The Petersen Page

Prayer From Underneath The Cross During Lent
February 27, 2008, 8:21 am
Filed under: Devotional

st121.jpgSt. Francis of Assisi”Look down upon me, good and gently Jesus, while before Thy face I humbly kneel; and with burning soul pray and beseech Thee to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, true contrition for my sins and a firm purpose of amendment. While with great love and tender pity I contemplate Thy five wounds, pondering over them within me, calling to mind the words which David, Thy prophet, said of Thee, my Jesus: “They have pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones.”


The Empty Chair
February 22, 2008, 2:46 am
Filed under: Articles, Devotional


A true story from Brennan Manning in the book, “Abba’s Child” Once a woman asked me to come and pray with her father, who was dying of cancer. When I arrived, I found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows and an empty chair beside his bed. I assumed the old fellow had been informed of my visit. “I guess you were expecting me,” I said. “No, who are you?” “I’m the new associate at your parish,” I replied. “When I saw the empty chair, I figured you knew I was going to show up.” “Oh yeah, the chair,” said the bed-ridden man. “Would you mind closing the door?” Puzzled, I shut the door. “I’ve never told anyone this, not even my daughter,” said the man, “but all my life I have never known how to pray. At the Sunday Mass I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it always went right over my head. “I abandoned any attempt at prayer,” he continued, “until one day about four years ago my best friend said to me, ‘Joe, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here’s what I suggest. Sit down on a chair, place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It’s not spooky because He promised, “I’ll be with you all days.” Then just speak to Him and listen in the same way you’re doing with me right now.’ “So, Padre, I tried it, and I like it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I’m careful though. If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she’d send me off to the funny farm.” I was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old guy to continue on the journey. Then I prayed with him, anointed him with oil, and returned to the rectory. Two nights later the daughter called to tell me that her daddy had died that afternoon. “Did he seem to die in peace?” I asked. “Yes. But there was something strange. In fact, beyond strange—kinda weird. Apparently just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on a chair beside his bed.”

The Same Foolish Love That Knew No Limits
February 21, 2008, 6:16 am
Filed under: My Devotionals


Hey everyone-

Im in a hotel in Dallas, and have been reading from 1 Corinthians 11 tonight about “Communion/the Lord’s Supper”.  In this season of Lent i think its important to take the time to stop and reflect on not only the story of what happened to Jesus, but how this single act of selflessness can be imitated in each of our lives daily………as we are on the road, meeting new people, forming new relationships, in the studio, in the writing process, taking care of our families, or in the busyness of our day to day.

Here is a prayer I found that I am going to start praying and thinking on each day as the march towards Easter continues.

I LOVE this line in the prayer…

Let me place my death in Yours 

and my weakness in Your abandonment,Take hold of me with Your love,that same foolish love that knew no limits,and let me offer myself to the Father with You so that I may rise with You to eternal life.”

How lucky we are to be held by a foolish love that knows no limits. 


Catholic Prayers

A Lenten Prayer called the Passion

Dear Lord Jesus, by Your Passion and ResurrectionYou brought life to the world.But the glory of the Resurrectioncame only after the sufferings of the Passion.You laid down Your life willinglyand gave up everything for us.Your body was broken and fastened to a Cross,Your clothing became the prize of soldiers,your blood ebbed slowly but surely away,and Your Mother was entrusted to the beloved disciple.Stretched out on the Cross,deprived of all earthly possessions and human aid, You cried out to Your Father that the end had come.You had accomplished the work given You, and You committed into His hands, as a perfect gift, the little life that remained to You.Lord, teach me to accept all afflictionsafter the example You have given.Let me place my death in Yours and my weakness in Your abandonment,Take hold of me with Your love,that same foolish love that knew no limits,and let me offer myself to the Father with You so that I may rise with You to eternal life.



My Valentine
February 14, 2008, 6:45 pm
Filed under: Quotes

 drummond_1_sm.gif“God, the Eternal God, is Love. Covet therefore that everlasting gift, that one thing which it is certain is going to stand, that one coinage which will be current in the universe when all other coinages of all the nations of the world shall be useless and unhonored.” Henry Drummond

Two Thieves of the Gospel
February 12, 2008, 7:31 pm
Filed under: Quotes


“Just like their are two men crucified on either side of Christ, their are two thieves of the gospel. One is legalism and the other is leniency.” Pastor Tim Keller Redeemer Press (PCA)-New York

The Meaning of Ash Wednesday
February 7, 2008, 3:04 am
Filed under: Articles


The meaning of Ash Wednesday

Friday, March 9, 2001


The essential truth, and gift, of Ash Wednesday is its call to come to terms with ourselves before God. Ash Wednesday says what so much of modern culture denies, namely that we human beings are forever deceiving and justifying ourselves.

For those familiar with Alcoholics Anonymous and other Twelve Step programs, Ash Wednesday is a like a giant, pull-out-all-the stops Step Four. We “made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.”

Ash Wednesday is not only a day for searching self-scrutiny on the part of individuals, but for us as a community of people. What we have most in common as human beings is our sin, our failure to be who we have been made to be and called to be. What we have most in common is our need for mercy.

Of course, a lot of people don’t agree with this. Many think that our problem is insufficient self-esteem. We need to think more highly of ourselves, love ourselves more. Personally, I think we have gone about as far down that road as we can go. I’m in favor of thinking less of ourselves. Oh sure, that too can be overdone. 

On Ash Wednesday, a pretty convincing call to attention was sounded at around 11 a.m. in the Pacific Northwest. When we clambered out from under our desks and door frames, one clear lesson was that we were all in this one together. The earthquake didn’t single out one racial, ethnic, gender, age, economic, ideological or occupational group. No, it was an equal opportunity event. A reminder that we’re all in this together, and that no one gets to point the finger or to distance themselves and say, “That’s about her, not me; about them, not us.”

Over the years I have noticed a university professor who always makes it to Ash Wednesday services every year, even though her Sunday attendance is sporadic. Finally, I asked her, “I see you really make a point of getting to Ash Wednesday. What’s the deal?”

“It’s the one day of the year,” she said, “when we really get it right, when we tell the truth, a truth that’s not told at the university. We’re a mess. We need help. If it’s all up to us, we’re doomed.”

Of course, confession, apology and remorse are possible and make sense only when we believe it is not all up to us.

Come Drunkards! Come Weaklings!
February 4, 2008, 8:42 pm
Filed under: Quotes
Fydor Dostoyevsky caught the shock and scandal of the gospel of grace when he wrote:‘At the last judgement Christ will say to us, “Come, you also! Come drunkards! Come weaklings! Come children of shame!”  And he will say to us: “Vile beings, you who are in the image of the beast and bear his mark, but come all the same, you as well.” And the wise and  prudent will say, “Lord, why do you welcome them?” And he will say: “If I welcome them, you wise men, if I welcome them, you prudent men, it is because not one of them has ever been judged worthy,”  And he will stretch out his arms, and we will fall at his feet and we will cry out sobbing, and then we will understand all, we will understand the Gospel of grace!  Lord, your Kingdom come!”Romans 2:4 Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance?