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Asking for a Sign

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“Lord, send me a sign!”

I can not begin to tell you how many times this phrase has left my mouth.  It usually occurs when I need to truly understand what God wants of me or for me during a moment of fervent and passionate prayer. It usually has a special ending of my own, “Lord, send me a sign—and make it really clear!” An example was when I was deciding what course to take with my career, namely my shift from classroom teacher to principal. The opportunity to do so at the school where I was employed didn’t exist so I needed to pursue the opportunity elsewhere. I applied and interviewed at a few places, but ignored the position of principal that was open at St. Dominic, even though I was asking for signs throughout the whole time. I received a “poke” from a respected friend to apply. Ignored it. I received a second “poke” from a trusted confidant to apply. Ignored it. A third “poke” occurred from someone with tremendous authority. I did not ignore it. The power of three was too much to ignore. I applied. I interviewed. I accepted. The signs became unmistakable. The  signs continued to inform me that I was doing what the Lord intended. There was no denying it. God certainly made it really clear.

In John 1:6-8, 19-28, John is reacting to this basic need for a sign to know and be assured of God’s presence. He is sharing what he has experienced as the sign from God that itwas now time to shift focus from himself to Jesus. John tells his disciples about the dove, and the light, and the words of God – all magnificent signs, bright neon arrows pointing at Jesus, the long awaited Messiah. It couldn’t be more clear. Yet, it is remarkable how slow people are to shift focus away from John to Jesus, if they ever do. The entirety of Jesus’s ministry is all about signs and wonders to move the hearts of those who seek. Those who saw the signs were open to seeing them. Those who didn’t see the signs, simply didn’t want to. They didn’t see it right up to the very end.

Do you find yourself asking God for a sign? Do you also ask him to make it really clear like I do? Do you see the signs even if the signs aren’t exactly what you thought they would be? People didn’t think the sign about the Messiah would be coming from a crazy desert dweller dressed in camel’s fur that ate locusts and honey. Those who do see the signs are open to seeing them. They understand that God works in amazing ways. He gives signs all the time. So the next time you find yourself asking for a sign from God, make sure you are open to the message He is sending or you just might miss it.

Posted by Jill Fischer
Tags: signs

Faith. Hope. Perseverence.

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On August 27, we celebrate the feast of St. Monica. I “met” St. Monica a few years ago. While I knew of her, I took the time to learn more about her in order to establish a friendship. I now call upon her daily as I try to live with and understand the changing nature of my role as mother, now that my children are adults. This is a struggle for me; the balancing act between continuing to teach but doing it in a way that will not be seen as too pushy. The life of St. Monica sheds some light on how to navigate this tenuous terrain. After all, I only want the best for my children, all children, and that is a life rooted in Jesus Christ. 

St. Monica was married to a pagan man who respected her beliefs but was unwilling to have their three children baptized. Their children were Augustine, Navigus, and Perpetua.  Monica would pray fervently for her husband’s conversion, and one year prior to his death, he was converted. In that time, Navigus and Perpetua entered into religious life, but Augustine was nothing but lazy and uncouth. Worried, Monica sent him away to Carthage for an education. Unfortunately, Augustine established an appreciation for a philosophy of life that was not Christian. Upon returning home and telling his mother, she kicked him out of the house. Feeling remorse, she reconciled with her son and pursued a different approach. She sought counsel from many people and  eventually forged a relationship with St. Ambrose. Augustine was eventually brought to conversion after seventeen years of persistence. Augustine went on to become St. Augustine.  (

What was the secret? Faith. Hope.  Perseverance in prayer. St. Monica found every avenue to teach in subtle and not so subtle ways. She called upon the Saints. She asked for help.  She sought support. She relied upon the Mass and making sacrifices. Her story demonstrates how even when you don’t think your children/next generation isn’t paying attention or listening, they most certainly are. If you read Confessions by St. Augustine, you will definitely see that St. Monica’s actions had more of an impact than her words. She never gave up on her son, because God never gives up on us. 

St. Monica,
I need your prayers. You know exactly how I'm feeling because you once felt it yourself. I'm hurting, hopeless, and in despair. I desperately want my child to return to Christ in his Church but I can't do it alone. I need God's help. Please join me in begging the Lord's powerful grace to flow into my child's life. Ask the Lord Jesus to soften his heart, prepare a path for his conversion, and activate the Holy Spirit in his life. Amen.

in Love, Jesus

Live Loved

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Have you ever experienced an epiphany? That moment when everything you thought or ever believed was forever changed, but for the better. I sure did. My epiphany came when I was sixteen years old. This is the moment when I realized that the only love I ever needed, or shall I say needed to accept, was that of Jesus. For you see, when I was sixteen, I attempted to take my life because I just didn’t feel loved. I felt alone. I felt unwanted. This was all despite the tremendous love I knew I had from my family and friends. I was craving something more and just wasn’t getting it. I knew that love existed in Heaven. As it dawned on me what I was doing and what that meant for my soul, I prayed to Jesus that, should He get me out of this situation, I would surrender my life to Him. In trying to end my life, I saved it by placing it squarely in His hands. That epiphany carries me through life: Lord, my life is in your hands. The love I knew, but hadn’t accepted, was the love of Jesus, even though I had known Him my whole life.

While I have lots of words to express my love for Jesus and my undying appreciation for Him and His Blessed Mother, I wish to share with you the words of author Max Lucado from a small little booklet entitled A Love Worth Giving To You at Christmas (2002).

Accept the love that came in the form of a newborn babe. Accept the forgiveness and grace bought for you through the cruel, nail-piercing reality of the Cross. Accept his love won for you through the victory of his resurrection. Let this love worth giving fill you, flood you, and change you forever. Live in the knowledge and acceptance of this love. Live loved.

Remember, God loves you simply because he has chosen to do so. He loves you when you don’t feel lovely. He loves you when no one else loves you. Others may abandon you, divorce you, and ignore you, but God will love you. Always. No matter what.

It is love worth giving. To you.

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