Archive for Hope

Spiritual Resilience through Perseverance

You learned to walk or ride a bicycle by falling down.  Olympic athletes fail too many times to count on their way to the gold medal. So it is with anything you want to achieve.  Spiritual resiliency is fundamental to a growth in holiness to which every Christian is called.  But along the way, we will encounter much failure.  That is not a reason to quit, at all, but the very reason to keep going! We learn one more way in which not to do it and as complex as our natures are, there are certainly a lot of ways we need to learn how not to do it.

But the real focus on developing spiritual resiliency as a trait, and enduring part of our being, is the celebration of our little successes along the way. Focus on those times when you overcame the temptation to give up and trusted God, remaining joyful and optimistic in the midst of a trial. One can even begin with small annoyances as I alluded to earlier, such as delays in traffic.  Begin with the small matters, pay attention to them and reinforce the successes. No jet pilot, astronaut, professional athlete or saint achieved what they did without both learning from the mistakes and working hard on reinforcing the successes.

‘They will know we are Christians by our love’, by our love, joy, peace and serenity in every circumstance through our spiritual resilience which is developed through perseverance over a long period of time.

Is “Turn it into a Blowtorch!” a diary or not?

I recently had a reviewer of “That Flame in your Heart? Turn it into a Blowtorch!” state that he was put off by diaries, even those of saints. Gosh, that excludes a huge part of Catholic tradition, even the Doctors of the Church!

I can see how the book could be taken as a diary.  (Next edition I will re-write the Introduction.) It is an easy mistake to make without an in-depth reading.

It is not.

As other reviewers have pointed out, this book, “Turn it into a Blowtorch!” has less to do with the author’s journey than the reader’s. It is in fact, structured as a 30 Day, or really 33 Day, retreat or journey into the interior spiritual life of the reader. More on that later.

I learned a long time ago as an officer in the Army, as a corporate executive, a trainer of thousands of people and a leader of hundreds of groups in the Church, to never advocate or expect more of those I lead than I am willing to do or have done myself. I have a miniature of the statue in front of the Infantry Headquarters at Ft. Benning, GA on my desk. The inscription reads “Follow me!” Jesus used the same words. (Mt 4:19. Mt 16:24, Lk 9:23)

I have absolutely nothing to gain by publishing a diary (proceeds go to charity) and everything to lose by exposing my interior spiritual journey. I do so only in service to the reader and the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. I am simply pointing the way, providing the path in hopes of shortening the reader’s time to learn the same lessons.

As can be said in every age past and in ages to come, we are facing a time of great turmoil and upheaval. St. John Paul, before he became Pope, characterized the uniqueness of this time we are living in, however, as the “…. final confrontation” between the Church and the anti-Church, the Gospel and the anti-Gospel. He goes on to say it is coming upon us and is inescapable. You can find a link to St. John Paul’s speech as well as a column by Francis Cardinal George here http://turnitintoablowtorch.com/francis-cardinal-georges-prophetic-column/

By profession I am a corporate and individual growth strategies expert. The book was written from that fundamental orientation. I have never had an individual or corporation tell me I have helped them get ready for the next major change too early. I have had some regret that they did not heed my advice seriously enough or quickly enough.

I feel a great sense of urgency in my own life and also to help others if they so desire it, to be more deeply rooted in an active, meaningful, and ongoing daily dialogue with the Person of Jesus Christ. The fruit of which is a peace, serenity and joy that only He can provide a pure gift, no matter what is going on in our lives or what is about to happen. When you possess Him and that fruit, the flame will become a blowtorch! The icon of His Sacred Heart reveals His own blowtorch of love and what He wants for our own hearts!

The message of the book, “That Flame in your Heart? Turn it into a Blowtorch!” is very simple. Yes, I have walked through a proverbial ‘hell’ but managed to find peace, serenity and joy beyond anything I could have ever comprehended.

The reader can walk that path with someone who has already been there and discover it for themselves, now. While there is still time, before their own time of need is upon them.

And in doing so, they will attract others to an intimate dialogue with the Person of Jesus Christ.

We are at a tipping point, now is the time of preparation. We are in the “…final confrontation…” of St. John Paul II.

May peace, serenity and joy be yours as Jesus turns that flame in your heart into a Blowtorch!