DAILY HOLY MASS READINGS
The Son of Man came to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many. Mk 10:45
Job 3:1-3, 11-17, 20-23, Psalm 88:2-8, Luke 9:51-56
Job 3:1-3, 11-17, 20-23
My soul's beloved, there are many in this world who feel as Job did when death seems like a friend bringing release from their terrible troubles. The people of the time viewed death as the end of life and there was nothing beyond to hope for that is why they looked upon material possessions as blessings from God and sickness and sorrow were punishment for sin. Yet Job knew that he was a righteous man and that he loved God - he could not understand why after all the bountiful blessings he had received all his life was suddenly taken from him and he lost all that he loved most dearly in the world as well as all his possessions and finally even his health. His grief was so great that he longed for death that would bring his suffering to an end.
So it is my Lord for all who do not know You. Who have not yet encountered You and who will go through life never having recourse to You because no one ever spoke of You - the Resurrection and the Life. This is why You have given all who follow You this mission that we make You known and loved for faith in You brings hope and no matter how hard life is on earth we understand that suffering in the right spirit is the quickest, surest way of growing in grace and perfection and that in the end there is the crown of victory for those who have walked the Way of the Cross. Grant my soul's beloved that when the cross is laid upon me that I may remember that You would not have permitted it were it not a necessary part of my journey preparing me to enter from this life to the next.
My soul's beloved, there are many times in life when suffering buffets us from every side and You seem distant. Even to lift our voice in prayer seems burdensome and futile. Great suffering comes in many ways and it brings us down to our knees and we can go in either direction - we can either cling to You and beg You to help us through the suffering or we can turn away from You in bitterness and anger. The choice is our to choose life or death. Despite all difficulties that the psalmist is experiencing he knows that You will hear his and will listen to his prayers. Often times my Lord only suffering can get our attention when there is a danger of us straying so far away from the fold that we could be lost forever.
Lord Jesus, my soul's beloved and my Friend help me never to stop crying out to You to save me when I am in distress.The greater the suffering may I cling to You even more strongly for You alone can help me find the strength to go on and You will bring me safely at last from sorrow of Calvary to the hope of the Resurrection.
My soul's beloved, You have shown us the way to the Kingdom is the way of suffering. We have to deny ourselves each day, pick up our cross and follow You. The three years of Your public ministry were drawing to a close and You knew what awaited You in Jerusalem. You knew that death was the only outcome to the resistance and hatred of those who opposed You and yet You would not be deterred. Even the people of the Samaritan village did not welcome You because to them You were a Jew and a foreigner. They could not see past their narrow prejudices that God was visiting His people.
Before we condemn them let us look at ourselves and at the many times we have rejected people who could be our friends and brothers and sisters simply because they did not fit our mold. On the other hand when we have experienced rejection and hurt do we respond as James and John wanted to do and call down the wrath of God on our enemies? You rebuked Your apostles and You revealed to them that You are a God of Mercy. You did not come to destroy but to restore and the only way that was possible was to keep Your gaze fixed on Jerusalem.
Help me never to lose sight of the goal which is the Kingdom of God.