Having spent much of my career working with children and adolescents with negative antisocial behaviors as well as learning difficulties, I’ve come to recognize some of the same patterns in adults. First, a story.
Nearly every day, “Junior”, returned to class in some kind of trouble. We would sit down with paper and pencil and map out what had happened. He had punched “Willie” in the arm and Willie punched him back.
So why did you punch Willie? I thought you liked him.
He’s cool and I want him to like me.
So if he’s cool and you want him to like him, how did punching him help that to happen?
Cuz the cool kids do that and I want to be cool.
Let me understand, you want to be cool and you want Willie to be a friend?
How did punching Willie work out in getting him to be a friend?
Not so good. He got mad.
This isn’t the first time he got mad at you. If you keep on punching, hitting and tripping Willie do you think he’ll start being your friend?
So if you keep doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep getting what you’ve got.
So what do you think you could do?
Do something else?
Yes, it’s like when you play basketball. When you shoot and miss the basket, What do you do? You change your stance or your hold or your eye focus. If you didn’t change something what would happen?
I’d miss again?
OK, now back to Willie, what could you do to win his acceptance?........
No one likes to be corrected, especially adults, whether in the workplace, by a spouse, or a friend but sometimes correction is necessary for our growth as a person and especially for our spiritual growth. The prophets from the beginning spoke God’s message of correction to Israel and their words were never popular. When they listened God saved them from their enemies.
Today, the world moans about the evils that surround us; the immorality of government leaders who support abortion and ignore Church law about the reception of the Eucharist or the Church leaders who cancel holy priests and keep silent about the breaches of authority in the state in Church affairs. Then there is the general decline in morality, the injustice of high prices for food, fuel, medicine and housing. It’s time to sit down and map out cause and effect. If Junior keeps assaulting and doesn’t get what he needs it’s time for a change. If leaders aren’t doing their job it’s time for a change.
As Americans and as Christians we have become passive and lazy. Few research multiple perspectives to discern the truth by finding alternative news sources or consulting scripture in order to sees the signs of the times and take a stand. If individuals aren’t living the Faith it’s time for a change.
The Blessed Virgin Mary has appeared more frequently in the 20th century than at any other time in history. Why? What is she trying to impress upon us? What is the message every time? Over and over her message is to repent, return to the sacraments, say the rosary daily and do penance. If we don’t change our behavior we are just like Junior, we will keep getting what we’ve got. These times are not like past times.
Read the Book of Revelation, it describes the signs of times before Christ will come again as the Just Judge. The seas will rise, earthquakes will abound, multiple volcanoes will erupt with greater frequency. Drought and fire and floods will increase. There will be unknown disease, pestilence and plague. Sound familiar?
In Bethlehem Christ showed himself as an innocent vulnerable child calling us to come and adore him. On Calvary he showed a superhuman love for each of us. That is all God ever wanted to be for us-one who loves with the tenderness of a father toward his vulnerable children. Every good parent knows that disobedience requires consequences, correction. We DO have a choice- obey and all is well or disobey and face the music.
Unfortunately somewhere in the last fifty years we were brainwashed to believe that because God loves us that there will be no consequences to our disobedience or ignoring him and that there is no Hell. That is a lie, promulgated by the Father of Lies, Satan. God is indeed love. That is His nature but he is also the God of Justice. Some say the time of his mercy is closing and his justice is at hand. Maybe. How many chances and warnings must we get to return to moral living before God has had enough of our disobedience and decides to clean up this putrid mess we’ve made.
In the days of Noah the people were so perverse that God sent a flood to cleanse the earth. Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of their unnatural and licentious living. But the citizens of Ninevah were smarter. When the prophet Jonah warned them of God’s wrath to come, they repented and were given another chance.
World War II resulted because too few listened to Mary’s warning in 1917, at Fatima. She said that if we did not pray the rosary and do penance a worse and greater war would follow and that Russia would spread its errors around the world. And so it happened!
Russia, China, Laos and Vietnam are all communist nations. Bangladesh, Guyana, India, Nepal, Nicaragua, Portugal, Sri Lanka, Tanzania all have socialist governments. Socialist parties are strong in Sweden, Denmark and Canada. Socialism as an option is becoming popular even in the USA. History shows that in many cases socialism is the precursor for communism.
As a people of faith we should be working hard to strengthen our own faith, praying daily, receiving the sacraments frequently and becoming active in spreading the truth because the truth is that God has been all but eliminated from every aspect of American society right down to the family. Did you know that that is the primary goal of communism? Destroy family life and loyalties and eliminate God from every aspect of society.
If we keep on doing what what we’re doing, we’ll keep on getting what we’ve got!