READINGS for 2009-01-25
And they immediately left the nets and followed Him. – Mark 1:18
Deciding whether or not to do what God wants may not be our biggest dilemma but knowing when to do it. It’s easy to make all sorts of promises to God during an intense worship event but it’s in the everyday life that makes the difference.
The Bible says that when Jesus called His disciples, they immediately left their nets and followed Him. Don’t you think that they were without responsibilities? Of course they had. They had families! But they knew that there was nothing more important than responding to Jesus’ call.
God-given opportunities can be lost if you don’t respond when He speaks. So when He interrupts your schedule today and tells you to say a prayer for somebody, or help a beggar, or to do our jobs well, or even to forgive those who have hurt us… stop whatever you are doing and do it. Don’t start making excuses.
When God speaks, respond — now! Annette Abad-Flores
“Those who want to be my disciples must… follow me… and… the Father will honor them.” (John 12:26)
Holy Spirit, give me the strength to follow You, now and always!
St. Paul, Apostle, pray for us.
The message of all the prophets includes a call to repentance and conversion of heart and life. This is one of the fundamental keystones of the Gospel and an essential aspect of its proclamation. Everywhere the Gospel is proclaimed, the first and most crucial fruit of its proclamation is not miracles or signs and wonders, but repentance and the lives of people undergoing conversion. Here is the truest sign of a work of God.
Jonah 3:1-5. 10
1 The word of the LORD came to Jonah a second time: 2 “Set out for the great city of Nineveh, and announce to it the message that I will tell you.” 3 So Jonah made ready and went to Nineveh, according to the LORD’s bidding. Now Nineveh was an enormously large city; it took three days to go through it. 4 Jonah began his journey through the city, and had gone but a single day’s walk announcing, “Forty days more and Nineveh shall be destroyed,” 5 when the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth. 10 When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil that he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out.
P S A L M
Psalm 25:4-5. 6-7. 8-9 (4a)
R: Teach me your ways, O Lord.
4 Your ways, O LORD, make known to me; teach me your paths, 5 guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my savior. (R) 6 Remember that your compassion, O LORD, and your love are from of old. 7 In your kindness remember me, because of your goodness, O LORD. (R) 8 Good and upright is the LORD; thus he shows sinners the way. 9 He guides the humble to justice, he teaches the humble his way. (R)
Paul’s concern is not to make life difficult for anyone. All he wants to do is see the Gospel proclaimed to all. He has an idea that the time is short, and so in his mind, there is an urgency for this to happen. He may not have been correct in thinking that the end of the world was close, but he is certainly right that there is an urgency to proclaim the Gospel — even today! The world needs to learn the truth and to live by it or else there will be more and more calamities and disasters brought about by the errant decisions of humanity.
1 Corinthians 7:29-31
29 I tell you, brothers, the time is running out. From now on, let those having wives act as not having them, 30 those weeping as not weeping, those rejoicing as not rejoicing, those buying as not owning, 31 those using the world as not using it fully. For the world in its present form is passing away.
G O S P E L
Jesus lays before us the fundamental Gospel message, “Repent and Believe.” And then we have the story of the call of the first two apostles. This is the power of the Gospel at work in the lives of men and women. This is what can happen if the Gospel is proclaimed with conviction and sincerity — the lives of men and women will be transformed! There is nothing more exciting than watching a person undergo conversion and see the way that God reveals Himself to them. They accept Him, and then the real work of change is begun and goes on and on …
14 After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: 15 “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” 16 As he passed by the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea; they were fishermen. 17 Jesus said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 18 Then they abandoned their nets and followed him. 19 He walked along a little farther and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John. They too were in a boat mending their nets. 20 Then he called them. So they left their father Zebedee in the boat along with the hired men and followed him.
think: This is what happens if the Gospel is proclaimed with conviction and sincerity — the lives of men and women will be transformed.
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 John 16-18
My weekly time with God
THANK YOU LIST
Things to be grateful for from the past week
Things to ask God for in the coming week
Most important word God told me this week
Building The kingdom:
an inTer-generaTional concern
I joined a father of a family in celebrating another passage of a year in his life. While we were celebrating with food and drinks aplenty, he proudly told all the guests that the year for him has been extra gracious. He claimed that he received the best gift he ever could dream of: his only son, whose birthday was also forthcoming, just passed the engineering board exams, the same one he himself managed to pass years ago. The proud father said he now has the confidence that his son will carry on with what he has courageously started in the family business.
The Almighty Father works out His plan for the universe in the same way. First, He raised up the patriarchs: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and their children. Then He sent the prophets who interacted with the kings in building up Israel as the Chosen People. John the Baptist came. The Gospel story says that after John, Jesus began His most important ministry as the Only Son sent by the Father. The Gospel goes on to tell us that Jesus also selected the first disciples whom He trained to be the next “fishers of men.”
The rationale for the generations is not to simply have a mere continuation of tasks. Rather, each generation is to build on — in a taller way, a better way — what the forefathers have established. Each generation has a valuable contribution in the grand plan. Each generation is this important. Fr. Domie Guzman, SSP
Reflecting on events and developments in your family, what unique contribution does your generation make in the family’s history? In your community or in your parish, try to appreciate the previous generations of volunteers who made valuable contributions to advance the community and/or parish. Spend some time in your prayer in lifting up to God the new and forthcoming generations in your family, in your company, in your community and in your Christian groups. Pray for God’s protection and anointing for the persons concerned.
Lord Jesus, help me to do my humble part in building Your Kingdom on earth. I thank You for the work of the past generations in strengthening the Church as it is now.
St. Paul, Apostle, pray for us.
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