READINGS for 2006-07-16
REJECT THE REJECTION
And if any place will not receive you and they refuse to hear you? shake off the dust that is on your feet... ? Mark 6:11
A few years ago, I became a salesman. I sold herbal juice, memorial plans, and engine oil. (I liked variety!)
Lord, I choose to look up, not down. I choose to stand again, not stay on the ground.
Quite often, when we are caught up in sin and hear a call to repent, we are not interested in listening. No one seems to be exempt from this at least a few times in their lives. The call to repentance is one of the more difficult to accept as it means admitting that we are wrong and walking away from that type of action. It means that we have to humble ourselves in repentance and few of us enjoy doing this!
12 To Amos, Amaziah said: ?Off with you, visionary, flee to the land of Judah! There earn your bread by prophesying, 13 but never again prophesy in Bethel; for it is the king?s sanctuary and a royal temple.? 14 Amos answered Amaziah, ?I was no prophet, nor have I belonged to a company of prophets; I was a shepherd and a dresser of sycamores. 15 The LORD took me from following the flock, and said to me: ?Go, prophesy to my people Israel.?
P S A L M
Psalm 85:9-10, 11-12, 13-14
R: Lord, let us see your kindness, and grant us your salvation.
8  I will hear what God proclaims; the LORD?for he proclaims peace. 9  Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him, glory dwelling in our land. (R) 10  Kindness and truth shall meet; justice and peace shall kiss. 11  Truth shall spring out of the earth, and justice shall look down from heaven. (R) 12  The LORD himself will give his benefits; our land shall yield its increase. 13  Justice shall walk before him, and salvation, along the way of his steps. (R)
This hymn in praise of God?s goodness is probably an early creedal statement. Here the author is reminding the Ephesians that they are called to give glory to God. At the center of this hymn is the recognition that we are sons and daughters of God. Here is the heart of the Gospel message. Let us focus upon this truth and ask God to reveal to us its full meaning and consequences. Let us also recognize that with such a dignity will also come responsibilities and duties.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens, 4 as he chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and without blemish before him. In love 5 he destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ, in accord with the favor of his will, 6 for the praise of the glory of his grace that he granted us in the beloved. 7 In him we have redemption by his blood, the forgiveness of transgressions, in accord with the riches of his grace 8 that he lavished upon us. In all wisdom and insight, 9 he has made known to us the mystery of his will in accord with his favor that he set forth in him 10 as a plan for the fullness of times, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth. 11 In him we were also chosen, destined in accord with the purpose of the one who accomplishes all things according to the intention of his will, 12 so that we might exist for the praise of his glory, we who first hoped in Christ. 13 In him you also, who have heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and have believed in him, were sealed with the promised holy Spirit, 14 which is the first installment of our inheritance toward redemption as God?s possession, to the praise of his glory.
Jesus wants His disciples to live as simple a life as possible. He does not want them living the high life so to speak, but giving witness to the Gospel in all that they do. This is important as it is very easy to lose focus upon the Gospel when we become distracted by the situations in which we find ourselves. A true missionary will not be too concerned by the latter and so ensure that the former remains the focus of his or her life.
7 He summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two and gave them authority over unclean spirits. 8 He instructed them to take nothing for the journey but a walking stick ? no food, no sack, no money in their belts. 9 They were, however, to wear sandals but not a second tunic. 10 He said to them, ?Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave from there. 11 Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you, leave there and shake the dust off your feet in testimony against them.? 12 So they went off and preached repentance. 13 They drove out many demons, and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.
God?s special verse/thought for me today________________
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READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Isaiah 10-12
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THANK YOU LIST
Things to be grateful for from the past week
Things to ask God for in the coming week
Most important word God told me this week
?The Lord Himself became true altar, priest, and bread and chalice of salvation. He alone sufficeth. Altar He is and lamb, victim and sacrificer, priest as well as food.?
St. Ephrem was born in Nisibis in Mesopotamia around 306. As a young man he was baptized as a Christian and later ordained a deacon. He apparently declined any further advancement, even feigning madness as a way of avoiding Episcopal consecration. In 363, when Nisibis fell to the Persians, Ephrem, along with the rest of the Christian population, took flight. He settled in Edessa (in present-day Iraq), where he lived in a remote cave and spent the rest of his life in monastic seclusion.
RELUCTANT PROPHET, LISTENER
It is not only the case that the prophet can be reluctant to ply his trade at the bidding of the Lord, but also that the people to whom he is sent may not be receptive to his message. In either case there is an impasse and the Gospel fails to reach those for whom it is intended. Now we can do nothing about another?s choice, however, like Amos we can persevere in the mission that we have been given as long as we possibly can.
Jesus, you gave up your life for me in service of the Gospel. I hope and pray for the grace to be able to repay you in my own limited way by giving myself in the service of the Church in way you ask me to do so.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us.
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