Last week’s “one thing” collection

This journal collection is fast becoming my favorite part of my day. I love to look back over the week and see how each day’s one thing that stands out from the mass reading builds on the previous day, until there is a theme to reflect on at the end of the week. In this case, obedience, which just so happens to be the word I was given at the beginning of this year, how cool is that!?

Incidentally, I resumed my reading of the catechism again this week which dovetailed beautifully as well, I love how that worked.

This is a good way to reflect on and record what I have learned from Sacred Scripture, and it really only takes a few minutes to do so, but the ability to look back and meditate on that time is so highly beneficial, it saddens me that I didn’t think of it sooner!

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Psalm 139

My Bible memory for the month of June…Psalm 139. This is a great passage to meditate on during adoration in my prayer time. I hope to have it hidden deep in my heart by the end of June. Each day after I give my day, myself and all I have, desire, and plan to do to my blessed Jesus, I read thru the entire passage out loud, then ink out a word or phrase and read through it again. I do this for 5-15 minutes every morning before I read the daily Mass readings. My pie in the sky plan is to have one chapter of Sacred Scripture memorized each month.

Do you memorize Sacred Scripture? Share your best tips and favorite passages with me.

One Thing

I have started a new thing in my journal to help me focus on the daily Mass readings, and to meditate on them through the day and reflect on them a week at a time at the end of the week.  This is my first attempt, starting last Sunday and ending yesterday evening.  I love how the readings are diverse enough to get something new each day, but are connected with the desires of my heart and my own personal circumstances in a way that they all dovetail together for a prayer at the end of the week that sums them all up together.  I also love that I can look back on it later, and remember the words that the Holy Spirit whispered into my own spirit, and my response to it.

How do you meditate on the Holy Scriptures?  Would love to hear and learn from your experiences.  Leave me a note, or a picture, or a link to your blog so I can see your stuff.

Jehovah Nissi, The Lord our Banner

Exodus 17:11-16 As long as Moses kept his hands raised up, Israel had the better of the fight, but when he let his hands rest, Amalek had the better of the fight. Moses’ hands, however, grew tired; so they took a rock and put it under him and he sat on it. Meanwhile Aaron and Hur supported his hands, one on one side and one on the other, so that his hands remained steady until sunset. And Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the sword. Then the Lord said to Moses: Write this down in a book as something to be remembered, and recite it to Joshua: I will completely blot out the memory of Amalek from under the heavens. Moses built an altar there, which he named Yahweh-nissi; for he said, “Take up the banner of the Lord! The Lord has a war against Amalek through the ages.”

I have been learning about the Names of God in the Old Testament and using them in my daily prayer time and in adoration of His Holy Name and attributes. I have found it a beautiful way to address God in my personal time of specific need, and call out to the Name that promises to meet that need. When I am needing peace, I address Jehovah Shalom, the God who is my peace. When I am in need of healing, I ask Jehovah Rapha to attend to my pain. When in need of provision, I can call to Jehovah Jireh, the God who provides. When I am feeling lost or in need of guidance or rest, I cry out to my Shepherd, Jehovah Raah.

A couple weeks ago, I was introduced to Jehovah Nissi, The Lord, our Banner. He first appears here in Exodus 17, after a victorious battle against Amalek, the grandson of Esau (who had sold his birthright to his younger brother Jacob/Israel for a bowl of stew). St. Augustine taught that Amalek represents the city of the world, and Israel represents the City of God. The battle between the children of Israel and the Amalekites is an OT type of what we experience in our Christian life today, what we know as spiritual warfare. Today’s battle is the Lord’s keeping of His sworn vow…to have war against Amalek from generation to generation. And truly, today we are fighting in spiritual battles between between the city of the world and the city of God.

I challenge you to read the entire account for yourself, starting with verse 8, and compare it with the NT Scriptures about spiritual warfare…..but for now, I want to focus on the details of the victory that Moses experienced in the battle with Amalek, and the Name of God that appears in this account.  Have you ever tried holding your hands above your head for a long period of time? They quickly grow tired, and you can only find relief by lowering them. This happened for Moses in this account, and when his arms dropped, the enemy advanced. Moses was assisted by Aaron and Hur, in that when his arms grew tired, they held them up for him, and relieved him in his need for rest.

This is a beautiful picture of Christian Community!

In today’s spiritual battle, we find this same phenomena. We all are fighting intense battles with an unseen enemy, we lift our hands in surrender to God and focus on Him, but the battle is long, our arms grow tired, and in our humanity, we grow weary in well-doing, lose our focus, and take a break…when our hands lower, our enemy advances. How we need the support and assistance of one other! Like Aaron and Hur, we can strengthen the arms of our brothers and sisters in battle through prayer and encouragement while we wait for the promise of the complete defeat of Amalek, and continue in the war against him through the ages.

Psalm 60:4 You have given a banner to those who fear you that it may be displayed because of the truth! Selah.

Tomato Basil Soup

We do meatless Fridays here at Les Buissonnets, and the husband has suggested grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup for supper.  This is a timely request, because my patio basil was starting to go to seed, so I harvested (forgot to take before pics, dang me) it to make tomato basil soup.

Because…regular tomato soup from a can cannot compare.

I used about a cup of fresh, chopped basil leaves, and sauteed with half an onion, finely chopped, and a couple tsps. of minced garlic in a smidge of olive oil until onion is translucent and the smell of basil reaches to the back of the apartment.

I rarely measure when I’m doing soup…I just throw in a little o’ this and a little o’ that.  This is the way my dad taught me to cook, may he rest in peace.

I add a large can of the cheapest, lowest sodium tomato soup, a small can of diced tomatoes (undrained), and 2 cups of whey…this is a good way to use up the whey after making yogurt in my instant pot, and adds probiotics and protein to an otherwise low nutrient soup.

Let it simmer…enjoy the aroma until supper time…then brag about it to all your wordpress and facebook friends.

Happy Friday.  Enjoy.