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Keep the change

The story is told about a man who brought his old car to a shop for change oil. After checking the car, the mechanic advised him to keep the oil, and change the car.

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In today’s Gospel (Jn. 10:1-10), we hear about the sheep entering the sheepfold, and going out again, led by the shepherd. When the restrictions of the lockdown ease up sooner or later, let us continue to listen to our Good Shepherd, and carry in our hearts the precious lessons and realizations we have learned.

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What do we keep, and what do we change? Let each one of us make a list of what to be or what to do in the “new normal.” May we all come out of the quarantine not only victorious, but also more virtuous.

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What are the things that we should bring along from our quarantine experience? I hope we don’t forget prayer. It is prayer that has helped us cope, and deal with our fears, deprivations, anxieties, restlessness, and boredom. Prayer made us bond with God, with our family, with our country, and with the world. Prayer works. Let us continue to pray, and to pray more.

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I hope we have learned to be humble. In our helplessness against an invisible enemy, we humbled ourselves to Someone greater than ourselves. I hope that we have realized that there are no greater gods among us as we came face to face with the reality of death, and dying anytime, anywhere. And that we need to obey, and heal, as one.

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Let’s bring along kindness, and continue to be generous to others. There were, and there will always be misfits, but a lot of us reached out to each other, went the extra mile, and gave the extra smile. Real heroes had their time to shine. Fake ones, too. We have also realized that kindness to our environment is something each of us should not take for granted from now on. And of course, I hope we have learned to be kind to ourselves.

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Let’s bring along hope, lots of it. Let us not be overwhelmed by negativities, and let the joy of the Lord be our strength. Someone once said that 10 percent of life is what you make it, and 90 percent is how you take it. Let’s take everything with the eyes of faith, and see broader and deeper, brighter and lighter.

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If March and April were dark and gloomy, the days ahead will be bright and sunny because it’s May, the month of Mama Mary who manifested her help and presence in the most difficult moments in our history. One good habit to continue is the constant washing of hands, and saying a “Hail Mary” or two while doing so.

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One good discovery I made is that of praying the Rosary while doing stretching and yoga exercises. It’s not only a good sweat, but a meditative and prayerful experience as well, as it is done slowly, and not hurriedly. You can end it with joyful praise songs as you just swing along! Try this healthy, happy, and holy experience.

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The “Walk with God to Manaoag” scheduled yesterday would have been the 62nd walk which we have been doing every first Saturday of May and October since 1989. Thy will be done, Lord. Maybe in October then.

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Together with Saint Padre Pio, we pray: “Stay with me, Lord, for You are my light, and without You, I will be in darkness; Stay with me, Lord, so that I hear Your voice and follow You; Stay with me, Lord, for I desire to love You very much, and always be in Your company, now and always. Amen.”

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A moment with the Lord:Lord, give us the wisdom to know what to keep and what to change in our lives, and the courage to do it. Amen.

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TAGS: Gospel, Jerry M. Orbos, Moments
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