Archive | August, 2012

Excellent!

30 Aug

Chastity, sobriety, & excellence. In FOCUS lingo that’s the ‘Big Three’. It’s just one of the many things we expect from our student leaders. Recent conversations with a couple students and learning how to juggle my studies & missionary life made me realized the need to highlight why Excellence is a ‘big’ enough deal to be in the ‘Big Three’.

MORE THAN A 4.0
As a student I thought I knew what striving for excellence meant: straight A’s. I worked hard for an ‘A’, but I knew it was only possible because of my God-given talents. Entering my senior year I began to see it differently: I was cheating the system. I knew what my art professors were looking for and I did the bare minimum to please them. I did not care about the process or even the end product, just the grade. My success and happiness were based on a letter–which tends to fluxuate throughout the semester. But God didn’t give me talents in order to give me an ‘A’. He won’t ask for my report card when I get to Heaven. He wanted me to use my talents to learn. Specifically to learn His voice, to know Him.

BUSY LIFE VS FULL LIFE
I have an addiction to worldly success (moreso then than now). And I know I am not the only one who needs to break this habit. My life was busy. Too busy for God. And this is probably the 2nd most common excuse I hear when inviting Catholics to Mass, Bible study, prayer, etc. Yesterday, a student told me a story about a busy day at work. She was stressed and all she wanted to do was leave. As a man was leaving, she told him to have a nice day. He simply replied, “Have a nice life”. But as he was halfway out the door he stopped, looked back at her and said “Have a Full life.” When God chooses to work in ordinary ways, we miss it because we are so busy. By taking time out of her busy day to say goodbye to a stranger, this student was reminded of the goal of our lives: to “have life, and have it to the full” (Jn 10:10). We were not meant to just ‘get the grade’ (or job, or house, etc.), we were meant to live lives of substance. It’s like choosing a salad when you can go for the steak (no offense to salad eaters), don’t worry about the cost, Jesus will pick up the check (aka carry your cross)!

EXCELLENCE IS NEEDED
Now, for all of you freshman who are on their way to earning a spot on academic probation, this is not a doctors note to get you off the hook. This is a call to live order and to be saints (after all sainthood is perfecting excellence). We still need successful students future lawyers, doctors, CEOs, teachers, artists, and even stay-at-home parents.  But moreso, we need successful students who will go on to be our future leaders and cultural revolutionaries, those jobs will always be in high demand. I have high hopes for your path to sainthood, just keep in mind that life uses a heck of a lot more letters than A-F.

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Papa B tels us how to ‘Be’

30 Aug

Follow this link for a bunch of sweet quotes on evangelization.

like this one:

“How many people also in our time are in search of God, in search of Jesus and of his Church, in search of divine mercy, and are waiting for a “sign” that will touch their minds and their hearts! Today, as then, the Evangelist reminds us that the only “sign” is Jesus raised on the cross: Jesus who died and rose is the absolutely sufficient sign. Through him we can understand the truth about life and obtain salvation.”
Pope Benedict XVI, Parish of God the Merciful Father, Rome, March 26, 2006

2x all-American: Lora Evenstad

25 Aug
Link

Stone soup for our stoney hearts

8 Aug

Stone soup for our stoney hearts

Ginny Kubitz Moyer talks about the classic book, stone soup, and it’s application to adults