Free Catholic Book by Michael Dubruiel

Worshipping in spirit and truth, which is the kind of worship

that God seeks, involves an intimate dialogue, pouring out

our hearts and minds to God at all times. The late Bishop John

Sheets used to define the spiritual life as a “dialogic relationship,”

a fancy way of saying that we are in conversation with God at

every moment. Nothing we do is too trivial for God, nothing

beneath his notice.

If we truly believed this, our lives would be immediately

transformed. Gone forever would be the idea that God doesn’t

care what we do with our lives. There would be no area of our

lives that would be off-limits to God. Because when we worship

in spirit and truth, we realize that we live because God’s breath

is within us, and we live best when we acknowledge the source

of every breath we take.

"michael dubruiel"

Following Christ by Michael Dubruiel

Steps to Take as You Follow Christ

Ask—Do I reverence God?

Seek—Find a way to adore God today, be it in the Eucharist or

in the secrecy of your room, or anywhere. When you see the

shape of the cross, say the prayer that St. Francis instructed his

brothers and sisters to say, “We adore you O Christ. . .”

Knock—Meditate on Hebrews 12:28–29. What does it mean to

offer acceptable worship to God? How is the kingdom we are

offered by Christ unshakeable?

Transform Your Life—Make you life one of reverence toward

God at all times. Let your focus be on remaining in God’s presence,

rather than judging and criticizing those around you.

"michael dubruiel"

Trust in God by Michael Dubruiel

Coming to the tomb of Jesus that first Easter morning, the

women discovered an angel there, the rock rolled away. It was a

shocking and unexpected sight. The guards, who were there to

This is the power of

the cross for the follower

of Christ, no matter

what happens to us or can

happen to us we are not

defeated.

make sure that the disciples did not steal the body of the Lord,

were also witnesses to this. They were overcome with fear—to the

point of being “like dead men.”

One experience, two groups of people, two different reactions.

One group looks at the empty tomb and rushes to tell what

they have witnessed. The other group is paralyzed by the life

event. This wasn’t just something that happened thousands of

years ago; it happens every moment of every day. Those who see

the cross as the end of their life, meet death there; those who

believe and place their trust in God, find in the cross life and victory.

"michael dubruiel"

Free Catholic Book by Michael Dubruiel

The human race has been fighting the battle against pride

since the Fall. Discontent with the lofty position God had given

them, they wanted to be just like God—but independent of

him. This disordered desire continues to be at the heart of human

nature. Only when God’s spirit lives within us to the fullest are

we able to be most fully human. And the only way to be filled

with God’s spirit is to empty ourselves of any false sense of who

we are, or who we think we have to be. This is the way of humility,

what St. Paul calls having “the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians

2:16).

In the gospels, Jesus warns his disciples against desiring titles

and lofty honors. If we achieve greatness in life, as Cardinal del

Val did, we must guard against becoming attached to the position

or to the glory attached to it. Cardinal del Val gave the following

spiritual advice often to those who came to him for

counsel:

Have a great devotion to the Passion of Our Lord.

With peace and resignation, put up with your daily

troubles and worries. Remember that you are not a disciple

of Christ unless you partake of His sufferings and

are associated with His Passion. The help of the grace

of silence was the only thing that enabled the saints to

carry their extremely heavy crosses. We can show our

love for Him by accepting with joy the cross He sends

our way.

The cross sheds light on the way of humility; it is the path

that Christ took and the surest path for us to receive all the blessings

that Christ wishes to bestow upon us.

"michael dubruiel"

Following Jesus by Michael Dubruiel

Reverence for Jesus should be our instinctive response to his

presence, whether in the Eucharist or in another human being.

Those who claim to follow Christ, yet lose sight of both his message

and his person, fall prey to worshipping an ideology rather

than a Divine Person. If we are consumed with self, the consuming

fire of God cannot touch us.

"michael dubruiel"

The Power of the Cross by Michael Dubruiel

St. Peter Chrysologus (the “golden-worded”) was known for

his clear and simple style of preaching. About the angel’s appearance

at the tomb, he preached, “Pray that the angel would

descend now and roll away all the hardness of our hearts and

open up our closed senses and declare to our minds that Christ

has risen, for just as the heart in which Christ lives and reigns is

heaven, so also in the heart in which Christ remains dead and

buried is a grave.”

For those who do not believe, life unfolds as a series of accidents.

When a follower of Christ sees his life in exactly the same

way, Jesus calls that person foolish, slow to believe. Someone like

that needs to redirect his attention to the cross.

"michael dubruiel"

The Power of the Cross by Michael Dubruiel

Free Catholic Book

Those of us who carry the cross of Christ, who see ourselves

as pilgrims headed for that City of God, are bound to see things

very differently. We give glory to God in all things, and seek

God’s blessing upon all of our undertakings. We will not content

ourselves with some self-serving “spiritual quest” that has more

to do with love of self than love of God. We understand that

physical beauty is transitional at best. What matters most is to

become the person God created us to be; which is to be more like

Christ. So we refuse to let ourselves get caught up in some endless

cycle of trying to become someone we are not.

When Jesus told the apostles that he must suffer at the hands

of the rulers and be crucified, Peter told him that it would never

happen. Jesus said to Peter, “Get behind me Satan!” He understood

that God’s way is not our way—and yet, ultimately it is the

only way to eternal life.

The choice is yours: Which road will you choose? And who

will be your companion for the journey? Are you going to believe

those who pressure you to conform to the self-indulgent values

of the City of Man? Or will you take the higher road, bound for

the City of God?

"michael dubruiel"

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