On March 10, when I was leaving my daughter’s home, at a stop sign, I looked up and saw this vulture posturing on top of a church steeple, as if he was saying “Look at me!”. The Lord seemed to be telling me to take notice, so I took a picture of it, and decided to pray about it later.
This morning, I took it to prayer, and the Lord led me to this verse, Set the trumpet to your lips! One like a vulture is over the house of the Lord, because they have broken my covenant, and transgressed my law. Hosea 8:1
So, I am blowing the trumpet.…
The Church is certainly going through a trial. And we can point fingers at who has broken the covenant and transgressed God’s laws, like Bishops and priests who have done terrible things, and not shepherded God’s people. Much has been written about that. But what I am pondering today is….what about the rest of us? Remember that in this Scripture passage, the Lord is speaking of the apostasy of the Israelites, His chosen people. And the Bible is not just the story of the Messiah, and the history of Christendom, it is a living, breathing WORD for us now as well. It is our story, and so when you read it, you should ask the Holy Spirit to speak to you through its words.
Today, WE are His people, those of us who belong to the Catholic Church. Really all who are baptized and profess to be Christians, are His people. That doesn’t mean He doesn’t love all people, of course He does, He died so each one of us can be saved. But we are supposed to be the ones spreading the Gospel, and building His Church, and obeying His commands. We are supposed to be leading others to Jesus, and showing by example.
Teach them to carry out everything I have commanded you. Matthew 28:20
We live in such a time of spiritual blindness, that many, Catholics (and professed Christians), think nothing is wrong with abortion, euthanasia, artificial contraception, homosexual “marriage”, divorce, fornication and “living together”, gender change, pornography, envitro fertilization, not keeping the Lord’s day, immodest dress, lying, dishonesty, ignoring the plight of the poor ….the list goes on. Some of these things are clearly spoken about by Jesus himself in Sacred Scripture:
For it is from within, from the human heart, that evil intentions come: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, wickedness, deceit, licentiousness, envy, slander, pride, folly. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person. Mark 7:21
Many are clearly spoken about in the Old and New Testaments. And the rest has been given to us by Sacred Tradition, and the Magesterium of the Church, (by the Holy Spirit of truth) because everything Jesus wanted to reveal to us is not in Scripture.
Jesus said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth.” John 16:12
But still we ignore it….if we call ourselves Christians, then why do we dare to ignore God’s law! Then we really are just like the Israelites who were in apostasy. We are cowards, caving in to the ideas of the culture and the world, when we are supposed to be SET APART! And we ignore the rights of God! He is the one who set order to the universe, the earth, and us. And I am not just speaking of the physical, there is a spiritual element as well.
We think that anything that we want to do we have a right to do. We are told that and convince ourselves that these things are ok. And while it might bother you at first, once you cross that line, you are blinded to Truth. Satan has you. One thing you see after this happens, is that the person may becomes angry or defensive about it, evasive or irrational even, perhaps lashing out if you try to reason with them. People who have scales over their eyes, are often convinced they are basically a good person, and so they don’t need to obey God’s laws. They think they don’t apply today or to them. I know because I was one of them.
Even worse, we become convinced that we cannot possibly obey God’s laws, they are too hard, too harsh. And that is another lie straight from Satan. Following Jesus is never easy. He said it wouldn’t be. But, when you give yourself over to Him, with full trust, He Himself shoulders most of the burden. What you thought was impossible, becomes not only possible, but easier, and joyful even!
Yes the vulture is posturing because he thinks he is having his day. He is taking souls from Our Lord, and so easily, so deceptively…he thinks he has you. And some of you he does.
But I believe in the love and power of God the Father, The Holy Spirit, and Jesus Christ. And I believe in the love and intercession of Our Mother Mary, who Jesus gave to us as our mother too. He was not just speaking to the Apostle, John. She is the “woman clothed with the sun” spoken of in Revelation. I believe that in this time of great apostasy, God is pouring out grace to any one who asks.
Ask Him!! He wants you to not be afraid of Him or His laws. They are for our protection. We are made for God, not ourselves. And Our Father in heaven knows exactly what we need… but gives us free will.
My testimony to you, as one who was once steeped in sin, is this….there is nothing, and I mean nothing to compare with the joy, freedom, and peace of walking daily with Jesus Christ. There is nothing to compare with the love of my Savior and my love for Him. I am so “in love” with Jesus, that I do not want to sin. I want sin out of my life, even small (venial) sin! But if I am Catholic and I fall, I only have to be repentant, and go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation that Jesus gave us. And there we are not only forgiven, but we are given more grace to “go and sin no more”, and given more grace to see ourselves and understand how God sees us. This is how we can “be perfect as Our Heavenly Father is perfect” because we can “do all things with Christ”. This is how God makes saints, and YOU are called to be one!
To all God’s beloved…. who are called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 1:7
Our Lord is not a tyrant or a taskmaster. When we are repentant, He is waiting with open arms. If we continue to refuse Him, He loves us so much, that He will try to reach us by allowing some trials or suffering to come to us…. to wake us up….to make us see.
The vulture is posturing, as if he has won, because he has caused much confusion, scandal, blindness to sin, and now FEAR. But his days are numbered. And the Lord is trying to get our attention. Resist the evil one, and come under the shelter of the Lord’s wings. He is imploring with all His heart, and waiting for you, with arms outstretched. Those arms outstretched on the cross, are for you.
Hear, O God, my cry; listen to my prayer! From the earth’s end I call to you as my heart grows faint. You will set me high upon a rock; you will give me rest, for you are my refuge, a tower of strength against the enemy. Oh, that I might lodge in your tent forever, take refuge in the shelter of your wings! Psalm 61:2-5