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The 'Holy Scrub Down'

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EDITOR'S NOTE: What's it like to devote your life to God? In this story, Br. Giuseppe Mignano, a Marian seminarian, shares an excerpt from his journal, a slice of life from someone walking "the narrow path."

By Br. Giuseppe Mignano, Mic

"I have a wooden beam in my eye."

Today, I was blessed with spiritual direction. It has been about a month since I've been to my spiritual director, and lately I've been feeling the spiritual tug to go see him. After meeting with him, I made my confession. As a penance, he told me to pray to God for guidance and then open the Bible and read. Wherever it says "you or thou," I was to add my name, Giuseppe.

After I got back to the house, I prayed the Rosary and evening prayer with the community, then Br. Kenny and I went to Christ the King Chapel at Franciscan University for an hour of adoration. It was absolutely amazing. A big turn out of students came to pray and worship.

We then went to Holy Rosary Catholic Church for another hour of adoration. When I got into the chapel at Holy Rosary, I found myself complaining to God about things that have been weighing on me. I've reviewed conversations that I've had with loved ones and how I have been selfish. I have been lacking in prudence, and the Lord showed me that tonight. After I stopped complaining, I remembered what my spiritual director told me. I prayed, then opened the Bible, put my name next to "you," and this is what I read:

Luke 6:37, 39, and 42: "Stop judging and, Giuseppe, you will not be judged. Stop condemning and, Giuseppe, you will not be condemned. Forgive and, Giuseppe, you will be forgiven. Can a blind person guide a blind person? Will not both fall into a pit? How can you, Giuseppe, say to your brother, 'Let me remove that splinter in your eye,' when you, Giuseppe, do not even notice the wooden beam in your own eye? Giuseppe, you hypocrite! Remove the wooden beam from your eye first, and then you will see clearly to remove the splinter in your brother's eye."

I wanted to cry. I felt like I just received a holy smack down! I knew exactly what He was talking about. I am a sinner, but I have to strive for holiness. I have to detach from all pointless conversations that lead to sin through gossip or disappointment in others. I have to give everybody the benefit of the doubt. I feel like I am in the Lord's hands, and He's scrubbing my soul with an iron bristle. It's difficult, but I need it. Please keep me in your prayers.

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Be a part of the discussion. Add a comment now!

A fellow sinner - Feb 18, 2012

The Lord has brought me face to face with the bitter reality of my sinfulness many a time; how fortunate are we that our God is a God of Truth and Mercy! Stand strong in the Lord, that none may unseat you. May you forever remain enfolded in the loving mantle of Our Lady, and may God's Mercy sustain you. I've not ceased praying for you.

Lois Ann Lachtara - Feb 20, 2012

It has been my experience in my own spiritual journey that every once in while we all need that experience of "pruning." It is a holy and wonderful GIFT to discover that board in your own eye! Yes! It will be painful..however, it is a sure sign of Gods' grace working in your soul. I have learned to accept these things with joy and thanksgiving as it shows me that He is still working within me to make me a reflection of Him. Praise Him and thank Him for His Love and Mercy!! I too, am praying for you. I humbly ask that you pray for me.

Anthony K. - Feb 20, 2012

Humility is a tough virtue to ask for it. Especially because you will surely receive a hearty dose when you request it.

JoAnn - Feb 23, 2012

Dear Br. Giuseppe. I didn't have a spiritual director to tell me what yours did. However, God prompted me to read your story today and by doing so I received the message He wanted me to hear, the very passage He directed you to. I thank Him for your humility and honesty and pray that we will both continue to be scrubbed.

jeanie - Feb 23, 2012

How blessed are we that you are so open to His Holy Spirit...thanks for sharing your thoughts and struggles that we all have experienced, but tend to overlook or bury in the busyness of our daily lives...may God continue to bless you and use you to bless others...

Brenda - Feb 25, 2012

Prying for you in walk with the Lord.Praying he shows you his light and his mercy.

Ekenjoku Grant - Mar 10, 2012

Bro.Giussepe,God's love towards us is unending and immeasureable.He forgives us when we go astray and leads us to the right path.please,pray for me,i am an aspirant.