Monday, March 28, 2011

Jesus Has Set Us Free

Beads of Joy 03-28-11

Jesus Has Set Us Free
©2011 James Dacey, Jr. SFO

Hello Everyone,

Wouldn't we all love to stop sinning? Of cause, is it possible? Of cause, at least it is possible to do all we can to try to stop. If we make no effort to try, and we really don't try; well then how in the world will we be able to at least have less sin in our lives? There is only one person I know who shares this thought the best, and his name is Fr. Larry Richards. Today I will share this story, one that Fr Richards share in many talks. I think his words and the way he tells the story will help so many of us get a better handle on our sins.

"You know C.S. Lewis was a great writer and he wasn't Catholic he was an Episcopalian. He wrote a book called “The Great Divorce.” I love one of the stories in The Great Divorce because in the story is a man who is in Purgatory. His whole theology of Purgatory is different than ours. Anyway he is dead and he is in Purgatory because of this demon of lust he has had his whole life. This little demon of lust, this is true, is this little demon and it sits on his shoulder. This demon has a chain around this man’s neck and he pulls it and makes this man do all this horrible things. And the man hates it and he hates himself. He is always crying out to God, “God you have got to help me. You have got to help me get rid of the demon of lust.” So anyway God sends an angel to the man. The angel looks at him and says, “What can I do for you?” And the man says, “It is this demon of lust that makes me do all these horrible things. I can’t stand it. I am so ashamed. It makes me again and again do these horrible things.” The angel looks at him and says, “May I kill it?” “Oh I don’t know if you want to kill it. Maybe you could wound it a little bit. You know, take its legs and break it or something.” And the angel looked at him and said, “May I kill it?” “Oh it is not very politically correct to kill things. I don’t know if you really want to kill it. I don’t know about killing it.” And the angel said, “May I kill it?” Finally the man said, “Yes, yes, yes you can kill it.” And the angel reaches out and he takes the demon of lust and he crushes it and he kills it. And this demon is transformed into a beautiful white stallion. And the man jumps on the stallion and the stallion takes him home to heaven, finally. God has sent all of us angels. We have a guardian angel every one of us. And the sin we deal with us in our life, the primary purpose of your guardian angel is to get you to heaven. The guardian angel looks at you almost every day and says, “May I kill the sin in your life?” What do you say? Well I don’t know. I kind of like my sin. I don’t know, maybe if it didn't control me and I controlled it. No, no, no. The only way to deal with sin in your life is to kill it. So will you give God permission in your life today to kill those sins in your life?" Fr. Larry Richards

I get so exciting hearing such incredible stories of hope and possibility. Nothing is impossible with God. We can defeat our sins, and we can do everything possible to live a life that is as pure as we possibly can. In today's gospel we can see how Jesus is talking to His people in the town where everyone knows Him since He was a child; and they gave Him no respect. Sometimes it's best when we have others from out of town come and share Jesus. This allows others to come inside and share Jesus with those we love, so we can go elsewhere to spread His love. Either way, let us do all we can to spread His joy and love with everyone. This is why I believe fellowship with strangers around the world works so well.

Today's Gospel: Luke 4:24-30
(The Rejection of Jesus at Nazareth)

"And he said, "Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his own country. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there came a great famine over all the land; and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha; and none of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian." When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away."

Questions To Ponder Today:
-Wouldn't we prefer to live our lives free of sin?
-How can we change what we say and do each day?
-Does the freedom Jesus give us, really free us?
-What is my earthly weakness? How can I stop?
-Do you fear being separated from God forever?
(Ponder a bit and even write down your top 3 weaknesses.)
Ask Jesus to help you rid your life of these.

Your brother in Christ Jesus & His Most Blessed Mother,
Jim (The Rosary Man) Dacey Jr SFO

Today we pray the Joyful Mysteries

1. The Annunciation
2. The Visitation
3. The Birth of Jesus
4. The Presentation in The Temple
5. Finding of Jesus in the Temple