September 18, 2019
Every day, as I read Psalm 95 to begin the divine office, the phrase, “enter into my rest” seems to jump off the page. What is this rest that God speaks of? What did the Israelites do to fail to enter into it? And, more importantly, what can we do to enter into God’s rest? In this podcast, Tony discusses Enter into my rest.
Scripture: Forty years I loathed that generation; I said: “This people’s heart goes astray; they do not know my ways.” Therefore I swore in my anger: “They shall never enter my rest.” –Psalm 95:10-11
Therefore, let us be on our guard while the promise of entering into his rest remains, that none of you seem to have failed. –Hebrews 4:1
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not from you; it is the gift of God; it is not from works, so no one may boast.” –Ephesians 2:8-9
“Encourage yourselves daily while it is still “today,” so that none of you may grow hardened by the deceit of sin.” — Hebrews 3:13
“For in fact we have received the good news just as they did. But the word that they heard did not profit them, for they were not united in faith with those who listened.” –Hebrews 4:2
Reflections: We all need God’s rest. How are you entering into His rest? How would you define God’s rest? How does faith help us enter into God’s rest?
September 11, 2019
Hard times, we are all going to have them. And, some of us get through them better than others. Others don’t do so well. They suffer openly, have a negative destructive attitude and feel that their happiness has been shortchanged. In this podcast, Tony discusses hard times.
Scripture: “Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” –Philippians 4:7
Quote: “Suffering has to come because if you look at the cross Jesus has his head bending down. He wants to kiss you. And he has his arms opened wide. He wants to embrace you. When you feel miserable inside look at the cross. Suffering, pain, sorrow, humiliation, feelings of loneliness, are nothing but the kiss of Jesus, a sign you have come so close he can kiss you.Suffering, pain, humiliation – this is the kiss of Jesus!” – Blessed Theresa of Calcutta
“Life is not the way it’s supposed to be, it’s the way it is. The way you cope is what makes the difference.” –- Virginia Satir
“What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Reflections: How has God helped you through hard times? What is you feeling about suffering? Is there anything we can learn from experiencing hard times?
September 4, 2019
In this podcast, Tony discusses giving thanks as an important element of Christianity. He uses the beautiful writings of St. Rose of Lima to better understand God’s amazing grace. The feast of St. Rose of Lima is celebrated this Saturday, August 23rd.
Quote: “If only mortals would learn how great it is to possess divine grace, how beautiful, how noble, how precious. How many riches it hides within itself, how many joys and delights! No one would complain about his cross or about troubles that may happen to him, if he would come to know the scales on which they are weighed when they are distributed to men.” –From the writings of St. Rose of Lima
“ Our Lord and Savior lifted up his voice and said with incomparable majesty: ‘Let all men know that grace comes after tribulation. Let them know that without the burden of afflictions it is impossible to reach the height of grace. Let them know that the gifts of grace increase as the struggles increase. Let men take care not to stray and be deceived. This is the only true stairway to paradise, and without the cross they can find no road to climb to heaven.’ ” –from the writings of St. Rose of Lima
Scripture: “In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” 1Thessalonians 5:18
Reflection: Has there been a trying time in your life that God’s grace helped you get through? Do you agree with St. Rose that grace flows to the afflicted and hurting?
August 27, 2019
In this Five Minutes with Tony podcast, Tony shares how we often are quick to judge people and show partiality to some and reject others. Often, we have our priorities backwards or out of order. The books of James guides us in our study of the sin of partiality.
Scripture: “My brothers, show no partiality as you adhere to the faith in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ. For if a man with gold rings on his fingers and in fine clothes comes into your assembly, and a poor person in shabby clothes also comes in, and you pay attention to the one wearing the fine clothes and say, “Sit here, please,” while you say to the poor one, “Stand there,” or “Sit at my feet,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil designs? Listen, my beloved brothers. Did not God choose those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom that he promised to those who love him?But you dishonored the poor person. Are not the rich oppressing you? And do they themselves not haul you off to court?” James 2:1-6
“But if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors.” James 2:9
Reflection: Have you ever been guilty of the sin of partiality? Why do we judge people in our lives as being worthy or not worthy of our love and respect?
August 19, 2019
We all know authentic people, we are attracted to them. They exude kindness and compassion, they don’t judge, they are trustworthy, passionate, helpful and genuine. In this podcast Tony discusses Authentic People.
Scripture: “Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect.” –Romans 12:2
“Since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us exercise them: if prophecy, in proportion to the faith; if ministry, in ministering; if one is a teacher, in teaching.” –Romans 12:6-7
“But the LORD said to Samuel: Do not judge from his appearance or from his lofty stature, because I have rejected him. God does not see as a mortal, who sees the appearance. The LORD looks into the heart.” — 1 Samuel 16:7
Reflections: Who is the most authentic person you know? Do you find that people often try to be someone they aren’t? How about you?
August 13, 2019
“Yes” is a word with tremendous power. It can unlock amazing opportunities, open doors, and lead us to a richer, fuller and more vibrant life. In this podcast, Tony discusses the Power of Yes.
Scripture: “Mary said, “Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.” –Luke 1:38
Such was his intention when, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home. For it is through the holy Spirit that this child has been conceived in her. –Matthew 1:20
Quote: “Let us look at her, and let us look to her, in order to be more humble, and even more courageous in following the Word of God, to receive the tender embrace of her son Jesus, an embrace that gives us life, hope, and peace.” -Pope Francis
Reflections: Have you said yes to Jesus? How did Mary and Joseph’s yes make you examine your own commitment? How do you say yes every day to Our Lord?
August 6, 2019
I am a fan of committed marriages. Whenever I hear of a couple celebrating 50 or 40 or even 25 years together it makes me smile. In this podcast, Tony discusses commitment in marriage and offers 6 things you can do to have a deeper understanding of commitment.
Quote: “God created marriage. No government subcommittee envisioned it. No social organization developed it. Marriage was conceived and born in the mind of God.” — Max Lucado
Quote: “As God by creation made two of one, so again by marriage He made one of two.” — Thomas Adam
Reflection: Do I have a “do what it takes to make this relationship work” commitment with my spouse? What are the thing I am doing to strengthen my marriage? Do you feel that a Christ-Centered relationship give you an commitment advantage?
July 30, 2019
Time flies is an expression we hear all the time. And it’s true. In this podcast, Tony discusses how time flies and how we need to understand that in the blink of an eye things can change. He offers several suggestions. too.
Scripture: To your eyes a thousand years are like yesterday, come and gone, or like a watch in the night. You sweep them away like a dream, like grass which is fresh in the morning. In the morning it sprouts and is fresh; by evening it withers and fades. Psalm 90 4:6 (Grail Version)
“Let your life be free from love of money but be content with what you have, for he has said, I will never forsake you or abandon you.” Hebrews 13:5
Quote: In the blink of an eye, something happens by chance, when you least expect it, sets you on a course that you never planned, into a future you never imagined. –Nicholas Sparks
“Life is a preparation for the future; and the best preparation for the future is to live as if there were none.” — Albert Einstein
“Happiness, not in another place but this place…not for another hour, but this hour.” –Walt Whitman
“Life can change in the blink of an eye. All you have is right now. So don’t ever put off telling someone how you feel about them, don’t assume that they know, because they might not and it might be too late.” ― Alexandra Potter
Reflection: Have you blinked you eyes and a year has goon by or even a decade? What can we do to savor the time we have together? Do you try to live in the moment? How difficult do you find it?
July 24, 2019
“Please don’t shake my hand too hard,” one of the prisoners whispered, as I reached out my hand to greet him. “I have cancer.” As we took our seats, with Theresa, George and me facing them, I asked, “tell me about your cancer?” In this podcast Tony discusses the crosses we bear.
Scripture: God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. [1 Co 10:13].
Reflections: Which of the three crosses would you choose? Or, would you rather keep the one you’ve got now? Are there those whos crosses would be too hard for you to handle?
July 17, 2019
Faith was the center of my mother’s life. Everything revolved around the church; mass, confession, holy days, and Christmas and Easter. My mom was also a stickler for attending mass and confession. As a kid, I never got away without attending Sunday mass and every week, it was confession on Saturday mornings. It wasn’t really my choice, my mom MADE me go! In this podcast, Tony discusses the positive influence his mother had on his faith.
Scripture: Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone! Therefore, you shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength. Take to heart these words which I enjoin on you today. Drill them into your children. Speak of them at home and abroad, whether you are busy or at rest. Deuteronomy 6:4-7
Reflection: How do you share the faith with your children? Do you think that your faithfulness has rubbed off on your children? How important is passing along your faith to your kids?