My writing

SPIRITUAL WARFARE: Finding Reality In God

December 10, 2017

It was a long battle. Eight years in the fray.  And so many more in recovery. I was very aware that my marriage was an assignment from God.  I even verified that before the wedding took place. As it went on, I found I was being trained: lessons specific for handling what was before me that I rigorously worked to learn and apply. One lesson I was being taught – this was fresh knowledge for me – was about binding a soul.  This binding works to lessen the negative effect that an evil person can have on the world. This was something very new to me. Over the years of the battle I watched as my binding would take effect, then watch some more how, in time, the binding would ease and slip off.  And the rancid behavior, calmed for a time, [...]

GOD 101: The Shape Of Change

November 17, 2017

I have had periods in my life when I feel perfectly comfortable with a concept God has given me to study, but don’t know how to express it in ordinary English language.  It feels, sometimes, as though I think in one language, but speak in another. This is one of those times. If we go to church, or read the Bible to the point of knowing it, or even if we listen to sermons on television, sooner or later we run up against the wall that is God’s final day for us.  The Day of Judgment.  We might also start to wonder why or how there is going to be a “New Heaven” and a “New Earth.” So we might be able to find a kind of theme facing us down: I’m going to come and sort you all out.  Those who pass my [...]

EVIL: Love And Inadequacy

October 23, 2017

A little while ago, during a vision, I happened upon something.  Not intentionally.  Or, at least, I don’t think it was intentionally. I raised my eyebrows at it and decided that I didn’t want to know this. I’m not sure why.  But I decided I wanted to keep it a secret. Even from myself. But last night, not realizing I was on the same path that would lead to the same answer, I happened upon it again. So the secret was officially “out.” Everything that exists has a seen side and an unseen side. Pretty much every minute of the day we are unaware of this. That the good has a tangled side. That the bad have a confused and weak side. That what appears before us and convinces us it is what we see is not, [...]

GOD 101: From His Bookshelf, or, Watch your backs

September 29, 2017

More and more it becomes fascinating to me how old I am.  Both because most serious mystics die young (it is very hard on the body), and because I can sit quietly and trace themes and currents that have been with me all my life. One set of visions I have found mostly annoying, to be honest.  Until very recently. At a very busy point in my mystical adventures I felt a sharp poke in my mystical rib-cage.  Poke.  Sharp.  Repeated. It was the insistence that I stop what I was doing and read a certain book. Which I thought was absurd. Now I have thought God’s instructions ridiculous, even stupid, throughout my life, but this one so astounded me that I reasoned that it proved that my visions my whole life were nothing more than the [...]

HEALING: Crossing The Line

September 9, 2017

My first healing miracle occurred in a public place.  A seminary, in fact. At morning Mass.  During the service.  At the rail. And while the event disturbed me deeply, I was still conscious enough to watch people around me and how they reacted to me now. Now. Now that they knew. I didn’t know I had this ability. But the next second in my life after the touch, they knew. My reaction, of course, as it has been my whole life, was to curl up like a mole somewhere soft and dark and just stay there until the commotion was over. Commotion. We don’t think of that word being attached to God. Mostly we think, Yes, I believe in God, but this morning’s newspaper is a lot more interesting than to think about than God. We [...]

FORGIVENESS: Turning The Tables—Do We Forgive the Father of the Prodigal?

August 27, 2017

Let’s face it, the Father of the Prodigal Son comes off as some kind of superhuman hero. God the Father, to be specific. I like to spend time in that low, quiet quarter of my soul that sort of rumbles about looking for meaning and connection with the rest of the world. And it interests me when I feel the wind with the same kind of whisper on it blowing by me. A mumble here, a shrug there. It is there in the world: the grumbling against the mighty spirituality of God. I know it’s in me.  Grumbling about the vast difference between the absolute that is God and my hunger pangs which are relative. Relative to me. They relate to me.  And my stomach. And in those moments, I really don’t care about God’s absolute need to [...]

GOD 101: On Belief, or Finally Managing to Get Our Shoes on the Right Feet

August 7, 2017

I have a suggestion. Before you read this, put a big, brown paper bag over your head. That way, when your head explodes from reading this, it won’t make such a mess. That someone else will have to clean up. Just trying to think of others. That’s all. Right. Ready? So, here goes. This Essay Is On Your Belief In God. Want to know what the truth is about Your Belief In God? Do you think it matters that You Believe In God? Well, if you do think this, You Are Wrong. It really doesn’t matter if you believe in God or not. What matters is if God believes in you. Take a moment. Walk around the block if you have to. I understand – really I do – Just How Important Your Belief In Your Belief In God Is To You. Really. I do. Before [...]

THE MECHANICS OF PRAYER: Praying For Someone With No Knees

July 22, 2017

Lately, there is something that I have been forced to sit quietly and consider: the act of praying for someone who doesn’t pray for themselves. On the surface it’s a no-brainer.  Someone is in need of God’s grace and mercy, and so we pray for him.  No matter what the need. No matter the person’s relationship with God. We pray. Right? Right.  That’s what we do. But what exactly are we doing when we do that?  Get down on our knees.  Find the words we are looking for.  Make our petition. Again and again and again. For a person who has no knees of their own. No faith. No belief in any power other than themselves. That shouldn’t matter to us, should it? Perhaps it’s not a matter of matter. Perhaps [...]

PAIN: My Father’s Back

July 2, 2017

In the chaotic swirl that has been my last few weeks, I planned to categorize this essay with something a bit less direct.  Something more acceptable. But I always came back to PAIN.  I didn’t want to be so stark in identifying what this was about, but, in the end, there was no way around it. It’s about pain. The conflict with being in pain and being a person of God is that as we turn our lives over to God, we want the pain in our lives to be explained away somehow.  In that great promise that we call God’s love.  God’s love for us.  Individually. God loves us.  My pain is somehow part of that love. Somehow. So as I work on the tapestry that is the picture of my conception – the tangle in the bathtub between [...]

HEALING: Finding Glory In Our Torment

June 2, 2017

I am not a grey-haired someone who sits back and is impressed by how well I have surmounted the very hairy challenges in my life. Instead, I am a grey-haired somebody who walks about being very impressed by how I have managed to survive God all my life. I have these periods when God taps me on the shoulder and whispers, Julia, got a minute?  Let’s heal something in you. As do other people, I realize. Each and every time I go through a let’s-get-healed period I think, Ah, ha.  This is it.  I’ve gotten to the bottom of it all at last! But, no. Not only do these very real spiritual strippings occur on a regular basis. They get worse every time. The pain is more profound.  The discovery more exacting and excruciating. And [...]

GOD 101: The Punishment Of God!, or not

May 28, 2017

This is a long life that we live.  Day in and day out. And given that we come here having been given not so much as a clue as to which end is up in terms of God and man, it’s a wonder we get through to the end at all. And not just combust spontaneously somewhere in the middle. From frustration. So why are we here again today? Well, it’s this frustration I have with people’s notions about God and his seemingly endless (well, he is eternal now, isn’t he) desire to Get Back At Us. When I listen to some people I get this picture of God, with his clipboards and dictates, taking it all down.  Looking it over.  Coming to an Ah Ha! about us. It brings to mind the question, Does God have a separate department for [...]

VIRTUES: The Tunings Of Faith

May 21, 2017

The word, faith, is said a lot. At least in my world. But almost every time it is named, it is done in its own unique way. Have faith. Have faith in me. Have faith in God. Your faith can move mountains. Your faith can set you free. Your faith will be rewarded. Your faith has made you well. We live by faith. Walk in faith. And so on and on and on. But the one phrase that has me truly confounded is: Faith is a gift. Period. Just the statement.  No explanation. Faith is a gift. It might be mentioned that it is given to us by God. So what is the deal exactly?  God is sitting around one day and looks down at me and thinks to himself, That’s it!  I’ll give Julia some faith! Does it come wrapped? Do I find it under my pillow when I [...]

EVIL: The Distinction Between Bondage And Marriage

May 5, 2017

I am a mystic. As such I approach the world as a place where the people in it are those who are in need of healing. Let’s face it, we are all in need of healing all the time. At least that’s what I thought until very recently. As a mystic, I really don’t have a mind for absolute forms of humanity.  I work with the relative.  People are like puzzles to me.  And I work to put the pieces together in a way that the person can function better in life.  Feel better about themselves.  Feel better about God, and their relationship with him. When humanity becomes a wall, an unmovable object, then I am challenged. And while I like challenges generally, I prefer them to be in the realm of healing. Healing: the art of picking up [...]

THE MECHANICS OF PRAYER: The Worst Prayer

April 28, 2017

She sat there at the table.  One hand covering a part of the other. Her sweetness so profound it creates its own kind of beauty. I want you to pray for a member of my family. I scrabble for my pen and the piece of paper I use in that setting to list those who will go on my general intercessory prayer list. I write the name down. Then, while she is still talking about this prayer of ours, just assigned, she straightens her spine.  And becomes The Brave Girl. Now we know that nothing can be done for him. I stand and watch her until she is finished, then go on with my day. Later, when I get home, I get out my intercessory prayer “notebook.” It’s this large, hard notebook that has massive rings.  When my daughter went to [...]

SOUL STRUCTURE: Islam, ISIS, And The Confusion That Lies Therein

April 21, 2017

This is not going to go well. That’s my prediction anyway. But I hereby restate my primary assertion about spiritual warfare: If you don’t know what you are dealing with, you don’t know how to address the problem. It’s as simple as that. A doctor is going to be much more effective with his patient if he already knows both what the disease is and what the best methods are to treat it. Otherwise he is swinging about in the dark. Which pretty much sums my opinion of most writing about spiritual warfare. In my humble opinion. Well, maybe not so humble. So let’s begin. I began studying the Muslim soul structure around about the time that Princess Diana died.  I remember this because I found the soul-structure [...]

SACRIFICE: Moses — Painting By Numbers

April 6, 2017

Lent is all about taking steps.  One after the other. Lent is only about taking steps. He leads.  We follow. Until we come to the edge.  Then he falls.  And we stay right where we are. And at that moment it is not just our souls and our hearts that are plunged into darkness. Not just our altars and our churches. But it is the world, even the universe that no longer has his light to see by. I write these posts because I am tired of living a life of clenching my fists hard and biting my lip whenever I hear someone say that Jesus Died For Me with the same kind of enthusiasm he might use if he just won a car on a game show. Gosh!  Isn’t it great!  Look at what he did for me! No. Just, no. Like Noah’s raven, Jesus was sent to [...]

SACRIFICE: The Burden Abraham Bore

March 16, 2017

The title may have the name, Abraham, in it, but this ultimately is about Jesus Christ.  And the characteristics that make up the concept of his sacrifice when he went to his death. People claim, too loudly sometimes, that Jesus died FOR US!  Without any real explanation of how that dying-for-us concept really works. The first part of this series focused on Jesus’s plea for mercy for those who accused him falsely.  By doing this two things happened: (1) Jesus came down off the cross, turned and faced God, and plead for us to be forgiven.  To do this, Jesus used his authority as the son of God to intercede for us.  To be honest, though, God is the one who can choose to forgive us or not.  Mercy is a choice that the one in [...]

SACRIFICE: The Raven’s Fate

March 2, 2017

And it came to pass at the end of forty days, that Noah opened the window of the ark which he had made: And he sent forth a raven, which went forth to and fro, until the waters were dried up from off the earth. Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground; But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole Earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark. And he stayed yet other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark; And the dove came in to him in the evening; and, lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf pluckt off: so Noah knew that the [...]

FORGIVENESS: The Nine Lepers

February 23, 2017

The wounding and healing of a person is an interesting process. The truth about the priest on whom I am focusing my forgiveness process – a stand-in for the line of priests in my life who have shunned me – is that what he did to me, at that time, bothered me no more than a mosquito bite.  Because the rest of my life was complete chaos. That day, and for so many thereafter, I didn’t have the time, the energy, or the interest to even think about what that priest said. Or did. So the pain was efficiently stored away. It was a shock to me, then, when God said at the beginning of this last Advent, It’s time to heal your priest-wounds. My first reaction was, What priest-wounds? And then, there they were. Spread out, like [...]

FORGIVENESS: Humility, or The Tale of Two Shawls

February 18, 2017

I have been studying what I thought was a “new” form of evil.  New to me, that is. Turns out, though, I studied it for years when I was half my age. Because it was only a study back then, and because the study was very intense, it left some terror in my soul. I’m very efficient about my emotions: if I don’t need them right here, right now for whatever it is I am doing, then they get stowed away. This terror had been stowed away – very much out of sight, out of mind – until the door was flung open and there it was. And here this study is again now. But what I realized was that when I had studied this particular form of evil, I had never come up with the understanding of what kind of spiritual weapon would be [...]

JESUS: In That Moment Right Before

February 5, 2017

I would say that, most of the time, when I hear scripture read, or read it for myself, it feels like the wind to me.  Something blowing by me.  I recognize the elements that are in the wind, but it is something that is beyond me in terms of capturing it.  Or even being part of it. From time-to-time, some of it makes me wrench my neck around in an attempt to seize it.  Some combination of words that are just that tantalizing as to make me want to scrutinize them. Then there are those astounding times when I hear or read words that I have received in a vision.  Sometimes the words are exactly the same.  And a cathedral-sized bell rings inside me.  It is a confirmation of accuracy.  I know that my vision was from God.  Those are, as [...]

TALES FROM BEYOND THE HORIZON: A Child In The Light And Shadow Of God

January 22, 2017

I like straight corners. If I am standing at the counter of a bank, I stand there straightening the piles of various forms. I wonder if people wonder at what I am doing. But I do it nonetheless. And the other day I found myself wanting to straighten the corners of my spirituality.  Specifically my relationship with the rest of the world that I live in. This is because I go through life feeling like I run into skewed corners all the time, all over the place, but do nothing about it. One place it shows up is around the phrase, When I came to Jesus.  It’s like a club of people.  And when that phrase is uttered, they grin at each other. Like new mothers who have discovered that they will not kill their first child from neglect.  I [...]

SPIRITUAL WARFARE: A Rant

January 15, 2017

I am angry.  Very angry. Well, at least I was. I came to a boil when I read the words that generally said in an article on deliverance that fighting Satan is no harder than taking out the garbage. That it’s merely something you might not want to do, but it’s your responsibility, so go for it. Oh, and there’s nothing to be afraid of.  Because you know, Jesus something or other. The man who was nailed to a cross to bleed to death because of evil has your back. You know. So forget about it. On the evening of the day that I read this – I won’t stoop to calling it nonsense – I heard the same statement made in a lecture. It must be in the air. Nothing frightening about Satan.  Oh, no.  He’s a peach.  A [...]

TALES FROM BEYOND THE HORIZON: Tell Lazarus, Arise

October 30, 2016

It was a time of flight. I used to define flight as a time when I had one foot in the seen world and the other in the unseen world. But recalling this time I think that it would be better defined as having both feet in the unseen world, while still being in this world. This flight was most profound.  So much so, that for the two years that it went on, I never needed my reading glasses to see. I thought, at the time, that this was an indication that I had received a healing to my eyes. But, no.  Over the years that followed the flight, my eyes gradually went back to being “normal.” My first miracle was when I touched the hand of a woman born deaf, and she was healed. And now I was beginning work on my second. When it was time, [...]

SPIRITUAL WARFARE: Critical Conditions

October 14, 2016

I had the grace a few weeks ago of being introduced to an agency that works to save slaves around the world.  That’s not the only work that this agency does.  They help women whose families try to seize their land after the death of their husbands.  They stop sex traffickers. And after they save the people from violence, they provide them with safe houses where they can heal from all their wounds. So faced with being asked to pray for the International Justice Mission, I looked at my schedule, scratched my head, and wondered where I would “fit” them in.  And I saw that I could rearrange my noon prayers to make room.  Normally, I would read the noonday prayers, supplemented with a little “outside” reading, [...]

SPIRITUAL WARFARE: The Need For Clean

October 8, 2016

Or Orthodoxy. In the church. This is a true story.  That I watched happened.  Up-close and personal, as they say. It’s the story of a church that was beset. The head of this church thought what was besetting it was church warfare. But it wasn’t. Because this particular church was actually at war with itself. And it lost the battle.  With itself. Let me explain. For every person who has ever walked this Earth, there is a soul.  A distinct soul.  A soul with its own song.  Its own point-of-view.  Its own way of seeing God.  Or not seeing God. Now souls of a certain kind tend to flock together.  It’s why there are different religions. Each are always much, much better than the others. Period. This is the only area [...]

HUMANITY: A Plain Jesus

September 30, 2016

From the time we can toddle around on our own we are taught that Jesus is two things: he is God, and he is man. Sometimes, because of the way he died, we are profoundly confused about just how and why he is God.  If he’s God, why can’t he just wave his finger and make his nightmare go away? But the whole, we’re going to hunt you down and kill you, aspect of his life will have to wait to be explored. Instead, I want to look at the phenomena that is Jesus, the man. Alexander Pope once wrote, To err is human.  To forgive is divine. Just with that little idiom we can see that perhaps understanding Jesus as God isn’t that impossible after all. He forgave us. He forgave us our sins. While nailed to a cross. Well, [...]

CANA: Chain Of Command

September 9, 2016

It is the story from the Bible for which I have the strongest reaction. The kind of story that makes me look around in church and wonder why people are nodding their heads at it. This story, the story of the Wedding at Cana, makes me want to crawl under the pew, or just get up and walk out. But it wasn’t until last Sunday when I heard a priest speaking from the pulpit and, having once been in the military, spoke about his subject at hand from the reference point of a chain-of-command, that things began to fall into place for me. He also spoke of orders that come from outside the chain of command. This week, as I mulled this whole story over, along with my lifelong reaction to it, I began to break it down into parts. And, oh how many [...]

SPIRITUAL WARFARE: Lucifer—Soulless Evil

August 19, 2016

I’ve always thought of myself as the weirdest person on Earth. One of the reasons for that is how, when I began the study of evil from its soul-structure point-of-view, one of the first things I wondered was, If evil has to do with the soul, and Lucifer doesn’t have a soul because he’s an angel, is he really evil?  And if he is, what kind of evil is it? This question has been like a slowly drip of water at the very back of my brain ever since. In fact, whenever faced with another lesson on evil, I wondered where Lucifer was. Reading about Lucifer never helped me. Pride. Fall. Battle. Hell. Is one who battles God by definition evil? Isn’t evil something that affects human on Earth? If evil is only in the realm of [...]

HEALING: Singing The Soul

August 5, 2016

The world says that I am wrong about this. But I know I’m not. In the world of Earth there are people without souls. It’s not that impossible. There are people without legs. People without eyes. I even heard of a baby born without a brain. And there are people without anger. Or emotion altogether. So it is not, if you think about it, impossible that there are people without souls. But the world, in general, is very protective about this concept. Everyone must have one, because everyone, inherently, is good.  And in order to be good, you have to have a soul. Ergo. But not everyone has a soul. Not everyone is inherently good. Because if you don’t have a soul, you have little ability to be good. The soul is your path in [...]