Monday, September 30, 2013

Zechariah 8:1-8, Psalm 102:16-23 & 29, Luke 9:46-50

Zechariah 8:1-8, Psalm 102:16-23 & 29, Luke 9:46-50

Zechariah 8:1-8

My Beloved, over and over in sacred Scripture God makes the most amazing promises to us sinners.  We are wicked, wayward and weak but He never forgets we belong to Him.  He never forgets the price You paid for our salvation.  He never forgets that we are bathed in the Blood of the Lamb through Your Bloody sacrifice on the Cross.

Every time we stray, He comes looking for us like the Father in the Prodigal Son, like the Good Samaritan, like the Good Shepherd who leaves the 99 sheep behind and comes in search of the one that is lost.

He will gather His people who bear Your Name, who have been redeemed and restored to the family of God through Your obedience even unto death on the Cross and together with You and the Holy Spirit will welcome us as Your Bride.  Justice and truth will prevail because God stoops low and deigns to live among us.

Psalm 102:16-23 & 29

My Beloved, how far away the world seems from the promises You make to us in these verses.  Yet we know that You never make empty promises.  Your Word is true and every promise will be realized in time.  You bend Your ear to the cry of the oppressed and the needy.  You will hasten to judge in favor of Your own.  We have been formed by You to praise You and so we will my Lord, Your praise will be always on our lips and we bow down in reverence before You.  You are our God and we are the people ransomed by Your love.  You promise that our descendants too will continue to live in safety under Your protection and enjoy Your unending grace and help.

Luke 9:46-50

My Beloved, if only we were as generous as You in our thoughts about others.  We are forever compartmentalizing and pigeon holing people and constricting them with our narrow mindedness.  All of us are children of God and enjoy equal dignity in His sight. 

Little children have never been as abused as they are in the present age.  They are unwelcome in our lives because selfishness rules our lives and we are consumed with materialism.  We restrict the number of children we have, the gender we prefer and even while the baby is in utero he or she is in danger of being annihilated at any stage in its growth.  Today You remind us that in welcoming children we welcome You and in welcoming You we welcome the Father who sent You.

Humility is a virtue and an attribute of God yet it is one that is least  appreciated or desired by the world. 

We continue to make divisions among ourselves and ostracize those who appear different from us or think differently.  Your advice to us is brief and bears Remembering.  We all work for the same Master, the same Lord, the same God and we all labor for the coming of the Kingdom of God.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Amos 6:1, 4-7, 1 Timothy 6:11-16, Psalm 146:7-10, Luke 16:19-31


Amos 6:1, 4-7, 1 Timothy 6:11-16, Psalm 146:7-10, Luke 16:19-31

 Amos 6:1, 4-7

My Beloved, as in the time of Amos, every age has its share of the rich, the powerful and the worldly who care not a whit about anyone but themselves.  Their ears are closed to the cries of those in pain, the whimpering sounds of those wallowing in poverty and wretchedness does not reach their ears because of the manic sounds of their merry making as they worship at the idol of self.

Today we not only have individuals but nations and continents that fit this description. There is no one to hear the cry of the poor who are trampled on each day with perfect equanimity by the sleek, fat, pampered of this world.

1 Timothy 6:11-16

Beloved, in these verses St. Paul reminds us of how those who belong solely to You ought to live.  Although in the world, we ought not to be of it.  Our whole life must be one of striving to be all that You call us to be  We are not alone in our struggle, not only do You pour grace into our hearts, not only have You led by example, You give us Your own Holy Spirit to dwell in us.  All we need do is give Him control of our lives, be docile under His guidance and we will dwell always in Your Holy Presence. 

We can fight the good fight and win the race with the help that You provide each day through prayer and the worthy reception of the Sacraments.

Psalm 146:7-10

Praise the Lord my soul.  As long as today lasts, praise Him for He is worthy of praise.  The Lord is a God of justice the poor, the oppressed, the widow, the orphan, the victim of violence and terror will find that God stoops low from the heavens and hears their cries even if that cry is soundless or but a whimper.  He sees every tear.  He is a God of mercy to those who are merciful, compassionate to those who show compassion, but to those who disobey His law of love He is a God of terrible justice.

The Lord is a generous Giver.  To all He gives with open hand.  He fulfills every desire.  With Him at our side we will want for nothing.

Luke 16:19-31

In his lifetime there was a chasm of indifference that lay between the rich man and Lazarus the beggar who lay at his gate although Lazarus saw him dining on rich food, dressed in fine clothes and travelling in and out through the gates of his mansion. The poor man longed for the leftovers that were thrown to the dogs but even these scraps which would have kept him alive were denied to him.

The rich man’s colossal indifference to the man who lay at his gate in utter poverty and degradation simply never came into his view and this was his downfall.  The same was true of the rest of his family.  When the time arrived for the rich man to pay the price and when the scales of justice were measured against him only then did he see the price that he had to pay for his callousness.  The same chasm his indifference had created between himself and Lazarus now also lay between him and heaven.  He has the gall ask that the same Lazarus who never came into the periphery of his vision in life now be sent to warn his brothers, beggars belief.

Abraham rightly reminds him that God has given us all we need for our salvation.  If the Resurrection cannot convince us that God is alive nothing ever will.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Haggai 1:1-8, Psalm 149:1-6 & 9, Luke 9:7-9


Haggai 1:1-8, Psalm 149:1-6 & 9, Luke 9:7-9

Haggai 1:1-8

My Beloved, as long as we lead selfish lives, concerned only about our physical and material well being and spare not a thought for our spiritual well being nothing we do will bear fruit.  The more we possess the less satisfaction and real joy will it bring us.  The more we pamper and pander our flesh, the emptier our lives will be. 

My body must be a temple where the Holy Spirit dwells, I must live and move and have my being in You who are my Rock, my Fortress and my Deliverer. I must make  my heart a fit dwelling place for Your Holy Spirit.  Help me to strive constantly with Your help, to live a holy life pleasing both to God and neighbor.
Psalm 149:1-6 & 9

My Beloved, You delight in Your people and You are our Delight.  Thank You for saving us, redeeming us and for ensuring we have a place with You in eternity.  Heaven rejoices and all those who have gone before us, who have won the victory through Your saving Blood exult, exalt and praise You night and day.  We are the people of God whom You have blessed, sanctified and robed in garments of white.  You call us friends, brothers and sisters.  For all You have done for us Lord we rejoice.  Death is vanquished by the power of the Living Word and God is gloriously triumphant.

Luke 9:7-9

My Beloved, we too must contemplate, meditate and discern for ourselves who You are.  We must be familiar with all You have done for us from the beginning of creation.  The more time we spend immersed in You and Your Word, the greater will be the clarity and conviction we receive from the Holy Spirit about who You truly are.

Your Word and Your works speak for themselves revealing to us that You are the Christ the Son of the Living God, incarnate of the Virgin Mary through the power of the Holy Spirit,.  You became Man, for our sakes You were crucified, died, was buried and Your rose again as foretold by Scripture and now You reign in glory at the Father's right hand.  Some day You will return to judge the living and the dead and You will take us to live with You forever and ever in the Kingdom of God.

Like Herod many get it wrong, but those who live in the bosom of Holy Mother Church where the fullness of Truth and Grace dwells, know the Truth. We taste it in every worthy reception of the Holy Eucharist and You my Beloved are Finer than the finest wheat and Sweeter than the sweetest honey.

My Lord and my God!!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ezra 9:5-9, Tobit 13:2-4, 7-8, Luke 9:1-6


Ezra 9:5-9, Tobit 13:2-4, 7-8, Luke 9:1-6

Ezra 9:5-9

My Beloved, we live in exile here on earth.  After we sinned hope was lost to us but the Father who created us in love did not abandon us.  We were held in slavery to sin and there was no way we could free ourselves so You sent Your Only Son, into the world one as one of us.  He took upon Himself our iniquity and shed His Blood to cleans us from our sins.   Washed in the Blood of the Lamb and restored to the family of God, hope is ours once more.  Exiles on earth but rejoicing that we are on our way to our eternal home in heaven.

Tobit 13:2-4, 7-8

My Beloved, no one can escape the justice of God we are all subject to this judgment and we will receive our reward or punishment according to our deeds.  Because we have a just God we rejoice for He is full of mercy and compassion.  He will not destroy the sinner who repents but will heal our wounds and restore to us all the grace we had once squandered.

For all that God has done for us in restoring to us our inheritance through Your obedience to His will, we praise and thank You and we offer You our love and our life for the acceptable sacrifice You offered to the Father in atonement for our sins.

Luke 9:1-6

In giving us our mission my Beloved, You have equipped us in the same way You equipped the 12 Apostles.  The mandate is the same by virtue of our baptism, we are sent into the world to proclaim God's Kingdom of saving love.  You do not send us powerless but have equipped us with all we need with the help of the Holy Spirit and the gifts He makes available to us.  You have given us the authority to drive out the darkness of sin and death and to allow Your light to shine through.  We are called to trust You completely.  The greater our childlike trust in You the greater will be the works You will perform through us.  

You ask us to be content with what we have and to be tireless in our labor for the coming of the Kingdom.

Thank You Lord for equipping us!  Help us to trust You totally as we go forth in Your Name.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

1 Timothy 4:12-16, Psalm 111:7-10, Luke 7:36-50


1 Timothy 4:12-16, Psalm 111:7-10, Luke 7:36-50

1 Timothy 4:12-16

My Beloved, Timothy was a young disciple of St. Paul whom he loved as dearly as a father. He instructs him as all good fathers do on how to conduct himself especially since Timothy too was a teacher and preacher of the Good News. St. Paul reminds him that a good character is essential for one who is evangelizes and is a witness to the faith.

He also advises him to spend his time well by reading, preaching and teach. He also urges him to use the spiritual gift he received when the elders laid their hands on him. We do not what this gift is but St. Paul urges him to use it.

Like Timothy, we too must be faithful and steadfast to the call that each of us has received and labor diligently in the Lord's vineyard until we come to the end of our journey on earth.

Psalm 111:7-10

Verse 10
10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
prudent are those who live by his precepts.
To him belongs everlasting praise.

My Beloved, it is strange that some people who one would imagine out to know better get nervous when they read the words ' the fear of the Lord' in Scripture to God and nervously replace it with 'the love of the Lord.' They have not really understood what Scripture reveals to us. They do not comprehend the fact that I tremble in fear to do anything that may wound You whom I am called to love with all my heart, my mind, my soul and all my strength because You loved me first.

Luke 7:36-50

When we pass from this life to the next we will hear You say to us, Verse 2 "What is this I hear about you? I want you to render an account of your service for it is about to be terminated.’ Have we been exceedingly careful in looking after our physical well being and neglected our spiritual need?  Have we spent all our time and resources in ensuring we have a sleek, well kept, physical body and our souls are weak, sick and neglected?

If You find us trustworthy You will give us greater responsibilities.  We have to choose who we will serve because, as You remind us, it is impossible to divide our loyalties between God and the world. Grant me the grace to choose You and eternal things over every thing else every time.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

1 Timothy 3:14-16, Psalm 111:1-6, Luke 7:31-35


1 Timothy 3:14-16, Psalm 111:1-6, Luke 7:31-35

1 Timothy 3:14-16

We are all members of the family of the household of God and anyone who sees us must recognize us a such by our conduct, our speech, and our actions.  The Church is our Mother .  Christ is the Head of His Church and we are its members, the body of Christ.  He is her rock, her cornerstone and her foundation.  She is His bride for whom He lay down His life in order that she may live.  Someday He will present her without wrinkle or stain to His Father and she will be united eternally with Him.

He is the First Born and through adoption we are His brothers and sisters, children of the Most High God with whom He shares His inheritance.  We call God Abba because He has given us His Spirit.  Our mission is to tell the whole word of Him and that salvation comes from Him alone and that He desires that all be saved and come to the knowledge of Truth.

Psalm 111:1-6

Verse 5
5 Always mindful of his covenant,
he provides food for those who fear him.

The Bread of Angels separates us from the rest of the world.  Feasting daily at His banqueting table we are transformed each day in His image and likeness and we reflect Him more and more as we live, move and have our being in God who became incarnate for our sakes.

Luke 7:31-35

We are a perverse, stubborn, hard headed people. Over 2000 years have passed since Your coming and one would imagine the whole world would be converted to You by now.  But we are sinners who prefer the broad and easy path. 

You are the Way, the Truth and the Life and the way to heaven is the way of the Cross.  It is only by laying down our life that we will gain it.  You came into the world and we recognize You as the Son of God but we are too afraid to follow You because we are afraid of what our discipleship to You might cost us. 

What fools we are Lord – we are created for You and we will never know perfect peace or joy until we surrender our whole being to You. 

All those who know that they are the children of the Father and who belong totally to God have been given a foretaste of heaven. 

Keep us faithful to the end my Beloved. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

1Timothy 3:1-13, Psalm 101:1-3, 5-6, Luke 7:11-17


1Timothy 3:1-13, Psalm 101:1-3, 5-6, Luke 7:11-17

1Timothy 3:1-13

My Beloved, all those whom You call to serve in the Church must be good men and women who strive to be holy always.  They have a role of leadership in the Church and are responsible for leading Your people to the Kingdom of God.  They ought not to be frivolous or  given to gossip, they must have self-control and must exercise moderation in all things.  They must be stalwarts in the faith and they must be ready to toil joyfully and wholeheartedly in the vineyard of the Lord.  They must be careful of their reputation less they become the target of scandals and gossip.

Lord God grant us leaders after the heart and mind of Your Beloved Son.

Psalm 101:1-3, 5-6

My Beloved, these verses echo the sentiments of St. Paul.  We are called to be people who praise God always and walk in the light of truth.  We must strive to live holy lives and avoid anything that could hinder  our brothers and sisters and prevent them from choosing to walk the narrow path that leads to salvation.

Those who desire to be witnesses and shine the Light of Your truth in the world must be trustworthy, humble and gentle.  We must never forget that it is God who calls, who chooses and who appoints shepherds and leaders in the Church and we must respect and obey them always.

Luke 7:11-17

My Beloved, on this particular day You when You were entering the town of Naim You know that You would meet the funeral procession of the only son of a heart broken widow whom she would soon see buried.  Did she remind You of the grief of Your own Mama would have to undergo.  She would have to wait for Your resurrection and she would see You again after three days.   This poor widow had not hope at all.  However, when You enter into our lives there is always hope.  You are a God of compassion, tenderness, mercy and incomparable love and the widow was to experience it.

You saw her, You had pity on her, You comforted her but You did not stop there, You did something positive to relieve her grief, Your restored her son to life and gave her back her son.

This widow can also be a symbol of Your Church.  Many of her children are spiritually dear and she grieve for each one of them.  But when they encounter You, when You reach out in forgiveness and touch them, Your bring healing, life, forgiveness and pardon.  You raise from spiritual death to life and You them whole again to Holy Mother Church.

Help us to imitate You.