Monday, August 29, 2016

1 Corinthians 2:1-5, Psalm 119:97-102, Mark 6:17-29

DAILY HOLY MASS READINGS


MEMORIAL OF THE PASSION OF SAINT JOHN THE BAPTIST

Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven. Mt. 5:10


1 Corinthians 2:1-5, Psalm 119:97-102, Mark 6:17-29


1 Corinthians 2:1-5

My soul's beloved, we often make the mistake that we need to be great orators, or have the gift of preaching, or be able to have a big vocabulary, and not be shy and nervous when it comes to being effective evangelists.  But St. Paul who is considered the greatest preacher after You and the worlds best missionary, tells us plainly that this is not true,  All we need is a passionate love for You and a passion to share our story of how You met us just where we were, and as we were, revealed Yourself to us and loved us. Yet this seems like a difficult and daunting task. We overthink everything instead of just speaking from the heart. To evangelize is nothing more complicated than speaking of how You touched my life - all I need to do is tell it as I have experienced it and of how  the encounter with You transformed my life. It is a journey. The way gets rough and difficult, I may get lost because I can be stupid, selfish, weak, frail, but You never give up on me. You come in search of me, seek me, find me, convict me and above all love me through it all and You will until the end. This is my story all I need to do is tell it just as St. Paul did. Once he encountered You he could not stop talking about it and about the radical effect it had on his life and how everything was well lost as long as he had You. He was set on fire with divine love and could not rest until he traveled wherever the Spirit led to proclaim this Good News of God who so loved the world that He sent His only Son that we may not perish but have eternal life.


Psalm 119:97-102

 My soul's beloved, along with the psalmist I too want to sing the praise of Your law of love for God and for neighbor. To love God is to love wisdom, honor, truth, and virtue. To meditate on Love is to meditate on God. There is no greater or higher law than the Law of Love embodied in You. When we walk in the light of Truth we are invincible, we can conquer and rout the enemy who roars in the world seeking to devour, pillage, steal and murder. To contemplate Your goodness, to be immersed in Your Truth is to have wisdom greater than world's worldly wise. To love Truth and to obey it keeps our feet from the path that leads to destruction and decay. Grant me this grace today my Lord to hold fast to Your Word, to cling to the Truth - do not let my hand slip lest I fall and be lost forever.



Mark 6:17-29



 My soul's beloved, Herodias, represents all the lawless in the world who do not wish to be told that they cannot have what they lust for. To impose self denial and self restraint is vinegar and gall to those who would prefer to sin with impunity. The rich, those with power and influence like to live under the illusion that they are not accountable to God's law so they either mock Him or pretend He does not exists. John the Baptist was an irritant to both Herod and Herodias his brother's lawful wife whom he took as his own. There can be no greater evil than an evil woman for once all goodness has disappeared she can sink to the depths of depravity and takes those whose lives she influences with her. As we can see how she had no compunction to shamelessly use her daughter to achieve her own ends.

A good woman can either bring out the noblest characteristics in men or she can bring him down lower than swine. Herod was drunk, he was insensate of all rational thought, he permitted himself to lose control and who he was and made silly promises, even to the half of his kingdom because a girl danced before him and his guests and delighted him. Instigated by her evil mother, she sought nothing less that the head of the tormentor of her conscience and so she connived to kill him. Foolish Herod, thought keeping his word and saving face was more important than sanctioning murder. 

We live in a world that continues to kill those who stand by the truth until one day Truth will rise up and have its day.