“He that sacrifices to God his property by alms-deeds,
his honor by bearing insults, or his body by mortifications,
by fasts and penitential rigours, offers to Him a part of himself and of what
belongs to him; but he that sacrifices to God his will,
by obedience, gives to Him all that he has,
and can say:
Lord, having given you my will, I have nothing more to give you.”
St. Alphonsus Liguori, p. 191
AN Excerpt From
The Sermons of St. Alphonsus Liguiori
(city mural /Nashville / Julie Cook / 2018)
The ins and out in and out of a city…as seen in the lives of the fortunate and unfortunate.
(sign posted within a doorway near an area known for the homeless/ Julie Cook / Nashville/ 2018)
(two images of a bird with a broken wing just off the park where the homeless congrugate
in Nashville / Julie Cook / 2018)
(a very sick dove sits out amongst the throng of 4th of July revalers, over looked and
basicaly ingnored by the enormous crowd / Julie Cook / 2018)
(a couple of wild turkeys and a squirrel resting during a heatwave on the grounds of
Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage / Julie Cook / 2018)
(a squirrel pays no attention to the tourists gathered by it’s side at Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage/
Julie Cook / 2018)
“But there must be a real giving up of the self.
You must throw it away
“blindly” so to speak. Christ will indeed give you a real personality:
but you must not go to Him for the sake of that.
As long as your own personality
is what you are bothering about you are not going to Him at all.
The very first step is to try to forget about the self altogether.
Your real, new self (which is Christ’s and also yours, and yours just because it is His)
will not come as long as you are looking for it.
It will come when you are looking for Him.
Does that sound strange?
The same principle holds, you know, for more everyday matters.
Even in social life,
you will never make a good impression on other people until you stop thinking about what sort
of impression you are making.
Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original:
whereas if you simply try to tell the truth
(without caring twopence how often it has been told before)
you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.
The principle runs through all life from top to bottom. Give up your self,
and you will find your real self.
Lose your life and you will save it.
Submit to death, death of your ambitions and favourite wishes every day and death
of your whole body in the end: submit with every fiber of your being, and
you will find eternal life.
Keep back nothing.
Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.
Nothing in you that has not died will ever be raised from the dead.
Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred,
loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay.
But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.”
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
Wise words you have passed on.
The bird with a broken wing looks like a robin born just this Spring. Most don’t make it.
Thanks TomMy husband told me it was a robin, most likely a young bird and he surmised the wing was broken— it was just across the street from the small inner city park where the homeless take up residence— lots of fussing and quibbling amongst the homeless as to whose space is whom as I observed two really get into it— the tiny urban park has small trees that are respite for the throngs of sparrows that roost there overnight— of which I suspect was Home to this young robin. The contrasts for both man and beast was telling— as the separation of security, health and comfort to that if illness, anxiety and exposure was great— as is more or less expected within our urban cities—,it’s just that my lens seemed hyper focused this trip. And it was not my first visit to Nashville. I’ve traversed many a large city both here and abroad and every time I am reminded of our finite nature— and now back home— as time warrants for some reflection— I will offer it— I think with Andrew Jackson whispering in my ear, as we now find ourselves living in such an odd time, I saw things more sharply than I have before— but it may not be a vision that would be expected seeing such extremes but perhaps a greater sense of conviction —0ld hickory’s has that way about him..
Julie, thank you. A thought that came this morning while I was doing something for Jerry stayed with me all day. “The only thing of value in this life is what we give away.” This, of course, had to be rooted in Jesus’ words in Luke 9:23. And this brings us back to His sacrifice for us. Where would we be without it?
and you Fran are a living embodiement of this thought…and a blessing not only to Jerry but to all of us who witness your giving.
Thank you, Julie. The Lord has HIs own way of bringing us to give all. It is never the way we would choose for ourselves, but when He brings us to it, He leads us to see His grace and glory in it; to see it as the most wonderful way. To care for Jerry is as “unto the Lord.” I would not trade places with anyone. Blessings as you serve your family.
So powerful, Julie! ❤ ❤