Rhythm and Rhyme

So many new sights and sounds have returned to us during this springtime. The sun shines brighter and longer. The birds sing earlier and more often. And the sky is a clear blue making the new greens on the earth glow with life. Perhaps that is why April is the official month for poetry?

Winter’s chill has come to a close, Christ’s resurrection is on the horizon, and the earth awaits this glorious rejuvenation. With that, the Guardian Angels of Education will take a page from our inspired Biblical authors and change the writing style to a more creative form. For the month of April, poetry will be the genre by which we will write. Perhaps in doing so, we might challenge our students to write in the same way, using their intellect and creativity to find the deeper meaning within every topic imaginable- especially God.

Adoro Te Devote
Godhead here in hiding, whom I do adore,
Masked by these bare shadows, shape and nothing more,
See, Lord, at thy service low lies here a heart Lost,
all lost in wonder at the God thou art.

Seeing, touching, tasting are in thee deceived:
How says trusty hearing? that shall be believed;
What God’s Son has told me, take for truth I do;
Truth himself speaks truly or there’s nothing true.

On the cross thy godhead made no sign to men,
Here thy very manhood steals from human ken:
Both are my confession, both are my belief,
And I pray the prayer of the dying thief.

I am not like Thomas, wounds I cannot see,
But can plainly call thee Lord and God as he;
Let me to a deeper faith daily nearer move,
Daily make me harder hope and dearer love.

O thou our reminder of Christ crucified,
Living Bread, the life of us for whom he died,
Lend this life to me then: feed and feast my mind,
There be thou the sweetness man was meant to find.

Bring the tender tale true of the Pelican;
Bathe me, Jesu Lord, in what thy bosom ran
Blood whereof a single drop has power to win
All the world forgiveness of its world of sin.

Jesu, whom I look at shrouded here below,
I beseech thee send me what I thirst for so,
Some day to gaze on thee face to face in light
And be blest for ever with thy glory’s sight. Amen.

~St. Thomas Aquinas, Translated by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Live Jesus in our hearts forever!

Discerning the Will of God

Since the beginning of time, the will of God has been contemplated by the greatest of kings to the lowliest of peasants. We ask the same questions today as they did in the past, “Am I on the right track to holiness?” “What must I do to please my God?” “How do I know that what I am doing is what God wants me to do?”

These are questions that we cannot answer alone; we need Jesus to help us find them. Thus, we search for ways to seek Him out so that we can better understand the mysteries of His Will. We do this so as to receive His wisdom via the most prized Gift He can give to us: His grace- an understanding of His immense love. This grace is the key to discerning God’s Will in our lives.

As Catholics, we have an insurmountable amount of ways in which God allows us accumulate such graces. Here are just a few of the most popular:

The Mass: At Mass, we listen to Christ through Sacred scripture and experience Him physically through Eucharistic Communion.

Adoration: While in an Adoration Chapel, we pay homage to our Lord by being with Him physically and consulting with Him about His will for our lives.

The Sacraments: Through the spiritual gifts of Baptism, Communion, Reconciliation, Confirmation, Matrimony, Holy Orders, and Anointing of the Sick, we come closer to Christ in our vocations as well as in our daily lives. We experience His teachings closer than ever before.

Prayer: While contemplating His spiritual presence within us, we meditate on His will for us in silence. We reflect on His mysterious love and become enamored by it, especially when we are willing to listen to His words as opposed to filling the conversation with our own.  (A well prayed Rosary is one of the best ways to really focus on His words instead of our own.)

In all of these activities, there is one common theme that all of these activities share: the presence of God. When we place ourselves inside His presence, we are more tuned in to His spiritual wavelengths and thus have better reception of the plans He shares with us. The more we are in His presence, the more we can learn from Him. The more we learn from Him, the more we understand His will.

In a couple of weeks, new students will be filling up our desks to learn from us. May we recognize God’s presence in them so that we can receive the graces necessary to teach with the faith and zeal that characterizes us as Christian teachers. When we do this constantly, we no longer discern the will of God, we participate freely in it.

Live Jesus in our hearts forever!