Skip to main content

Inglorious Bastards

First thing.  The title of this blog doesn't have anything to do with Quentin Tarrantino movie.  What I will be writing about his how God chooses the most unlikely characters to fulfill his designs.

The most difficult part of my spiritual journey is coming to terms with my weakness.  Almost daily I fall short and can't get myself to do "the next right thing." St. Paul speaks about this poignantly in his letter to the Romans as he reflects, "I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate."  Usually when I would mess up I would get down on myself, but the more I prayed and read the lives of the saints the more I realized that God could use my weakness for good.  In my previous post I wrote about hope, about how one should trust in God's providence.  This hope is based on the fact that God is faithful and will fulfill his promises as long as one is faithful to the end. St. Paul writes again, "And I am sure that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ."  

That brings me to my point about how God chooses the least qualified to accomplish his deeds. Here is a brief list of God's unique characters:


  1. St. Peter.  St. Peter denied Jesus three times during his crucifixion, but later went on to become the first pope.
  2. King David.  King David committed adultery and organized the murder of an innocent man, but later on became a great leader, a "man after God's heart."
  3. St. Mary of Egypt. St. Mary was a prostitute who seduced many men, but later on repented and became a great saint.
  4. St. Augustine.  Augustine was a hedonistic womanizer and fathered a child out of wedlock, but later on became one of the most influential doctors of the Church.
  5. Blessed Bartolo Longo. Longo was a satanic priest who later repented and became a Dominican tertiary who helped build the basilica of Our Lady of The Rosary in Pompeii Italy.
  6. Rahab. Rahab was a prostitute who helped Joshua and his spies who later became one of the ancestors of Jesus.
The truth is that God writes straight with crooked lines.  Poet Charles Peguy speaks about this reality in his poem, The Portal of the Mystery of Hope:

"If it were from limpid days that she made limpid days. If it were with souls, with clear water that she made her springs. From clear water that she made clear water. If it were from pure souls that she made pure souls, Heavens, that would be nothing. Anyone could do as much. And there wouldn't be any secret to it.
 But it's from sullied water, old water, stale water. But it's from an impure soul that she makes a pure soul and  that's the most beautiful secret in the whole garden of the world." 





Comments

Popular posts from this blog

10 Great Quotes from The Book of Sirach

The book of Sirach is a book that is often overlooked in the bible. This is unfortunate since this book contains many wise, practical saying on how to live a virtous life. The book was believed to have been written between 200-175 B.C.E.

Here are ten quotes that I feel best reflect this timeless work.

1."Do not become a beggar by feasting with\borrowed money, when you have nothing in your purse." Sirach 18:33

2."In all you do remember the end of your life, and then you will never sin." 7:36

3.."Glory and dishonor come from speaking; a man's tongue is his downfall." 5:13"

4."A wise man is cautious in everything." 18:27

5."One who trusts others is light minded." 19:4

6."If you pursue justice, you will obtain it and wear it as a glorious robe." 27:8

7."Many have fallen by the edge of the sword, but no many as have fallen because of the tongue." 28:18

8." In all of your work be industrious and no sickness will…

George Michael, Carrie Fisher, and The Afterlife

I was stunned, as was most of the world was when I heard about the passing of George Michael on Christmas day.  Michael possessed enormous talent was and one of the most successful acts in the 1980's and early 90's

Shortly after Carrie Fisher died.  Fisher was famous for her legendary role as princess Leia from the Star Wars movies.  Strangely her mother also died the day after.

2016 was notable year for celebrity deaths.

Some names include: Prince, Glenn Frey, David Bowie,  Doris Roberts, Alan Rickman, and Muhammad Ali.

As a Catholic these deaths got me thinking about the transient nature of life, and the inevitability of death.

Marcus Aurelius, the stoic, emperor, philosopher king wrote about the passing nature of life as he reflected, "Time is a sort of river of passing events, and strong is its current; no sooner is a thing brought to sight than it is swept by and another takes its place, and this too will be swept away."

Even though I agree mostly with Aurelius&#…

Me vs. The Almighty

There is famous scene in the bible where Jacob wrestles with God.  Jacob fights with God until God takes out a bone from Jacob's thigh. Interestingly, God eventually relents and stops fighting with Jacob. After this dramatic incident Jacob is renamed Israel which literally means, "he who struggles with God."

I can relate to this story.  Many times in my life I have argued with God. I still do. (my wife can attest to that.) Many times I have criticized his tactics, his ways, and his wisdom. In my worst moments I have even used choice language. I have a complicated relationship with God. Like Jacob I have wrestled with God. (thigh bone still intact)

Recently I approached a priest friend of mine and told him of my struggles with God.  I expected that he would chide me for my lack of respect and informality. What this priest said was illuminating and encouraging. He told me that it was OK at times to be angry with God, God understood. He in fact encouraged this honesty and o…