CDs: Healing Through Rosary, by Father Robert DeGrandis, with Cecilia Kittley, actually two CDs with music that includes the "Ave Maria. Fr. DeGrandis is a member of the Society of St. Joseph and has traveled worldwide in the charismatic Catholic community. He has many gifts, with deliverance and healing through prayer among them!  CLICK HERE


From the archives:


We have asked this previously: Do you let other people define you? Do you let them tell you who you are -- or are supposed to be? Does your self-perception change according to who is around? If so, they may be impinging on your mission. Likely, they are also impinging on your happiness.

Your mission is your destiny. It is the "you" at your holiest. It is the you at your happiest. It is the you at your closest to God and your best -- reaching full potential away from the confines of others. God has a great plan for you. Do you realize that? And are you letting others affect it?

Humility comes when you welcome who you really area (as opposed to creating a pretense).

People label us. They put a tag on us. And too often, it sticks. We start to believe the way we're perceived. We let the judgment take hold. They perceive us based on assumptions, false first impressions, or old information. Folks keep us in a box. They limit us. They seek their own comfort in trying to form us as they want us to be, in the way that makes them most comfortable (and superior) -- instead of the way God made us.

This especially happens with those who have known you the longest. A trial! We do this to each other all the time. Those who are closest to us often can't accept who we have become -- our development, especially our spiritual development.

They feel threatened. They may be afraid of losing your friendship. They may feel it will change the relationship. Or, they're afraid they won't be able to keep up. They may be jealous.

Yet, you can't let others project their emotions on you. We want to grow. We want to change for the better. Everyone is here on earth precisely for that purpose -- to evolve into a great and pure vessel for God. Do we allow that transformation? Or do we give into the labels? Throughout life, we are to shed old skin and progress as increasingly glorious "butterflies." Others will resist that because they aren't used to the butterfly, or are envious.

People label us as dumb or ambitious. Or lazy. As partiers. As selfish. As too strong, or too weak. As prideful (when we are just being confident). Who do you think you are, we can hear them thinking.

They often want us to remain in the slot we were in when they first met us and just as often they define you on past transgressions -- taking no note of the way you have shed bad habits through the mercy of Jesus.

That's because they don't see -- nor do they try to see -- through His eyes. They categorize you. They cast you into a role, a mold. You're in a file in their "filing" cabinet. They have stereotyped you. Don't play the part. Look at the way the Pharisees defined Jesus. Look at the way no one believed He was Who He really was until the resurrection (and still many denied Him).

Usually, when this happens, people are seeing something in you that reminds them of someone else and suddenly you are that someone else -- often a negative someone else.

Bible-thumper. Religious fanatic.

"Holier than thou."

Don't let negatives be spoken over you. When that occurs, it's like a curse. Shrug it off as soon as it tries to alight on your shoulder (or take its place on your forehead like a barcode). Sometimes, people just keep holding onto something that is not you and sometimes, we have to prune acquaintanceships because their time has passed. Perhaps unknowingly, they try to hinder your spiritual development. Don't worry about popularity contests.

If you let others define you, you won't reach true happiness because you won't reach the destiny the Lord has assigned to you. Every single person on earth is equally important in God's mysterious, incomparable Plan. And no one on earth sees even a fraction of it. Our "geniuses" have no clue when it comes to His perspective (unless they take the Christian perspective). Renounce their labels. Remain in faith. Move upward always. Don't look back at past worldliness; you'll only stumble. Forget about what once enticed you (and kept you in that box). Forget about the way others perceive you and remain steadfast in how the Lord sees you.

We're all equal, and God has a plan of greatness for every one of us. He made us to be great. Joy comes with greatness as ordained by the Lord -- the greatness of motherhood, the greatness of being a great janitor, the greatness of a life lived for others. It is labels -- and our accepting those labels -- that prevent us from achieving bigger spiritual things. Go for the greatest "you." Go for the best you can be -- no matter what others around you think. Rest in the Lord. Remain in Him. Worry about pleasing Him only. Gravitate to the interior "you" that is most familiar to you, and maintain the real you no matter how others try to perceive you and cause you to misperceive yourself.

[resources: Father Degrandis' books and The God of Miracles]

[also: Michael Brown retreat, Lafayette, Louisiana!]

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