READINGS for 2007-07-04
RUN TO GOD
“And when they saw him, they pleaded with him to leave their region.” – Matthew 8:34
Genesis 21:5, 8-20
P S A L M
G O S P E L
God’s special verse/thought for me today________________
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Sirach 14-18
THE “PAGAN TERRITORIES” OF OUR LIVESToday’s Gospel episode is surely a dramatic one, worthy perhaps of a being made into a horror movie replete with computer-generated special effects. And yet, for all the gripping suspense and drama, the narrative ends on a somewhat “strange” note: when word spread about what happened (particularly regarding the herd of swine), the entire town came out to meet Jesus, only to beg Him to leave their neighborhood.
Why was it so? In the first place, this particular miracle of demonic expulsion took place in pagan territory. Biblical geography indicates that Gadara, to the east of the Lake of Galilee, was an area occupied by pagans. The herd of pigs moreover confirms this fact, since pigs were considered as repulsive animals to Israelites.
Applying it now to our lives, we ask: Is it possible that there are still certain “areas” of our lives that are “pagan territory,” in which we would rather not have Jesus “meddling”? Perhaps He intends to purify and liberate us from the demons of our sinful habits, but we still prefer to “bargain” with Him. Or again, He wants to purge us from our penchant for New Age or neo-pagan beliefs and practices (horoscopes, feng shui, tarot cards, and whatnot), but we still do not want to let go of them.
How then can we call ourselves genuine Catholics, if we are given to such compromises? For such an authenticity in our Faith, surely there is no need for cinematic special effects, right? We just have to welcome Christ into our lives and testify to Him authentically in all that we do. Fr. Martin M.
REFLECTION QUESTION: Do you know what you still haven’t submitted to God?
Examine, me, Lord, for my “pagan territories” and conquer them.
St. Bertha, widow and abbess, pray for us.
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