“Let there be great joy and jubilation in heaven for those souls who seek to turn away from sin and follow the path (Mary) that leads to Her son, Jesus Christ!”
Today marks the 100th anniversary of the third apparition of Our Lady to the three shepherd children (Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta) of Fatima, Portugal in 1917.
There is always great joy in my heart and soul because of what Our Lady’s message has meant to so many Catholics, myself included, across the globe — an opportunity to console God, pray and make sacrifices for those who have no one doing such for them. In addition, a generation shall live to witness the full conversion of Russia, if it isn’t happening already, and the triumph of Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart.
There is also sadness in my heart and soul, although one does not have time to grieve when prayer and taking joy in God’s will should be a the heart of our daily activities, because so many others, especially Roman Catholics, choose to turn a blind eye to witnessing as true apostles of Fatima.
What one does today in obedience today to Jesus’s calling or invitation could affect and change the life of another. I give God all the glory for I have been blessed with grace, honor, and privilege to witness such a miracle first hand through my BFF (Brother G).
I did not choose heaven. Heaven chose me!
I am today a humble and undeserving servant of Christ whom I serve through His mother. I believe this with all my heart simply because the grace of Our Lord spoke to my heart in March 2017 and said, ”Come follow me. Teach others about love and prayer [there seemed to be an emphasis on prayer]. Your sins are forgiven. Go and sin no more!”
Naturally I felt like a newly received convert into the church who was ready to serve my Lord right out of the gate. Like Francisco and Jacinto Marto of Fatima, I wanted to console God and save souls. However, I was not even close to serving Our Lord in the way these two recently canonized saints of the church did.
I had forgotten in my momentary lapse of joy that responding to His call meant I would fall many times. And each time I do, His grace will lift me up, shake the dust from my clothes, point me in the direction of His mother (for she is the path that leads to God), and gently push me in the direction I am to go.
The first step to understanding God’s will or purpose in one’s life is to humble oneself before the Lord.
The second step is prayer; learning to listen to God’s voice through prayer. What is important here however is knowing how to pray. Pray not for yourself, but for others. In turn let them pray for you.
The third step is forgiveness for your sins (Sacrament of Reconciliation for us Catholics). I believe absolutely that confession opens our hearts and soul to the love and mercy of our Lord, thus creating in us a spirit of willingness to be of greater service to Christ rather than focusing on ourselves.
The fourth step is Mass and the Holy Eucharist; returning to the church for those who have been away. Both are intertwined. We cannot have one without the other.
The fifth step is what I call prayer of conviction. Develop a strong prayer life through daily recitation of the holy Rosary and the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Participate in and obtain the promises of the Sacred Heart and Immaculate Heart of Jesus and Mary through the First Friday and Saturday devotions. You can learn more about both devotions by clicking here.
Prayer is my passion. I believe absolutely (conviction) that prayer is our direct link to having a conversation with our Father. In my case, I speak with my mother (Mary), who then speaks to Her Son, who then goes before the Father and presents my request. It doesn’t get any more beautiful than that.
In fact, because there are those reading this who doubt the above to be true, let me call on our Lord to open the eyes of you doubting Thomas’s.
January 29, 2016, was the last day I worked for an energy company located downtown (Tulsa), with whom I had worked off and on as a contractor since 2011. I wanted very much to receive an offer to become a permanent employee of this organization. I absolutely loved my job, the people I worked with and the location I was working. In fact, there was nothing (save for one) that I did not love about my job. This final lay off had the appearance of, ”This is your last go around, Carlos!” Let me be clear, I was not laid off due to performance issues, but because of a downturn in the industry.
July 12, 2016, I received my final unemployment check. Since that time I have had no income, save for the grace of God through the generosity of my BFF’s (Mr. Man and Brother G). With the exception of one interview, all jobs I have applied for since January 2016 have been met with rejection. Glory to God. Isn’t God amazing? His timing is perfect.
As of today (Thursday, July 13, 2017), one hundred years to the day when Our Lady appeared to Lucia, Francisco, and Jacinta for the third time at the Cova at Fatima in 1917, I am binding the following to my daily recitation of the Rosary which I ask the three visionaries to present to Our Lady, who will in turn present it to Her son, who will in turn present my prayer before the Father … I will no longer actively seek to find employment. Rather, this former company with whom I was employed as a contractor will not only reach out and request my return, they will also make an offer to become a permanent employee.
As to the hour or day when this will happen? Only God knows. Will it happen? Yes. Only then, like the miracle of the sun at Fatima in October, will you come to believe, fall on your knees, seek God’s mercy and forgiveness through His Son, whose path can only be accessed by going through His Mother.
To God be all the glory!