Saturday, November 28, 2009

Saturday stuff...

Twiddily dee...dah... dah... ta... dah.... twidid... whatever.
I'm painting shepherds today - with an angel appearing to them - on the first Christmas eve.  I would have liked to have seen that - the angels.  I decided to dream about it last night, but nothing happened - I was hoping to see angels.
Have you ever seen an angel?  I don't know if I have either - I saw someone once - but I didn't realize it could have been an apparition until after it was over - and there is no guarantee it was an actual apparition either.  Anyway, though I wanted to get away, I looked in the direction the person was pointing - just for a moment mind you, when I looked back - the person had disappeared.  I may have written about it before - it happened in the Basilica of St. Peter's years ago.  At least the shepherds knew they were seeing heavenly beings, all that light and glitter and music and stuff - my experience was pretty normal.  I think God prefers normal.

You won't believe what happened to me this morning.  I saw Mrs. Rabitowitz!  No kidding.  I was saying my prayers and looked out the french doors and there she was - looking into the house.  She was saying something but I couldn't hear her because the doors were shut.  I made a gesture of praying hands, and then lifted my office book to show her I was praying, so she'd understand why I couldn't come to the door.  (I never go to the door or answer the phone when I am praying, and frequently while I'm painting.)  She nodded and cocked her head towards the bird feeder indicating it was time to start feeding the wildlife.  Then she hopped off into the hedge and took up her station, watching and waiting for I don't know what.  And here I thought she was dead.

Speaking of prayer.  This morning I considered how every sin is a choice - after baptism that is.  The temptations - or the tribulations of life - test our fidelity.  In every life one is faced with a fundamental choice - to choose between good or evil, Christ or the Antichrist.  Some people may live in such severe testing, the choice is every day.  Sometimes we lose, sometimes we win - yet so long as we live in the body we have  hope and mercy is available to us - so we can lose a battle, recoup, and begin anew.  But we have to keep trying.
"Even though we are unable to remain in control of the temptation, we are nevertheless being asked not to run from it or avoid it.  We need to undergo the temptation and pass through it in order to come to Jesus, and we need to follow in his footsteps, our eyes focused upon his, he in us and we in him...  In every temptation, in the depths of the infatuation of our senses or in the densest darkness of our mind, there is but one way out, for us as well, the way of Jesus." - Dom Andre Louf, o.c.s.o.
Don't run from the struggles of the temptations and trials and tribulations - if you do - come back - come back to Jesus.  Never settle for, or opt for the easy way out - if you do - come back - come back to Jesus.  If you fall away - or die like Mrs. Rabitowitz did, which is just a metaphor for mortal sin - come back - come back to Jesus.  Choose life, not the temptation.  Choose real life, eternal life, and not a lifestyle.  Choose Jesus not the drama of daily compromise.  It's a choice - it really is.
Art: Govert Flinck - Aankondiging aan de herders  Source
       Bunnycake Source
       Study for Jacob Wrestling Angel - Léon Joseph-Florentine Bonnat, 1876


  1. Wish we had a Mrs. Rabitowiz...we just draw very fat raccoons!
    And we saw a dead one on the road the other day that might have been our visitor. Hope he doesn't show up during prayer!
    Great post on perseverance and returning to Jesus. We all need a good shot of that.

  2. michael r.3:37 PM

    Neat that you had a visit from Mrs. Rabitowitz!

  3. Thanks for the Mrs. Rabitowitz update! Curiously, the rabbit population in my yard has decreased. I was unemployed..connection?

    I'm always happy to hear you are painting! Looks like you had plastic surgery again too.

  4. Do we get to see the finished work?

  5. I wish I could see angels. But the minute I saw something that came close to some kind of an apparition, I'd start questioning my sanity. Why would I, of all people, be privileged enough to see celestial beings?

    Ever heard of this quote before?

    “The angels are lost in perpetual contemplation of an infinite glory.”

    It’s one of two of the most beautiful descriptions of God (not Angels) that I know of (the other description of God is in the closing doxology: “Through Him, with Him, In Him...”) It makes we think of the unimaginable and incomprehensible vision Angels have surrendered to. I think (I could be wrong) that the quote Is originally from a Muslim source from antiquity, and then later used by Viktor Frankl (a Jew and survivor of the Holocaust) in one of his books.

    “Twiddily dee...dah... dah... ta... dah.... twidid...” I LOVE that song! ;0)

  6. Just before Chesterton died, he was unconscious, but at one point he woke up and said: It's all become clear. In the end, we all must choose, light or darkness.

    This post was wonderful!

  7. I've always wondered if the shepherds became disciples of Jesus when He began His earthly mission.

    They must have received some great graces that First Christmas Night: Angels, Jesus, Mary, Joseph!!!

    And they must have shared their experience with friends and relatives.

    But who would believe lowly shepherds?

  8. Goofy title , lovely post.
    I heard an angel once. I was half awake and half asleep and he kept telling me things. He was preparing me for something terrible that was about to happen to me. I was 33 at the time. Although I knew what was happening, I said to the voice, "your too loud and your waking me up." I didn't remember what I was told but I know it's still in my brain and had helped me in some way.

    So if you hear an angel - prepare yourself.

  9. LeoRufus9:23 AM

    I just love your stories of Mrs. Rabitowitz!

    I will tell you of my deer Doe Remi and her fawns some time.


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