Darkness

We’ve all been there in one way or another. The darkness. Unsure, A little afraid. Or maybe it was worse; we had a sense of dread, maybe evil just around the corner, through the trees.

Maybe you’re somewhere in between; you can see the light off in the distance, but you’re not sure you can cross through the darkness.

By some measure it’s relative; each of us knows the doubt and pain and struggle of our own reality and experience.
The old adage, “…there’s always someone worse off than you…” might be a good way to approach this commonality of humanity.
Consider the homeless.  Consider the abused.  Consider those that don’t have enough to eat; maybe nothing at all to eat.
Consider those displaced by war, terrorized by violence otherwise.  Consider the children, and old people, who can’t get away from the shelling, the bombs, the murderous mobs.
Imagine living in the open, in the cold, in the wet, with no real shelter from the elements.
Consider the suffering. Maybe from mental illness, or disease, or strife otherwise in your life, hounding you, not letting up.
And then consider being nailed to a cross and hung there to die.

Imagine a darkness so deep, unending, leaving your heart black with dispare, nothing to hold you back from the abyss but your pain.

And then consider the love it took to walk toward the cross, accept it. A commitment so complete that it bears witness to God’s love for us, to speak truth to the very end, until the spirit departs.
In the end, I think that’s why they call Good Friday good.
INRI_Iēsus Nazarēnus, Rēx Iūdaeōrum
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Prayer for Generosity – Ignatius of Loyola

Eternal Word, only begotten Son of God,

Teach me true generosity.

Teach me to serve you as you deserve.

To give without counting the cost,

To fight heedless of wounds,

To labor without seeking rest,

To sacrifice myself without thought of any reward

Save the knowledge that I have done your will.

Amen.

[Feast Day, Ignatius Loyola, 31 July]

Ignatian Prayer, Hearts on Fire

Ignatius developed and taught his friends to examine themselves, their actions, and intentions, through prayer.

The Spiritual Exercises, The Examen, both came from the Ignatian approach to prayer.

Following is from a "Lunchtime Examen" I found on an Ignatian Spirituality site. It sums up things nicely, step by step.

The process is the same each day. The effect is timeless. The effect is GOOD. Give it a try.

Chill

This was the view I had recently. It was a 30-Hour Retreat. We got up early, almost like a work day to get there.

It's good to do for mind, body, and soul. Regularly. For your own well-being, and for others.

When you allow yourself to chill, it means taking pause, a bit of emotional and spiritual detente, giving your engine time to spool down from breakneck speed.

Chill. Out. GOOD.

Half Full, Happy Anniversary, All GOOD.

I started this blog three years ago this month, July. At the time I was looking for a way to share some thoughts, some insights, and further the good in the world.

Not sure how much good I’ve done, but I’ve definitely shared a lot of thoughts. Gotten some positive feedback along the way, which is good for me if nothing else. And I’ve certainly learned a lot.

I plan to continue blogging, sharing, pursuing the GOOD in this manner. I’ve also got another avenues coming down the pike later this yesr.

I’ll have an e-book up in the fall, before the holidays. It will be a sort of coffee table book, a short volume, about being a new dad. It will bring a little humor, and hopefully inspiration, to fathers. 

 I’m also designing a short podcast I’ll produce and share periodically.  Same goal: share a little insight, further the good in the world.

So whether you’re new to this blog,  or have been along these last three years, thanks for reading. Please share it with others. On we go toward the GOOD.

NEVER SUICIDE!  NEVER GIVE UP – EVER.

News of Chester Bennington’s suicide has me slowly shaking my head in frustration. The Linkin Park frontman left the world far too early, taking his own life at age 41. 

“Another one gone”, I can only think.

His passing marks the latest of several public faces that have meant so much to so many through their lives and art. And then each decided to end end it, check out, commit suicide.

Ronnie Montrose. Robin Williams. Chris Cornell. And now Chester Bennington. 

So very sad, for sure. But SO frustrating, too.  

These posts from twitter give some sense of the tragedy of suicide. In this case they’re about Bennington (mostly), but the themes of darkness and pain and resulting loss are universal.

Famous or not, EVERY life matters. 

No one should give up on hope, no one should give up on life.  

No matter how dark it is, there is light out there for you.  

Say No to the pain, don’t let it have the last word. Don’t let the anxiety and depression win.  

Stay in the fight.  Accept, and transcend, and KEEP GOING.



Finally, put this number in your phone. I just did. 

You never know when you might change someone’s life, by saving it.

NEVER SUICIDE. NEVER GIVE UP.