READINGS for 2008-04-28
“I have told you this so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you.” – John16:4a
As one of the leaders of the inmates at the Correctional Institute for Women, there were times when I had to do things that didn’t sit well with the other prisoners. Especially when it comes to prohibited activities inside the institution.
Once I discovered that some prisoners were using drugs. At first, I withheld the information because I was afraid that those who were guilty would harm me. But with courage from the Holy Spirit and believing that nothing could be against me if I was on God’s side, I did what He inspired me to do and reported the incident.
A general inspection was immediately conducted to find drug paraphernalia and its users. The search yielded a tooter, foil and other evidence under some beddings. The squad leader involved in the drug use was given disciplinary action, charged with an additional case and was stripped of her position and privileges. After she served time in solitary confinement, she was transferred to another dormitory far from where I was, to keep her from carrying out her threats to harm me.
Truly, if you are with God, there’s nothing to fear because He is your protector! Beth Coral
Afraid of the things you cannot reveal? Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to give you strength and shield you from harm.
Give me the grace, O Jesus, and the boldness to glorify You. Amen.
The Gospel truth is spreading further into the Roman Empire. It is no longer confined to a few places near Jerusalem. Thanks to committed men like Paul, Barnabas and many others, the Gospel has been preached far and wide. It is our duty and privilege to do the same today. Worldly philosophies of secularism and materialism have made inroads into the life of the Church. Thus, the need to work towards a re-evangelization of many.
Acts 16: 11-15
11 We set sail from Troas, making a straight run for Samothrace, and on the next day to Neapolis, 12 and from there to Philippi, a leading city in that district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. We spent some time in that city. 13 On the sabbath we went outside the city gate along the river where we thought there would be a place of prayer. We sat and spoke with the women who had gathered there. 14 One of them, a woman named Lydia,a dealer in purple cloth, from the city of Thyatira, a worshiper of God, listened, and the Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what Paul was saying. 15 After she and her household had been baptized, she offered usan invitation, “If you consider me a believer in the Lord, come and stay at my home,” and she prevailed on us.
P S A L M
Psalm 149: 1b-2 , 3-4, 5-6a and 19b
R: The Lord takes delight in his people.
1 Sing to the LORD a new song of praise in the assembly of the faithful. 2 Let Israel be glad in their maker, let the children of Zion rejoice in their king. (R) 3 Let them praise his name in the festive dance, let them sing praise to him with timbrel and harp. 4 For the LORD loves his people, and he adorns the lowly with victory. (R) 5 Let the faithful exult in glory; let them sing for joy upon their couches; 6 let the high praises of God be in their throats. 9 This is the glory of all his faithful. Alleluia. (R)
G O S P E L
Jesus predicts some of the persecution and suffering His followers will have to endure particularly when a decisive break with Judaism will occur. This will surely help instill in the minds of many believers and non-believers alike the significance and effect of faith in Jesus Christ. Suffering and persecution will always be a part of a disciple’s life. We will do well to prepare ourselves accordingly.
John 15: 26- 16:4a
26 “When the Advocate comes whom I will send you from the Father, the Spirit of truth that proceeds from the Father, he will testify to me. 27 And you also testify, because you have been with me from the beginning. 16: 1 “I have told you this so that you may not fall away. 2 They will expel you from the synagogues; in fact, the hour is coming when everyone who kills you will think he is offering worship to God. 3 They will do this because they have not known either the Father or me. 4 I have told you this so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you.
think: Am I always ready to explain my faith?
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 Deuteronomy 4-7
THE BITTER PILL
A cliché goes, “The truth hurts.” By experience, we know that this is true. However, we also know that only the truth sets a man free. The truth is like a bitter pill that heals. Lying is a disease. Only the truth can restore to health anyone who is sick with lying.
The truth that Jesus had to leave His disciples was a big blow to the men who left everything to follow Him. They were sad. “Still,” Jesus said, “I must tell you the truth.” He had to go. Jesus did not give them a code to declassify; He spoke in the clearest terms about Himself. Telling them the truth helped them face the issue squarely. Facing issues in life is the first step to conquering them and growing in maturity through them.
When the disciples confronted the issue about Jesus’ farewell, they realized that Jesus’ physical absence from them actually meant the presence of the same Jesus in each of them. From then on, they themselves became an alter Christus, “another Christ.” From then on, they would see Jesus no longer with their physical eyes but with their eyes of faith. The presence of Jesus made the apostles strive to be Jesus to one another and recognize Him in each other as well.
The absence of Jesus paved the way for His abiding presence. In John 17:24, did not Jesus pray to the Father that all those whom the Father gave Him be with Him always? And departing from their sight was part of the answer to this fervent prayer of His. For by vanishing from their midst, Jesus became present in their very midst. His own Spirit, the Holy Spirit, the living Principle of His life and power, the very Breath of God, came not only upon but also into the hearts of His disciples even as Jesus went away. Letting go of Jesus was like the bitter pill the disciples had to take. It was, however, a bitter pill that gave them the sweet presence of the Holy Spirit in their hearts.
The truth hurts. It is like a bitter pill. Anyone who refuses to take it can never be healed. But one who takes it is healed and becomes a healer himself. Fr. Bobby Titco
Have you taken the “truth pill” today?
I am scared of the truth, O Lord, because the truth often hurts. But only the truth can set me free. Hold me by the hand as I face the truth about myself and never leave me. Heal me and set me free, Jesus. Amen.
St. Catherine of Siena, virgin and doctor of the Church, pray for us.
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