Christians often read the Bible and then look around at the world and think the end times are near. I don’t want to say whether that’s true or not, but I do want to say that either way it’s important to have hope for the future. Here’s why.
The answer: This is very similar to why we should have trust. We should have hope for the future because no matter what happens we must have faith that we’re heading in the right direction. Of course, if you know your life isn’t going the right way because it’s your own fault, then still, indeed, by having hope for the future you can muster the courage needed from inside to mark your wrongs and start heading in the right way. Without hope for the future, it’s very hard to set and accomplish long-term goals.
Even if we only have 15 years left on Earth, for example, we should continue to live everyday as if we expect the Earth to rotate around the sun for millions of more years.
This is my message for you today. Enjoy your time here while we can and have hope!
“Clean a car once, and it’ll be clean for a while. Keep a car clean and it will always shine.“
Today I want to relay something I learned after having a long and interesting discussion with a fellow brother in Christ. This discussion is something I wish I had had when I was younger. It might be the very thing you need to hear today to maintain your faith and keep your chin up during these hard times.
Even if we knew for certain that the world was going to end tomorrow, we should still be strong and clean of sins and vices today. I was talking with one of the best car wash experts in Canada who is a fellow Christian and he helped me make a lovely metaphor for understanding why it’s important to shine brightly in the world and how to do it. Now let me relay what I heard to you, put it in the best words I can.
What I Learned About Shining Brightly from Auto Detailing Halifax
To clean an old car and make it look new again isn’t easy. A quick car wash every once in a while, on the other hand, is very easy. That’s why a quick car wash isn’t sufficient. Just like how a man must be baptized to be clean of his sins, a car must be detailed professionally by a car wash expert. This is a great metaphor for understating the the saintly virtue of shining brightly. When we rebuilt our blog in January, we told you to stay tuned for posts about car cleaning. Now, we’re hear in a why I didn’t even expect, and we’re excited to be because understanding what we’re saying here today is a key many people might need to become the shining light in this dark world that they’re meant to be.
To begin helping you understand, let us make 5 easy comparisons between car cleaning and shining brightly for the Lord.
An old car freshly washed is like an old sinner freshly baptized.
A car that just had professional engine detailing runs better, just like a man who just went to church behaves better.
A car that has just been detailed shines brighter in the world, just like how a man with faith in Christ shines brighter in the face of tribulation.
An automobile that has just had interior auto detailing service is nicer to be in, just like how a man who has just spent time reading the Bible is nicer to be around.
When we want to be cleaned and shine brightly, we must ask the Lord for guidance and help. And when we want our vehicle to be cleaned sufficiently, we must ask a local professional auto detailing company for service.
I don’t believe it’s a coincidence that this makes such a good metaphor. Christ’s flock often work humble jobs. When talking to a fellow brother who cleans cars for a living, I had this revelation. I listened to him as he described how he used a steam cleaner for interior car detailing and I thought of how monks use a censor for the inside of a tabernacle. When he talked about headlight restoration I thought of Moses shining brightly on the top of the mountain. Most minds don’t work this way, thinking in terms of metaphors and symbolism, but the Bible is full of it. The hundreds of short stories embedded in the Bible are all full of symbols and metaphors to help us better understand how to live a virtuous life in the eyes of the Lord.
Just like how Saint Francis was able to look at wild animals and learn lessons about life in general, for some reason I was able to look at the car wash industry and see metaphors for shining brightly and what that means for a human on Earth. Indeed, just like how a saint makes men shine brighter throughout the world with his sermons, a company like Auto Detailing Halifax makes cars shine brighter throughout the world with its services. So then what should we do if we want to shine more brightly with the saintly virtues? If we look at it in the terms I’ve been describing here and use the car wash metaphor to understand shining brightly, we can look at what a car cleaner does to a car to make it shine and compare it to what we have to do to make ourselves shine brighter.
There’s a lot more to discuss in this vein, but I’ll leave it here for now. Think about this for a little while, and stay tuned for my next post will expound even further.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions like “how will I get through this?” and “why is this happening to me?” and my answer is always the same. Before I get to that answer, let me talk about what trust really means to a Catholic.
Trust isn’t a financial term or a something you put faith in. Trust is when you don’t need faith because you just know. When I put trust into something, knowing all will work out for the betterment of the best thing possible, I simply know all will be fine because I know God knows what’s best even if I can’t understand it.
Now, to answer those questions above, it’s always the same. Just trust in God. Everything that might seem bad often becomes the best thing that ever happened to you in hindsight. So, just remember, when you’re uncertain what’s going to happen next, uncertain whether everything will be okay, just put trust in God, stay calm and I promise you all will be fine.
Our dear friend Larry hasn’t been with us for several years now. He passed away in December of 2017, after several decades of serving the community of Kingston Ontario with appliance repair services. I’ve found myself thinking about him more often as time goes by, mainly because he taught me so much of what I know about fixing appliances. More importantly, he taught me a saintly virtue which I will get to in a moment here. Before I plan a trip to visit his tombstone with some dear friends who also knew him, I wanted to make this memorial post in his honor.
Larry was a good man and I know he’s in Heaven now. But, I miss him. More than ever I wish he was still here, because I feel there is still some things he could teach me at this point in my life. I always looked up to Larry. Not only was his skill as an appliance repairman out of this world, but his character and personality was a great example of what a good Catholic should be. Today, in remembering this great man, I want to cover one of the saintly virtues he had that I still struggle with. Whenever I think of this virtue, I think of Larry.
What was Larry’s best virtue? The answer: compassion.
I like to think of myself as virtuous, but remembering Larry always reminds me there’s always more room for compassion in the world. With all the political divides and religious opinions that fracture the world apart, I find it hard to feel compassion towards certain people sometimes. I won’t say who, but there’s certain groups of people I strongly disagree with when it comes to politics and they drive me crazy sometimes. When I get too worked up, remembering Larry always helps.
Larry’s compassion was unbelievably sound. He cared for everyone no matter if they were liberal or conservative. He loved all people, the way Saint Francis did. He was a true example of a holy man, and in my mind he is a saint. I remember when the appliance repair company he worked for went out of business, and he had to find work elsewhere. The company’s owners screwed him out of a pension and most people would’ve exploded from rage but not Larry. He stayed cool and knew it was part of God’s plan. Not only that, he showed his old boss compassion and continued to be kind to him whenever he got the chance. That blew me away to see.
Then, much later in life, Larry began work with a newer company at www.appliancerepairkingston.com soon before cancer crept up on him. Even while working with a team of youngsters and dealing with cancer, Larry kept a warm heart and showed the world compassion. I’ll never forget the peace in his eyes when I visited him on his deathbed. He was only working for this new company for a few months before the doctors said he didn’t have much time left. I spent his last day sitting by his side, as did most of his friends and family.
Larry was dearly loved and still is. In fact, I think it’s not wrong to say he’s even more loved now than he was when he was alive, because there’s something about looking back in time that allows you to be grateful for all the little things you took for granted.
So RIP, Larry. You’re legacy lives on in all our hearts!
Thanks for reading this memorial post. If for any reason you wish to contact us, feel free to do so.
Here, unlike among other people, we don’t consider the Bible or the Vita of Saint Francis to be fantasy books. When we read about the adventures of Jesus or the deeds of Saint Francis we take in these stories as truth. But, then again, we also believe in the importance of fantasy among children, and that’s what we want to talk about today.
To begin, let’s share 5 simple things a good coming of age fantasy novel can do for a child who reads it:
5 Benefits of Reading Coming of Age Fantasy Books for Children
A child, by reading any book let alone fantasy, can expand their vocabulary.
A child, by reading coming of age fantasy novels specifically, can learn more about the struggles of growing up and becoming an adult.
A child, by reading about good versus evil in fantasy books, can see why it’s important to be on the “good side.”
A child, when they pick up a book of any kind and get involved in the story, is building the habit of reading which many adults lack and which can benefit them for the rest of their lives if they continue to read when they’re older, even if it’s epic fantasy books.
Last but not least, if a child finds a coming of age fantasy author they adore, like many fans do for J.K. Rowling and other authors who write books similar to Harry Potter, and the work of this author inspired them enough, then readers might turn into writers and people who learn how to write at an early age can benefit all of society.
These are five simple benefits of children reading fantasy, but why have we decided to talk about this today? We have a case study, as a dear friend of ours has a son, Thomas, who has fallen in love with coming of age fantasy books and audio books written by Sever Bronny, and we’ve seen how this has had a great, positive impact on this child’s life.
We call him a child, but Thomas is 15-years-old now. When he was 14-years-old, we’d never catch him reading a book let alone developing his own education voluntarily. Thomas has always struggled with reading in school, mostly because he just never liked reading. But now that he loves reading thanks to his favorite completed fantasy series, Thomas has been using bigger words in his speaking, has been more creative in general and is now reading on average more words per day than his parents! We have no doubt that because Thomas has discovered a love for reading at such an early age thanks to the kind of books similar to Harry Potter that he enjoys, he will grow up to become a lot more intelligent and eloquent than he would have otherwise.
Even though most fantasy books reveal dark aspects of human nature that are not always best for children to explore, we support children reading them because the Bible also reveals these dark truths and we believe it’s beneficial for children to learn about the struggle between good and evil as early in life as possible. After all, even our happiest fairy tales for toddlers reveal the truths of good against evil and this is supposed to help the development of their intellectual growth. So we praise Thomas for reading coming of age fantasy books and are now asking any parents who read this to consider picking up a good book for their children.
Lately there has been nothing more pleasing then seeing the excited look on Thomas’ face when he has a new coming of age fantasy book in his hand. He’s already read more books than I had by the time I was 20-years-old and I’m very proud of him. So thank you for reading this and I’m glad we got to share the power of reading these books for everyone!
Today’s blog post is all about why staying calm is important and what you can do to stay calm. Certainly, we believe calmness is a saintly virtue. What do we mean by “saintly virtue”? We mean that calmness is a virtue that the medieval saints would hold dear. It’s a virtue many sinners lack and one that can bless your life.
In today’s frustrations of day to day life, staying calm can keep one ready for the unexpected in unexpected ways. For instance, if you were calm during a terrorist attack, you have an advantage over the terrorists and can reason your way to safety without panicking. Panic in emotionally stressed situations is like an instinct, put can be overpowered with awareness.
How can you stay calm? Of course, praying to God and to god through Christ or Saint Francis is one cure that we recommend, but there’s another one you might not expect from us. Meditation is part of many Eastern traditions, but I’ve been experimenting with it for years now and find that it works in a Western Christian context quite well. The Bible describes prayer as if it were a form of meditation and so I find it helpful to think of it that way. If you’re not calm, try praying in a way that calms you via by meditating. There are many good guides online on how to meditate successfully and that’s one thing to try.
I hope it works for you. Remember, as God’s children it is important for us to remain calm at all times for the sake of those who can’t. And I know you have the power to do so!
I will not speak the name of the virus that is causing so much trouble around the world this month of March, 2020. Speaking it’s name gives it power. That’s the power of names, and the name Francis of Assisi has a lot of power for me. Before I make this a religious squabble, realize that I am speaking metaphorically. But I do believe hoarding is a temptation that is unnecessary. Say that even if all grocery stores shut down at once in your city, your hoard, however great it is, isn’t going to last forever! For me, Saint Francis is the patron saint of moderation and he is the perfect saint to pray to if you have temptations to hoard. If you don’t have temptations, then the best you can do is share this message with people you know who do. And for all of us I say this because CNN has articles about people hoarding toilet paper.
I bore witness to the hoarding that’s going on around the world when I went to my local grocery store yesterday. We were limited to only being aloud to buy one bag of toilet paper. All the chicken and pasta was out of stock, so was all the bread! I bet people are stuffing the bread in their freezers, planning to eat it all at once if electricity goes out. It was kind of comedic for me because I was only buying what I needed for the day, knowing the Lord would watch over me if I was in want of food.
But that’s just the crust of my message. My real message is that praying to Saint Francis, I testify, works as a cure for temptations to hoard. I know this because it happened to me. Let me explain my story.
You may not know this but I’ve been in Calgary for a week helping out a friend who owns a business here. While I’m here, I take on a few jobs that my friend’s technician is too busy to do because I might as well if I have the time. So yesterday I was at a client’s house fixing a fridge. I was talking to the client while working. We were talking about how I was going to help my friend’s Calgary appliance repair business by connecting him with an accountant I knew well in the city. It turned out the accountant didn’t have the time for a new client so together we work every night getting files sorted ourselves. “Soon he won’t need my help anymore and I’ll go home,” is what I said to the client. Then, of course, we started talking about that virus whose name I will not mention.
The conversation didn’t go on for much longer before I realized she was hoarding and I began to talk about Saint Francis. She listened to me well, but kindly said she was an atheist with no offence given. But with that said she did like my message behind why hoarding isn’t necessary during this time of crisis. She realized that her hoard was for ever cursed of being limited, and that instead of worrying and hoarding she should be enjoying her life and being grateful for the beauty of nature, as Saint Francis was.
The client may not have prayed, but my message was a cure for her nonetheless. She agreed to stop hoarding, knowing that her children had already been greatly worried by her behavior. For me, I did pray and my temptations were cured too. I’m grateful to have the wisdom I need to stay calm during a crisis, and for me Saint Francis has a lot to do with that. If you don’t know why I think Saint Francis is the patron saint of moderation then read the post I wrote last Wednesday. Therein, I explain why briefly, but I’ll explain further in the future.
From the words above I hope the message is clear of why hoarding isn’t necessary during this pandemic. If you are suffering from temptations to hoard, please pray to Saint Francis. For many it might seem silly and I’m smart enough to understand why others might even laugh while they do it, but there’s a kind mercy out there in the universe and I bet that by the act of doing this you will also acknowledge the fact that you have a problem, and that’s the first step to stopping. See through the illusion. All that you need will be supplied to you. There’s no need to worry. If you have faith your foot will not catch and slip. Know that you live in a world of abundant nature, and hoarding is unnecessary!
As believers of the faith, “what if” questions can be dangerous. But we think this one is a good one to ask because it strengthens our faith: “What if Saint Francis of Assisi was alive today and worked as an appliance repair technician?”
As imitators of Christ, saints are who they are because they’re known for their righteous deeds and performance of miracles. Many traveled around the Mediterranean world in Late Antiquity expelling demons from the possessed and preaching the Word. Saint Francis, however, is a medieval saint from Italy and wasn’t known to perform that many miracles but rather performed poetry and traveled as an itinerary friar. He made great leaps and bounds in converting people to Christianity as he traveled but more importantly he converted sinful Christians to live a more moderate lifestyle, and many rich and powerful merchants took upon the cord around their waist after being inspired by Francis’ special way of life. Because of his preaching of moderation, he really was the ultimate imitator of Christ, content with little and relying on the benefaction of those he visited for shelter and food.
So if an appliance technician today lived like Saint Francis we might expect him to, rather than repair lavish, modern appliances, preach of how one should be content without such luxuries. “One should, in order to store your treasures in heaven, avoid earthly materials and be content with washing your dishes and drying your clothes by hand,” is what he might say.
This is supposed to sound rhetorical because we believe it’s the truth, and as automotive experts who delve in appliance repair we understand how we could be doing things differently to change the world. But, unlike Christ, appliance technicians can’t be expected to rely on their customers for shelter and food as we travel around fixing appliances with miracles.
We stick to our answer to this question despite our ongoing sins and praise St. Francis for his gift to us in helping us see the errors in our ways. Whenever we can, we strive to include his teachings in our services, being humble and content with providing our appliance repair and mechanic services for as little cost as possible.
We wish St. Francis is with you in your prayers. As an appliance mechanic who does his work with peace in mind, I pray to the Saint of Moderation daily. From Benedict, Maryland to all parts of North America, lectures on the wisdom of St. Francis have been my duty, as I’ve studied his story. In medieval Europe he changed the face of Christianity. Now I change the face of appliance repair services, often wearing a cord around my waste.
If you’re having a hard time, just remember we love you and believe in you. The Catholic Church is here for people who are struggling. Despite all the sin in the world the Church that St. Francis helped to shape is still existent and that itself is a miracle.
With all the love in my heart, I wish you a great day! If you ever need someone to talk to feel free to reach out to us!
Greetings and welcome to the blog that loves St. Francis more than it loves cars, but prefers to blog about cars while keeping St. Francis in mind.
We just want you to stay tuned for now as we work on building our website. Thanks for visiting. If you enjoy humor and gossip about cars alongside the occasional funny short story then you’re in the right place!