February 4, 2023

Insider's View newsletter

For you this week:

  • Reflection for Saturday: The craziest question I’ve ever been asked
  • Inside the Ministry: Anyone know a webmaster who loves serving the Lord?
  • This week’s faith-builder: An Intimate Conversation with Jesus
  • Footsteps to Heaven podcast: Psalm 1 (the premier podcast)

This week’s Trivia Challenge: What did God create on the seventh day? (Check your answer at the end of this newsletter.)

Saturday February 4, 2023

ScripturesHebrews 13:15-17, 20-21
Psalm 23:1-6
Mark 6:30-34

The Lord God is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In lush, green pastures he gives me repose.
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.
He guides me in right paths.
Even though I walk in a dark valley
I fear no evil, for You are at my side
with Your rod and Your staff
giving me courage.
(From Saturday’s responsorial psalm)

Reflection for Saturday:
The craziest question I’ve ever been asked

peaceful path through the woodsRecently I received a most surprising email from someone named Jesse. He wrote: “This is gonna sound crazy, but I’d love to do something to make your life better. Hit reply and send me your request.”

It sure did sound crazy! But it made me stop what I was doing. I asked the Holy Spirit, “Should I respond to this? Is it worth being distracted by this question?”

Well, I did hit “reply” as a sort of spiritual exercise. I wrote:

“Okay, I’ll take you up on your crazy offer. What first comes to mind is a vacation in a restful, retreat-like cabin where the scenery and weather are gorgeous. And wow I could sure use it because my husband and I have not been on a vacation in three years — first due to Covid lockdowns, then my father passed away, then my mom’s health problems took over, then my husband’s health problems, and then my own severe health problems (two hospitalizations followed by weeks in bed), during which Good News Ministries absolutely had to continue serving without a pause. Thank God I have a great team — a little team that does big work!”

{Pause for an update. I’m feeling much better. My energy is almost back to normal. More time is needed to become completely healed, so please keep praying for me, thank you. My schedule is not back to normal yet because of physical therapy and other medical follow-up appointments. End of pause.}

Of course, Jesse isn’t going to line up a vacation for me. But as a spiritual exercise, my answer to his question convicted me of an important truth: Getaways are essential. I cannot serve well without being refreshed. This Saturday’s responsorial Psalm reinforced it.

“He gives me repose…. He refreshes my soul…. He guides me in right paths…. I fear no evil, for You are at my side….”

Time and again, I hear from readers who, like me, have been crucified for doing good. We’ve lost friends. We’re very tired of the evils rampaging around us in the dark valley. We see shadows of our loved ones who are weighed down by the deceptions of today’s world, and we call out to them but they don’t want to hear us.

This is why we must find — and use — paths that lead to green pastures and restful waters. Jesus wants to uplift us when we’re downtrodden, energize us when we’re weary, and renew us so we can share the Good News of his salvation.

We need to be lifted above the world — the high view, the perspective that comes from resting in the Lord, away from normal trials and activities — so that we can go back into the world and make a difference.

A true vacation should be at least one week. But God also gives us one day every week for renewal and restoration. In fact, he commands us to take this break. The Day of the Lord (Sunday) is so sacred that we should do no work, per God’s instructions in the 10 Commandments (unless you’re required to work that day, in which case, a different day can be your sabbath rest).

For me, that means sacrificing my efficiency agenda. Weekend chores such as laundry and lawn mowing are relegated to Saturdays or else they don’t get done at all. (If you visit, ignore the dust!)

Jesus — not Jesse — is the one to turn to for help planning my vacation. Three attempts over the past three years have failed. I’m excited to find out what Jesus is going to do to make up for this.

Inside the Ministry:
Anyone know a webmaster who loves serving the Lord?


Help wanted: a webmaster who knows how to work with MySQL databases. Someone to whom I can turn when something goes awry on GNM’s various websites. You’d be surprised at how often I get pulled away from important work to take care of the urgent work of troubleshooting.

For a year and a half, I’ve been the only one on the team who can (sort of) do this work, but my database knowledge is severely limited. Please keep this in your prayers. Imagine how valuable it would be to get this off of my shoulders!

Remember when Jesus asked for prayers for an increase in laborers for the harvest (Matthew 9:35-38)? He knew that workers in the mission fields would always have more to do than we have sufficient time and energy for, because there are billions of lost souls and countless hearts that are hurting and yearning for the healing salve of Christ. I simply must find a way to focus on my own calling by delegating website-database work to someone else.

God has the answer. Is the right servant listening?

Here’s the link to our Help Wanted page: gnm.org/about-join.


This week’s recommended faith-builder:
An Intimate Conversation with Jesus

How do you pray to feel closer to Jesus? How do you use your sabbath rest time for real restoration? Here’s a conversation you can have with Jesus, which my pastor of many years ago asked me to write for parishioners to use during Eucharistic Adoration. It’s still a favorite today through the GNM website.

Open your prayer life to this intimate conversation you can have with Jesus. See it and download it from gnm.org/prayers/intimate-conversation-with-jesus.

Footsteps to Heaven podcast show with Terry Modica

Psalm 1 (the premier podcast)

Find out why the first three verses of Psalm chapter 1 mean so much to me. 

Has God given you a favorite scripture? A life verse. Something that represents God the Father putting his loving hand on your shoulder, saying, “That’s my girl. That’s my boy.”

In the very first episode of Footsteps to Heaven (May 3, 2019), I explained how the promise of God in Psalm 1 has been the key to success for Good News Ministries, as it can be for you too.

Visit gnm.org/footsteps1.

Note: You can sign up for early access to new episodes. Subscribe at gnm-media.org for the podcast videos or at footstepstoheaven.com for the audio-only version.

Trivia QuestionAnswer to this week’s Trivia Challenge:
What did God create on the seventh day? Vacation! After all, why would God need a day of rest? He’s all-powerful and never gets tired. He rested after six days of creating the world to set an example. He wants us to be sure to know that it is essential to take time off from work and other busy activities, recollecting on our relationship with him and getting rested up for what will happen next.

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.

Let’s connect in GNM’s own SmartCatholics community, called Good News Faith Builders. I’m available to interact with you there.

Thank you for reading this newsletter.

Terry ModicaYour servant in Christ,
Terry Modica, Executive Director
Good News Ministries

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