READINGS for 2008-11-06
ChRIst OR NOthING
For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much rubbish, that I may gain Christ. – Philippians 3:8
Nina and Jenny are officemates and have become the best of friends. But things changed when Nina began to have an illicit affair in the office and she wanted Jenny to cover up for it. Jenny could not give in to Nina’s wish and decided to talk to the guy instead. She pleaded for him to go away from her best friend. Of course, Nina didn’t appreciate what Jenny did and decided to end their friendship. Painful as it was, Jenny accepted it, knowing that she just did the right thing even if it meant losing a dear friend.
There are many occasions in life that compel us to make firm decisions and stand by our convictions even if it costs us. There is a saying that when we lose some, we win some. But not everything that the world considers a loss is really that. In Christ, there is always victory. What can be more worthwhile than knowing that we live a life that mirrors Christ? What could be more rewarding than knowing that we are doing things that glorify Him?Jane Gonzales
Can we honestly say, we are willing to give up everything for Christ, even if it costs us our lives?
Dear Lord, Thank You for giving Your all for me. May I let go of those that hinder me from giving my all to You. Amen.
Paul may be willing to give up physical circumcision as a sign that marks the People of God but he is not willing to lose the spiritual significance or meaning of the act! The Holy Spirit sets Christians apart at Baptism and marks us for a new type of existence. He marks us as claimed for the Kingdom of God such that nothing or no one else can touch us. We have been made God’s children and as far as Paul is concerned, that is not only the way it should be, but nothing else can make a rival claim to us any more.
3 Brothers and sisters: We are the circumcision, we who worship through the Spirit of God, who boast in Christ Jesus and do not put our confidence in flesh, 4 although I myself have grounds for confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he can be confident in the flesh, all the more can I. 5 Circumcised on the eighth day, of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrew parentage, in observance of the law a Pharisee, 6 in zeal I persecuted the church, in righteousness based on the law I was blameless. 7 [But] whatever gains I had, these I have come to consider a loss because of Christ. 8 More than that, I even consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
P S A L M
Psalm 105:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
R: Let hearts rejoice who search for the Lord.
2 Sing to him, sing his praise, proclaim all his wondrous deeds. 3 Glory in his holy name; rejoice, O hearts that seek the LORD! (R) 4 Look to the LORD in his strength; seek to serve him constantly. 5 Recall the wondrous deeds that he has wrought, his portents, and the judgments he has uttered. (R) 6 You descendants of Abraham, his servants, sons of Jacob, his chosen ones! 7 He, the LORD, is our God; throughout the earth his judgments prevail. (R)
G O S P E L
We normally eat meals with our friend, not with enemies or strangers, unless of course we are trying to make them our friends! It is precisely for this reason we so often find Jesus eating with sinners and strangers. He has a mission – to bring the Good News of God’s loving mercy and forgiveness to them. This will not be possible unless He is willing to spend time with them, get to know them, earn their trust and then challenge them to accept the Gospel.
1 The tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to listen to him, 2 but the Pharisees and scribes began to complain, saying, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” 3 So to them he addressed this parable. 4 “What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? 5 And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy 6 and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance. 8 “Or what woman having ten coins and losing one would not light a lamp and sweep the house, searching carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she does find it, she calls together her friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found the coin that I lost.’ 10 In just the same way, I tell you, there will be rejoicing among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”
think:Are we willing to spend time with sinners, get to know them, earn their trust and then challenge them to accept the Gospel.
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 Isaiah 61-63
NO ONE IS A LOST CAUSE
For God, no one is a lost cause. One may be compared with a sheep among 99 other sheep. One may be likened to one drachma among nine others. For a shepherd, one sheep may be lost. For a woman, a drachma may be lost. But for God, no sheep nor drachma is lost; it has yet to be found. In this world of ours, where some people are even told to get lost, it is indeed a source of unspeakable consolation to know that for God, no one is a lost cause. If this is the case, why do some self-righteous people label someone as a lost cause? Here are three possible reasons.
First, those who consider anyone as a lost cause are also lost themselves. It takes one to know one, as a cliché says. They are lost not because God considers them as such, but because they regard themselves that way. Second, those who judge anyone as a lost may be compared with a sheep among 99 other sheep. One may be likened to one drachma among nine others. For a shepherd, one sheep may be lost. For a woman, a drachma may be lost. But for God, no sheep nor drachma is lost; it has yet to be found. In this world of ours, where some people are even told to get lost, it is indeed a source
of unspeakable consolation to know that for God, no one is a lost cause. If this is the case, why do some self-righteous people label someone as a lost cause? Here are three possible reasons.
First, those who consider anyone as a lost cause are also lost themselves. It takes one to know one, as a cliché says. They are lost not because God considers them as such, but because they regard themselves that way.
Second, those who judge anyone as a lost cause do not really know the true worth of a soul. The reason is simple: They did not create that soul. God alone, who created each soul, can truly value every human person.
Third, those who dismiss anyone as a lost cause are truly ignorant of God. They do not know Him. Do you know that the Lord’s favorite biblical passage is Hosea 6:6 (“It is mercy I desire, not sacrifice”)? Jesus quoted this twice, the only passage He quoted more than once—first in Matthew 9:13 and second in Matthew 12:7.
Whoever among us thinks that he or she is lost is gravely mistaken. Whoever among us considers anyone as a lost cause is morally wrong. The scribes and Pharisees in the Gospel today were morally wrong. They were gravely mistaken. But they did not know. Fr. Bobby Titco
For God, no one is a lost cause.
Console me, O God, with the love You have for me. Help me see my worth the way You value me. As you never consider me a lost cause, so too will I never dismiss anyone as a hopeless case. Amen.
St. Winoc, abbot, pray for us.
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