READINGS for 2006-05-30

Didache | Companion | Sabbath



I consider life of no importance? ? Acts 20:24

When I saw Connie, a close friend of mine, dying before my very eyes, my life changed. On the way to the hospital my wife and I were arguing and fighting about things that seemed so big. But as we opened the door to Connie?s room and saw her gasping for every breath and Titus, her husband, could do nothing but hold her hand and kiss her forehead, all the ?big things? became so petty. She clung to him like nothing else mattered.
      The view of death defines what is important.
      Jesus who knew that his stay on earth was drawing to a close and He was going to die a unforgettable death, turned to do the most important person? His Father. And as He did this, He prayed like nothing else mattered? for you and me.
      We are important to Him. Ariel D.

Is what is important to you as important to Him?

Teach me to set my sights beyond what is trivial. Teach me to wisely discern exactly what is trivial in Your eyes.



Acts 20:17-27

Paul does not seem to be too concerned about a future in prison awaiting him. He profoundly trusts that the Spirit has everything under control and is willing to wait and see what happens. But he does not give up proclaiming the Gospel. As we will see he continues to entertain visitors while under house arrest and never ceases to take up the opportunity to preach to the guards as well! Let us pray that we will be as innovative as Paul when it comes to our turn to share the Gospel with others.

17 From Miletus he had the presbyters of the church at Ephesus summoned. 18 When they came to him, he addressed them, ?You know how I lived among you the whole time from the day I first came to the province of Asia. 19 I served the Lord with all humility and with the tears and trials that came to me because of the plots of the Jews, 20 and I did not at all shrink from telling you what was for your benefit, or from teaching you in public or in your homes. 21 I earnestly bore witness for both Jews and Greeks to repentance before God and to faith in our Lord Jesus. 22 But now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem. What will happen to me there I do not know, 23 except that in one city after another the holy Spirit has been warning me that imprisonment and hardships await me. 24 Yet I consider life of no importance to me, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to bear witness to the gospel of God?s grace. 25 ?But now I know that none of you to whom I preached the kingdom during my travels will ever see my face again. 26 And so I solemnly declare to you this day that I am not responsible for the blood of any of you, 27 for I did not shrink from proclaiming to you the entire plan of God.?


Psalm 68:10-11, 20-21

R: Sing to God, O Kingdoms of the earth.

9 [10] A bountiful rain you showered down, O God, upon your inheritance; you restored the land when it languished; 10 [11] your flock settled in it; in your goodness, O God, you provided it for the needy. (R) 19 [20] Blessed day by day be the Lord, who bears our burdens; God, who is our salvation. 20 [21] God is a saving God for us; the LORD, my Lord, controls the passageways of death. (R)


John 17:1-11

?The Hour? is an important concept in John?s Gospel. It is Jesus? designation that He uses to refer to His Passion, a time critical to His mission. ?The Hour? refers to that critical moment where our salvation is wrought when Jesus dies on the cross. It is indeed, a critical hour in human history as from that time on the world is never the same ? salvation for all people, indeed all creation has become a concrete possibility.

1 When Jesus had said this, he raised his eyes to heaven and said, ?Father, the hour has come. Give glory to your son, so that your son may glorify you, 2 just as you gave him authority over all people, so that he may give eternal life to all you gave him. 3 Now this is eternal life, that they should know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ. 4 I glorified you on earth by accomplishing the work that you gave me to do. 5 Now glorify me, Father, with you, with the glory that I had with you before the world began. 6 ?I revealed your name to those whom you gave me out of the world. They belonged to you, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7 Now they know that everything you gave me is from you, 8 because the words you gave to me I have given to them, and they accepted them and truly understood that I came from you, and they have believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for the ones you have given me, because they are yours, 10 and everything of mine is yours and everything of yours is mine, and I have been glorified in them. 11 And now I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, while I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are.?

my reflections
Let us pray that we will be as innovative as Paul when our turn comes to share the Gospel with others.



God?s special verse/thought for me today________________


Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________





We admire people who are convinced they ?have a calling? and follow through with it. We might admire them from a distance but we could always feel uneasy at their presence. Imagine watching TV with Mother Teresa. We admire them not because of what they proclaim but of what they lived. They didn?t just tell the world that they have a mission but they followed through and lived dangerous lives. We also admire them because we have in our simple hearts that seed of calling. We once dared to imagine how to live dangerously ? giving our all for a singular cause. But most of us have trodden the ordinary and crushed our desires to live out extraordinarily. We delegated holiness and heroism to the saints and we forfeited the opportunities to be radical in living the Gospel.
      Dorothy Day once said: ?Don?t call me a saint. I don?t want to be easily dismissed.? That?s how we deal with those who remind us that there?s more to us than the mundane tasks we?re doing.
      In our reading today, Paul writes his farewell letter to the Ephesians. He knew that he?s about to die but his words spoke of fire: ?I don?t care what my life counts as long as I follow through the calling God has placed in my life ? that is to preach Jesus Christ.? He is telling his readers: Imitate me. You may not be called to die or live in a way that I did but you are called to greatness. You are called to be holy in the very way you are washing the dishes and knitting that jumper. A person who continues to pray and love her children despite their stubbornness of heart ? that?s radical living. A person who continues to encourage his co-workers while not waiting to be noticed ? that?s radical living. A person who opens his house and invites a stranger to a dinner ? that?s radical living.
      Radical living is radical loving. This is how we could follow through that calling in our hearts to live extraordinary lives. The trick is that we don?t do it only once in a while ? we do it consistently. Like Paul, we follow through until the end. By then, we would be comfortable asking Mother Teresa if she likes popcorn while you watch the TV together. Bro. Noel C.

How could you start awakening within you that desire for radical loving?

Father, free me from mediocrity. Let me follow through until the end. Awaken in me that desire for greatness ? the desire to be radical in my loving. Amen.

St. Joan of Arc, virgin and martyr, pray for us.

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