November 24, 2004

Giving Thanks

I will truly be giving thanks when I learn how to give thanks without hesitation for all those things that get in the way and slow me down.

I will truly be giving thanks when I can without hesitation thank God for those who treat me poorly.

I will truly be giving thanks when I learn to give thanks for the things that most aggravate me.

I will truly be giving thanks when I want nothing other than what God has set out before me.

I will truly be giving thanks when I hand what has been so generously given to the next person down the line.

For what I am about to receive, whatsoever it may be, may the Lord make me truly thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Posted by Steven Riddle at 12:18 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

From William Law--A Reminder of Spiritual Laws

from A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life
William Law (1686-1761)

It is as reasonable to suppose it the desire of all Christians to arrive at Christian perfection as to suppose that all sick men desire to be restored to perfect health; yet experience shows us, that nothing wants more to be pressed, repeated, and forced upon our minds, than the plainest rules of Christianity.

I am reminded more and more of this when I am under the pressure of deadlines, etc. I grow more remote, more difficult to approach, more distant, less concerned for the welfare of others. What I realize is that it is not during the good times that character expresses itself, but rather during the difficult times. And each type of difficult time reveals something more of character. If we wish to know outselves well, we should take a snapshot at each of our difficult moments--mourning, under pressure, under scrutiny, in financial crisis, whatever. Each of these moments will shows us in greater or lesser light depending in large part on how far we have allowed grace and "the plainest rules of Christianity" to shape us. And it is in examining moments like these that the Saints themselves realized how far they were from the perfection that is part of God's gift to us.

And yet, lest we use this as an excuse to tumble into despair, our Father loves us with an everlasting love no matter how unloveable we try to make ourselves. It is important to remember that His is a love with no conditions and without regard to persons. His love is more intimate than the masks we wear--it is love of the core of our being, of the person He sees us as in the body of Christ.

Posted by Steven Riddle at 08:01 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

November 23, 2004

Iraq--An Irony

I'm sorry so little posting of recent date. Hope that it will pick up shortly. Today just a moment for this short note.

I heard that some Sunni Clerics are calling for a boycott of forthcoming elections in Iraq. I don't suppose they stopped for a moment to consider that now they can call for such a boycott without consequences. What would have happened in the days of the Ba'athist regime had a similar call taken place against the pseudo-elections of Saddam and Ba'ath?

But being involved in it they cannot objectively see--blilnd hatred has indeed made them blind and they cannot know how far they have come in little more than a year.

Posted by Steven Riddle at 08:48 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

November 22, 2004

Tim Drake's Book n Blog

Y'all might be interested in checking out Tim Drakes new book and a web page that has a link to a blog for Young Catholics. Mr. Drake at one time kept a Blog here at St. Blogs. Perhaps he still does so (many people come and go under my radar) or perhaps this represents his return to blogging.

Posted by Steven Riddle at 09:26 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"Absorbent and Yellow and Porous Is He. . . "

The long awaited advent of that Art House film was greeted by yours truly and Son almost on the day of its arrival.

Yes, Spongebob Squarepants:The Movie (Bigger. Better. More Absorbent.) is with us in full cinematic glory, and indeed glorious it is--from the live action pirate beginning to the post credits live action clearing of the theater, every moment is a triumph.

Seriously--it's not for the very young. One woman near me brought her son, who may have been three or four and there were some moments that would have been frightening (especially given the big screen) to one so young. However, if your munchkins are in the 5-whatever age-group, Spongebob provides exactly what they need to be semi-permenantly wound-up.

Except for Ellyn, I've anecdotally notices a tremendous divide on the part of Spongebob, and it showed in the attendees at this theatre--they were overwhelmingly male. Some mothers reluctnatly trudged in to endure the high-pitched voices and the hyperactivity of Spongebob and Patrick, but most of the cause for the attendance was male. Linda despises Spongebob and is constantly lamenting that Samuel can't see Bugs Bunny and friends. But those of us who have come to know and love Spongebob know that the secret is in his kindness and his irrepressible good cheer even in the worst of circumstances.

The Spongebob movies is everything you've come to expect of Spongebob and more--as the advertising line says: Bigger. Better. More Absorbent.

So it you're of a Spongebob mind, grab a kid and run for the nearest theater. If not, you may want to pay the exorbitant rates and become acquainted with the residents of Bikini Bottom because you are missing out on some generally pleasant, exceptionally generous and kind (if somewhat below the average wattage) company.

Posted by Steven Riddle at 07:49 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack