Assorted Ramblings

by Thomas A. Stobie, S.F.O.


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This is a collection of some of my sayings. I may add to these over time or convert them to full meditations.

On Pride

Pride is mostly a matter of perspective.

If what I am doing, I am doing to show how good am I, or to bring me glory then it is pride. Acknowledging the truth about yourself is not pride, but bragging about it is.

If what I am doing is for God and his people and God's glory than it is good and not pride.

Ask yourself why are you doing it and be truthful and you should know whether it is pride or not.

On Blame

If you feel you need to assign blame to everything bad that happens if your life, you are souring yourself.

Often we blame others for do things that we do or would do. Look carefully at yourself and reverse the situation in your mind; could it happen?

Accepting our own mistakes, rather than blaming others falsely, is a true act of humility and courage and allows us to grow.

Running from our own mistakes by blaming others falsely sets us up to fail again.

On Leadership

I now lead out of love for those I lead. When I ask something of someone, it is for their good, the good of others, or the good of the organization we serve. Sometimes this is selecting experts in what is needed to be done, other times it includes adding novices to learn and grow from the experience as well. Sometimes leadership is staying out of it and letting someone else lead either in a particular area or overall. What I teach, I do if I can. Sometimes doing it is beyond me, so all I can do is teach. Sometimes, you must help others decide by providing them information and no pressure or direction.

On Following

I find it easy to follow a loving leader and difficult to follow someone else. The loving leader wants the best for all and will sacrifice himself for others. Leaders who follow not a loving philosophy are more difficult as their agendas vary. It what they ask is moral, just and reasonable, I follow through with their request (but I may complain and let them know about it) even if it I don't agree with it. [We are obligated to follow our leaders in these sorts of requests. Paying taxes to a wasteful and misguided government is an example] If what they ask is immoral, injust or not reasonable, I tell them what is wrong with the request and refuse to go along. This has cost me at times, including jobs, but I will continue my practices. I try to find good leaders to follow and try to get good people into leadership and always respect the position, even when the person has lost my respect.

On Service

I serve out of love for my fellow man. As St. Theresa of Calcutta (yes, I know she has not been canonized yet, but it is how I think of her) put it, "I let the Jesus in me serve the Jesus in others." This is so true. In service, I sense the Holy Spirit, Jesus and God the Father present within me and those whom I am serving. I can often feel their love for us at these times. There are many ways to serve, and including leading and being served. Serve always and you will be happy.

Jesus' life is the perfect example, serving everyone regardless of station, origin, beliefs, etc., out of love.

On Being Served

I let myself be served and at times have to asked to be served (physically handicapped - limited walking ability). This was tough at first, but the Holy Spirit should me the good it was doing for those who was helping me, so He softened my heart on being served and that it was a service to allow yourself to be served. Humility greatly helps when being served, accepting that another wants to be of service, and often poorer service than you could do yourself for yourself.

On the Cross

The cross reminds us of our sinfulness, God's boundless mercy, God's wisdom far exceeding man's wisdom, and there is no greater love than to give one's life for a friend.

Jesus died for each of us individually on the cross. If no one else needed His mercy, He still will have done it. Praise be to God!

On the Eucharist

For me, the Eucharist is a spiritual feast, receiving Jesus totally within me, physically, mentally, and spiritually.

It helps me burn with the fire of Christ's love for others, seeing them as he sees them, wonderful children of God.

In terms of the experience, preparation makes a big difference.

  • Meditating on Whom I am receiving and why prior to reception makes a big difference.

  • Cleansing my soul, through confession, also makes a big difference.

  • Letting going of all my problems and anxieties and focusing on Jesus also makes a big difference.

During the consecration, I try to unite myself with Jesus in the sacrifice of the mass, offering up my body and blood out of love for the good of others. At times, I feel union with Jesus at this time.

The prayers around the consecration can also be valuable to unite with, reaching out to the whole church and the world, and joining in union with the prayers. At times, I can feel the multitude of peoples praying in union in love.

Sometimes after receiving the Eucharist, I can sense the multitude of people united in the Body of Christ and their love for God and for others.

Even when in a times of spiritual dryness, the Eucharist usually is an oasis in the desert experience, renewing me for the continued journey.

Jesus is very present to me in the Eucharist, His love and joy fills me. Different Eucharists may have different experiences with Jesus.

At times, I also share in Jesus' great and deep suffering include that caused by the world today and the way it fails to love. I feel His Wounded Heart crying out in agony at the injustices, cruelties, and selfishness committed in the world.

In response to Jesus, I offer Him myself and love Him as much as I can, uniting myself with Him in all things.

The Eucharist is Jesus. Jesus the man. Jesus the God. Jesus in the Body of Christ. Jesus and the church. Jesus the lover. Jesus the merciful. Jesus the sufferer. Jesus the redeemer. Jesus the teacher. {I could go on and on} It is Jesus in total, every aspect, every dimension, every time.

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Sayings by Thomas A. Stobie, SFO 2002. Permission granted to copy for personal use and to share with others.


I also have a collection of modern day oxymorons and misleading phrases. Check them out.


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Last Modified 5 Nov 2008.