READINGS for 2009-01-28
“The sower sows the word.” – Mark 4:14
I wrapped my Bible with a bookstore cover. I didn’t want my former gang to discover that I was attending prayer meetings. If these toughies find out, they’d surely ridicule me. But the preacher in the prayer meeting spoke about Mark 8:38 — that God will be ashamedof the ones who are ashamed of Him. The following prayer meeting I carried my Bible, this time with no more covers. My gang saw it. They sarcastically sang a joyful song complete with choreography, “Ang mga ibon….”
I persisted and became an active member of my community because the seed of the Gospel was sown. For me, the Gospel will always mean S-E-E-D. “S” for sincerity. The Gospel helped me remove my mask as “The Great Pretender.” The process was painful yet liberating. “E” for endurance. Injustice prevails in our society, so I learned to justtiis! I decide to endure hardships and move on heavenwards. “E” for enthusiasm. I battle sadness by choosing a zealous and healthy outlook in life. And “D” for devotion. From a person whose religion was ideology and blind fanaticism, I deepened my prayer life in God.
Oh, remember my gang? They’re now active in the Church and in their own Catholic communities. Some SEED eh?Obet Cabrillas
“Preach the Gospel. Use words if you must.” (St. Francis of Assisi)
Lord, let the word of Christ dwell in me richly and bear fruit in my life.
God deals with sin definitively. What a pity it is that we do not take hold of His offer of victory just as definitively. If only we realize the absolute horror sin is to God, we would be much less inclined to commit it. Jesus offers us His victory on the cross. The perverse truth is that we all too often simply ignore His offer and continue in sin. Why do we do this? Ask yourself for the answer to this question. Then and only then will we realize what is on offer to us and how crazy we are not to accept the gift of salvation in its fullness.
11 Every priest stands daily at his ministry, offering frequently those same sacrifices that can never take away sins. 12 But this one offered one sacrifice for sins, and took his seat forever at the right hand of God; 13 now he waits until his enemies are made his footstool. 14 For by one offering he has made perfect forever those who are being consecrated. 15 The holy Spirit also testifies to us, for after saying: 16 “This is the covenant I will establish with them after those days, says the Lord: ‘I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them upon their minds,’ ” 17 he also says: “Their sins and their evildoing I will remember no more.” 18 Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer offering for sin.
P S A L M
Psalm 110:1. 2. 3. 4
R: You are a priest forever, in the line of Melchizedeck.
1 The LORD said to my Lord: “Sit at my right hand till I make your enemies your footstool.” (R) 2 The scepter of your power the LORD will stretch forth from Zion The Lord says, “Rule in the midst of your enemies.” (R) 3 “Yours is princely power in the day of your birth, in holy splendor; before the daystar, like the dew, I have begotten you.” (R) 4 The LORD has sworn, and he will not repent: “You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek.” (R)
G O S P E L
The secular mentality and agenda of the world today does a great job of choking off any sort of religiosity before it can get too set. This is a great shame as what this means is that we are discarding the certainty of truth for the winds of whatever prevailing fad or fashion happens to be ‘in’ at the moment. In order to overcome this problem, the Church will need a series of generations to reject the relativism of the world, and return to the sure anchor of truth of which it seems the Church is the last, if not the only remaining, custodian!
1 On another occasion he began to teach by the sea. A very large crowd gathered around him so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down. And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land. 2 And he taught them at length in parables, and in the course of his instruction he said to them, 3 “Hear this! A sower went out to sow. 4 And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil. It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep. 6 And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots. 7 Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it and it produced no grain. 8 And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit. It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.” 9 He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.” 10 And when he was alone, those present along with the Twelve questioned him about the parables. 11 He answered them, “The mystery of the kingdom of God has been granted to you. But to those outside everything comes in parables, 12 so that ‘they may look and see but not perceive, and hear and listen but not understand, in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.’” 13 Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable? Then how will you understand any of the parables? 14 The sower sows the word. 15 These are the ones on the path where the word is sown. As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once and takes away the word sown in them. 16 And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who, when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy. 17 But they have no root; they last only for a time. Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 18 Those sown among thorns are another sort. They are the people who hear the word, 19 but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches, and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word, and it bears no fruit. 20 But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”
think:If only we realize the absolute horror sin is to God, we would be much less inclined to commit it.
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 Psalm 6-10
generaTion on The go
A well-known Japanese filmmaker made a very emphatic cinema about our culture by putting together without any commentary a collage of various daily scenes: people rushing through street crossings, trains churning with lightning speed, cars speeding up on freeways, elevators shooting up and down the building, etc. In the rush, everything seems reduced to being a component of a mechanical movement. Art, leisure, meditation and mysticism seem all lost.
Jesus is right. Seeds of wisdom and divine inspiration can do nothing in a “footpath” culture. The heart, under such condition, is busy pumping the needed biological sustenance for muscles and veins. The heart has no time to ponder.
Instead, note the divine rhythm that unfolds for us from Genesis:
· Evening came, and morning followed…
· On the seventh day God rested…
· After raining for 40 days and 40 nights, the rains stopped for 40 days and 40 nights… and dry land appeared during the time of Noah...
· After the slavery of 400 years, came the twilight Passover…
· After 50 days of journey from Egypt, the Israelites journeyed on a staggered basis to the Promised land for 40 years…
· Prophecy was silent in Israel for 400 years until John the Baptist appeared…
· Jesus waited for 30 years in hiddenness and silence, then He embarked on His public ministry for three years.
· After the intensity of Good Friday, there was darkness and the silence of the tomb that led to the Resurrection.
· After the Damascus experience, Paul spent three years of retreat in the desert of Arabia before he had his three mission journeys. Fr. Domie Guzman, SSP
Do you often hear yourself making a convenient alibi out of your being busy? What is the Lord telling you about this? Meditate on this truth: When we are sick, all urgencies about work stop. Money, work, deadlines and people’s demands all take a backseat.
Lord Jesus, help me to take the time to pause and let Your Spirit fill me and invigorate me for a more fruitful life.
St. Thomas Aquinas, Priest and Doctor, pray for us.
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