October 20, 2012
Join us over at Thoughts on Grace for more of this meme. And if you can contribute, please join the fun and inspiration. Colleen has some gorgeous Florida skies to show us this week.
This morning I made the Korean fermented veggie dish, kimchi. One gallon of napa cabbage, bok choy, green onions, daikon radish, carrots, Asian pear, Fuji apple, Mandarin orange, and lemon. This is an unusual mix designed by a Korean woman to appeal to western tastes. The paste contains coarse ground red pepper, crushed garlic, sesame seeds, sesame oil, and I put in some of the persimmon paste I ground last week. I ferment it using Kosher salt.
Kimchi stinks up the house when you’re making it- fermenting cabbage does that – but I ripen it on the back porch. You can also eat it fresh, too. Right now, after all the prep work and mixing everything together, my back muscles are so burning, but the end result is one of the healthiest dishes you can eat. It’s especially good in the winter season when people are passing around colds and the flu. The capsaicin in the red pepper will kill any virus or bad bacteria around, the full vitamins from the veggies remain because nothing is cooked away, and you can drink the veggie juice for sore throats. It is one of the best probiotics you can eat and keeps for months. Kimchi is meant to be eaten with rice and other side dishes. If you eat it plain, you might breathe out flames.
I always thank God for giving me the strength to make something this labor intensive. There was a time when I couldn’t. Also, to know about and be able to eat such healthy food.
I do a little spiritual reading every day. Recently I’ve taken up True Devotion to Mary again. It’s always good to review this book if you’ve made your consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. I find new things every time I read it, and always appreciate the Blessed Mother more. At our parish many people renew their consecration every year using the prayer in the book.
I suppose one could consider reading the meditations in Divine Intimacy as spiritual reading, but to me they are a bit more. Today’s meditations by Father Gabriel on apostolic charity seem well suited to this Year of Faith and the “New Evangelization” in that it dwells on being a good apostle.
In raising man to the supernatural plane, God did not intend to destroy in him what had already been created, but only to sublimate and to elevate it. In the light of these principles, we understand why it has been said that the apostle, as well as the priest, must be a “perfect gentleman” (Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman).
We also grasp why the saints are the more perfect men, in the sense that they have carried the natural virtues to their highest perfection and sublimation. It follows that the saints are more capable than others of surrounding men with amiability, delicacy, and understanding, while loving them with a purely supernatural love; thus they more easily win their hearts. This perfect courtesy, ever self-possessed, even with the importunate and even in moments of weariness, can only flow from the great supernatural virtue and delicate charity.
I can’t help but think of St. Francis de Sales and St. Philip Neri here, as well as St. Frances Cabrini, and the new saint to be raised to the altars tomorrow, St. Marianne Cope. I think of the word “classy” because they conducted themselves with grace and dignity. One trait that would make us all better apostles and witnesses to Christ is the ability to listen well to others, giving them our undivided attention, not interrupting, and communicating through this skill that the one speaking is at that moment the most important person in the world. Doing this requires great self mastery.
Father Gabriel writes:
Grant, O Lord, that in consecrating myself to Your service, my tenderness toward my neighbor may not diminish, but may grow in my heart, and may become ever more pure, more supernatural. Teach me to love tenderly all who draw near to me. Make me gentle, affable, agreeable, not to attract to myself the affection of creatures, but to conquer their hearts for You.
O Jesus, if the apostle should be a copy of You, not only in broad lines, but even in details, how shall I be such if I do not try to imitate the gentleness of Your heart? O Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like unto Yours.
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