Nov 7, 2007

Shakedown and Shake Up

One recent late afternoon while looking at TV weather, a commercial interruption caused me to scan other channels, one of which was in the middle of an Oprah Winfry interview of Dr. Alvin Poussaint and Dr. Bill Cosby (yes, he has an earned doctorate). I've always liked Bill Cosby and he and Dr. Poussaint were being asked about a controversial feature of their recent book, Come On, People: On the Path from Victims to Victors--a home shakedown.

In a later Meet the Press interview with Tim Russert, Cosby and Poussaint expanded on how to protect black children from drugs, guns, and other modern evils. I was intrigued about the recommendation of random parental room "shakedowns" for both black and white children. See this clip of Cosby's discussion.

Did I ever thoroughly go through my childrens' rooms while they were growing up over 20 years ago? No, but my husband and I would probably perform an occasional shakedown today, especially if we saw unwelcome behavioral changes in the child. If we saw a gun, evidence of drug use, pornography, signs of immoral behavior, etc., then we could not avoid confronting this evil in our home.

Our first goal would be to "shake up" the child (yes, he is always my child and I will always want to protect him from being injured or killed--either spiritually or physically). He (or she) would be told in clear and forceful words that no material of a wicked nature is ever allowed in our home that is consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. And the bad material would be publicly destroyed in front of the young person to clarify we meant business! Obviously, this would be only the first step--but this action is where we would have to start.

Christian Modesty

Christian modesty usually seems to refer to dressing decently and avoiding arousing the sexual instinct, unless married. Another form of Christian modesty is likely even more important and deals with hiding our gifts so that not even the right arm knows what the left arm is doing.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend told me about some of the wonderful things she does for others. Later she sent me this email explaining that she should have been silent about her good works, and also quoted a recent email she herself had received from a second friend.

I received the below email from a dear friend. It was most certainly meant for me to hear because when we were talking several nights ago I errored in revealing that I had helped other people when i should have kept it to myself. Her thoughts reflect mine, she just states it so beautifully. The woman who wrote converted to the Catholic Faith at Easter, 2007. She has a depth of holiness that is exceptional.
Signed: FRIEND


I want to apologize to you for having told you yesterday about giving out those prayer books to Fr. X’s laity……first of all, it wasn’t right for me to tell anyone about what I’m doing, because by doing that, I am seeking praise from others, which doesn’t belong to me. It belongs solely to God. I should only be concerned with pleasing God and I should keep things like that secret from everyone else. The second thing I want to apologize for is that I didn’t give glory to God when I told you about this yesterday…..He’s the one who’s blessing the laity; He’s just using me as an instrument to distribute the books, that’s all. I’m ashamed for having taking God’s glory of goodness away from Him yesterday. I know better than that.

I want you to also know that I’m not writing this letter to seek any more praise, but to let you know that I feel bad for what I did. Please accept my apology.