"As believers we’re all beloved by God" by: Caleb Gibson

   “After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him, 17 and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.’” (Mat. 3:13-17).
   Imagine hearing this voice. You hear God’s voice saying how much He loved His son.   
   I would have been awestruck.   
   Imagine someone fainting and falling in the water after hearing this.  
   Right after this baptism Jesus went to into the wilderness and fasted for forty days. Then the Devil tempted him with three temptations. 

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"Enjoying Pope’s visit, his message for Christians" by: Rosario Resendez

   This past week the pope was visiting in the United States. I thought it was awesome to have him here.    
   Pope Francis in my opinion is our faith in action. He shows us how we are supposed to be humble and full of joy. I couldn’t help but laugh every time I saw the little Fiat he was in traveling among the huge black SUVs. 
   The Pope’s visit to the United States was a big deal here at the convent too. We changed our daily schedule here so we were able to catch him on television.  
   I would have liked to see him in person but seeing all those people that went out to see him, I think I got a better view from our couch. 
   I loved the prayer service he held at Ground Zero in New York. The most powerful image that I will always remember what when he gave the sign of peace to the representatives of all the different religions in the world.  


"Lord’s love is steady, secure" by: Caleb Gibson

   Jesus was having breakfast with the disciples when he asked Peter, “do you (agape) love Me more than these?” (John 21:15).  
   Peter told the Lord, “Yes, Lord; You know that I (phileo) love You.” (John 21:15). Now Jesus did this a total of three times with Peter, the same amount of times that Peter had denied knowing Christ. 
   So what is this significance? As English readers we do not get the full explanation by simply reading the text in our language.  
   As we go to a commentary or a Greek text we can discover the amazing truth that is revealed in this discussion between Peter and Jesus. 
   When Jesus asked Peter if he loved Him, He used the Greek word, “Agape” 
   The Greek language uses different words to describe love. This agape is the God kind of love. It is self-sacrificing. 
   Phileo is a different kind of love; it means brotherly love. He wanted to show him that we cannot rely on our own will power. 


"Ask God to help us clean out old sins" by: Betsy Monico

 It is difficult for me to write tonight.  
   Three of my kids are jumping on the trampoline. I was just with them playing “steam roller” and football. 
   The entire time I was playing with them I had a running dialogue going in my head about normal sibling behavior. 
   I feel like they pick, fight, and can be entirely too rough with each other. I want to pounce on them quite often and fix it all, but then I remember that most of this is a normal family dynamics and that they do get along…sometimes! 
   You see, I want kindness around here all the time. I am a peacemaker. 
   I attempt to be a peacekeeper. I have to remind myself often that Jesus Christ is the only real peacemaker and peacekeeper. I am even learning in my 40s to be “okay” when things are not “okay.” 
   Another reason for my unsettled mind is that I saw “War Room.” 


"Where did water go?" by: Mike Reddell

   What happened to all of the water we were getting? 
   Seems like yesterday, when we were watching the torrents of water from Tropical Storm Bill tear through Matagorda County.  
   I thought about the wet spring and early summer as I surveyed the parched sections of lawn that the sprinkler didn’t seem to help much. 
   I also noticed those cracks in the ground that tell us it’s been awhile since we had some serious precipitation. 
   Matagorda County and part of Brazoria County were recently reclassified by the Texas Drought Monitor under moderate drought conditions.  
   Counties immediately around us are either designated as abnormally dry or no status at all.  
   No rain, at least in sight, temperatures around 100 and a heat index of 109 on Tuesday seems to be the perfect accents for the drought news.  

"Remembering Robin Williams’ legacy" by: Jessica Shepard

   Year and a day.
   That’s how long Robin Williams has been gone. 
   And though I personally didn’t know him, he still left a mark on my life. 
   The first movie that I ever saw with him in a main role was “Hook.” 
   “Hook” came out in 1991 when I was four years old. 
   Granted, I didn’t see it then, but, it is one of the oldest movies I can remember or have seen with him in it. 
   “Popeye” also comes to mind, but, it’s rather vague and I don’t remember it too well. 
   Nearly every child that grew up in the 90s knows of his iconic role as “Genie” from “Aladdin.” 
   I’m not afraid to admit that some of those sassy one-liners were added to my smart aleck repertoire. 
   As I got older I was able to finally access movies above a “G” rating. 
   The “Dead Poets Society” will always remain as one of my favorite movies of all time. 

"The Other Side of Investing" by: John Sample

   Last week was a loss each day to add to the previous week’s losses.  
   The indexes either wiped out the years gains or were very close.  
   You add that to the correction in the Chinese indexes and the dog days of August are living up to the moniker.  
   One tends to forget about the Greek and Puerto Crisis passing almost unnoticed.  
   What has been noticed is the earnings reports. The devil is always in the details.  
   The detail being that most CEOs cannot project earnings growth in the upcoming quarters.  
   One of the biggest culprits being the strength of the dollar.  
   With the Fed facing the reality of higher employment and a steady growth in the economy, interest rates will be raised in the U.S. while Europe will continue to print money to support the lagging Economies in Europe.   

"When you feel lost, Jesus is looking for you" by: Betsy Monico

   My husband called me yesterday morning and said we had a problem. 
   Our Jack Russell had been gone from the house for a few hours. 
   He typically goes on voyages around the house into the woods, but has somewhat been trained to come back home and check in. 
   There had been no check-in. (This reminds me of myself years ago at the county fair. Let’s just say I too avoided check-ins!) 
   I got home from my morning errands and did what any woman with a big heart would do.  
   I put on the tallest tube socks I could find, my boots, got a big stick for protection, and took off into the woods. I was going to find him. 
   My fear was that he had a run-in with a snake. 
   Only two weeks ago, I nursed him back to health from a horrible bite.   
   He was sick for three days. I just knew that might have happened again and that the heat would be a factor. 

"No barriers exist between us, God" by: Caleb Gibson

   The Bible says, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.”(2 Cor. 3:18).  
   This analogy of the mirror speaks that God wants us to look to Jesus.  
   Just as we wake up and look in the mirror before we leave the house, God wants us to look to Jesus. 
   Many times when we approach God we look to ourselves, our insecurities, and our failures.  
   Instead God wants us to behold, “the glory of the Lord.” How do we behold Jesus?  
   We behold Him by seeing Him in the Bible. 
   Every story of the Bible points to the cross.  
   For instance, when you see the story of how Abraham gave up his son his only son, the son that he loved, you see Jesus.  

"Beginning important step toward community" by: Sister Maria del Rosario Resendez

   On Aug. 5, 2015, I became a novice with the Incarnate Word and Blessed Sacrament Sisters of Victoria. 
   This was a private ceremony so I was not able to invite a lot of people, but my family and my parish priest was able to come. 
   The novitiate is the initial step into becoming part of this community. During the first year of the novitiate which is called the canonical year, I do not leave the convent.  
   I receive the habit and a white veil because I have not yet taken vows.  
   I also received my sister name, therefore I am now called Sister Maria del Rosario. This name has sentimental value to me as this is the name my grandmother wanted to give me when I was born instead of just plain Rosario. 
   I am to study our spirituality and church law throughout this whole year, along with learning more about the daily lives and ministry of the sisters. 


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