READINGS for 2008-04-22
THE SMILE OF PEACE
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you… Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.” – John 14:27
One of the things I love about Norlie is her smile. Behind that smile is such a joyful disposition that you’d think she’s problemproof and worry-free. Come to think of it, I’ve never seen her get angry or irritated at anyone. More than patience, I believe the Lord has blessed Norlie with the gift of His peace — inner peace that calms the heart and soothes the soul.
The last time we saw each other, Norlie gave me some sad news. During her checkup, the doctor discovered a five-entimeter lump between her small and large intestines. Her biopsy showed the lump to be malignant. As I listened to her speak, I did my best to keep myself from crying. Norlie was even the one who comforted and reassured me. Her inner peace was overwhelming as she said, “Don’t worry, Dins. I know God will take care of me. Pray with me, OK?” And with that same winning smile, she embraced me. Dina Pecaña
“Let nothing trouble or frighten you. All things pass away. Only God never changes. Patience obtains everything. God alone suffices.” (St. Teresa of Avila)
In the midst of problems, sickness and trials, grant me the gift of your peace, Lord.
Paul’s persecutors seem to be following him around. This time they stone him but he escapes to Derbe. However, we see the perseverance of Paul in that after a while he returns to the same cities that have previously sought to kill him to try again with the Gospel. For Paul, there is no greater imperative than the proclamation of the Gospel, not even the preservation of his own life. Let us seek to learn from his level of commitment.
Acts 14: 19-28
19 In those days, some Jews from Antioch and Iconium arrived and won over the crowds. They stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing that he was dead. 20 But when the disciples gathered around him, he got up and entered the city. On the following day he left with Barnabas for Derbe. 21 After they had proclaimed the good news to that city and made a considerable number of disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch. 22 They strengthened the spirits of the disciples and exhorted them to persevere in the faith, saying, “It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom of God.” 23 They appointed presbyters for them in each church and, with prayer and fasting, commended them to the Lord in whom they had put their faith. 24 Then they traveled through Pisidia and reached Pamphylia. 25 After proclaiming the word at Perga they went down to Attalia. 26 From there they sailed to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work they had now accomplished. 27 And when they arrived, they called the church together and reported what God had done with them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles. 28 Then they spent no little time with the disciples.
P S A L M
Psalm 145 : 10-11, 12-13ab,21
R: Your friends make known, O Lord, the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
10 Let all your works give you thanks, O LORD, and let your faithful ones bless you. 11 Let them discourse of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might. (R) 12 Making known to men your might and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is a kingdom for all ages, and your dominion endures through all generations. (R) 21 May my mouth speak the praise of the LORD, and may all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever. (R)
G O S P E L
Jesus knows that His life is ultimately in His Father’s hand. He knows that the evil one has no power over Him. He knows that all that happens from now on is part of a higher and more important plan than anyone could have imagined. This is the culmination of 2,000 years of work with the Jewish people, and He, Jesus, is the centerpiece of this work. Jesus knows that all He has to do is submit in obedience to His Father’s will and everything will work out in the end.
27 “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. 28 You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. 29 And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe. 30 I will no longer speak much with you, for the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over me, 31 but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me.”
think:Let us seek to learn from Paul’s level of commitment.
God’s special verse/thought for me today________________
T O D A Y ’ S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Numbers 21-24
JESUS OUR PEACE
When nations are not at war, they are not necessarily at peace with one another. They may be preparing for war instead. When people do not fight, they do not essentially have peace within. They may be just as troubled inside as those who are at war.
Peace is not external. It resides in the heart of those who are not disturbed by any conflict from the outside.
Peace does not depend on international agreements. It rests on God’s gift of reconciliation with us through Jesus, His Son. We pray for peace, but we should not forget to work for it. Peace is God’s gift and our task. People who pray for peace are not automatically peaceful people. Peaceful people are people who make peace with God and with one another.
Jesus gives us His peace. Let us be peacemakers.
The absence of conflict is not peace. But the absence of Jesus in our lives is always the absence of peace. Jesus is our Peace.Fr. Bobby Titco
Peace is God’s gift and our task.
Lord Jesus Christ, You are our Peace. Please dwell in our hearts. You said to Your apostles, “I leave you peace; my peace I give you.” Look not on our sins, but increase our faith, hope, and love. Make us channels of Your peace that we may have the unity of Your kingdom where You live and reign forever and ever. Amen.
St. Bicor, Persian martyr, pray for us.
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