READINGS for 2008-05-24

Didache | Companion | Sabbath



“I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” – Mark 10:15
“I don’t like kids! They do nothing but sleep and cry!” said my lady friend who is single. She’s right about the sleeping and crying part but I love kids just the same.
Nothing beats the feeling of a father who carries in his arms a child who sleeps peacefully in reckless abandon. “Sleeping is an act of faith,” my med student friend once told me. He was referring to the times when he would study long and hard, and then would finally sleep, entrusting the outcome of the all-important exam the next day into the hands of God.
And crying? I once saw a child alone in the grocery. His head swirled at 1,000 revolutions per minute as he looked for his mother. When he was sure that he was lost, he cried at the top of his lungs. So I took his hand, brought him to the customer service station and was reunited with his mom.
Are you lost? Have the floods of life overtaken you? Stop struggling. It’s time to do what kids do: Cry! Cry to God. Wait on His hand to pick you up. Then sleep in faith in His loving arms. This is how to receive the Kingdom of God. Jon Escoto
Have all your paths led to dead-ends and still you deny you are lost? If you don’t know what to say to God, simply cry. That’s pure prayer. And God will come to find you.
God, I’m lost! I don’t know what to do. You’re my only hope. I’m tired. Rescue me that I may sleep in Your arms in peace.


For James, the answer to every situation is prayer. In good times or bad. However, how many of us heed his call and follow his advice? In the good times we tend to feel independent of God and we forget His place in our lives. In the bad times we turn to Him to solve all of our problems with “a snap of His fingers.” Neither of these two responses is sufficient. Prayer is the heart and basis of our relationship with God. Without it, we will spiritually wither and die.
James 5:13-20
13 Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone in good spirits? He should sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? He should summon the presbyters of the church, and they should pray over him and anoint [him] with oil in the name of the Lord, 15 and the prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will raise him up. If he has committed any sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The fervent prayer of a righteous person is very powerful. 17 Elijah was a human being like us; yet he prayed earnestly that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain upon the land. 18 Then he prayed again, and the sky gave rain and the earth produced its fruit. 19 My brothers, if anyone among you should stray from the truth and someone bring him back, 20 He should know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.
Psalm 141:1-2, 3 and 8
R: Let my prayer come like incense before you.
1 O LORD, to you I call; hasten to me; hearken to my voice when I call upon you. 2 Let my prayer come like incense before you; the lifting up of my hands, like the evening sacrifice. (R) 3 O LORD, set a watch before my mouth, a guard at the door of my lips. 8 For toward you, O GOD, my Lord, my eyes are turned; in you I take refuge; strip me not of life. (R)
Children are again placed before us as images of our faith. They have a certain zest for life and seemingly carefree attitude. Our faith in God ought to lead us to a similar sort of relationship with Him where we can live in His presence like children and enjoy the freedom He gives us as His sons and daughters. A sober and somber Christianity is not a very attractive thing. Let us live and enjoy our lives to the full – in Christ, of course.
Mark 10:13-16
13 People were bringing children to him that he might touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14 When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Amen, I say to you, whoever does not accept the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.” 16 Then he embraced them and blessed them, placing his hands on them.
my reflections
think:Do I possess child-like faith?

God’s special verse/thought for me today________________

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________


A memorable childhood experience that I cherish is my playtime with my father. Being the eldest and the only boy among three siblings, and being his namesake, I was my father’s pet. One particular game that He taught me early was chess. He said playing this game would help me develop my thinking — my logical and analytical abilities. Many times, I would find myself valuing all my pieces on the playing board, and I would be zealous in seeing to it that none of these would be “captured” or “eaten” by enemy pieces. Everything – everyone of my playing pieces – was important. This slowed down my play and limited my moves. My father would then remind me that the game must go on, and that I have at times to sacrifice a good number of my “small pawns” to save the more important pieces, something which I soon learned to do.
Children are our “pawns” in daily life, in real life. Children bear the brunt of poverty. Children suffer the psychological wounds brought about by immature parents. Children are the ones displaced by parental quarrels and by societal wars.  Children are the ones easily sacrificed as world bodies and countries craft their policies on population control. Even in Jesus’ time, children were the ones who were easily pushed away as the avid crowd and the over-protective disciples argued. Children are our natural “pawns” because they can be easily silenced, they do not argue, and they are generally docile.
So now, very early in their lives, children are pushed to behave like adults. They are taught how to survive: to labor at an early age, to beg shamelessly on our streets, to use adult talk and foul language to defend themselves, to learn the art of deception and robbery. Mother Teresa of Calcutta loved to repeat her words of warning: “In destroying the child, we are destroying love.”
If we are to rescue our world and our church, we have first to rescue the children. They are the world and the church of tomorrow. Fr. Domie Guzman
Reflection Question:
Wrestle with Jesus in prayer, and ask how you can be a bearer of Jesus to the youth and the youngsters around you.
Lord, You asked the little children to come to You so that You may keep them in Your protective and loving embrace. May You give me the grace to also love and protect the young and innocent in our society — the future of our nation.
Sts. Donatian and Rogatian, martyrs, pray for us.

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