Tuesday, September 20, 2011
“My brothers and sisters, you must never weary of doing what is right.” (2 Thes. 3:13)
This is a good reminder. I think sometimes we do weary of doing what we do… whether it be going out to a job every day, or taking care of the house, cooking and cleaning, or serving in our church, or just being patient and understanding with some of the people in our lives. And sometimes we weary of watching and tracking our food, and of exercising!!
When I feel tired and wish I didn’t have to work, I always remember something Sister Agnes, founder of this mission here in Honduras, used to say: “There’ll be plenty of time to rest in heaven!” And just two or three days ago, I read a quote of Mother Teresa saying basically the same thing. So as St. Paul reminds us – here our job is to work and serve the Lord in whatever way He calls us; our rest will come when we reach the Kingdom of our Lord!
AFTER ONE YEAR WITH SP
On September 2, I celebrated my 1-Year Spark Anniversary. I began on SP weighing 177 pounds. By the end on June, I was down to 163.4 pounds (now you know why I belong to the Slowest Losers Team!!). Even though my weight loss was slow, I was very happy to have gotten that far, even though I hadn’t met my goal.
But over the past three months I’ve gained it all back. On my Anniversary, I was weighing 177 pounds again!!
So since then, I’ve been thinking and reflecting a lot…
Was it worth it?
Was it worth being on SP for a year if I am now weighing the same as I did when I joined?
Was it worth all the time I put into Sparking?
Was it worth all the effort to exercise most days and track food and all the rest?
I’ve been asking myself these questions for the past few weeks. To be honest, that was one of the reasons that I slacked off for a couple of weeks, not exercising, not Sparking…
But now I know that the answer to all those questions is YES – it was and is worth it!!
WHY?? There are several reasons:
1) I’ve learned a lot over this past year. What have I learned?
– Losing weight isn’t easy!! It takes a lot of work.
– Keeping it off is even harder!! That takes commitment and discipline over the long haul!
– It really is a life-style change, and not a diet. That means a whole new attitude toward food and exercise. It isn’t something I do just to reach a goal. It’s something I have to live day after day, to become and continue to be a healthier me.
2) Even though I’ve gained back what I lost, I AM healthier.
– Even though I was diagnosed with Type-2 diabetes, due to the change in life-style (diet and exercise), I was able to bring my blood sugar numbers down into the normal range without any medication, and they continue to be in the normal range.
– My cholesterol and triglycerides have come down considererably, without medication.
– I have been able to lower my blood pressure medication to a half-dose (with doctor’s supervision).
– I am much stronger and more flexible. A year ago I could not go up or down stairs without a banister for support, or someone’s hand. I couldn’t even step down a curb into the street without support. Now I have no problem with any of that, and am able to get up from the floor without support, and able to lift heavier things than I ever could before (even the grandchildren!!)
– Everyone tells me how great I look!
3) FRIENDS!! I’ve made so many wonderful friends on SP, people who support me and encourage me, and who constantly inspire me by their example and words!! I never would have believed that it was possible to form such wonderful friendships with people you’ve never met!!
Soooooo……. Now I begin again – stronger, wiser, and ready to shed these regained pounds and continue on until I reach my goal!!
Today, I accept my reality, I renew my commitment, I reset my goals. AND…. , with humility, I reset my ticker!!
Goals: Novermber 1 - 170 pounds
January 15 - 160 pounds
April 15 - 150 pounds.
Thanks, all of you, my friends, for being my friends, and accompanying me on this journey with your support, encouragement.
Blessings and hugs to all!
Monday, September 19, 2011
"The sufferings of the present are nothing compared with the glory to be revealed in us!" (Rm.8: 18)
We all have to go through trials of some kind. Sometimes these are minor things, discomforts, inconveniences. But other times, they are real sufferings - either with personal health or difficult situations, or sufferings for what our family members or friends are going through.
This verse can give us strength and patience, and help us keep our eyes on the Lord even in the most difficult situations.
Hi, my friends. No time to chat today... thought I'd have plenty of time, but then "things" intervened, and now I have to rush to prepare the prayer for today's teacher's meeting before I go to Rosary.
Did get my exercise in - and so far, so good with food. I'm really trying hard to stick to the plan. Let's see if this week I shed a pound or two!!
Have a wonderful day, filled with the presence of the Lord and His blessings!
Saturday, September 17, 2011
"May the God of peace himself make you perfectly holy " (1 Thes. 5:23)
I want to share a few thoughts from "In the School of the Holy Spirit" by Jacques Phillipe.
"The Spirit of God is a spirit of peace, and He speaks and acts in peace and gentleness, never in tumult and agitation. What's more, the motions of the Spirit are delicate touches that don't make a great noise and can penetrate our spiritual consciousness only if we have within ourselves a sort of calm zone of silence and peace. If our inner world is noisy and agitated, the gentle voice of the Holy Spirit will find it very difficult to be heard.
"We sometimes let ourselves be overtaken by excessive noise - not so much physical noise as the ceaseless whirlwind of thoughts, imaginations and words that we've heard or said - and all this merely feeds our worries, fears and frustrations, and obviously leaves the Holy Spirit little chance of making Himself heard."
I think lots of us have a hard time achieving this calm and quiet within ourselves. We live in a world where so many people and things (phones, TV, internet...etc....) are constantly calling for our attention, that even when we are alone, our minds are so accustomed to being "entertained", that we find it hard to quiet our thoughts, memory, imagination, worries,etc, and just be silent, inside and out, in the presence of God, and so be able to hear the voice of the Spirit. We need to frequently return to our inner self, to the presence of God within us.
Today has been a mostly quiet day... (Love it!!) My friend and guest is giving class in the University, Yolanda is assisting at a workshop for catechists, and the children are at a birthday party, so I am home alone in peace and quiet.
After a little while on SP, I want to prepare the Rosary for this week (PPT). Last week the chapel reflection with the students was on abortion, so this week I want to prepare a Rosary with pro-life meditations/prayers on the mysteries.
Hope all of you are having a relaxing weekend also!
Blessings and Marge
Friday, September 16, 2011
"Call to me, and I will answer you; I will tell you great things beyond the reach of your knowledge." (Jeremiah 33:3)
A wonderful verse, especially the first half!! Call to me and I will answer - no if, buts, or maybes! Just Call me and I will answer! How very much our God loves us and how close to us He is!
I'm blogging late today because a good friend, the rector of the Catholic University, came in to town today. He stays here when he's in town, and we needed to talk about a project concerning the University and our high school, so we had a long meeting this morning. Then we went out for a leisurely lunch.
We were talking about God, and this mornings readings - about the importance of being satisfied with what we have, and not being materialistic and always wanting more, about the danger of going after riches, etc.
Anyway, somehow we got to talking about this verse in Jeremiah. I got a real kick out of something my friend said. He said that 333 (Jeramiah 33;3) is God's telephone number... God says, Call me and I'll answer!
I'm not so good at memorizing verses... I remember the words of the verse, but not where they come from (I love online Bible searchers!) But that's one verse I'll never forget now! LOL!!! I bet you won't either!
Have a wonderful and blessed weekend! And thank you all for being my friends!
Thursday, September 15, 2011
" Standing by the cross of Jesus were His mother ..." (John 19:25)
Today I would like to share a reflection from "Living Faith", a booklet with daily meditations.
"Today we unite with Mary, the mother whose heart was lanced with the sword of suffering. What agony for Mary to watch her beloved son dying and to know she could not lessen His pain. Her sorrow lives on in parents who have experienced their own heartaches. Their children died through suicide, car accidents, illness and disease. Some are on drugs or have been sexually abused. Other children left home and have never returned. Like Mary, these parents have has a sharp blade of anguish pierce their hearts.
We may not have children, but each of us will have our time by the cross of someone in severe physical, social, spiritual or mental pain. When we stand by them compassionately, we become faithful messengers of loving kindness. We join Mary in what she endured in waiting those long hours with her crucified son. Like Mary, we open our hearts wide and offer our comforting presence to the one whose suffering we cannot undo." - Sister Joyce Rupp, O.S.M
With the way our world is today, more and more people are suffering.... and so often we are called to stand by a family member or a friend, and even if only by our presence, be there for them. We can't do it alone... we need the help of our Lord and His mother to give us the strength, the wisdom, the love to be able to share in the suffering of others and try to be a source of strength and comfort to them.
In the past two days, there have been two senseless murders of people close to us. First, a young man, about 22, who had studied for 4 years in our school (his older brother graduated,and his younger sister is still in our school) was murdered a block from his home. They thing he saw something he shouldn't have (maybe a robbery or homicide) and that's why he was killed.
And yesterday, the husband of a friend, he managed a hotel, was shot to death in an apparent robbery at the hotel.
So sad, both cases! What do you say to the family in cases like this? I guess there are no words, just be there with them.
Well, we are just past mid-week. I've been trying hard to stay on track, and succeeding pretty well! Those extra pounds are starting to come off, slowly, but I hope surely!! LOL!! I really have to work at it to keep my eating under control. I bought some Green Tea bags the other day, so that when I feel like eating, I can have a cup of tea instead. I have other herbal teas as well, but they say Green Tea is very good for heart health, so I'm including it too.
I'm also being faithful to my 8 glasses of water - I had slacked off on that too.
I bought two new jeans when I was in the States, but with these extra pounds, they're a little tight, so I have that extra motivation to get these pounds off for good!!!
Did my exercise, and now I'm going to prepare the Holy Hour for this afternoon. (We have a Holy Hour every Thursday at 4:00 pm.)
Today is Independence Day in Honduras.
Hope everyone has a wonderful day!!
Blessings and love to each of you!
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