Thankful

Every year around this time, people start to look inward and share what they are thankful for. Some do it in person and many do it through social media. It’s that time where the year is coming to an end and we look back on all the things that have taken place in the world, our country, and our lives.

This year has been a rough one to say the least. The majority of our country has been shut down since Early 2020 due to COVID-19 and that has impacted millions of Americans in one way or another. People have lost jobs, businesses, hope, and there are those who’ve died from the virus or underlying conditions with the virus added to them.

Add to that a presidential election that brought out the ugliness in many people on both sides of the aisle. Friendships ended and family feuds started or escalated all because people have forgotten how to disagree and move on.

What are your thoughts at this point of this year? Are you hopeful? Are you scared?

I think that 2020 gave us an opportunity to take a step back and be thankful for the smallest things in life, like waking up this morning. Sadly, many people have missed that message because they were too caught up in the election, or being told what to think from mainstream or social media.

Since the start of this virus, I’ve managed to keep a positive attitude, even in the face of losing our business, I remained optimistic. Months later with a new job and new challenges, I still remain optimistic. Why? For me, it’s keeping my eyes on Christ. I can’t do it all alone but as Paul says in Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things in him who strengthens me.”

What or who is it that strengthens you? Is it working? Are you content with the way your life is going?

This year, like every other year, I’m thankful for my beautiful bride, my wonderful children, family and friends. I’m also thankful for my new job and new opportunities but most of all, I’m thankful for having Jesus Christ at the center of my life because without him, none of this is possible.

May you be blessed, safe, and have a Happy Thanksgiving!

What Have We Learned So Far?

We are now weeks into this epidemic and what have we learned from all of what’s going on with the coronavirus in the United States?

We’ve learned that when push comes to shove, Americans are still strong. Our hospitals, law enforcement officers, fire fighters, and rescue personnel are placing themselves in harms way for the health and safety of their communities first. They deserve our thanks and prayers for their health, safety, and for them to continue their work.

We should also thank and pray for our truckers who are working to bring supplies to those in need. Thank and pray for the American worker, who’s job has been deemed “essential” and are still doing their part to keep the country going.

Pray for and look after those who’ve lost their jobs and businesses. During times like these, stress, anxiety, and depression can hit home hard leading to drinking, drug use, and sometimes suicide. Be kind to and look out for each other. Help your fellow man.

The biggest thing that I’ve noticed throughout this whole ordeal, in my opinion, is the fact that we to place God back in the center of our lives. I honestly feel that he’s been warning us over these past few decades and instead of getting better, as a whole, we are getting worse. Disobeying his laws, making a mockery out of the sacrament of marriage, the continued murdering of the unborn, and countless other acts that snub our noses at God. God is a loving God, but he is also a just God.

What have I learned about myself during this time? A lot! I’ve noticed where the lack of God is in my life. I’ve learned that although I’ve come to grips with certain areas in my life, more work is needed to attain the peace that I’ve desperately searched for. Day by day and with the grace of God, I will achieve my goals too.

God bless you all, be safe, and Buen Camino.

Losing it

Well it finally happened today, I lost it. Not “Falling Down” losing it but I went off on quite a few people today. Let me explain.

Earlier in the week a Catholic Persona who I’ve followed for quite sometime on Facebook posted something that I found to be quite disturbing. He was passionate about having the sacraments back and finished his post with the hashtag BishopsBringBackOurSacraments. Well I found this to be quite selfish and started to explain that to him. He wasn’t having it. He was dead set that the saints wouldn’t have put up with this and neither should we. I thought that was a pretty bold statement for him to make considering most saints went through much worse and most, if not all, were obedient to the Church and what was asked of them.

Today I saw another “Catholic a Persona” saying the same thing and he had a petition and a website created for this purpose to petition the bishops to bring back the sacraments. That’s when I lost it and proceeded to unload on him with both barrels like Wyatt Earp did after his brother was killed. I let him and his followers have it, French words and all to get my point across (I know. Not my finest moment) until I finally decided to step away to try to cool off. In the end, I issued many an apology but still cited that I disagreed with his viewpoint on the issue.

Maybe saying that he is being disobedient to the Church was too strong but I don’t think so, some of them might feel that way but I don’t. Let me give an example.

As a parent, if my child who is living at home informed me that they were going to go to Cabo San Lucas for spring break, I would not allow them to go and I would explain how this virus is highly contagious and easily spread, especially when you are in big groups. My Child might not like my decision and may even hate me for making it but as a parent, it is my responsibility to keep them healthy and safe, and as a child living at home, they must obey the laws that we as parents have set forth. It is the same with our bishops; they are looking after our health and well being during these times. They don’t enjoy saying no but it is for the safety of the whole, not the few.

I still say that those who are pushing to have the sacraments back are being disobedient and selfish. What do they think would happen if the bishops caved in and said “Ok! We will give you what you want” and then a parishioner contracts the virus and dies from it. Now the family of the deceased parishioner wants to sue the Church because they knew about the dangers but proceeded to go against the orders set by the states. Do you think they’d care then? It’s not their deceased family member or them being sued.

For those of you who disagree with me and are persistent in asking for the sacraments to be put back, maybe you should take the examples that I gave to heart and pray on them. While your at it, pray for those who’ve died already because of the virus or for those dying from it now who are not allowed to have a family member be with them as they are passing. Pray for those family members who are so grief stricken because of it. Pray for the medical staff who are working diligently to save lives. Pray for the cleaning workers in the hospitals that work ceaselessly to keep their facilities clean. Pray for them and their families who worry that they might bring the virus home. Pray for our safety personnel; law enforce, fire departments, and paramedics who are also coming in contact with some of those who have the virus. And pray for this epidemic to come to an end sooner than later.

This is not a time for disobedience or selfishness but a time to think about our fellow man. Jesus commanded, “Love one another as I have loved you.” John 13:34

May God bless you all, and until next time, been camino.

Thou Shalt Not Steal

How many of you have gone to your local store to purchase toilet paper only to find an empty aisle? What’s up with that? I think the meme that I shared above says it all.

Almost empty bathroom aisle

During a time of crisis, like the one that we are currently in, it is wise to buy a few extra items to see you through it. You should have enough food and household supplies (this includes toilet paper) to last you at least a month. There is no reason that you should be buying 8 32-roll packs of toilet paper. If so, well…like the meme at the top says, you should’ve seen your doctor long before COVID-19.

If you are purchasing more than what you need, you are hoarding and you are also stealing. That’s right, I said that you are stealing! You may not be stealing from the store (but then again some of you might be) but, you are stealing from those who will need these items and will not be able to find them at the store, like those who are elderly and are on a tight budget. Because of their budgets, some people can only afford to shop at certain times of the month. If you are Christian, and you are one of the people hoarding items, shame on you! If you are Catholic, and you are one of the people hoarding items, not only shame on you but, you need to take your butt to confession. If you are not a believer in Christ and you are one of the people hoarding these items, there is a special place in hell for you all. Just kidding. No, I’m not.

Think about others before yourself, especially during times like these. Can you imagine if Jesus had been selfish and thought of only himself? He thought about others rather than himself and his actions show it. Now I’m no Jesus myself but I do my best to follow his example, you should too. This is what he commands us to do; John 15:12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” There it is, in black and white.

Until next time, be excellent to each other.