This week shall be a week about lists.
Recently I was reading Back To Virtue by Peter Kreeft and in a section on virtues in the Sermon on the Mount (or Beatitudes) was struck by his outstanding description of what they are and how we react to them. I’ll have to post that later as time is short for me today and I would also like to keep this F5 short. Plus there are a lot of links here for you so that you may spend your time reading what I’ve linked to instead of my own blathering endlessly on. Plus as a bonus I’ve included a sixth entry.
And now on to those lists!
— 1 —
The Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-10). Listed here because I alluded to them in the intro, and because they are among the most important and most challenging words ever written.
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
— 2 —
The 7 Habits of People Who Place Radical Trust in God by Jennifer Fulwiler.
In which she lists the common threads she found between the lives of people who place their entire trust in the Lord. It is a tremendous list and there is much wisdom to by learned from considering these seven habits very carefully and applying them to our lives.
— 3 —
7 Tips Perfectionists Don’t Want to Hear by Silvana Ramos.
If you are a perfectionist as I am, this is a must read. If you know or love someone who has these tendencies it is a must read to help you understand them. Number 2, and the description she provides with it, has been the hell of my own making for as long as I can remember.
— 4 —
Within his article for Catholic World Report Thomas Doran lists The Other 10 Commandments, or as I refer to them The 10 Commandments of This World.
Unlike God’s Commandments, which are unchanging and necessary for man’s well being in every time and place, Satan’s commandments are adapted to changing cultures, so as to most effectively entice, discourage, and destroy. The devil’s commandments for our age, as I read them in this new year. Beware, they are troubling and terrible.
Click here and scroll down to read his list, though I recommend the entire article. It’s not long.
— 5 —
Within his article Hilary Mantel’s Cursed Childhood Rod Dreher lists six things that he identifies as recurrent themes in his writing that emerged from his most formative experiences. You can read the entire article if you wish, but I’m going to paste them below as they are, for me, worthy of keeping at my mind’s forefront when dealing with the world and people each day.
The world is not what we think it is. What is unseen is as real as what’s seen.
People are not who we think they are; they are not even who they think they are.
People will go to extraordinary lengths — including telling themselves outlandish lies, accepting what ought to be unacceptable and making their own lives and the lives of others miserable — to avoid facing truths that would compromise the worldview upon which they’ve settled.
The battle lines between good and evil, and between order and chaos, are not drawn where we would like them to be. The front is everywhere, most particularly within our own hearts.
Be wary of the treachery of the good man who believes in his own goodness.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)
— 6 —
As a tonic I’m going to present a bonus this week: 10 Brilliant Quotes from St. Francis de Sales on Cultivating Peace.
St. Francis de Sales has become very important in my life as I’ve read and reread his classic The Introduction to the Devout Life. I highly recommend it to anyone.
Pick one or more from this list, write it down, and read it each day when you wake up. Soon you will “Be who you are and be that well.”