READINGS for 2006-10-01

Didache | Companion | Sabbath

DIDACHE

A TRIBUTE

"If anyone gives you a drink of water because you belong to Christ and bear his name, truly, I say to you, he will not go without reward.? ? Mark 9:41

This reflection is written in memory of my mother.
      I will never forget the times she provided for my needs as I went about serving the Lord in our community. One time, she handed P10,000 to my sister and asked her to accompany me to the mall to buy me new clothes. That was during the time that I was about to teach in a seminary.
      Another time, she gave me money to be able to celebrate my birthday with the girls I minister to.
      I never had to ask her for my needs, even if I knew that our financial situation was not so strong then. But underneath her generosity was, I believe, her quiet understanding of what I?m doing to fulfill God?s purpose for my life.
     Throughout her life, she fulfilled her role in birthing and raising God?s child. For that reason, I believe she is now enjoying her reward in Heaven!
TessVA.

REFLECTION:
When was the last time you did a good deed for someone?

Lord, give me a sensitive heart to listen to the unspoken needs of the people around me.

COMPANION

1st READING

Numbers 11:25-29

Moses models for us one of the characteristics of a true leader. A leader who has the welfare of the people as his or her foremost concern is never concerned about establishing and maintaining a power base. It is the people who must come first and hence Moses is glad that the two are prophesying because it means that God is blessing His people with more prophets to explain and proclaim His word to the people. Let us pray for the grace that we, and all who are leaders in our communities, will do away with selfish ambition and seek to place the welfare of the community first among our priorities.

25 The LORD then came down in the cloud and spoke to him. Taking some of the spirit that was on Moses, he bestowed it on the seventy elders; and as the spirit came to rest on them, they prophesied. 26 Now two men, one named Eldad and the other Medad, were not in the gathering but had been left in the camp. They too had been on the list, but had not gone out to the tent; yet the spirit came to rest on them also, and they prophesied in the camp. 27 So, when a young man quickly told Moses, ?Eldad and Medad are prophesying in the camp,? 28 Joshua, son of Nun, who from his youth had been Moses? aide, said, ?Moses, my lord, stop them.? 29 But Moses answered him, ?Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the people of the LORD were prophets! Would that the LORD might bestow his spirit on them all!?

P S A L M

Psalm 19:8, 10, 12-13, 14

R: The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.


7 [8] The law of the LORD is perfect, refreshing the soul; the decree of the LORD is trustworthy, giving wisdom to the simple. (R) 9 [10] the fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever; the ordinances of the LORD are true, all of them just. (R) 11 [12] Though your servant is careful of them, very diligent in keeping them, 12 [13] yet who can detect failings? Cleanse me from my unknown faults! (R) 13 [14] From wanton sin especially, restrain your servant; let it not rule over me. Then shall I be blameless and innocent of serious sin. (R)

2nd READING

James 5:1-6


If we are really serious about following the Word of God I think we need to meditate upon this text often as it will help us keep a godly perspective in our desires and ambitions. James tells us that the rich should lament their wealth particularly if there has been any injustice associated with its acquisition. Those who have inherited wealth are not excused from ensuring that their wealth has not been accumulated through unjust or unfair means. It is the duty of the rich to ensure that those who have little are provided for according to human dignity.

1 Come now, you rich, weep and wail over your impending miseries. 2 Your wealth has rotted away, your clothes have become moth-eaten, 3 your gold and silver have corroded, and that corrosion will be a testimony against you; it will devour your flesh like a fire. You have stored up treasure for the last days. 4 Behold, the wages you withheld from the workers who harvested your fields are crying aloud, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. 5 You have lived on earth in luxury and pleasure; you have fattened your hearts for the day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned; you have murdered the righteous one; he offers you no resistance.

G O S P E L

Mark 9:38-43.45.47-48


We do have to be wary of those who speak in the name of Jesus but are charlatans at the same time. There will always be someone who is willing to exploit others by whatever means they find effective. This is why it is so important for leaders, in fact all Christians, to ensure that their lives are free of hypocrisy. Our proclamation of the Gospel will be ineffective if we are compromised by any unchristian practices in our lives. Let us pray for the grace to be true to the Gospel in all its aspects.

38 John said to him, ?Teacher, we saw someone driving out demons in your name, and we tried to prevent him because he does not follow us.? 39 Jesus replied, ?Do not prevent him. There is no one who performs a mighty deed in my name who can at the same time speak ill of me. 40 For whoever is not against us is for us. 41 Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ, amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward. 42 ?Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe [in me] to sin, it would be better for him if a great millstone were put around his neck and he were thrown into the sea. 43 If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed than with two hands to go into Gehenna, into the unquenchable fire. 45 And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life crippled than with two feet to be thrown into Gehenna. [46] 46 47 And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. Better for you to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into Gehenna, 48 where ?their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.??

my reflections
think:
Let us pray for the grace that we, and all who are leaders in our communities, will do away with selfish ambition and seek to place the welfare of the community first among our priorities.


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God?s special verse/thought for me today________________

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T O D A Y ? S BLESSING LIST

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________

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READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1Maccabees 1-2

SABBATH PAUSE

My weekly time with God

THANK YOU LIST

Things to be grateful for from the past week

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SPECIAL NEEDS

Things to ask God for in the coming week

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HIDDEN TREASURE

Most important word God told me this week

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 PERSONAL MISSION STATEMENT

  The ultimate purpose of my life

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  GOALS FOR THE QUARTER

  Priority areas God wants me to work on

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PRAYER SHEET FOR MY LIFE
Things I will pray for regularly

  
DATE          PERSONAL NEED       DATE        GOD?S ANSWERS
When the  ?Until now, you have not  When I   ?Ask and you shall receive,
answer      asked for anything My      in started  that your joy may be full.?
  came        Name.? John 16: 24         praying-          - John 16: 24b

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PRAYER SHEET FOR MY LIFE
Things I will pray for regularly

     EVANGELISM LIST                          CARING LIST  
     People God wants me to                     People God wants me to
        bring closer to Him                       pray for and show more love to
  
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SABBATH

A ?HARD SAYING? FROM JESUS

Have you ever heard of the so-called ?hard sayings? of Jesus? Well, we have some of them in our Gospel passage today. Yes, like it or not, Jesus is by no means a mere sweet-looking and tender consoler. His Passion and Death were certainly no joke. He therefore has radical demands as well.
      Although he did have a word or two regarding tolerance to others (the first half of the Gospel passage), he did insist on a certain strictness with ourselves in the second half. This can be beneficial in the long run, because what prevents us from seriously following Christ is not so much some other person?s bad influence as some weakness of our own. Here, we must be very honest and call a spade a spade. The experience of reformed alcoholics, for example, reminds us how difficult it is to admit to ourselves that we have a weakness: many reformed alcoholics testify that they had been drinking excessively for years before  they admitted to themselves that they had a problem. And yet, this is only the first step. The next one? the actual, radical dropping of the bad habit (be it drugs, sex, alcohol, gambling, overeating, and so on) ? is always most painful, just like the cutting off of a hand or a foot. But Jesus tells us that such a step is necessary if one is to become free and enter into the joy of the Kingdom.
      Now, in attempting to set ourselves free, let us not commit the mistake of wanting to do it on our own. For such an undertaking we need prayer, the sacraments and the support of a community.
      With this last point, we go back to the importance of having an open, loving, tolerant and welcoming attitude to one another. All these, instead of jealousy, rivalry, competition and intrigue. It can all be summarized in the figure of a triangle: God is at the topmost corner, and then I and my neighbor at each corner of the base. The more we go upwards to God, the more we also grow closer to each other. The inverse is also true: the more we draw near each other in peace and harmony, the nearer we come to God.
      In the end, no one of us is really better than the other. God alone is the supreme Lord and Master. He certainly has the right to His ?hard sayings? in the preaching of His Son Jesus Christ. Fr. Martin M.

REFLECTION QUESTION:
In attempting to set ourselves free, let us not commit the mistake of wanting to do it on our own. For such an undertaking we need prayer, the sacraments and the support of a community.

Grant me tha grace I need, Lord, to follow Your commands.

St. Therese of the Child Jesus, virgin, pray for us.




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