READINGS for 2006-02-18
HIS HOLY PRESENCE
?And He was transfigured before them, and His clothes became dazzling
My husband and I were so blessed to join a trip to Jerusalem in 1993 with leaders of Catholic communities. When we were in the Upper Room (said to be the site of the Last Supper) praying for our personal message and for our country, in a vision I saw Jesus, about 8 feet tall, long haired, wearing a long white garment with big-sized feet. He was going around the room blessing each one of us. It was an awesome vision and I felt the majesty and gloriousness of His holy presence. Shortly after when we were back home, my husband and I attended mass to thank God for our victorious pilgrimage to Jerusalem at our parish. We normally use the center entrance door when we go to church, but on this occasion, we used the side door. The picture of Jesus of the Divine Mercy on the right side front of the church caught my attention. I told my husband that was exactly how Jesus looked when I saw him in the Upper Room. I was amazed when my husband told me that the picture was taken at the Upper Room. Peter must have felt the same way during the transfiguration of Jesus. I thank God for these encounter that made my faith grow strong. Donna E.
Take me higher, Lord, than I am able to become on my own.
James is keenly aware that the tongue can be a very dangerous organ in someone?s life. The words that we speak often indicate the state of our hearts. So much can be discerned by the way in which a person speaks and the words that he or she uses. Hopefully, we are all aware of this and so make the effort to be guarded in our language. Our words can be tremendous allies in proclaiming the Gospel, but they can also be a great liability if they get out of control.
1 Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you realize that we will be judged more strictly, 2 for we all fall short in many respects. If anyone does not fall short in speech, he is a perfect man, able to bridle his whole body also. 3 If we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we also guide their whole bodies. 4 It is the same with ships: even though they are so large and driven by fierce winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot?s inclination wishes. 5 In the same way the tongue is a small member and yet has great pretensions. Consider how small a fire can set a huge forest ablaze. 6 The tongue is also a fire. It exists among our members as a world of malice, defiling the whole body and setting the entire course of our lives on fire, itself set on fire by Gehenna. 7 For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, 8 but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. This need not be so, my brothers.
P S A L M
Psalm 12:2-3, 4-5, 7-8
R: You will protect us, Lord.
1  Help, O LORD! for no one now is dutiful; faithfulness has vanished from among men. 2  Everyone speaks falsehood to his neighbor; with smooth lips they speak, and double heart. (R) 3  May the LORD destroy all smooth lips, every boastful tongue, 4  those who say, ?We are heroes with our tongues; our lips are our own; who is lord over us?? (R) 6  The promises of the LORD are sure, like tried silver, freed from dross, sevenfold refined. 7  You, O LORD, will keep us and preserve us always from this generation. (R)
G O S P E L
The Transfiguration of Jesus is a reminder to the apostles, or at least Peter, James and John, of the divinity of Jesus. The Father reveals the true identity of His Son to them. The experience held them in awe as they witnessed Jesus conversing with Moses and Elijah. What wouldn?t we give to have been there with them! However, that was not to be and we have to be content with the revelation that God chooses to make to each one of us. Let us be thankful for that and always be ready to share our experiences with others if it will benefit their faith.
2 After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, 3 and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them. 4 Then Elijah appeared to them along with Moses, and they were conversing with Jesus. 5 Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, ?Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.? 6 He hardly knew what to say, they were so terrified. 7 Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; then from the cloud came a voice, ?This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.? 8 Suddenly, looking around, they no longer saw anyone but Jesus alone with them. 9 As they were coming down from the mountain, he charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone, except when the Son of Man had risen from the dead. 10 So they kept the matter to themselves, questioning what rising from the dead meant. 11 Then they asked him, ?Why do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?? 12 He told them, ?Elijah will indeed come first and restore all things, yet how is it written regarding the Son of Man that he must suffer greatly and be treated with contempt? 13 But I tell you that Elijah has come and they did to him whatever they pleased, as it is written of him.?
God?s special verse/thought for me today_______________________
thank You Lord for: ______________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Deuteronomy 16-18
TALK LESS, LISTEN MORE
Have you been put in jeopardy because of your tongue? Has talking too much, talking at the wrong time, talking falsely or arrogantly caused you any trouble?
I suppose we have all suffered because of our tongue. St. James? warning in the First Reading today is truly worth heeding. Some even say, ?Less talk, less mistake. So better no talk.?
But there is a time for talking. When? The right time, of course. But when is the right time? The time set by God. Just exactly when is that? God will tell us when that time has come.
Jesus, after giving Peter, James and John a glimpse of His eternal glory, He admonished them not to go around talking about what they had seen. The time before Jesus? death and resurrection is not the right time. It is not the time set by God. The time for Peter, James and John to talk freely about what they had witnessed on top of Mount Tabor is the time after the resurrection. The time after the resurrection is God?s time.
Not seldom is the case that divine messages come with specific instruction as to the proper time in which the messages are to be made public. The secrets of Fatima is one example.
Let us train our tongue to speak only the truth but also to talk only at the right time. The right time is God?s time. God will tell us when that time has come. But unless we talk less and listen more, we will never hear Him tell us when.
When it is time to talk remember:
Let my tongue only speak the truth.
St. Simeon, bishop martyr, pray for us.
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