Wednesday, December 12, 2012

St. Jane Frances de Chantal

Today is the fest day of St. Jane Frances de Chantal, wife, mother, nun and founder of a religious community. St. Francis de Sales played an important role in her life after her husband died, leading her to found the Visitation nuns. 

St. Jane was born in 1572 to a very noble family, with her father being the head of Parliament at Dijon, France. However, when she was 18 months old, her mother suddenly passed away, leaving her father to be the main influence on her education. At the age of 21, she married Baron de Chantal, with whom she had 6 children, including 3 who died during infancy. At the castle, she restored the custom of daily mass, and taught her children the importance of virtue and piety, while engaging in many other charitable works. It is said that she made a vow that she would never refuse anyone who asked for alms in the name of Christ.

After 7 years of marriage, in 1601, Jane's husband was shot and died while on a hunting expedition. Amazingly, she forgave the man who shot her husband, and even acted as a sponsor for one of his children. However, even with all of her composure, she sank into a deep depression for about 4 months. She ran into additional problems, because her 75 year old father-in-law threatened to disinherit her children if she did not return to his home. 

When she was 32, she met St. Francis de Sales, who became her spiritual director. She explained to him that she wanted to become a nun, but he told her to delay her decision. However, after 3 years, Francis explained to her that he wanted to establish a place where women, whose health, age, or other considerations barred them from joining an already established community. They were primarily intended to exemplify the virtues of Mary at the Visitation (hence their name, the Visitation nuns): humility and meekness. The congregation began with three women when Jane was 45. She encouraged the local authorities to make great efforts for the victims of the plague and she put all her convent’s resources at the disposal of the sick. 

Much like St. Jane Frances de Chantal, we must prevent our zeal from becoming fanaticism. Furthermore, the love that we have must not degenerate into sentimentalism. We must be strong in faith, but, at the same time, patient, forgiving, tender, conciliatory. For example, a Christian must be firm like a father, but mild like a mother, just like St. Jane. St. Jane went through a great deal of suffering throughout her life, and even questioned her faith at times, but in the end she truly gave her life to God.


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas Shoes

One of my absolute favorite Christmas songs is “Christmas Shoes.” For those of you that haven’t heard it, I recommend listening to it. It’s kind of a sad song, but it always manages to truly touch my heart. Every time I listen to it, I at least tear up and sometimes end up full-out crying (no judgments). It always manages to catch me off-guard; its message is just so strikingly clear and it always hits when I’m wrapped up in unimportant tasks. A lot of the other Christmas songs are about Santa, and the silly aspects of Christmas. While those are all enjoyable, sometimes I think we focus too much on all the material aspects of the holiday. Like the man in the song, we worry about getting the perfect gift for everyone on our list, putting up the decorations, making all the delicious Christmas dinner nomnoms. Sometimes, we get so wrapped up in all these details, but this song always, always reminds me to take a step back. When you think about it, those things aren’t all that important. Yes, everyone wants the holidays to run smoothly and be memorable, but when I think about my favorite Christmases my memories don’t go to the presents or the food. They go to the family who came in from Colorado, or the beautiful midnight Mass I attended. I think about the aunt who came over on Christmas morning, or how at peace I feel just being with my family.

This song brings us back to the true meaning of Christmas. Ultimately, Christmas is about loving others, and spreading love everywhere we go. That’s how it all started: with God’s gift of love to the world through His Son, with Mary’s selfless “yes” to God’s plan, with the innkeeper’s compassion in giving the only space he had left. In the song, the little boy is trying to give his mom a gift of love. He wants to make her happy; to make her beautiful if she were to go to Jesus that night. He’s not thinking about the gifts he wants to see under the tree, but about his mom and how he can show that he loves here. His intentions are so pure; his love so radiant and genuine. He exemplifies everything that Christmas is all about, and I think it’s such a great reminder. 

This Christmas season, I encourage you to think about ways you can spread love to others. It doesn’t have to be big; as Mother Teresa said, “It is not the magnitude of our actions but the amount of love that is put into them that matters.” God doesn’t ask for magnificent acts every day; just smiling at someone or donating food to a food bank is a wonderful, loving act. How will you share the real meaning of Christmas? 

I hope everyone's finals are going well-I'm praying for everyone! 

God bless, 

Friday, December 7, 2012

That time of year....

Is the annual finals panic starting to set in for anyone else? I know it sure has for me.  There is always so much to do at the end of the term. Final group projects and studying seem to own every bit of our schedules.  Sometimes I pray to myself, “Lord, grant me the motivation to study, the time to sleep, and the wisdom to know which one is most pertinent at that moment in time.”

So as we are approaching exam week, remember that it will all be okay.  When things get stressful, I try to take a couple of deep breaths and let God be near my thoughts. 

Good luck to all as we enter into this week.  And remember, once we are through this week, we have break =)


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Take Some Time

"Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house.  But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock.  And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand.  The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house.  And it collapsed and was completely ruined."
- Mt 7:24-27

It is the last week of classes and like many of you, I have a lot more stress than usual.  Final assignments, projects, and exams seem to fill my mind throughout the day.  With this high level of stress we may forget to make time, or just feel like there is no time to spare, for God.  Even though we may feel this way, it is important to be sure and set aside that time for Him.  Even though your brain says, “If I stop studying and working my stress will only increase,” trust me that spending some time with God will definitely help ease any worries you may have.


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Feeding the Multitudes

There are many famous, well-known Gospel readings, and today's Gospel reading is  one of the Gospel readings that most people know or have heard of. Many of the actions that Jesus takes in the Gospels show how much He cares for and wants to help us. Many of us enjoy it when others help us with a tough task at hand, but do we help others as much as they help us? Take some time to think of an instance when you have truly helped someone who was suffering.

As I mentioned above, today's Gospel reading is very famous, it is the feeding of the multitudes. However, interestingly, there are two instances of this miracle in the Gospel of Mark and Matthew. The first instance in both of these books involves Jesus using 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish to feed 5000 people, but the second instance involves Jesus using 7 loaves of bread and a few fish to feed 4000 people. Luke and John do not mention this second miracle. It is almost like we get a double helping of hearing about the love and compassion that Jesus shows for us.

The Gospel starts with Jesus returning from talking with the Disciples to meet the needs of a crowd that was forming. The crowd had brought all the sick people from the town so that Jesus could heal them. This shows the great faith that the people in the crowd had, for they cared about the less fortunate. However, they were still amazed when Jesus healed the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute, and many others.

Then the Gospel mentions that Jesus recognized the needs of the people, for they had not eaten in three days time. However, the people did not complain about the lack of nourishment, Jesus, like his father, knew the needs of his people before they even said anything. Nevertheless, the Disciples showed another example of a lack of faith, for they did not trust that Jesus would take care of the people. They asked Him how they would be able to obtain enough bread to feed all of the people, assuming that they would have to get the bread through natural means. They assumed this even while the whole crowd showed faith in Jesus by bringing their sick to Him, trusting that He wwould help them with their suffering. The Discples were even with Jesus when He had fed 5000 people, and yet they still did not believe. This can happen in our lives as well. Sometimes we are too distracted by the consequences of certain obstacles that we do not trust that God will protect his children. Jesus realizes that, like the Discples, we are also still learning to let go of our fears. Jesus does not reprimand the Apostles, but he does expected more out of them than younger Christians because they have witnessed his works.

Out of the seven loaves of bread and the few fish that the Apostles had, Jesus blessed, broke, and gave it to the Apostles so the they could hand it out to the crowd. Much like the loaves, we are also blessed, broken, and given by God. We blessed with many great talents and skills, so that we may spread the Good News of the Lord. We are broken by God, so that are made innocent and sincere like children. Finally, we are given to others so that we may help them see the truth and and love that God has to offer. The food satisfied the entire crowd and there was a surplus, so that some was left over.

Sometimes you might not realize it, but God cares about us and wants to see us succeed. This is seen perfectly in this Gospel reading. This Gospel reading is definitely a 'feel-good' classic.

-Luke Knudson

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

God's Beautiful Authority

Don't you just love personal revelations?  I had one yesterday.  I was reading my daily reflection in my little advent book (I love how God is already using this book to teach me new things!) and it reminded me of something I don't often think about: God is in authority.

Do you know why this is so great?  Because this means that what God says, goes!  We have proof from personal accounts and accounts of people past and present.  We have proof from the life of Jesus.  He healed so many people, both spiritually and physically, simply by saying so.  He has power.  And the cool thing is that God loves us.  God loves us so much that he died for us.  He died even for those who rejected him.  He died for those who were completely sinful.  He died because he loved us.  That's an unimaginable amount of love!  God loves us, so he wants the best for us.  The one disclaimer is that we have to want it too.  God will never force anything on us.  So we have to ask.  We have to pray.

Lately I've been feeling frustrated because I have been unmotivated to pray.  And when I do pray, it's usually halfheartedly and out of convenience.  But after I spent time on yesterdays reflection, I think that maybe my problem is that I have lacked faith in the power of prayer.  If God never forces himself on us, then prayer is our way of telling God that we love and trust him and that we want him to direct our lives.  Our prayers tell our powerful God that we want him too.  Hearing our prayers and hearing our desire for him, God will respond.  Maybe not today, maybe not in the way we want.  But God's timing is perfect and he always works for our good.  He is not looking to screw us over!

God has authority and power.  And he wants to use it to better your world.

Until next time,

Monday, December 3, 2012

Happy Advent!

                Wow, it’s already December, and yesterday marked the start of the Advent season. When I was little, Advent was just a way of counting down until Christmas. As I’ve grown, though, I’ve come to appreciate it much more.
I see Advent as a beautiful time of the year. The word “advent” is derived from the Latin word meaning “coming,” and its literal definition is the coming or arrival, especially of something extremely important. How fitting is that definition? We are waiting the coming of Jesus, who of course is very important! We as Catholics are taking this time to prepare for the coming of Christ, our Savior. We are getting ready to celebrate His birth, and also prepare for His Second Coming. Many of the readings during this time tell us to stay awake and to be ready for our Lord’s arrival. I personally love this annual reminder. It highlights one of the crucial elements of our faith: that we should exemplify Christ’s love and spread His message all the time, in every aspect of our lives. If we are to be truly ready, we need to be alert and live every single moment for Christ. We cannot be fair-weather Catholics; we need to live out our faith constantly.
                Advent also happens to be the start of the liturgical year, and I think it’s the perfect beginning. It gives us a chance to reflect on how prepared we are for the coming of Christ, and to discern ways to become even more prepared throughout the coming liturgical year. Our faith is constantly changing and we are always growing, and Advent is a great time to reflect on where we are in our spiritual journey. Do you remember those paper Advent chains you would make in school when you were little? I think I’m going to make myself one this year, and set some Advent goals for each day. These might not be huge acts; it may be simply smiling at a stranger or participating in a food or toy drive. Living a life for Christ, though, doesn’t mean big acts all the time; it means doing things with love and compassion, no matter how big or small the act is.
I encourage you, as this Advent season begins, to spend some time reflecting on your relationship with Christ and the way you live out your faith. Are there aspects you’d like to change? Is there something you would like to do this Advent season to strengthen your faith? Perhaps you would also benefit from a paper Advent chain, or maybe you’ll strive to read the Bible daily. St. Monica-St. George is giving away a small book with daily Advent reflections that has some great thoughts; maybe you’ll pick one up. Really use this season, though, to prepare for Christ and live out your faith.
God bless,

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Are You Ready?

The end of the church year is quickly approaching, and a new year will soon begin.  It is at this time of the year that I begin to start thinking more about advent and Christmas.  I think of all of the wonderful things that come with the holidays, like seeing family and friends, and I also begin to prepare myself for the coming of the Lord Jesus.  In the midst of all of this I tend to overlook the message that is sent during the last couple of week of the church year.  It is now when we hear more about the end of the world and Jesus coming again to save us and grant us eternal salvation.  It makes me stop to think about when Jesus will be back, and will I be ready.  I once heard that the best way for the devil to persuade you into succumbing to temptation is to convince you that you still have plenty of time to correct yourself, and that there is no big hurry.  This thought can lead people into a harmful lifestyle full of sin, and when the time does come, it is too late.  So as the old year comes to an end and a new year begins, we are reminded that Jesus is coming to Earth.   Not only are we focusing on celebrating the first coming of Jesus Christ, but let us not forget that He will be coming back for us, which could happen at any time.

Are you prepared for Jesus to return?


Wednesday, November 28, 2012


It is not always easy to stay firm and grounded in faith. There are many that will try to break faith through words or actions, but these are not enough to break the love that God has for all of us. I know, personally, when I came to the University of Cincinnati from a Catholic high school, I was surprised by how many people did not believe in God. I guess that I was living in a bubble of my own creation. I have stood my ground against people who have tried to convince me that my faith is not important. Nevertheless, I do actually enjoy a good bit of religious debate because it gives me greater perspective on my faith. Today's Gospel reminds us of the strength and fortitude that we must have to stay faithful.

Jesus starts out by letting the Apostles know about all of the suffering that they will go through, which forecasts what the Apostles will go through during the Acts of the Apostles. It also foretells some of the hardship that the Church would have to go through during its infancy. Even today the Church suffers from harsh criticism and hatred. Jesus explains that the Apostles will be 'handed over' to be dragged before civil and religious courts. He makes it know that this is because they are associated with Him.

Many of the early Christians came into conflict with the Jewish community and were handed over to the synagogues. Synagogues were not only places of prayer and learning Scripture, they also functioned as civil courts. Many people felt threatened by the actions and ideas of Christians. However, Jesus lets His Apostles that they, have nothing to fear, that they will know what to do or say when the time comes. The sad thing is that most of the accusers, as Jesus goes on to explain, were members of the household, such as "parents, brothers, relatives and ‘friends’." Many the things that Jesus is telling the Apostles apply to us as well.

It makes no sense that Jesus, who taught truth, love, freedom, peace, justice and non-violence, becomes the object of lies, hatred, imprisonment and torture, division, injustice and terrible violence. Jesus exclaims that the Apostles will not be harmed, but this is meant to signify the fact that nothing will break their faith. If we are able to make it through all that our enemies can throw at us, we will be able to come out at the end as people who can be proud of our faith.

We must all try to help people see where truth and goodness lies. This can be done by discovering these in our own lives. Finally, we must all have the courage to live up to our values. We must not submit to those who try to break our faith. God will help guide through tough times, but, in the end, it is faith and fortitude that protect us.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Freedom of Forgiveness!

If you ever want to read the Bible but are unsure of where to begin, the gospels are always a great place to start.  Or you could Go Eat Pop Corn! That is, read Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, and Colossians =)  For about the past week, I've been reading through Galatians.  There are so many good thoughts inspired by Paul as I read his letter to the Galatians, but the one that has been really inspiring to me is when Paul talks about life before and after the coming of Christ.

"Before the coming of this faith, we were held in custody under the law, locked up until the faith that was to come would be revealed.  So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith." Galatians 3:23-24

Throughout this letter, Paul really emphasizes life before and after Christ, so it definitely got me thinking.  What if Christ never came?  First of all, we would still be under the law..."locked up".  We would have no forgiveness, we would have to pay for every little and big mistake we made...we would have no hope!  Secondly, we wouldn't have proof of God's crazy, incredible love for us.

Imagine a world in which you had no forgiveness.  Think about the mistakes you make, the sins you commit on a daily basis.  What if, after you made a wrong, there was no chance that you would be forgiven?  How hopeless and depressing would that be?  We are human.  We are going to screw up, that's just how it works.  But thankfully, Christ came and paid the price of our sins (BIG and small!) for each of us personally.  So now, we not only have an amazing example of how to forgive and how to love unconditionally but we also receive those things for ourselves.  Christ offers us forgiveness so that we are not slaves to the law and he has proven that he loves us unconditionally because we are more precious than his own life!

Now when we screw up, we can receive forgiveness.  We are saved not by our perfection but by our faith.  How crazy awesome is that?  It's so freeing!  When we mess up, we can still have hope.  We can try again to become a better version of ourselves.  And that is definitely something we can thank God for!

Need something else to think about?  If Jesus' dieing on the cross meant only saving you, he would still do it.  Believe it or not, he loves you that much.

Until next time,

Monday, November 26, 2012

"The World is about to Turn!"

                Recently in church, the song “Canticle of the Turning” was sung and I really liked the message. The words and even the music were hopeful and left a feeling of anticipation. The refrain seems to symbolize the idea that good things are coming. God will bring good changes and blessings to you and the world. The world is always about to turn as long as you have faith and look for the signs.

                “My heart shall sing of the day you bring.
                Let the fires of your justice burn.
                Wipe away all tears, for the dawn draws near,
                and the world is about to turn!”

                 In the verses, the song expresses joy in your soul for God being in your heart. It embodies the meaning of the phrase ‘good things come to those who wait.’ Having the greatness of God in your heart always and waiting for His signs and blessings will bring you good things and happiness. God works great things in people, however small one person may be, and he helps the strong while humbling the ‘proud’. Being a humble person and having faith and belief in God gives you the strength to get through your trials. The song references tyrants and how you having justice takes away their power. Recognizing and acting on the justice God stands for takes away power that oppressive people have. With God the hungry and poor shall be fed. I find this to be of literal and figurative meaning. The poor and hungry people of the world will be taken care of by God and the people who are poor and hungry in faith, belief, and happiness will be fed in that sense as well. Though there are wars and fighting, God will deliver His mercy.

                I had to write about this song because later in the day one of the church’s campus ministers, Sister Leslie, said that being Catholic means you have salvations every day. Some religions involve one big moment of revelation and understanding so it was interesting that she thought of it like that. God can turn your heart in different ways and can give you little, or big, moments of understanding every day. I thought it was cool that I had liked that song and looked it up to get more of the meaning and then Sister Leslie talked about God turning your heart and sending every day salvations. It was kind of like I experienced a little sign myself so I had to share it with you.

Hope you experience a little turning in your world soon :)

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Presentation of Mary

I am sure that most people are thinking about all the food that they are going to eat tomorrow, during one of the most popular holidays in America, Thanksgiving. However, along with all of the hype about tomorrow, today is very important feast day in the Catholic Church, celebrating the life of Mary. Today, is the feast of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

 Most parents, during Mary's time, had their child blessed before and after birth, but, for some Jews, that was not enough, and they had their child blessed during infancy. The child was consecrated by a priest in a temple, and, afterwards, the child would stay in rooms that were owned by the temple, assisting the priests with their duties.

 The Bible containes no text concernign this feast of Mary. Instead, you have to refer to the apocryphal works, particularly the Protoevangel of St. James. After Anna was told by an angle that she was going to have a child, Mary, Anna dedicated Mary to the Lord. Supposedly, when she turned 3, Mary was brought to a temple that accepted only the best daughters of Israel. During ancient time, the age of three was seen as a time of transformation from infancy into childhood, because it was at this time that the child was weened and potty trained. Mary spent her youth in a type of holy retirement, disconnected from the corruption of the world. She exemplified the religious, interior life. Mary lived like this until she turned 14, when she was espoused to St. Joseph. The temple that Mary entered can be seen as a symbol for the Garden of Eden, and Mary's entrance into the temple, thus, symbolizes the entrance of the New Eve.

 The feast of the Presentation of Mary most likely originated in Syria, which is where the apocryphal books originated. Just for some clarification, the apocryphal books were writings that contained information that was considered fraudulent, so they were not included in the canon, the books contained in the bible. The feast was introduced by a French nobleman, Philippe de Mazières, Chancellor of the King of Cyprus, who spent some time at Avignon during the pontificate of Gregory XI. It was taken up by many dioceses, but at the end of the Middle Ages, it was still missing in many calendars. In 1500, at Toledo it was assigned by Cardinal Ximenes to September 30th. Sixtus IV received it into the Catholic Rites, and Pius V struck it from the calendar, but Sixtus V took it up a second time. The date of celebration has changed, but the feast still continues today in the Catholic Church.

I found it interesting that the three feasts of the Birthday of Our Lady, the Holy Name of Mary, and her Presentation in the Temple correspond in the Marian cycle with the first three feasts of the cycle of feasts of our Lord: Christmas, the Holy Name of Jesus, and His Presentation in the Temple.

 Mary gave up a large part of her life to the Lord. Take some time today to calm yourself in all of this holiday hype. Prepare yourself for the coming season of Advent.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Beauty of Differences

Vincent Van Gogh once said, "The best way to know God is to love many things."  I love this quote.  I love this idea because God made everything.  So by exposing ourselves to the world and all that is in it, we are learning more about who God is.  If we stay in our bubble, if we stay locked in our tunnel vision views, if we stay closed minded then we are missing out on so many beautiful things!  If we never leave our houses or our neighborhood, we would never see the ocean or the stars or meet wonderful people.  All of these things teach us more about who God is.  The more we know about the world and the more we love the things in it, the more we know about and love God too.

Last night in small group, we were talking about what we loved about our Catholic faith.  One of my absolute favorite parts about Catholicism is how open we are to other faith traditions.  We learn about them.  We don't judge them or try to convince them that they are wrong.  We respect and value their opinion, their takes on life.  We learn from them by learning about them.

Often times I think people stick with what they know.  We stay in our comfortable bubble and fear things that are different.  We fear people who look different or who were raised different.  But I think once we step outside that circle we are exposed to a world much more beautiful than we could have ever thought.  We are exposed to different ways of thinking, different opinions, different ideas.  God is big.  Bigger than we will ever be able to comprehend.  The more we experience, the more we learn about God.

So I urge you, don't be afraid to face people who believe things different than what you believe.  You might not agree on politics or social issues.  You may not agree on religion or spirituality.  Quite frankly, you may not agree on much.  But listen and learn with an open, nonjudgmental ear.  In doing so, you might learn something about your infinite, loving God.

Until next time,

Monday, November 19, 2012

Giving from the Heart

Last week, the Gospel reading was about the poor widow who gave the Church two small coins, which was all she had. This is another one of my favorite Biblical stories; I remember reading and rereading it in my children’s Bible. When I was young, I’m not sure I knew why I really liked it so much, but now I am able to easily recognize the parts of the story that really touch me. 

The first point I reflect upon is the fact that Jesus said how even though she gave the smaller monetary amount, she gave more than the rich people who donated a lot of money. It shows us that God doesn’t care about how much money is given; He is much more concerned about how much of the heart is given. This is such an important message God gives us. The poor widow gave much more of herself, and her gift was a lot more selfless than the rich people’s. Giving is not meant to be something that is calculated, and done to earn the admiration of observers; it is supposed to be genuine and for the sake of others. God wants to see us believe in a cause, and to truly want to help others, not give money or time simply because that’s what we’re supposed to do and that’s what makes us look good. Also, He wants us to give more than money or time; He wants us to go much deeper and give our hearts and love to others. By giving all she had, that widow showed how much she cared about others in need, and was able to put them above herself. 

This leads me to the second point I focus on in this story. Even though the poor widow did not have a lot herself, she was able to selflessly give away what she had for others and trust in God to take care of her. This, to me, is amazing. I often times, to my dismay, find it very difficult to trust completely in God. I spend a lot of time worrying, or deliberating about choices, instead of just leaving it up to Him. The poor widow was able to give away all she had, and not be concerned, for she trusted that God would provide for her somehow. I admire the trust she had in God, and that’s the relationship with Him I try to strive for. That poor widow is a role model to me, and I hope all of you can take away from her story as much as I do every time I read or hear it. 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving and God bless, 

Friday, November 16, 2012

We Exist to Serve

A few days ago, I was talking to a nice gentleman that has recently gone through a lot.  If I were in his shoes, I would be so frustrated.  But, this man was just eager to get better.  We had a nice conversation about some of his life experiences.  One conversation lead to another and throughout his words I could hear his excitement in his voice.  This elderly man was thrilled to experience more life.  I asked a series of questions trying to basically ask how he could stay so positive without literally asking “with so much bad, how do you keep so happy?”  But for as many indirect questions as I asked I got a pretty straightforward response.  He looked at me and said, “I know I am still here because my work is not done. I still have someone’s life to touch.”

Wow! What an outlook to have.  I need reminding sometimes that it is not always about what I am going through at the current moment.  But rather, we are here to ask what we can do for others.  We exist to serve.  I think that it is equally important that serving may not actually mean physical labor.  Sometimes, it is just being in the presence of someone that needs a friend. 

So for today, Go in peace to love and serve the lord =)  And don’t be afraid of the wonderful things that God will surprise you with.