A student of mine came to class thirty minutes late, without paper, without a pencil, and without a book - two days in a row. The only thing he brought with him to class was an interesting pipe-like contraption used for Lord-knows what.
I did not see an irresponsible student, however. I saw a precious child of God who does not know how much he is loved by his heavenly Father and the purpose and meaning that God has waiting for him.
From that moment I started praying that I would have an opportunity to communicate to him as stated in Jeremiah, "For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future," (Jer. 29:11) and that my student experiences the sweet taste of redemption as a precious child of God - the Redeemer.
Saturday night after Mass I met a lady who is 98 years old. She proudly told me her age and had such a big smile on her face. She was Jesus to me at that moment because I was sad after having attended two very untimely funerals in that past week and then also received news that my dear sister in law has a terminal cancer. In meeting this wonderful woman I heard the voice of Jesus say, "trust me and I will give you rest and peace- it will be okay"
On the day of the 2nd "Wing-off" more than one parishioner had prayed thru the day for a let-up in the terrible weather. Was it too much to hope for? Five minutes to start we headed over to Slyders - was that the sun breaking through? I'm sure it was! Whoa! Am I seeing a rainbow? YES, and it arced directly over Slyders. Rainbows make me smile - so does Fr. Satish.
One day after school, my mom, sister, and I walked to CVS. Since dogs aren't allowed in, we tied my dog up and went inside. When we came back out, there was an empty harness. I was starting to panic. What if he tried to cross Far Hills? He'd be smashed! We went around the block twice. We couldn't find him. My mom reminded me of a bible verse: "Don't worry about anything, instead pray about everything." So we went home and prayed. Many people prayed for us. The next morning my mom found out who had . We got home and our dog was waiting for us. I believe in the power of prayer, for real! (age 10)
Here are some encounters with Christ submitted by a one of I.C.'s Religious Education PREP classes - the children are all between 8 and 10 years old:
*My first time serving was when I was poured with Jesus' love! The visiting priest touched my cross necklace and I felt the Holy Spirit! Now I enjoy serving every time!
*Sunset in the clouds.
*When I sing and serve at church! I enjoy being invited to sing and serve the Lord!
*When Jesus touched my heart when I was praying and singing.
* The clouds remind me of God.
*One time when my sister didn't know a Bible story I read from the Bible and asked her questions about them then she understood more.
* I had two encounters with Christ. I had two dreams about him. One of the dreams I was brushing my hair in front of my mirror and Jesus came up behind me singing.
Listening to my children sing, "We Believe". Hearing young voices praise God is indeed an "Encounter with Christ"!
I saw a priest react to an emergency today. Initially, alarm as he took in the situation - no panic. One could sense a calmness as he left the situation dictate a course of action. He asked for any nurse or medic to step forward. The priest approached the patient and anointed with oil as he prayed. He gave further directions then stepped back as medics arrived. This patient was in good hands. This priest knew it.
My daughter is suffering from stage breast cancer and she just had a good report stating that she is almost in remission. I was also granted a very large order that I was not expecting.
My encounter with Christ was at Healing Mass. Feeling the Holy Spirit flowing through Christ's Church is amazing.
Today I could have encountered Christ, but I was extremely tired after a very rough day at work that I didn't even have the desire to open my eyes to even see Christ. Regardless, He still wanted to have an encounter with me and showed Himself in my wife and daughters. I arrived home and without even saying anything, my oldest daughter prepared a bubble bath for me with candles and soft music, and the best part was a note she left for me on my towel that said, "I love you Daddy." And not to stop there, Christ prepared me even more surprises. After my bath was finished, my wife and my youngest daughter had prepared a delicious and romantic dinner to share as a family.
Sometimes we look for Christ in the spectacular or in impossible miracles. However, He is much closer to us and show himself in our children, in our family, and in our homes. Simple things are sometimes not so simple if we look closely.
Thank you Jesus for this small yet great encounter.
Two days after the retreat, I received numerous calls from one of my graduate students -- from Sudan - beginning at 5:30 in the morning. At 7:00 I heard the ring and answered. It was clear he was upset. So, I invited him to meet me at 8:30.
He began the conversation with, "Do you care?" I was confused. It took an hour to learn that he was terribly homesick, that he represented the hopes of his family and his being a graduate student at UD was essential, and that he was married and wanted to bring his wife to the US, but needed sponsorship.
My encounter with Jesus is that Jesus' presence helped me realize that I had to say "Yes" to the young man's question.
His wife will soon be coming to the US.
Seeing the beautiful stars this morning. I was reminded of how much beauty our Heavenly Father has given us in this world. And just as the stars are always there, He is always there for us.
Healing Service - September 24
Easy encounters, one after another, musical offerings given, beautiful oil flowing. What a blessing!