The Spirits Around Us, by Michael H. Brown, a brand new book on the supernatural realities around us -- around every person. Read of current encounters on deathbeds, in hospitals, in everyday life, in 'haunted' settings that finally get a Catholic explanation (as even St. Augustine spoke of their effect, and saints like Padre Pio saw them). Demons, angels, spirits of the deceased, purgatorial souls, often affecting us in unseen, unsuspected ways and dispelled through deep prayer in the Name of Jesus when we know how to do so and approach them with Catholic faith, prayer, and love! CLICK HERE



In this life, you are a paint brush. The paint is your life experiences. The portrait is your life. The world is the studio, with the subject love.

That love is there for all of us and once you open it, it will inevitably lead you to your self -- your real self. It will also lead you to your mission.

This is important because you want to be who you really are in preparation for eternity -- when you step (joyously) into your authentic existence. This we get from a person who glimpsed the afterlife. Paint the right picture.

Many are those who, like the Pharisees, tend only to cleansing the exterior. They worry only about outer appearance. They dress in just the right fashion. They carefully conduct rituals. They comport themselves as holy. They are seen to pray. And all of that can be important. They appear clean on the outside.

But more important (by far) is to cleanse internally. Said Jesus: "Beware of the leaven–that is, the hypocrisy–of the Pharisees. There is nothing concealed that will not be revealed, nor secret that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the darkness will be heard in the light" (Luke 12).

Thoughts. Emotions. How do you think? What do you think? What are your "first thoughts"? What thoughts do you hold as your own? Are they negative? Are they always critical? Are they "me first"? What do you wish for others?

Do you splash paint all over the place?

Every day, every moment, we must be meticulous in cleansing what Teresa of Avila called the "interior castle." This is what God sees. This is the person He knows as the real us. And when we hold negativity, it slows our progression to Heaven (because it sullies). Jesus said, "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men's bones and all uncleanness" (Matthew 23:27).

Those "bones" can be the dark blotches of sin. They can be emotions. They are thoughts. They can be spirits. Dark forces are allowed entry when we think or act in a way that is sinful; one bad proclivity leads to another. Are you having trouble loving others? Do you find it hard to think in a positive way about those around you?

It could be because you still allow in thoughts of greed or lust or selfishness, thoughts of revenge, thoughts that are critical. These will block the flow of grace. Discipline yourself so that every first thought is a good one. Discipline is a key to happiness! Look at the word: disciple. It is the follower of a "school of thought."

Our thought lives are our true selves -- the picture we paint -- and when we die we will assume a robe with a whiteness or grayness or blackness, the hues, that are commensurate with our interior lives. We will step into who we really are. One sinful tendency can bring in additional ones -- just as Jesus spoke of a spirit leaving a person but returning with seven others.

Purification, on the other hand, brings angels and comes when we serve others -- for the right reason. The more me serve, the more we purify. It is best to do it here instead of purgatory.

We cleanse when we serve and we serve when we fulfill our life missions.

Many times, we have discussed "life missions." We all have one of those, and accomplishing this mission with an attitude of unselfishness causes blemishes to vanish -- cleanses the castle.  How do we tell what it is?

"Our assignment is programmed in at birth, and it is the very thing or things we love most," said the woman I just quoted. "Acting from this love helps us to realize our true self, which is created anew each day of our lives through authentic behavior. This is what is meant by 'following your love.'"

So often, we stray from what we really love -- what really makes us feel at home -- because we seek to please society instead of God. We need to turn away from a competitive lifestyle into one that feels like an old shoe. This is when we know we are on the right path! What we love may seem simple -- even innocuous. But somewhere there is part of your mission with it. Maybe it's just making others laugh. Maybe it's simply fishing with the young. Maybe it's singing in a choir. Maybe it's those night-time stories read to a toddler. You can be a senator or CEO and yet this may be more important than anything else you do (reading night-time stories).

It is the little, finer strokes. It is the subtle shade. It is the simpler paint -- simple but pure, because it is mixed in the heart.

You will be happiest and most loving doing what you are meant to do. And so: do it! Dare to live a life of joy (as opposed to one of pretense). Dare to purify. It is not the sufferings or challenges of life but how we handle them. Suffering cleanses. So does love (in all circumstances). Love elevates.

"One of the many beliefs I have formed from this experience is that whenever unconditional love is bestowed upon an individual, it causes a purging of 'unloving energy' or self-hating energy (a person or the light), it causes a purging of 'unloving energy' or self-hating energy (which are illusions) to come into the consciousness of the individual to be examined and discharged," said this witness to Heaven. "Thus, the individual's level of consciousness is raised every time this is done."

We might want to re-read that!

It is how to cleanse, it is how we paint our lives -- and it is how we "dress" for eternity.

[see: The God of Miracles and Retreat in Cleveland, November 6]

[Viewer feedback (from Texas): "This morning, my wife very nearly was killed as she was about to enter the freeway on ramp. A big semi blew through the intersection without even slowing down for the stop sign. She paused before leaving the house to talk for a few seconds, and to share a morning hug and exchange our 'I love yous.' That few seconds kept her from getting run over by the high speed truck. As frightening as it is, I think sometimes we are given reminders of how fragile and precious life really is, and that we should never miss an opportunity to say 'I love you,' because we never know when it will be for the last time. It also reminds us that God and His angels are watching over us, and to offer Him our heartfelt thanks and praise."

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