Birthdays – A matter of life and death

 

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This weekend we had a huge banquet with my family and extended family consisting of four generations, to celebrate my birthday .

Birthdays remind us of why we’re born, of new life, of new beginnings.  My catholic faith allows me to believe that each person has a purpose in life, a God given purpose to do God’s work. Be that by serving God through your family, your work or lifestyle.

I was not worried about growing older but believing and reflecting on all the reasons to be grateful and for the events of the past year. It was a happy time to celebrate my birthday for a great year I have had.

At the top of my list —is my Catholic faith. Our faith does not change my realities of life, pain and death: They still happen. But faith changes how I understand what it is that is actually happening.

Our Catholic faith goes deeper than our intellectual understanding. Our faith is not merely a matter of the mind, but a matter of believing in something that is  a mystery but that is greater than ourselves.

I celebrated blessings of my husband and two beautiful girls, my health, my extended family, my friends, having a roof over my head, by belongings, my car, my pet dog, my work etc..

 

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Life is different when viewed through the eyes of faith. My actions and opinions  have been shaped by my faith. I have a heaven perspective and that impinges in all that I do. Sure I have made mistakes, but I know that with God’s grace I am forgiven.

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The way I view marriage, life and death. The way I treat people, the way I have raised our two children, the way I have conducted myself at work has all come from my rooted catholic faith.

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In these dark days for our country, I am increasingly mindful of the wisdom of our church’s social doctrine. Giving to others when it hurts comes from my faith. Helping someone in need comes from my faith. My volunteer work comes from my faith. My view of “Death” is not doom and gloom. “Death” is going to my eternal home where God is awaiting for my arrival in the time of His choosing. God is my Father – my creator. Heaven is where I will meet up with my awaiting family and friends.

I think of people who are dying or who have no faith and what they must be going through during their end of days. How denying God doesn’t deny the truth.

Getting older has its downsides. The doctor prescribes more pills. The knees and the back can’t handle as much time doing work as I once did. Once you get past 45, you know you are more than halfway home.  I know that death is a door, not a wall.

Still, “Life is a banquet, . It is a banquet, and it is filled with foretastes of an even greater, heavenly banquet.  Even in the rough times this past year, I felt that God and His Son Jesus were there to support me and lead me to the best solution that was heavenly possible. Praying to my creator God can direct the paths I take. Praying to my creator God can bestow grace upon me, my family and friends.

On my birthday it was a good day to celebrate with gratitude to my Creator.

 

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TODAY I JUST WANT TO SAY THANK-YOU

Image result for John 12:25THANK-YOU GOD & JESUS FOR:-

  1. loving me first
  2. faith in believing in You
  3. the desire to serve You
  4. Jesus who gave up His life for me
  5. my gifts and talents
  6. the family I was born in
  7. my beautiful country  Australia
  8. my parents who care for me
  9. my husband who loves me
  10. the children we share
  11. food on my table
  12. the home I live in
  13. the car I drive
  14. Your healing touch
  15. the work I have done
  16. the ministry I have
  17. Your real presence and gift of the eucharist
  18. the money in my wallet
  19. the friends who see me as I am
  20. the people you send to help me
  21. the church I belong to
  22. Your protection over me
  23. peace in my family
  24. Your forgiveness when I fail You
  25. the abundance in my life
  26. Your unconditional love
  27. holidays
  28. family gatherings and celebrations
  29. rebirth and new life at Easter
  30. joy in my heart
  31. Your angels and saints
  32. Your mother and our mother MARY
  33. Your Holy Spirit as our comforter and guide
  34. the glory of HEAVEN                                                                                                                    AMEN 

I’d like to leave by saying that I hope you can find gratitude in your heart today and with these beautiful Taize chants(click below)

STAY WITH ME CHANT

JESUS REMEMBER ME

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AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE CAN CHANGE YOUR LIFE

The benefits of practicing gratitude are nearly endless. People who regularly practice gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon the things they’re thankful for experience more positive emotions, feel more alive, sleep better, express more compassion and kindness, and even have stronger immune systems. And gratitude doesn’t need to be reserved only for momentous occasions: Sure, you might express gratitude after receiving a promotion at work, but you can also be thankful for something as simple as a delicious piece of pie. Research by UC Davis psychologist Robert Emmons, author of Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier, shows that simply keeping a gratitude journal—regularly writing brief reflections on moments for which we’re thankful—can significantly increase well-being and life satisfaction.(Courtesy of Happify Daily)

ENJA  Global Village video clip here

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How many times do we takes things for granted, living our lives as if there were no tomorrow? How many times to we busily go about our daily life and then something happens and it shatters us to the core.

But if you are Christ centred then you  will be able to cope better and keep sadness, and depression  away because it’s when we give thanks and praise to the creator that we receive what we need and if it’s not what we need, it’s because God has a better plan for you. A plan better than the one you mapped out for yourself, if you believe. It’s only when we stop to smell the roses, share what we have that we get to appreciate the things we love.

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Taken Happify Daily            -Link

How do we do that?

1. Keep a digital gratitude journal

There are a number of apps that focus on cultivating a spirit of thankfulness. The Gratitude! app challenges users to write five things they’re grateful for every day. Developers say that recording gratitude consecutively for three weeks creates a brighter outlook and a new habit of happiness. Plus, it’s pretty cool to be able to look back on all of the things that made you thankful. Other apps to try include Gratitude 365 and The Gratitude Journal.

2. Take a thankfulness challenge

Chances are you’ve seen one of these challenges floating around your Facebook news feed at one point or another. The premise is simple: every day, for a week, or two weeks, or a month, post what you’re thankful for. Hesitant to be so public? Try private messaging different friends every day, letting them know why you’re grateful to have them in your life.

3. Get some Twitter inspiration

When Thanksgiving rolls around, many people turn to Twitter to share the reasons why they’re thankful, but several trending hashtags prompt sharing your appreciation all year long. Follow the hashtags #AttitudeofGratitude, #WhyImThankful, and #Thankful to read through thousands of reasons why people all over the world are giving thanks. Tweet your own to join the uplifting conversation.

4. Master the “thank you” email

While it’s no handwritten letter, sending a short “thank you” email can be a huge pick-me-up for someone in the middle of a long day. Thank a coworker for his or her hard work preparing for the morning meeting, or send digital appreciation to your roommate for listening to your worries about tomorrow’s big presentation. Knowing someone’s thinking of you makes a person feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

5. Pay it forward

Random acts of kindness work in the digital world, too. Browse through Kickstarter campaigns, and donate a few dollars towards somebody’s dream of opening a gallery or creating a documentary. Visit GiveForward.com, a fundraising platform where people raise money for loved ones in need. Can’t contribute financially? Share a story that speaks to your heart and offer words of encouragement.

PRAYER OF GRATITUDE BY KELLI MAHONEY

Thank you, Lord, for the blessings you have bestowed on my life. You have provided me with more than I could ever have imagined. You have surrounded me with people who always look out for me. You have given me family and friends who bless me every day with kind words and actions. They lift me up in ways that keep my eyes focused on you and make my spirit soar.

Also, thank you, Lord, for keeping me safe. You protect me from those things that seem to haunt others. You help me make better choices, and you have provided me with advisors that help me with the difficult decisions. You speak to me in so many ways so that I always know you are here.

And Lord, I am so grateful for keeping those around me safe and loved. I hope that you provide me with the ability and sense to show them every day how much they matter. I hope that you give me the ability to give to them the same kindness they have provided to me. I am just so grateful for all of your blessings in my life, Lord. I pray that you remind me of just how lucky I am, and that you never allow me to forget to show my gratitude in prayer and returned kind acts. Thank you, Lord. In your name, Amen.