READINGS for 2007-10-17
HOW ARE YOU?
Woe to you…! – Luke 11:42
I recently had another one of those pleasant phone conversations with my five-year-old grandson Dylan. The moment I heard his voice on the phone, I immediately asked him about his mom who was on vacation in Holland.
And he goes, “Lola, you ask me first, ‘How are you?’”
I laughed heartily because the last time we were together, I asked Dylan, “How are you?”
And he answered the usual, “I’m fine, thank you.”
I then taught him that saying “I’m fine” is now archaic. Nowadays, people know you’re a cool guy when your response is, “I’m good!”
And so we practiced the greeting several times—I, asking him “How are you?” and he would answer, “I’m good!” He loved the exercise so much, we kept repeating it the whole day.
Today’s readings remind us about practicing what we preach. Next time I see my grandson, I will teach him how we, renewed Christians, answer the question “How are you?” We say, “I’m victorious!” because through His sacrifice on the cross, Jesus Christ has won for us victory over sin.
I pray that my grandson will see that I am indeed victorious and that he will be, too, as he grows up. Cynthia S.
How are you?
Lord, help me to walk my talk that I may truly be Your victorious child.
Paul spends the best part of three chapters outlining humanity’s need for salvation. He wants to make it absolutely clear to all that this is a fundamental truth that we have to accept. Perhaps this was an important point to establish when writing to the Romans as Rome was the center of the known universe and a very proud, perhaps arrogant place. After all, they were in control of most of the known world at the time.
1 You, are without excuse, every one of you who passes judgment. For by the standard by which you judge another you condemn yourself, since you, the judge, do the very same things. 2 We know that the judgment of God on those who do such things is true. 3 Do you suppose, then, you who judge those who engage in such things and yet do them yourself, that you will escape the judgment of God? 4 Or do you hold his priceless kindness, forbearance, and patience in low esteem, unaware that the kindness of God would lead you to repentance? 5 By your stubbornness and impenitent heart, you are storing up wrath for yourself for the day of wrath and revelation of the just judgment of God, 6 who will repay everyone according to his works: 7 eternal life to those who seek glory, honor, and immortality through perseverance in good works, 8 but wrath and fury to those who selfishly disobey the truth and obey wickedness. 9 Yes, affliction and distress will come upon every human being who does evil, Jew first and then Greek. 10 But there will be glory, honor, and peace for everyone who does good, Jew first and then Greek. 11 There is no partiality with God.
P S A L M
Psalm 62:2-3, 6-7, 9
R: Lord, you give back to everyone according to his works.
1  Only in God is my soul at rest; from him comes my salvation. 2  He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed at all. (R) 5  Only in God be at rest, my soul, for from him comes my hope. 6  He only is my rock and my salvation, my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed. (R) 8  Trust in him at all times, O my people! Pour out your hearts before him; God is our refuge! (R)
G O S P E L
Jesus is not going to allow anyone to get away from facing the hypocrisy in their lives. The lawyers seemingly would have done better to keep quiet. However, I suppose it is better to be challenged to repent and change one’s way than to remain caught up in a life of sin! It is clear that Jesus does not condemn the person, only the sin. He always gives someone an opportunity to repent. If we refuse to repent we will be condemned on Judgment Day, not by God but by our action of refusing to repent!
42 “Woe to you Pharisees! You pay tithes of mint and of rue and of every garden herb, but you pay no attention to judgment and to love for God. These you should have done, without overlooking the others. 43 Woe to you Pharisees! You love the seat of honor in synagogues and greetings in marketplaces. 44 Woe to you! You are like unseen graves over which people unknowingly walk.” 45 Then one of the scholars of the law said to him in reply, “Teacher, by saying this you are insulting us too.” 46 And he said, “Woe also to you scholars of the law! You impose on people burdens hard to carry, but you yourselves do not lift one finger to touch them.”
think: If we refuse to repent we will be condemned on Judgment Day, not by God but by our action of refusing to repent!
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Matthew 15-17
GOD IS THE JUST JUDGE
God is the Author of our lives, whether we like it or not! At the end of our lives we will come before God and His Christ, the Judge of the living and the dead. We will give to God an account of our lives. There will be no escape, there will be no place to run and hide. Yet we are not to be ashamed because God is on our side and not against us. Jesus stands alongside as the just judge.
One of the weaknesses we find within us is that of judgment. Some find it more of a struggle than others; it is a weakness that is born out of criticism, low self esteem, and a desire to be in control. So many times we turn to God for the judgment we can pass on to others. It is trust that there is a need for right judgment. A discerning spirit to know right from wrong, good from evil. The gift of right judgment is a gift given us by the Spirit at Confirmation. Yet judgment is a right that belongs to God who alone is Judge. The things that we pass judgment on others will be the very things by which God will pass judgment us. Have you ever noticed that the very things you pass judgment on others are the very things you yourself struggle with? It can be a valuable exercise in self awareness when you reflect at the judgment being made on the person. Reflect upon yourself as Jesus says, to pull out the plank in your own eyes before taking the splinter out your brother’s eyes. As Paul says in today’s first reading, “For by the standard by which you judge another you condemn yourself, since you, the judge, do the very same things.
God is patient and He waits for us to return to Him. It is the kindness of God that leads us to repentance. We come to a deeper realization that we are all sinners and have fallen short of the glory of God; so who are we to judge? God will repay us according to our works. Let us remove the
stubbornness of our own hearts and persevere in good works. Fr. Brian Steele
REFLECTION QUESTION: Where have I passed judgment on another person? Seek to be reconciled with the Lord Jesus Christ for judgment passed onto a member of the family, a friend or some other acquaintance.
Lord, I ask You to forgive me for the times I have passed judgment on another. Remove the stubbornness and impertinence that can lie hidden in my heart. Help me to forgive and love as You have forgiven and loved me. Amen.
St. Victor, bishop, pray for us.
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