For you this week:
- Reflection for Saturday: A Season of Shaking
- Inside the Ministry: October's Smart Event is making people stronger
- 2021 October's Rosary Campaign: Post your prayer requests now
- This week's WordBytes faith-builder: How to Overcome the Pain of Frustration
- Virtual Retreat: Explore the Holy Land from home and meet Jesus in person!
Saturday October 9, 2021
The heavens and the earth quake, but the Lord is a refuge to his people. (From Saturday's first reading)
Reflection for Saturday: A Season of Shaking
God's timing is uncanny. Consider the first reading this Saturday in light of what's happening in our world today.
Apply the sickle, for the harvest is ripe;
Come and tread, for the wine press is full;
The vats overflow, for great is their malice. (Joel 4:13)
It's a very common understanding today: We are living in a time when the world needs divine intervention and we need it more than ever before. Evil has gotten stronger. Demons have more control.
But wait. Is this really what's happening?
Yes it is true (I believe) that God is doing a unique intervention and we're going to see more of it, but NO is not true that Evil has gotten stronger. This is only an illusion that the Evil One wants us to believe. In fact, for every demon working against what is good, there are multiple holy angels sent by God to bring about his Divine Will.
Evil is not getting stronger, not at all! Rather, God and his holy angels are forcing the truth out into the open. God and his holy angels are ripping the covers off of demonic activity so that it's exposed so that we who belong to Christ will see what's going on and finally take a stand because now we realize beyond doubt, beyond question, that we do need to take a stand. We do need to stand strong in faith, trusting God, believing God's word, and repenting of our disbelief and our mediocre faith and the ways we have made compromises with the false teachings of worldly ideas.
Crowds upon crowds in the Valley of Decision;
For near is the day of the Lord in the Valley of Decision. (Joel 4:14)
God is making it clearer and clearer that there is no room for compromise when it comes to matters of faith and morals. We have to decide for God or else we are against him. We are in a season of purging. God is dividing the sheep from the goats, the wheat from the tares. We cannot have one foot on his side of the fence and the other foot in the world any longer. Those who keep doing so will fall off the fence when the shaking gets very rough. Which side will they land on?
Where are you standing now?
How firm is your stand?
Mediocre faith makes us weak. By God's grace and mercy those of mediocre faith can still reach heaven (eventually), but mediocre faith does not give us strong legs to stand on when everything around us is shaking. And God wants us to be wholehearted in our faith, which is why I suspect he's going to make the shaking still greater. There are many who are still embracing mediocre faith and lack wholeheartedness in their devotion to Christ. We are in a season of being strengthened.
The Lord roars from Zion,
and from Jerusalem raises his voice;
The heavens and the earth quake,
but the Lord is a refuge to his people,
a stronghold to the children of Israel. (Joel 4:16)
Do not be afraid of the devil if you are standing with the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no reason to fear disaster as we look around and see evil getting away with so much -- if we are clinging to Christ. Let him strengthen your legs of faith so that you can stand strong. Cling to Jesus. Keep your eyes on Jesus. You don't need to know every detail of what kind of corruption is happening nor what evildoers are doing or what lies of the devil your loved ones are believing. Just keep your eyes on Jesus and learn to interpret everything according to the truths about him as described in the Bible and in traditional Church teachings.
We are living in a time of shaking so that our legs become strong -- our legs of faith. It is no accident that you were born into these times and are still alive in these times. It is God's choice because you have an important part in this time of history in our Church and in the world. Stand strong knowing that he is on your side. Well, let's re-state that. It's actually better to say that you are on his side. Those who are not fully on his side are those who fall when things shake.
Do you feel like you are toppling? Do you feel feeble? Then rejoice because God is revealing to you where you need to lean on him more heavily.
Then shall you know that I, the Lord, am your God. (Joel 4:17)
Inside the Ministry:
October's Smart Event is making people stronger
Tiffany is one of the first to delve into Mystical Union with Christ through the Rosary, our new course in the SmartCatholics Academy. She explains why:
"Thanks for the course! What I'm hoping to accomplish is to grow in love for the Rosary through connecting it more in my head with Jesus. I love Mary; she's my Confirmation Saint and she was my bridge to Jesus, but once I built a relationship with him, I felt less interested in the Rosary. It seems so linked to Mary culturally even though I know that the mysteries are all about Jesus. I want to learn how to better use this powerful tool in my spiritual life and be more inclined to turn to it for prayer."
You too can learn how to experience the Rosary as your own personal mystical union with Christ. What has wearied you? What are your troubles? Come and experience the joy of deeper union with Christ your Healer.
Don't wait! Using the Mysteries of the Rosary, you can rise to new heights of faith, hope and love.
Mystical Union with Christ through the Rosary is a set of 5 lessons in audio podcasts with discussion questions will help the teachings sink deeper as you share your answers with other students and read what they post. At the end of the course, you'll receive a Certificate of Celebration -- whoohooo!
Register for SmartCatholics and join this free course @ members.smartcatholics.com/courses/5889552.
2021 October's Rosary Campaign
Who are you praying for because they left the Catholic Faith? We all know people who believe the lies of the Devil. Our loved ones come to mind first. Are we also praying for politicians, school teachers, co-workers, church leaders and others who claim to be Catholic but are living and proclaiming what goes against the teachings of scripture and the Church Magisterium?
In light of everything that's happening in our world today and what might soon happen, we must-must-must do many prayers and penances and sacrifices for the unfaithful. Join our annual Holy Rosary Campaign by filling out the form @ gnm.org/prayers/rosary-campaign.
You might also want to use our special adaptation of the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary for Conversions @ gnm.org/prayers/pray-the-rosary/luminous-mysteries.
As you know October is the Month of the Holy Rosary. We can expect many blessings from God when we offer up our daily Rosary for those who have been unfaithful to the Lord.
WordBytes is a library of Catholic faith-building articles by Good News Ministries. Come on in and explore! Visit WordBytes.org today.
This week's recommended faith-builder:
How to Overcome the Pain of Frustration
Feeling the pain of frustration? Want to get rid of it? Some people can deal with the very same problem and never get frustrated. Here are 8 steps for finding true and lasting inner peace no matter what is going on around you and who is causing it.
For more on this, visit wordbytes.org/suffering-the-pain-of-frustration/.
Explore the Holy Land from home and meet Jesus in person!
Have you ever visited friends after they went to the Holy Land and you were forced to sit through hours of viewing their slides or videos (“Here I am standing in front of the restaurant. Here I am standing in front of our hotel. Here I am standing in front of a bored donkey. Here I am standing in front of …..” snore)? Well, let me show you the pictures that I took in 1998 and 2000. There are lots of pictures, and this could take some time to get all the way through, but you can stop any time without losing your place if you sign in.
Our Virtual Pilgrimage is designed to fascinate you with a personal experience of spiritual growth as you get in touch with what it means to walk in the footsteps of Jesus.
Visually, we cannot see what it was really like in Jesus’ day, because 2,000 years have passed and churches have been built over most of the places where key events in Jesus’ life occurred. But spiritually you can still get in touch with what it was like for Jesus when he walked through Israel and Galilee. That is part of the pilgrimage experience.
Our Virtual Pilgrimage is about tuning in to God, every moment, in every activity, to receive special gifts, insights, favors, growth, and communication and intimacy with him. To make this a true spiritual pilgrimage, open yourself to him in each and every moment as you look at each picture and read every scripture, narrative and prayer. This is a time of GRACE; he will give you more than what you normally receive from him in the activities of everyday life.
This is a multi-media presentation. Look for the play button to click for sound effects. If you want to exit the tour and return later for more, use the sign-in tab that you’ll find at the top of each page to save the place where you left off.
Start your pilgrimage today @ gnm-holyland.org.
God bless you!
Every morning, I lift up in prayer everyone who helps Good News Ministries in any way (donors, volunteers, prayer supporters, etc.) and all the prayer requests posted on our site. What can I cover in prayer for you? Post your prayer request.
How else can the team and I serve you today? Visit our homepage.
Thank you for reading this newsletter.
Your servant in Christ,
Terry Modica, Executive Director
Good News Ministries
Keep your eyes on Jesus!
And when you have to look at others, see them through his eyes.