READINGS for 2007-12-14
“If only you had paid attention to my commands…” – Isaiah 48:18
We should have won that “Treasure Hunt.” We were way ahead of the other teams and we were looking for the final item on the list. If only we had paid enough attention to the instructions, we would have easily found out that the map to the location of the last treasure was just at the back of the instruction manual.
We were too eager to get to the treasure we overlooked the very thing that would lead us to the treasure – the instructions. Life, I think, is a lot like a treasure hunt. If we want to get to the treasure we have to follow instructions. God made it easy for us to find the “Treasure.” He laid it out to us in a simple, easy to understand and very accessible instruction manual – the Bible.
Many times we get so caught up with life’s complexities, we miss out on the more important things. We are often overwhelmed with so many things that we have to accomplish, we seldom have time to read God’s Word. Jesus is the Word of God. He is Life.
Wanna have a life?
Check out God’s “instruction manual.”
Then you will live the life. Randy B.
How much of God’s Word do I take in?
Do I spend time studying God’s Word? More than just reading the Word, do I live the Word.
Lord, with so many things I have to do today, remind me to make time for the things that matter most. Teach me to value and study your Word. But most of all, teach me to live it. Amen.
The image of a river for our happiness and that of the waves of the sea for our integrity is extremely powerful. A river is relentless in the course it follows and nothing is able to stop the coming and going of the waves of the sea. Their continual pounding erodes the shoreline even if it is made of rocks. This is the sort of happiness and integrity that I want!
17 Thus says the LORD, your redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, “I, the LORD, your God, teach you what is for your good, and lead you on the way you should go. 18 If you would hearken to my commandments, your prosperity would be like a river, and your vindication like the waves of the sea; 19 your descendants would be like the sand, and those born of your stock like its grains, their name never cut off or blotted out from my presence.”
P S A L M
Psalm 1:1-2, 3, 4, 6
R: Those who follow you, Lord. Will have the light of life.
1 Blessed the man who follows not the counsel of the wicked nor walks in the way of sinners, nor sits in the company of the insolent, 2 but delights in the law of the LORD and meditates on his law day and night. (R) 3 He is like a tree planted near running water, that yields its fruit in due season, and whose leaves never fade. Whatever he does, prospers. (R) 4 Not so the wicked, not so; they are like chaff which the wind drives away. 6 For the LORD watches over the way of the just, but the way of the wicked vanishes. (R)
It is always possible to find something we dislike about a person no matter who they are and what they say and do. This does not mean that what we find is true! Jesus notices that the crowds are like this – no matter what he does they seem to find fault with it in one way or another! However, He tells them that wisdom, meaning the wisdom of God, will be proved right in the end. That is, one day they will realize how wrong they were.
G O S P E L
16 “To what shall I compare this generation? It is like children who sit in marketplaces and call to one another, 17 ‘We played the flute for you, but you did not dance, we sang a dirge but you did not mourn.’ 18 For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they said, ‘He is possessed by a demon.’ 19 The Son of Man came eating and drinking and they said, ‘Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’ But wisdom is vindicated by her works.”
think: The wisdom of God will be proved right in the end.
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 2 Thessalonians 1-3
TRUE HOLINESS IS… PERFECTION IN CHARITY
The Pharisees called themselves the “separated ones” – the cream of the crop. Their name stems from the Aramaic word “perusim” which really means the “elite ones.” Indeed, their struggle for holiness and righteous living makes them move away from persons they considered filthy and “BI” (Bad Influence).
In Christian history, the early monasteries and convents of priests and religious were built outside the city walls… and a good number were established on top of hills and mountains. This was also for the purpose of segregating the priests and the religious from the secularism that was in society. It was thought that the fool-proof way to holiness and purity of life was through avoidance, abstinence… and through a “flight from the world” mentality.
In addressing the Parables found in Luke 15 to the Pharisees and scribes, Jesus wants the Pharisees and us to realize that holiness should not be a shell that separates us from others. Rather, holiness should make us more and more act in the way of God – a way of love and compassion. This is what real holiness is: not the ability to make judgments over who is really bad and who is good, but the ability to better understand others with empathy. God himself – Jesus reveals in his Parables – is “love and compassion to the fullest.” God rejoices not in the damnation of the lost… but in the recovery of the lost.
The Apostle Paul proclaimed to the Philippians (2:5ff) that Jesus, the Holy One of God, stripped himself of his Godly dignity and he took the form of humanity. In this manner, he raised us up to the dignity of God’s children by his pouring out of self. In this process of self-emptying, we have doctrine and example. Fr DOMIE, SSP
REFLECTION QUESTION: SOMETHING TO DO: Pray for God’s blessing over people you loved to judge. Include in your “Prayer for God’s Blessing” also the good intentions for bar girls, drug addicts, hardened criminals, etc. Resolve to do this – that you will continue to be an intercessor for all these types of persons, and that you will continue to embrace them all in loving prayers.
May we follow Your example, and thus become holy, worthy to be called Your own.
St. Serapion, martyr, pray for us.
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