Or better yet, we can simply listen. We can offer people new ways to see themselves — not as poor, not as voiceless, not as victims, but as strong and tenacious, as victors, as having a voice.
And with that voice we can teach each other how to use it for speaking up about love and equality and for building each other up until our hands meet the hands of all our brothers and sisters and know, deep in our core, that each person is being seen as a unique, loved individual, no more, but certainly no less.
Skip to main content. I raise my eyebrows when he does and snap my head to Sejeong who equally looked surprised like I was. I awkwardly smile and offer a short wave back, my eyes inevitably going to Jeongguk right after to see him there looking at Moonbin with that annoyed expression, his tongue poking through his cheek while his hands were on his hips.
I was low key waiting for him to look at me and give me a disapproving look too but he turns his back on me instead, taking off his headband to readjust it on his head. I push her on the arm and she laughs, complaining then again how come I seem to attract hot guys. But her teasing could not be absorbed by my mind properly since I was primarily concerned if I pissed off Jeongguk simply by waving back. I hold myself back from rolling my eyes, wanting to be on his good side as much as possible.
He huffs a breath as if to prove my point. When I see who it is, it dawns to me why Jeongguk looked so shocked to hear the voice, since no doubt he knew that it was Seri calling his name seconds ago.
I can still see it in the way you look at me. Even when it was my birthday! It was peak possessive lover behavior. If you really care for me like you said, then just leave. You only love yourself. I meet his eyes. Orchestra practice starts in like twenty minutes. He frowns. Jeongguk halts and so do I. But can he blame me?
He brings out his pinky and I smile smally, sealing the promise then, the gesture reminding me of the old days when we were younger and less prone to having stupid problems.
He glances at me. Call her mean names if you want. For the record, I really tried not thinking about what Seri said, but no matter what I do, my mind just naturally goes back to it, making me ask myself if that was what other people really thought too. I was so caught up with it that even I started thinking if I was being too comfortable with Jeongguk and was starting to act more like a girlfriend rather than just a best friend. You never worried about things like that before.
She sits up from her bed, intrigued by my statement. So, you did have those thoughts before. This is good. Things like those only end up with happy endings in movies. I turn to Sejeong. She raises her eyebrows in wonder but then reality comes to her. I forgot to stop by earlier at the convenience store. Besides, I still had my phone with me just in case. Was it normal to have him put his around your shoulders whenever you walk?
Was it normal to text her good morning and good night with no reason at all other than for the sake of just greeting her? Was it even normal that I was overanalyzing everything we were doing? It just never visits my mind as often as it does now. Arriving at the convenience store, I see about three other university students roaming around the aisles, probably aiming to buy some easy snacks and food like I came here for.
Though just when the cashier was punching in the items that I was about to pay for, he pauses and sighs, looking outside, causing me to look as well and see that it was now raining, the rain pouring down harder as each second passed. But by how hard it was still going on with no clear indication of it stopping any time soon, I think the former choice would be the better option at the moment. My name being called makes me whip my head to the direction I heard it from and once I do, I see Moonbin standing there, dressed in a blue hoodie and black cargo shorts.
He had an eco bag carried in one shoulder and was holding an umbrella in the opposite hand, his expression looking surprised. Might be because of the incoming storm tomorrow. He raises his eyebrows. But are you really going to wait until it stops? I know that agreeing would be the rational thing to do, but before I can even say yes out loud, the image of Jeongguk being all pouty and mad pops in my head.
But I developed it none then less. I may be rationalizing my negative qualities into being worse than they are but I have a hard time thinking of a counterargument.
From my understanding the very fact that I suffer from this disqualifies me as a suitable partner. Bruce and Linda, a thought. I am now to afraid to bring up topics or things that make me feel vulnerable in case of how he reacts or making the situation worse, but I want to be open with him. What should I do? Shout out to all the people commenting and reminding me big time that I am not alone in these feelings.
That alone alleviates so much of the burden. Thank you for the article and thank you for the comments, all xoxo. Your email address will not be published.
About the Author. Lisa Firestone, Ph. An accomplished and much requested lecturer, Dr. Firestone speaks at national and international conferences in the areas of couple relations, parenting, and suicide and violence prevention.
Follow Dr. Related Articles. Chapter 2 3. Chapter 3 4. Chapter 4 5. Chapter 5 6. Chapter 6 7. Chapter 7 8. Chapter 8 9. Chapter 9 Chapter 10 Chapter 11 Chapter In the months that pass, Castiel learns a lot about both of them.
He made Castiel eat and stay hydrated and kept him in decent spirits with ridiculous jokes and meta discussions about Star Wars. And sometimes he would just open a book and read to him until Castiel fell asleep, dreams full of turning pages and green eyes. Pamela scolds them both for thinking cold turkey was the way to go. She suggests Castiel stick to beer and taper off.
Taper off, boys. They agree, feeling like dumbasses. She also suggests Alcoholics Anonymous for them both. Eventually Castiel is down to one beer with dinner and Dean takes the savings from not buying alcohol and puts the money in a jar on the kitchen counter, declaring it their Beach Jar for all future trips to the beach. One morning Castiel wakes to the sun already high. When he goes to find Dean, and honestly, coffee, he finds a post it stuck to the coffee pot.
Castiel flips on the coffee pot and let's the dog inside. A note is pinned to his collar. He cracks up. Castiel growls and drops his head back. I thought I told you? It makes Castiel smile. He tries to reciprocate as much as he can. Maybe you could start going through some of the stuff in the office? Castiel knows his gaze is heated as Dean descends on him.
Why is "voice" important? What is your evidence that "voice" is important? Where can I read about "voice? Related Articles. What is a Wookah? Voice Lessons: Littleton, Colorado. Jesus is aware of the superstitious mentality of his listeners and he knows that they misinterpreted that type of event.
Jesus clearly rejects this outlook, because God does not allow tragedies in order to punish sins, and he affirms that those poor victims were no worse than others.
But the Gospel invites us to reflect: What idea do we have of God? Jesus, on the contrary, invites us to change our heart, to make a radical about-face on the path of our lives , to abandon compromises with evil — and this is something we all do, compromises with evil, hypocrisy I think that nearly all of us has a little hypocrisy — in order to decidedly take up the path of the Gospel.
But again there is the temptation to justify ourselves. What should we convert from? But, fortunately for us, Jesus is like a farmer who, with limitless patience, still obtains a concession for the fruitless vine. The invincible patience of Jesus! Have you thought about the patience of God? Have you ever thought as well of his limitless concern for sinners? How it should lead us to impatience with ourselves! And she prayed in the convent, and when, at the moment of being executed, the man turned to the priest, took the Crucifix and kissed it.
The patience of God! He does the same with us, with all of us. He saves us because he has great patience with us. And this is his mercy. Now is the time! Let us begin today. May the Virgin Mary sustain us, so that we can open our hearts to the grace of God, to his mercy; and may she help us to never judge others, but rather to allow ourselves to be struck by daily misfortunes and to make a serious examination of our consciences and to repent.
Jesus does not answer the question directly: there is no need to know how many are saved; rather it is important to know which path leads to salvation. What does Jesus mean? Through which door should we enter? And why does Jesus speak of a narrow door? The image of the door recurs in the Gospel on various occasions and calls to mind the door of the house, of the home, where we find safety, love and warmth.
This door is Jesus himself cf. Jn He is the door. He is the entrance to salvation. He leads us to the Father and the door that is Jesus is never closed. This door is never closed it is always open and to all, without distinction, without exclusion, without privileges. Because, you know, Jesus does not exclude anyone. No, you are not excluded! Precisely for this reason you are the favourite, because Jesus prefers sinners, always, in order to forgive them, to love them.
Jesus is waiting for you to embrace you, to pardon you. Do not be afraid: he is waiting for you. Take heart, have the courage to enter through his door. Everyone is invited to cross the threshold of this door, to cross the threshold of faith, to enter into his life and to make him enter our life, so that he may transform it, renew it and give it full and enduring joy.
In our day we pass in front of so many doors that invite us to come in, promising a happiness which later we realize lasts only an instant, exhausts itself with no future. But I ask you: by which door do we want to enter? And who do we want to let in through the door of our life?
It is not a firework, not a flash of light! No, it is a peaceful light that lasts for ever and gives us peace. No, not for that reason! Rather, because he asks us to open our hearts to him, to recognize that we are sinners in need of his salvation, his forgiveness and his love in order to have the humility to accept his mercy and to let ourselves be renewed by him.
I ask you: are you Christians by label or by the truth? And let each one answer within him- or herself! Not Christians, never Christians by label! Christians in truth, Christians in the heart. Being Christian is living and witnessing to faith in prayer, in works of charity, in promoting justice, in doing good.
The whole of our life must pass through the narrow door which is Christ. Let us ask the Virgin Mary, Door of Heaven, to help us cross the threshold of faith and to let her Son transform our life, as he transformed hers to bring everyone the joy of the Gospel. Using the image of a door, he wants his listeners to understand that it is not a question of numbers — how many will be saved —, how many is not relevant, but rather, it is important for everyone to know the way that leads to salvation.
This way means entering through a door. But where is the door? Who is the door? Jesus himself is that door. He leads us to communion with the Father, where we find love, understanding and protection. But why is this door narrow, one might ask? Why does he say it is narrow? It is a narrow door not because it is oppressive, but because it demands that we restrain and limit our pride and our fear, in order to open ourselves to Him with humble and trusting hearts, acknowledging that we are sinners and in need of his forgiveness.
This is why it is narrow, to limit our pride, which swells us. God does not have preferences, but always welcomes everyone, without distinction. A narrow door to restrain our pride and our fear; a door open wide because God welcomes us without distinction. And the salvation that He gives us is an unending flow of mercy that overcomes every barrier and opens surprising perspectives of light and peace. The door is narrow but always open wide: do not forget this. Once more, Jesus extends a pressing invitation to us today to go to Him, to pass through the door of a full, reconciled and happy life.
He awaits each one of us, no matter what sins we have committed, to embrace us, to offer us his forgiveness. He alone can transform our hearts, He alone can give full meaning to our existence, giving us true joy. When we encounter the love and mercy of God, there is authentic change. Our lives are enlightened by the light of the Holy Spirit: an inextinguishable light! I would like to propose something to you. Let us think now for a moment, in silence, of the things that we have inside us which prevent us from entering the door: my pride, my arrogance, my sins.
Then, let us think of the other door, the one opened wide by the mercy of God who awaits us on the other side to grant us forgiveness. The Lord offers us many opportunities to be saved and to enter through the door of salvation.
Rather, we have to accept the opportunity for salvation. Because at a certain moment, the master of the house will rise and shut the door cf. Lk , as the Gospel reminded us. But if God is good and loves us, why would he close the door at a certain point? Because our life is not a video game nor a television soap opera. Our life is serious and our goal is important: eternal salvation.
Let us ask the Virgin Mary, the Gate of Heaven, to help us seize the opportunities the Lord gives us in order to cross the threshold of faith and thus to enter a broad path: it is the path of salvation that can embrace all those who allow themselves to be enraptured by love. It is love that saves, the love that already on this earth is a source of happiness for all those who, in meekness, patience and justice, forget about themselves and give themselves to others, especially to those who are most weak.
Thursday of the Thirtieth week in Ordinary Time. Observing this scene, Jesus shares two short parables, and with them two instructions: one concerning the place, and the other concerning the reward. The first analogy is set at a wedding banquet. With this recommendation, Jesus does not intend to give rules of social behaviour, but rather a lesson on the value of humility.
History teaches that pride, careerism, vanity and ostentation are the causes of many evils. And Jesus helps us to understand the necessity of choosing the last place, that is, of seeking to be small and hidden: humility.
Let us not forget this: God pays much more than men do! He gives us a much greater place than that which men give us! The place that God gives us is close to his heart and his reward is eternal life. This means choosing gratuitousness rather than self-seeking and calculating to obtain a reward, seeking interest and trying to increase your wealth.
In this way Jesus shows his preference for the poor and the excluded, who are the privileged in the Kingdom of God, and he launches the fundamental message of the Gospel which is to serve others out of love for God. Today, Jesus gives voice to those who are voiceless, and to each one of us he addresses an urgent appeal to open our hearts and to make our own the sufferings and anxieties of the poor, the hungry, the marginalized , the refugees, those who are defeated by life, those who are rejected by society and by the arrogance of the strong.
And those who are discarded make up the vast majority of the population. At this time, I think with gratitude of the soup kitchens where many volunteers offer their services, giving food to people who are alone, in need, unemployed or homeless. In this way serving others becomes a testimony of love, which makes the love of Christ visible and credible. Let us ask the Virgin Mary, who was humble throughout her whole life, to lead us every day along the way of humility, and to ren der us capable of free gestures of welcome and solidarity with those who are marginalized, so as to become worthy of the divine reward.
The Lord goes to the house of a leader of the Pharisees for a meal and there he is reproached for not observing the ablutions. It would be embarrassing. The passage continues with the advice that the Lord gives as to who should be invited to a banquet at home, identifying the elect as those who have nothing to give you in exchange. Such is the gratuity of the banquet. However, the first ones to be invited did not want to go to the dinner; they did not care about the meal or the people who were there, or of the Lord who invited them; they were interested in other things.
They each had their own interests which were greater to them than the invitation. These people are attached to interests to the point in which they fall into slavery of the spirit, and they are incapable of understanding the gratuity of the invitation.
Here one sees two attitudes. The first, that of God, is always free: in order to save, God does not charge anything. However, those who mind their own interests do not understand the gratuity. And I, who am a practising Catholic, I go to mass every Sunday, I carry out my duties, and to me, nothing? As such there is always an exchange. Rather, the Lord does not ask for anything in exchange, only love and faithfulness, for He is love and He is faithful.
I ask myself, what do they feel, the ones who are indisposed to come to this banquet? They feel safe, they feel secure, they feel saved in their own way, outside of the banquet, for they have lost the meaning of gratuity; they have lost the meaning of love and they have lost a greater and more beautiful thing, namely the capacity to feel themselves loved, which leaves no hope; when you no longer feel loved, you have lost everything.
The parable of the man who gave a great banquet, and sent out many invitations. There is always an apology. They apologize. This passage, ends with a second refusal, this one from the mouth of Jesus Himself. When someone rejects Jesus, the Lord waits for them, gives them a second chance, perhaps even a third, a fourth, a fifth… but in the end, He rejects them.
And this refusal makes us think of ourselves, of the times that Jesus calls us; calls us to celebrate with Him, to be close to Him, to change our life. Think about seeking out His most intimate friends and they refuse! Then He seeks out the sick… and they go; perhaps some refuse. And I have always found a reason to excuse myself, to refuse. In the end, those who do not reject Jesus, and are not rejected by Him, will enter the Kingdom of God. Yes, He is good, He is merciful — He is merciful, but He is also just.
And if you close the door of your heart from within, He cannot open it, because He is very respectful of our heart. Refusing Jesus is closing the door from within, and He cannot enter. It is Jesus Himself who pays for the feast. Many people in fact drew near to Jesus, they wanted to be included among his followers; and this would happen especially after some miraculous sign which accredited him as the Messiah, the King of Israel.
However Jesus did not want to disappoint anyone. He knew well what awaited him in Jerusalem and which path the Father was asking him to take: it was the Way of the Cross, the way of sacrificing himself for the forgiveness of our sins.
Following Jesus does not mean taking part in a triumphal procession! It means sharing his merciful love, entering his great work of mercy for each and every man and for all men. The work of Jesus is, precisely, a work of mercy, a work of forgiveness and of love! Jesus is so full of mercy! And this universal pardon, this mercy, passes through the Cross.
Jesus, however, does not want to do this work alone: he wants to involve us too in the mission that the Father entrusted to him. The Christian detaches him or herself from all things and rediscovers all things in the logic of the Gospel, the logic of love and of service.
To explain this requirement, Jesus uses two parables: that of the tower to be built and that of the king going to war. Jesus does not wish to address the topic of war here; it is only a parable. Yet at this moment in which we are praying intensely for peace, this word of the Lord touches us to the core, and essentially tells us: there is a more profound war that we must all fight!
It is the firm and courageous decision to renounce evil and its enticements and to choose the good, ready to pay in person: this is following Christ, this is what taking up our cross means! This profound war against evil! What is the use of waging war, so many wars, if you aren't capable of waging this profound war against evil? It is pointless! There is so much of it! So much of it! And the doubt always remains: is this war or that war — because wars are everywhere — really a war to solve problems or is it a commercial war for selling weapons in illegal trade?
These are the enemies to fight, united and consistent, following no other interests than those of peace and of the common good.
Dear brothers and sisters, today we are also commemorating the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, a Feast particularly dear to the Eastern Churches. And let all of us now send a beautiful greeting to all the brothers, sisters, bishops, monks and nuns of the Eastern Churches, both Orthodox and Catholic, a beautiful greeting!
Jesus is the sun, Mary is the dawn that heralds his rising. Yesterday evening we kept vigil, entrusting to her intercession our prayers for peace in the world, especially in Syria and throughout the Middle East.
Let us now invoke her as Queen of Peace. Queen of Peace pray for us! The Heart of the Good Shepherd tells us that his love is limitless; it is never exhausted and it never gives up. The Heart of the Good Shepherd reaches out to us, above all to those who are most distant. Contemplating the Heart of Christ, we are faced with the fundamental question of our priestly life: Where is my heart directed?
It is a question we need to keep asking, daily, weekly… Where is my heart directed? Our ministry is often full of plans, projects and activities: from catechesis to liturgy, to works of charity, to pastoral and administrative commitments. Amid all these, we must still ask ourselves: What is my heart set on? All of us have our weaknesses and sins.
The great riches of the Heart of Jesus are two: the Father and ourselves. His days were divided between prayer to the Father and encountering people. Not distance, but encounter. The heart of the priest is a heart pierced by the love of the Lord.Firestone has published numerous professional articles, and most recently was the co-author of Sex and Love in Intimate Relationships (APA Books, ), Conquer Your Critical Inner Voice (New Harbinger, ), Creating a Life of Meaning and Compassion: The Wisdom of Psychotherapy (APA Books, ) and The Self Under Siege (Routledge, ).