Posts by: scogee

By on 25/03/2019

A New Start

Monday 25th March

Do not remember the former things or consider the things of old. I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.  (Isaiah 43:18-19)

What if I’m at the midpoint of Lent and not much is going on?

I began Lent with the best of intentions, but I am not sure what I’m doing or what I want to be doing for Lent? Can my Lent be rescued? Can a six-week journey be completed in the remaining three weeks?

The first step to beginning is already begun if I have the desire to do something real for Lent. What we need is a real desire – a real sense of expectation that God has something for me to hear, to learn, to change, and I want to be ready to listen.

There are things that get in our way of starting right now but we have to remember that  God doesn’t need much of an opening to begin to free us and show us His transforming love. It’s not too late to start again.

Once we can say we want to make something of these precious days remaining in Lent, then we can be more specific about what we want.

For some of us, it is obvious. There is a big, glaring self-defeating pattern staring us in the face. Most of the time, however, it takes a little reflection, a bit of honest examination of conscience to really see what is getting in the way of being closer to Jesus

After some reflection I might admit there is a streak of stubbornness or impatience or harshness that keeps putting me at odds with people. Perhaps there is an old wound or a fresh experience of hurt or loss that has turned into a festering anger that robs me of simple joys and sorrow. I might somehow know that I am compensating for some emptiness or loneliness or sadness or insecurity by trying to fill in what is missing with temporary satisfaction by over eating, drinking too much, or escaping in sexual fantasy or pornography.

Maybe a homily or something I read recently made me realize that I really have not paid attention to the needs of the poor. After some reflection I may realize that I’m not very grateful for what has been given to me, and therefore, I’m just not very happy, generous or free.

It’s not too late in Lent to turn to the Lord with some real, concrete desires. Ask Him how to move forward in Lent.

While I take a shower or get ready each morning, I can take a moment to pray one of those desires:

PRAYER: Lord having reflected on my life at this point in Lent it feels so good to be honest with myself before you. Let me know your presence today. Help me face the challenges that will be there today. Give me some more freedom to make different choices and to stop escaping in the old ways. Help me to love as you have loved me. Amen.

Imagine all the different prayers like that – one minute long – that could shape our day.

Let’s give Lent a new start in the days ahead. God is offering us more than we can ask or imagine.

Written by
Sandra Purcell: Responsible for assisting Bruce with his Ministry as well as research and resource development.


By on 24/03/2019

Sunday 24th March


By on 23/03/2019

Where My Help Comes From

Saturday 23rd March

Immediately he stood up before them, took what he had been lying on, and went to his home, glorifying God. (Luke 5:25)

In the story of the paralyzed man, Jesus is at a house talking to a group of people when a paralyzed man is lowered from the roof.

Jesus chooses to heal the man, but what excited me the most was his response, “immediately he stood up before them, took what he had been lying on, and went to his home, glorifying God.”

I know in my life, if I was to have something amazing happen to me, my first reaction would be to tell my loved ones, or post it online, or possibly even give a “yahoo” to myself out of excitement. This man who was healed had for the first time in his life the ability to do things for himself (as back then people didn’t have wheelchairs, so we are under the assumption he was reliant on people around him) and his first reaction was to “glorify God,” or – to give thanks!

In fact, that has such an effect that once he left everyone in the house was “filled with amazement, and they glorified God.

Giving thanks to God for the blessings in our lives can be one of the best habits we can create this Lent. How changed would we be if every day we thought of something new we could give thanks to God to?

We can also see using this scripture, that if we give thanks to God, the people around us will do the same in their lives when they see all that God is doing for you

PRAYER: Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today. May we remember that our blessings come from you and help us to be all you have created us to be. Amen.

Written by
Justin Gimondo: Responsible for assisting Bruce with his Ministry.


By on 22/03/2019

More than our Circumstances

Friday 22nd March

And we all with unveiled face, as beholding as in a mirror, the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image. 2 Corinth 3:18 (NASB)

I walked into the office with my arm full of bags and dumped them down on some chairs with a heavy sigh.

Not only had I had little sleep over the past fortnight due to a back condition that was ‘playing ‘up, but I had just reached my limit of 10 days of driving around going from doctor appointments to x-rays to blood tests, to pharmacies and back to the doctors for a member of my family.

I was tired. Tired of it all. And so, I expressed myself to all in earshot of my voice. Whether they wanted to listen or not. I was complaining.

Maybe I had some good reasons to be upset but I was not happy. As the saying goes – ‘not happy Jan.’ Someone who cares for me just the other day reminded me of that day!

Reflecting upon my behaviour, it was not bad as such, but I had not accepted my circumstances. I could not change them right there and then.

I had to accept where I was, even if I had not chosen it.

I could decide to see the best of everything or the worst of everything. I could decide to wallow in my disappointment or ask God to grace me with the strength and courage (for I felt unable to do this myself) to lift me out of the ‘pit’.

Our Lord chose to love us unconditionally whether or not we returned that love. Whether or not we appreciated Him or not. Whether or not we even believed He existed. He STILL LOVED. Coming down off His throne to live on Earth for 33 years showed us this love. Dying for us on the Cross showed us this Love.

Why could I not follow His example and show this love to a member of my family?

So, accepting my circumstances, accepting my sinful nature, accepting I needed to say sorry, accepting I needed forgiveness, accepting I needed Him – a Saviour- MY Saviour to change me to learn to Love more like Him, helped me take a step more towards holiness.

Where do you need the Saviour? Do you need to accept your circumstances and then allow Him to come and transform you, your thinking, your attitude, your love, and maybe even your circumstances? For He is Jesus, Our Lord and Saviour and is quite capable to do it all.

PRAYER: Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today. Grace me with the strength and courage to accept my circumstances and transform my thinking and my attitude so that I can be transformed into your image. Amen.

Written by
Rosemary Downes: Co-founder of The Catholic Guy Ministry and founder of the Heart Ministry for Women.


By on 21/03/2019

The Power of the Pause

Thursday 21st March

Be still, and know that I am God. (Psalms 46:10)

Have you ever paused and reflected on the things that you hear?

Everything today is instant and taking time for pause or for preparation is on the decline.

Recently I got to share with a group of high school kids about the story of the Paralyzed man, and I challenged them all to stop and listen with the ears of their heart to the scripture.

I posed this question to them– “What do you notice, or what stands out to you about this scripture?” Then they had time to talk about it in their small groups and the responses people shared were profound as we all got to pause, prepare, reflect then respond.

We should be taking this same outlook to our walk through Lent. Sometimes we need to set aside purposeful time to reflect on what we heard today, what we read, hearing God’s still small voice in amongst the busyness of our day doesn’t always come naturally.

For those students, if I didn’t set aside time to pause, prepare, reflect and then respond, we would’ve moved on to our next activity and skipped an opportunity to hear God’s voice.

Today I want to ask you, what did you notice about your day yesterday, or maybe the day you’ve just had? What stood out to you in conversation? How maybe could you have done something differently? Let us prepare our hearts to hear His voice.

PRAYER: Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today Thank you for giving us the time we have in our day. May we start to pause, prepare, reflect and respond to see the things you are doing in our lives.  Amen.

Written by
Justin Gimondo: Responsible for assisting Bruce with his Ministry as well as research and resource development.


By on 20/03/2019

I re-grouted our kitchen floor the other day and after my knees and back gave way I thought of my grandmother. I grew up knowing her when she chopped wood for the kitchen stove and loungeroom open fireplace. She would wash clothes by hand and then put them through a wringer again by hand, then hang them out to dry. What back-breaking work! And this is just a few things our grandparents had to do as part of their normal chores!

I think I need to thank God every day for the modern appliances man has invented. Recently, our washing machine needed fixing and we didn’t have it for two weeks. Having to do our washing by hand and carrying wet washing to hang outside was like doing a workout. No wonder none of the women in the olden days needed to do workouts at the gym to keep fit.

The modern woman may have help with the housework but our expectations of having spotless homes all the time, and cooking the best and healthiest meals ever, having perfect children, looking beautiful always, working full time or part time and smiling all the time while doing everything, etc. The list goes on and on and I can do it all. Do I believe this? Or am I falling apart after a short amount of time?

We cannot do it all.

I used to be a Supermum, then I needed time for me and extra time for others. I needed refreshment. All of this applies to men as well, because their list of jobs and expectations is just as long. I can do all things through God who strengthens me. This used to be a scripture I would recite to get everything done.

Now I enjoy, Be still and know that I am God. I need to have time to know people and know God and this is the most important thing. So, I learn to be still because chores are always going to be there but my family and friends will not.

My grandmother would make the best homemade bread with homemade jam and fresh cream. The breakfast meal and conversation with her and Grandpa are what I remember, and amongst all the chores, I was made to feel important and loved. Maybe you don’t have such happy memories of family but we can make our own family memories like this. We can start today to make memories for ourselves, our family and our friends. Choose a family if circumstances don’t allow you to have your own family.

I hope I am making good memories with my family and friends with love and helping them know that I think they are important in my life.

In your life, who are you making sure is feeling loved, needed and important?

For anyone reading this, I want you to know that God loves you and you are important. You are part of his family and He has great memories already of you and your life and wants you to continue having more with Him.

Why don’t you have breakfast with Him one morning and have a conversation and start building those memories!

Eat well and Happy Memory Making!

May these jottings from my journal inspire you to believe in and fall in love with Christ- the hope of the world, as stated in Jeremiah 17:7, ‘Blessed is the man who believes and trusts in and relies on the Lord and whose hope and confident expectation is the Lord!’

Love always

Rosemary


By on 20/03/2019

True Champions

Wednesday 20th March

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will for God, you will receive what he has promised. Hebrews 10:36 (NIV)

I love to watch movies like Remember the Titans about great athletes and their teams where the underdogs refuse to give up and overcome impossible odds to achieve their dreams.

Sometimes their friends and families believe in them and sometimes they have to do it on their own. Some have natural talent while others have to work twice as hard to get to the top. Most of them have to lose before they start winning.

True champions – not just winners – inspire us to persevere through hardships and get to the end of the game! We know so much growth happens along the journey!

In our faith, we also need champions to inspire us to persevere! Some days it is hard to keep going. We work so hard sometimes only to fail and then have to get back up again.

We have to remember God doesn’t want us to win every race.

He only asks us to take the next step, and the next until we cross the finish line.

PRAYER: Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today. Lord don’t let me give up today – help me to persevere. I know that You are the source of my power and I want to take the next step with you. Amen.

Written by
Sandra Purcell: Responsible for assisting Bruce with his Ministry as well as research and resource development.


By on 19/03/2019

Finding God’s Plan

Tuesday 19th March

Commit to the Lord whatever you do and He will establish your plans. (Proverbs 16:3)

Have you ever watched a trail of ants, they seem to be on a mission and have a purpose? Maybe it’s the queen ant who has the plan and all the worker ants are just looking at the blueprint, but they are all in sync. They know what they are doing.

Sometimes if I am truly honest and look at my life, I don’t know what I am doing. I don’t know where I am heading. I am just doing day to day.

What is my purpose? Is it just to be a wife, a mother, working in my career? Is there a greater purpose with all that I do?

As Christians we know God is the Master planner. The One who has the blueprint and who invites us to be the “workers in the field”.

I may only know my tasks day by day, but I trust in the Chief Architect who has the Master Plan.

But also, as intelligent creatures, God wants us to seek Him, to know Him and so know His heart and mind and so have plans for our lives. As we grow in love with our God more and develop our relationship with The Father, Son and Spirit we have a desire to bring “our works” to Him and ask His Blessing and instruction for the final plans.

It’s like we are design students bringing our research work to the teacher who encourages us and critiques our work to make it better and shows us how to produce our best finished work down the track.

Don’t we naturally want to produce the best work we can, the best plans and hear from the teacher- “well done?” I do.

In doing these ‘best plans’ we bring honour to Our God and love our neighbour along the journey of life. And on top of that is the great feeling of satisfaction, of real purpose that makes a difference in my heart. I am fulfilled.

So be encouraged make plans, find your place in Gods bigger plan and you will truly find satisfaction.

PRAYER: Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today. If I am truly honest and look at my life, I don’t know what I am doing. I don’t know where I am heading. I am just doing day to day. Today I trust that you are the master architect with the master plan for my life and I commit my day and my plans to you. Amen.

Written by
Rosemary Downes: Co-founder of The Catholic Guy Ministry and founder of the Heart Ministry for Women.


By on 18/03/2019

The State of Your Heart

Monday 18th March

Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flows the springs of life. (Proverbs 4:23)

If you could have a heart to heart talk with yourself back when you were a twenty-five-year-old, what would you say?

I really love this question?

I remember looking at people who were around 50 when I was a kid and thinking, “they are so old!!” Now I am up there, and I wouldn’t say I feel ancient, but I do feel that I have lived a pretty great life already and see only better times ahead.

During Lent we are called to be holy or to do everything we can to be the best version of ourselves that we can be – so what are the things that stand in your way today? What is the state of your heart?

As I look back, my top three pieces of advice to twenty-five-year-old me would be:

1. Take God at his word

Time and again I have seen God’s word proven to be true in my life and those close to me. I know I’m still working to take God at his word more seriously every day. He is who He says He is.

2. Be grateful

Even when our circumstances are hard there is always something to be grateful for – waking up in the morning, food on the table, a job, a friend, warm clothes, sunshine … Being grateful brings light into the darkest of situations and gives glory to God who blesses us so much.

3. Find your identity in Christ

We all define ourselves in various ways, but our identity must first and foremost be grounded in Christ. When you find yourself looking for love, look to Christ, when you find yourself needing affirmation, look to Christ. When you find yourself needing to feel significant, look to Christ. Only Christ can bring true contentment, true identity and true security.

I know I could make a list of 50 things and yet I also know that 25-year-old me could not cope with a list that long to aspire to.

What advice would you give to a twenty-five-year-old you or a younger you? Are there areas of your life that still need God today? This is the time to change!

Lord, here I am. This is me in all my imperfections and I need you today. I want my heart to be filled with light and to be able to turn away from things that are not of you. Guide me in my thoughts and actions today. Thank you for the great plans you have for me. Amen.

Written by
Sandra Purcell: Responsible for assisting Bruce with his Ministry as well as research and resource development.


By on 17/03/2019

Sunday 17th March