DAILY HOLY MASS READINGS: Acts 12:1-11,
SOLEMNITY OF STS. PETER & PAUL
My Beloved no plan against those who belong to You will succeed. Those who live lives of debauchery will find after a while that their senses are dulled. They need to constantly find new and more horrific ways to tempt their palates. Evil draws its pleasure from more evil. When Herod decides to persecute the Church he does so because it pleases him but when he finds that the Jews, who did not like him too much, were pleased by his attacks on the Church, he decided to curry favor with them by boldly arresting Peter, Your Vicar on earth. They would soon discover that although God may be silent for a time He is not asleep - in fact He is ever watchful and protective of His own.
When the members of the Church heard of Peter's arrest they all began to pray and we see that when the whole community of God prays it has the ability to release the most awesome power of God. Peter himself was serene. Twenty four guards were appointed to watch over Peter who was so heavily chained it would have been impossible for him to escape even if he tried.
Peter sleeps peacefully that night in fact his sleep is so deep that when God sends His angel to wake him up Peter has to be literally shaken up. Once awake the angel said, "Get up quickly." When we work for the Kingdom there is no time for lolling around or hitting the snooze button and grabbing a few more seconds or minutes of sleep. As soon as we hear the call we have to be awake, alert and ready for action. The angel makes sure that Peter wears his belt, puts on his sandals and wraps himself in his cloak.
It is important to note that while we are alert when we hear the call, we cannot run off in a tangent. We must make sure we have all that we need. We have got to be properly equipped. There is no room for compromise. God gives us the time we need to prepare ourselves while He not only helps us but keeps watch as well. No barrier is unsurmountable with God beside us. No guard, no gate, no wall with no exceptions all give way at His command and open the way for those who work to bring about His Kingdom in the world. God remains with us to strengthen us when we need Him but when we are ready, like any good Father, He lets go and we go ahead in faith believing He is beside us whether we see Him or not. God is always with us
Those who belong to You my Beloved remain safe under the shelter of Your wings all the days of their lives.
My Love, we live in different times from the days of St. Paul and we face different threats and dangers today, but our attitude has to be like his.
Today the world is steeped in immorality. There is a constant denial of Beauty, Truth and Wisdom, and this imperils all human beings and most especially those who seek to walk the narrow way. Those of us who call ourselves, Catholic and Christian have to live as heroically as St. Paul did. Our war is against ourselves and the world. I am called to live a holy life in secret and in public. The way I speak, move, dress, act, laugh,smile, pray, work, think, breathe, sleep and rise must all be under the discipline and control of the Holy Spirit. I must permit Him to will and work in me. I must believe that You are always beside me to strengthen me when I am weak and to encourage me to live a life of holiness both publicly and privately. I am called to live a life of grace boldly only then can I pray Verses 6-8 as confidently as St. Paul did.
"6 As for me, I am already poured out as a libation, and the moment of my departure has come. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8 Now there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness with which the Lord, the just judge, will reward me on that day; and not only me, but all those who have longed for his glorious coming."
My Beloved, there are people of different faiths in the world and almost all have heard about You. Should You as them, "Who do you say I am," we will surely hear differing responses. But when You direct this question to me as You did to Peter and Your Apostles, when You say to me, "M--- Mine, who do you say I am," I respond, together with Peter and say "My Beloved, You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God," and I add, "You are my Life, my Love, my Hope, my ever present thought asleep or awake. I live in You as long as I live, I breathe in You and through You as long as there is breath in my body and until I take my last breath here on earth. When I die, I will die with You beside me, with You holding me close to You. I draw my life from the Church which You founded on Peter and the Apostles and which You entrusted to Peter and his successors - they will hold it safely until You come again in glory to claim Your Bride. Maranatha Lord Jesus, Maranatha!!!!"