attempting to navigate
life's  journey with no
gps to guide the way to
constantly changing destinations
while unforeseen detours
even deadends harass our
dream trip into a nightmare
life's goals sometimes are
at odds with competitors
perhaps even partners
falling way short of ideals-
desires that motivated
years of effort and sacrifice
producing unpromising results
leaving disappointment in its wake...
then there's that, you know,
never enough
always more ?
another moutain to climb
one more gold medal to win
another championship trophy to kiss
all transitory satisfactions that will
pass into faded memories when the
present drains into a distant past
fame and beauty are
terrified of time which
attacks them without conscience
leaving only wrinkled photographs
and dusty scrapbooks to boast about
what used to be but will
never be anything more than
transitory fulfillment in the
race of life never quite
living up to their billing as the
sine qua non of happiness
because there are always those
terrible tremors of loss that
foster feelings of despair
when answers fail to satisfy
questions about life's trials
suffering and heartache
whether from circumstances of
pride's downfall
sickness
weakness of character
broken promises
fractured relationships
plain ol' sin
troubles of too many kinds
too few that are
acceptable with any
measure of peace and...
last but not leat there's that
end...over..done.gone...passed away
ie  death thing that we really
don't like to talk about
as in the certitude of finality
so...all this and more
leads me to
ask the question
is this all there is?

Reflection/Discussion:
-Does unbelief foster the stated description? Why/not?
-What if this is actually all there is?
-What if there is an afterlife? How does that affect the way you live now?
-Why are you here? What is your purpose for living?
-Why don't we talk about death? Explain.
-How do you talk about eternal truths to someone in today's culture?
-Prepare a 5-10 minute explanation of your relationship with God.



Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The Throne

at the center
within each heart
there stands
a throne
a seat of authority
a position due homage
for the allegiance of
our will is to
the one who sits
upon that throne
regarding all
interests therein
nothing escapes
decisions of
agenda
time
money
career
commitment
responsibility
morality
citizenship
speech
affiliations
recreation
relationships
family
fulfillment
who or what
we worship
each under
the purview of
the one who
reigns with authority
that reality is
reflected in the fruit of
our daily lives
eventually leading even to
Eternal Life or death
examine yourself
answer truthfully
is it you or
the Lord?

Reflection/Discussion:
-Which of the areas mentioned are/not under the Lordship of Jesus?
-Why is Jesus not on the throne of certain areas of your life?
-What help can you get to move ahead?
-How does the "fruit" of our lives reflect who sits on the throne?
-How would being part of a men's/women's group help?
-How can you get that to happen? 





Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Sin

regardless of the silence
bestowing a cloak of
invisibility to its existence we
absolve ourselves of any guilt  by
pragmatic subjectivity-
decrees of justification- by
self-righteous formulations
untethered from nature's law
whose logic is suppressed by
secularism's reliance on
transitory feelings bestowing a
crown of unbridled relativism
on morality thus ensuring
sin's disappearance-
even from the pulpit- which
obfuscates Calvary making the
Cross irrelevant
Resurrection superfluous
Christian Morality into
caricatures of religiosity
but look around...
death terrifies 
disease overwhelms
selfishness reigns
pride is idolized
murder justified
lust idealized 
envy trivialized
lukewarmness normalized
resentment rationalized
greed exceeded
debauchery exalted
anger validated
forgiveness resented
reality equivocated
enslaving  humanity into a
hopeless depravity wrapped in
fantasies of a guaranteed utopia by
intelligentsia's progressive decrees
dictating compliance since
they know better than you
beware
perfection of this world is
an illusion
fixing ourselves is
beyond our capabilities
only a transformation of
our nature can
conquer Eden's curse
only at an infinite cost can
infinite debts be pardoned
someone must pay the price for
our redemption from
sin and evil's domination or
it doesn't happen
Someone did-
the Savior Jesus Christ
Offering His Precious Blood for our
forgiveness
freedom
power
unequivocal Love-
exchanging His Life for ours
conquering sin and death
raising humanity into
sharing His Divinity
Born again into a
New Creation-
an Event and Process-
waiting for our
yes or no...hint...
yes is better

Reflection/Discussion:
-Is sin talked about in your parish/church? Why/not?
-What does "perfection of this world is an illusion" mean?
-What are some of the manifestations of sin in today's culture?incorrec
-What is relativism? Why is it an incorrect/inadequate philosophy?
-What does it mean to be "born again"?
-How is being "born again" an event as well as a process?
-How much is the Sacrament of Reconciliation part of your life? Why? 
-How does your sin limit your growth in holiness?
  



Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Encounter

yearning for more
than meets the eye
a vague uneasiness
filled my emptiness
within and without
the insufficiency of
temporal everything 
despite striving to
vacuum fulfillment
into my ego
I realized that
nothing finite could fill
infinite desires
nothing temporary could satisfy
eternal longings
except
Infinite and Eternal Love
finally admitting a
conviction of my life's
self-centeredness
a sorrow for sin
led to a turning away from
wrongdoing's false glamour
then a turning toward
reconciliation by
finding forgiveness
from a Savior
whose Identity is not ethereal
but rather Incarnate
the Person who initiates
an unspeakable offer
a transfer from slavery
to freedom-
death to life- but
only by my free choice
a Decision to follow Him as
my Lord and Savior
thus beginning a
Nuptial Journey
He is known
first by Word
then by heart
as the One who
died for me
but now is Alive
no longer just an idea
but now Real
through a
Passionate Encounter

Reflection/Discussion:
-How do your desires point to the Infinite?
-What does "Passionate Encounter" mean?
-What are the elements necessary to encounter Jesus?
-What prevents you from encountering Jesus or
  growing in your relationship with Him?
-What is the relationship between faith and feelings?
-What does " a nuptial journey" mean?




Sunday, October 7, 2012

Table of Contents


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New Evangelization 
 
The Lord is always reaching out to us, whether we know Him or not. If you do not know Him yet, seek Him with all your heart. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you; be persistent. He seeks you more than you seek Him. Put yourself in a position of seeking and when He knocks on the door of your heart, open wide. 

 If we have chosen to be His disciple, He calls us to reach out to those in our spheres of influence to bring His Word of Love. “To know Him and to make Him known; to love Him and to make Him loved” is our challenge. How that happens, to whom we reach out, what we say doesn’t have to be perfect, or a huge event. Love is sometimes best when it is small and personal. Use these poems in your outreach for they are meant to help "open minds and hearts" and, ultimately, to "find" or, better, to "be found"!

The Approval: Where do we look for approval -from God or from others?
The Assumption: A common assumption is not true.
The Benchmark: evaluating our lives on our deathbed.
The Call: He calls each of us to Himself  by name.
The Chance: Take a chance to see if it's all True.
The Claim: There are only three possibilities regarding the identity of Jesus.
The Crux:  Jesus tells us that we become who/what we worship    
The Disciple: Who is a true disciple of Jesus?
The Door: It is our decision to open or not.
The Encounter: How to have a personal relationship with Jesus.
The Focus: Conversion is needed before Catechesis can take hold.
The Gospel: The simplicity of the Gospel in a confused world.
The Identity: Who are you......really?
The Invitation: Jesus personally invites each one of us to follow Him.
The Kiss: The Gift of Salvation  needs to be accepted by each person.
The Prodigals: He patiently waits.
The Question: Without faith, it doesn't look pretty.
The Rest: When searching turns to finding
The Sin: Despite the silence, sin is a reality.
The Seeker: He longs to be one with us.
The Tell: Like a "tell" in poker, embedded in our nature is a “tell” of the Infinite.
The Tragedy: Eternity without God is the real tragedy.
The Two Ways: One leads to Life, the other to death.
The Witness: Jesus speaks of our calling to be His witness.
The Last Things Series: 
                                        Death
                                        Judgement 
                                        Heaven 
                                        Hell
                                       
Spiritual Life

Our journey with the Lord is an adventure with peaks and valleys. He pursues and bids us to "come closer". Together, we grow in His Love, discovering His Wisdom in the communion of saints. Like the myriad angles of a diamond, the spiritual life is forever giving glimmers of the Infinite-ever deeper, ever richer. Read, reflect and pray over the poems on the spiritual life.Your insight is valuable because it is yours to give; it is what you have grown to understand- what you have been shown. Discussing your take with others is a wonderful way to support one another in seeking the Lord. Remember, it might be just what another is waiting to hear.

The As If: Living our faith as if it is true and real...because it is.
The Betrayal: When Shepherds don't Shepherd, what to do?
The Circle: Life is a cyclic process of growth in holiness when we follow the Lord.
The Crux:  Jesus tells us that we become who/what we worship by the decisions we make.
The Denudation:  Trials strip us of our false securities and expose our sin.
The Desert: Part of the journey is purification.
The Dialogue: Jesus and a modern disciple speak to each other.
The Discerner: Surrender is the way to discern God’s Will.
The Disciple: Who is a true disciple of Jesus?
The Enemy: Satan is real.
The Grace: Soar with eagles wings. 
The Holy One: We are invited to live in His Presence.
The Lover: Going deeper.
The Magis : Follow the Lord with heroic leadership.
The Narrative: Whose plan for your life are you following?
The Presence: Experiencing the Lord’s Presence in our lives is for each of us.
The Race: Life is a battle and process of hard fought growth in holiness.
The Security: Where is the source of your security?
The Throne: Who sits on the throne of your life?
The Tribulation: Persecution is here-our calling to be faithful witnesses.
The True Intimacy: What does it mean to live in true, intimate relationships?
The Way: The only way to holiness.




Suffering

Almost nothing grabs our attention like suffering.  Whether the source is from without or within, it intersects almost every aspect of our lives. Sometimes it’s shocking, and sometimes it’s inevitable, the result of our own weakness/sin. It can turn our lives upside down and inside out. However it comes, it stretches us, many times beyond our strength. It causes us to question  why did God allow this?  Why hasn't He stopped it?  It tempts us to complain and feel sorry for ourselves and, sometimes, to give up and find escapes that lead down paths we later wish we had never trod. For sure, it slaps us in the face that we actually don't have control over our lives. We are not immortal.

Faith points the way to God but often times in circular paths. The Lord can bring good out of all things, even suffering. It can be exasperating and can seem like it will never end. It is part of our personal journey and part of the human condition. There are no simplistic answers. It is definitely a huge trial. Yet, we are not alone. The Lord is with us even when we do not experience Him. I encourage you to not waste your suffering. It is your great though reluctant opportunity to grow in the Lord and help bring about great things in the Kingdom of God.  See what that means by praying your way through these poems. 

The Challenge: How to deal with the challenge of illness.
The Cross: Dealing with loss.
The Dream: Dealing with divorce.
The Embrace: Acceptance of our cross in life.
The Healing: The gradual healing of loss.
The Hour: Persecution is here.
The Seeing: How the Lord sees our suffering vs how we sometimes look at it.
The Offering: Joining our suffering with the Lord’s for union and intercession.
The Suffering: Jesus redeems our suffering.
The Tempest: Seeking the Lord in the midst of sometimes chaotic suffering.
The Trials: Trials purify us to become holy like Jesus.
The Word of the Cross: Listen to the Way to Life Eternal.





Morality

Truth is absolute, not relative. It is revealed by God both in nature and in His Word. It is taught and guarded by the Church. The world disagrees because Satan disagrees. Thus, the battle is on.  Side by side, we fight the forces of evil, not only around us, but,  also, within for we bear the heritage of the fall.  Though reborn, we tend toward sin in all its myriad allurements. It is only possible to grow in holiness with the gift of grace and the support of our brothers and sisters in the Lord, guided by His Word in the heart of the Church. As we ask, seek and knock, we will find the way.

Chastity: A virtue under siege.
The Decision:  Moral decision making.
The Forgiver: Forgiveness in the life of a disciple. 
The Refusal: We are called to disobey false/immoral laws.  
The Seduction: God's plan for human sexuality.
The Abortion Series:
The Daughter: Abortion from the child’s viewpoint.
The Regret: The Mom of "The Daughter" speaks.
The Outsider: The Dad reacts to the abortion of "The Daughter".
The Griever: Jesus reacts to the abortion of "The Daughter".



Trinity/Mary/Scripture

he Father, revealed in the Son by the power of the Holy Spirit, speaks His Word in the Virgin Mother who, in turn, gives the Lord to us.  Intimacy is at the heart of the Trinity and the bond of TMother and Son.   Scripture opens their Life to us. He speaks to each of us and bids us to build up one another. Don’t hesitate. 

The Passion Series:
  
The Cup: Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane
The Look: Peter’s denial 
The Centurion: The Crucifixion
The Third Day: Mary Magdalene and the Resurrection.

The Father: Is our view of the Father accurate or distorted?
The Kiss: Jesus on the cross.
The Son: Mary speaks about her Son.
The Mother Mary: Jesus speaks about His Mother.
The Promised: The Holy Spirit and you.