God wants your heart.. AND SO DOES SATAN.

Spiritual warfare exists. Every day, God pursues your heart. And so does Satan.

I swear. I just experienced it very keenly about an hour ago.

Yet I realize… it’s an every day battle. In the little things and the big things. There is always a battle for our heart.

Satan wants to detour you from staying in God’s Kingdom, from forever residing with God. And boy, is Satan deceptively cunning. He attracts. After all, He was one of God’s highest and most beautiful angels.

He wants your soul for all the selfish reasons… because he does not want you to experience happiness– the happiness that he willingly lost.

So ask yourself… and be honest…

Who are you living for? Who will you die for? Who are you fighting for?

God? Or Satan?

If we’re not for God, we’re against Him. Perhaps we’re running away from the Light for which we were made. Perhaps we’re hiding. But it’s not bringing us any closer.

Yet God is pursuing us… Are you listening? Are you watching out for Him?

Oftentimes, I find I am not. But I want this to change. I want to keep getting better and better at these practices. I don’t want my heart to be stolen without my knowing.

Saint Benedict is awesome because he reminds us about our mortality and our consequent propensity to weakness. In fact, Saint Benedict is often known as a “patron of a happy death.” The front of his medal reads: “May we be strengthened by his presence in the hour of our death.”

The back of the medal of Saint Benedict reads: “May the Holy Cross be my Light! May the Dragon never be my guide!” (The “Dragon?” Satan.) And under the word “Peace,” it also reads: “Begone Satan! Never tempt me with your vanities! What you offer me is evil. Drink the poison yourself!

Now what’s “the poison,” you ask?

According to the legend of Saint Benedict, during a Mass in which he was to consecrate bread and wine to become the Body and Blood of Christ, hostile monks attempted to poison him, and poisoned the communion bread and wine. However, when Saint Benedict tried to bless the wine, the cup in which it was contained shattered when he made the sign of the cross over it. This cup is featured on his medal. Supposedly, a raven (also featured on the medal) flew in and carried away the poisoned bread before Saint Benedict consecrated it as well.

Saint Benedict is said to be one of the greatest saints to call upon for deliverance from evil spirits. The Benedictine Crucifix– a crucifix with the medal of Saint Benedict on it– is used in exorcisms.  And with Whose power does Saint Benedict ward off demons? CHRIST’S.

Let us never forget that while we can experience the amazing, wonderful power of GOD, another opposing power equally exists, and it is that of Satan.

We must be keenly aware of spiritual warfare and how Satan wants our heart. More importantly, we must also be confident and vigilant in knowing that, so long as we continue to follow Christ’s Light, God will protect our heart with all that He is!

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(c) SouthernFriedCatholicism. Read more about the medal below!

“Southern Fried Catholicism” Blog

Eucharistic LORD: You never change!

It’s so awesome to know that no matter where you are in the world, if you go to Mass, you can expect to see and to receive the very same LORD Jesus Christ: present there before you, body, blood, soul, and divinity… and to enter into you wholly.

Hebrews 13:8-9 reads: “Jesus Christ, yesterday, and today; and the same for ever. Be not led away with various and strange doctrines. For it is best that the heart be established with grace….”.

Truly, Our LORD is always the same. In the light and in the dark, in the ups and in the downs, in the certainty and in the confusion… may we not only know, but believe and feel that He is LORD of Heaven and Earth, for all eternity.

Jesus, You never change. I at times feel like I change with the wind. But let me know that I am always your beloved daughter, no matter what. In the light and in the goodness (that I can only do through Your grace)… in the dark and in the sin… I am always loved by You, Love Himself.

May You, in the Eucharist, be the source and the summit of my life! Until we meet alas face to face.

You never change. Give me the grace to have a faith as true as Yours to me.

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from death unto LIFE: the Alpha and the Omega, MY Beginning and MY End

Last Friday, I saw my supervisor for the last time. When I said goodbye to her that evening, little did I know that would be the last time that I would see her with God’s breath within her earthly body.

Tonight I have chosen to meditate upon a Psalm that has me thinking about my human finitude on earth and God’s infinitude in all Creation, Psalm 51:10: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.”

Have you ever felt liked God was renewing you, refreshing your soul with His love, His joy, His mercy, His sweet sweet kindness, His downright romance?

There are so many points in our lives, day by day, not big turning points, but  tiny unseen ones, in which God turns us back to Him: our Ultimate Reality and Purpose!

I also often think of this Psalm before and after I go to Confession. For God offers me grace to re-turn my direction towards Him. I am either going towards Him or away from him; there is no standing still in this race of life. As St. Paul says, we are to “fight the good fight, finish the race, and [keep] the faith” (2 Timothy 4:7).

Even in the darkest of hours, the driest of times, spiritually, I can still ardently say, “I am waiting, O Lord!” when none of my emotions feel that He, in fact, is going towards me. But oh, how He is always pursuing my heart! Like a Lover, attracted to me so sweetly and yet so fiercely at the same time (“Love’s like a hurricane, I am a tree…”).

Sometimes, His cutting off that emotional love and making it purely “decisional” on our end is simply what makes for a more passionate re-uniting with Our Lord in the end. He makes the greatest of saints-in-the-making suffer the hardest.

Throughout our lives, we have endings and beginnings of various chapters. Our beginnings? Re-awakenings to God in the new chapters of our life. As I ponder on Psalm 51:10, I realize that I have my beginning in my Creator, and I have my end in Him as well. I have a beginning and I have an end: the Alpha and the Omega: my Lord and my God!

God creates and sends every individual to renew and to refresh the face of the earth with His grace in some unique way! And then… it is His ardent desire to be able to call every individual back to Heaven to be with Him, where He has a room for him or her with which he or she may dwell with Him forever. God desires this, but ultimately it is our choice to claim His as the Lord of our lives for all eternity. He does not condemn us to Hell; we do that to ourselves. How he so ardently longs for us!

God was my supervisor’s beginning; He is her end as well. Not only is He the Alpha and the Omega. He is HER Alpha and HER Omega. He is MY Alpha and MY Omega. And He should be YOUR Alpha and YOUR Omega, too. What are you waiting for?!

Jesus tells us: “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:2-3)

Linda’s steadfast spirit truly inspired me to be ALIVE, to follow God’s Will without abandon, to make Him my beginning and my end. May Linda not only rest in peace in the room reserved for her by Our Lord, but also dance merrily, sing songs of praise, and be our fierce and active prayer warrior as she intercedes for us in Heaven!

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Stanford University has a non-denominational church and I saw this wallpaper in its foyer. I liked the Alpha and Omega symbols, as well as the keys of Saint Peter. (The church is secretly Catholic, it just doesn’t know. Ha!)

“You’re my Alpha, Omega, Beginning and End. You’re my Savior, Messiah, Redeemer, and Friend. You’re my Prince of Peace. And I will live my life for You!”