Fidel's Walk

I just thought I'd gather all the nuggets of useful wisdom I gather as I walk through life. This wisdom may come from sermons, books, friends, etc. It helps me to read thru this again and again so I can grow spiritually and be victorious over the attacks of the Enemy. It's amazing how just one sentence or even one word can change your life forever.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

India Crack Pots

A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on each end of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots had a crack in it, and while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water at the end of the long walk from the stream to the master's house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water in his master's house. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments, perfect to the end for which it was made. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. "I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you."
"Why?" asked the bearer. "What are you ashamed of?"

"I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master's house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don't get full value from your efforts," the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, "As we return to the master's house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path."

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again it apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, "Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot's side? That's because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it.

"I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you've watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master's table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house."

Each of us has our own unique flaws. We are all cracked pots. But if we will allow it, the Lord will use our flaws to grace His Father's table.

In God's great economy, nothing goes to waste. So as we seek ways to minister together, and as God calls you to the tasks He has appointed for you, don't be afraid of your flaws. Acknowledge them, and allow Him to take advantage of them, and you, too, can be the cause of beauty in His pathway.

Go out boldly, knowing that in our weakness we find His strength, and that "In Him every one of God's promises is a Yes."

[+/-] show/hide this post

Friday, October 26, 2007

Too Busy for a Friend

Too Busy for a Friend... One day a teacher asked her students to list the names of the other students in the room on two sheets of paper, leaving a space between each name.

Then she told them to think of the nicest thing they could say about each of their classmates and write it down.

It took the remainder of the class period to finish their assignment, and as the students left the room, each one handed in the papers.

That Saturday, the teacher wrote down the name of each student on a separate sheet of paper, and listed what everyone else had said about that individual.

On Monday she gave each student his or her list. Before long, the entire class was smiling. 'Really?' she heard whispered. 'I never knew that I meant anything to anyone!' and, 'I didn't know others liked me so much,' were most of the comments.

No one ever mentioned those papers in class again. She never knew if they discussed them after class or with their parents, but it didn't matter. The exercise had accomplished its purpose. The students were happy with themselves and one another. That group of students moved on.

Several years later, one of the students was killed inVietNam and his teacher attended the funeral of that special student. She had never seen a serviceman in a military coffin before. He looked so handsome, so mature.

The church was packed with his friends. One by one those who loved him took a last walk by the coffin. The teacher was the last one to bless the coffin.

As she stood there, one of the soldiers who acted as pallbearer came up to her. 'Were you Mark's math teacher?' he asked. She nodded: 'yes.' Then he said: 'Mark talked about you a lot.'

After the funeral, most of Mark's former classmates went together to a luncheon. Mark's mother and father were there, obviously waiting to speak with his teacher.

'We want to show you something,' his father said, taking a wallet out of his pocket 'They found this on Mark when he was killed. We thought you might recognize it.'

Opening the billfold, he carefully removed two worn pieces of notebook paper that had obviously been taped, folded and refolded many times. The teacher knew without looking that the papers were the ones on which she had listed all the good things each of Mark's classmates had said about him.

'Thank you so much for doing that,' Mark's mother said. 'As you can see, Mark treasured it.'

All of Mark's former classmates started to gather around. Charlie smiled rather sheepishly and said, 'I still have my list. It's in the top drawer of my desk at home.'

Chuck's wife said, 'Chuck asked me to put his in our wedding album.'

'I have mine too,' Marilyn said. 'It's in my diary'

Then Vicki, another classmate, reached into her pocketbook, took out her wallet and showed her worn and frazzled list to the group. 'I carry this with me at all times,' Vicki said and without batting an eyelash, she continued: 'I think we all saved our lists'

That's when the teacher finally sat down and cried. She cried for Mark and for all his friends who would never see him again.

The density of people in society is so thick that we forget that life will end one day. And we don't know when that one day will be.

So please, tell the people you love and care for, that they are special and important. Tell them, before it is too late.

And One Way To Accomplish This Is: Forward this message on. If you do not send it, you will have, once again passed up the wonderful opportunity to do something nice and beautiful.

If you've received this, it is because someone cares for you and it means there is probably at least someone for whom you care.

If you're 'too busy' to take those few minutes right now to forward this message on, would this be the VERY first time you didn't do that little thing that would make a difference in your relationships?

The more people that you send this to, the better you'll be at reaching out to those you care about.

Remember, you reap what you sow. What you put into the lives of others comes back into your own.

[+/-] show/hide this post

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Lost Cousin

My wife lost a cousin over the weekend whose body was found badly beaten last Friday night. The truck he drove was found at another part of town behind Chuck E Cheese's on SW Military Drive. His name was John Joe Aguilar, age 26.

There was a small news article about it here and here.

[+/-] show/hide this post

Thursday, March 08, 2007

The Donkeys

A man had two donkeys and wondered which one to put the lighter
weighing cotton on and which one to put the heavier weighing sugar on.
He decided to let the donkeys choose.  

The one donkey went over to the bag of cotton and nudged  it with his
nose, then he went over to the bag of sugar and nudges it. Then the
donkey went back to the bag of cotton and nudged it with his nose again.

The man reasoned that the donkey chose the bag of cotton and puts it on
the donkey. He then put the bag of sugar on the other donkey, and they
got on their way.  As they went along, the donkey with the sugar
struggled under its load.  

On the other hand, the donkey with the cotton was having little trouble
at all. Finally they came to the river, and look, the bridge was out!
The only way to get to the other side was to swim. What do you think

He felt as if his load was getting lighter! As he swam the
sugar began to dissolve, and the farther he swam, the lighter his load became.
Finally he reached the other side, wet, but only slightly worn from the

What about the donkey with the bag of cotton? As he swam
along, he felt his load was getting heavier and heavier. Well, as he
swam the cotton began to absorb the water. The more he swam, the heavier
the bag of cotton became. Exhausted and now overburdened, he sank
beneath the water, never to be seen again.

[+/-] show/hide this post

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

The Truth Will Set U Free

The Truth Will Set You Free

Jer 18:18-20 / Mt 20:17-28

When people get really angry about something, they are almost always revealing something about themselves and about their needs, and quite often they neither know nor intend to reveal it! And so it is with today's Old Testament reading. The prophet Jeremiah was not just another eccentric outsider. He was the ultimate insider in the government of the kingdom of Judah. He was a nobleman and a leader in the government, and he had been telling the truth to his colleagues and to the people for a long time.

But they just didn't want to hear the truth, because it called for a painful re-thinking of their country's destiny and of their own personal careers. Those in power were not about to give up their privileged status so easily, so in their fury they threw Jeremiah in prison to shut him up. But the truth that Jeremiah had spoken couldn't be silenced, and the nation collapsed as he had predicted.

Many things can move us to ignore or deny the truth, but fear and ego are the prime culprits. We can never grow whole, we can never grow into our best selves, until we face the truth and embrace the whole of it, whatever it may be. But there's no way that we can face the truth alone -- ego and fear are too powerful. Fortunately for us, we don't have to face it alone. The Lord will walk us through the fire and out the other side, step by step.

Trust that and you'll know what they mean when they say, The truth will set you free.

[+/-] show/hide this post

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Mouse Trap

A mouse looked through the crack in the wall to see the farmer and his wife open a package.  What food might this contain?" The mouse wondered - he was devastated to discover it was a mousetrap.

Retreating to the farmyard, the mouse proclaimed the warning: "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The chicken clucked and scratched, raised her head and said, "Mr. Mouse, I can tell this is a grave concern to you, but it is of no consequence to me. I cannot be bothered by it."

The mouse turned to the pig and told him, "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The pig sympathized, but said, "I am so very sorry, Mr. Mouse, but there is nothing I can do about it but pray. Be assured you are in my prayers."

The mouse turned to the cow and said "There is a mousetrap in the house! There is a mousetrap in the house!"

The cow said, "Wow, Mr. Mouse. I'm sorry for you, but it's no skin off my nose."

So, the mouse returned to the house, head down and dejected, to face the farmer's mousetrap alone. That very night a sound was heard throughout the house -- like the sound of a mousetrap catching its prey.

The farmer's wife rushed to see what was caught. In the darkness, she did not see it was a venomous snake whose tail the trap had caught.  The snake bit the farmer's wife. The farmer rushed her to the hospital , and she returned home with a fever.

Everyone knows you treat a fever with fresh chicken soup, so the farmer took his hatchet to the farmyard for the soup's main  ingredient.

But his wife's sickness continued, so friends and neighbors came to sit with her around the clock. To feed them, the farmer butchered the pig.

The farmer's wife did not get well; she died. So many people came for her funeral, the farmer had the cow slaughtered to provide enough meat for all of them.

The mouse looked upon it all from his crack in the wall with great sadness.

So, the next time you hear someone is facing a problem and think it doesn't concern you, remember -- when one of us is threatened, we are all at risk.

[+/-] show/hide this post

Thursday, February 15, 2007

How to be original

Your Faith. Your Life. Your World.                                    
How to be an Original!

Revelation 2:17
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone which no one knows except him who receives it.

Yesterday we talked about the fact that all we do is only an imitation of something done by either God the Son or Satan. Taken out of context, that can make it sound as though we are unimportant and that there is "nothing new" about us. But the paradox is that, in losing one's life of "originality" and actively attempting to be an imitator of Christ, we become...original! Mortal sinners are mortally dull for they lose their individuality by entering into the anonymity of the same stupid sins as all other sinners. Saints, in contrast, are never the same as other saints. They are all highly individual and all fascinating. That is the meaning of the "new name" in today's verse.

You are intended to see, praise, and express something in the life and glory of God that nobody else ever has or ever will. You are called to make a contribution to history and to the good of the kingdom of heaven that no one else ever could. To do that, you must overcome your pride and receive the hidden manna of the Eucharist, of course. But that can be done with the help of the Spirit who speaks to all the churches - and to you, if you have ears to hear. Today, listen to the Spirit and take a step toward that utterly unique place He has prepared for you in the glory of the Father.

[+/-] show/hide this post