READINGS for 2009-07-14

Didache | Companion | Sabbath



No SAlT?
Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. – Matthew 11:20
Lolo Isidro, my grandpa, always had wise instructions to his children. Living in a far- flung village that seems to be the last place in the solar system, my dad would muse over the memories of not having electricity in Eastern Samar for almost his entire youth. Since refrigerators then could only be seen in two places — in Manila and in his dreams — his family would always have problems when they slaughtered a pig or a carabao for a special occasion. Lolo Isidro’s anti-rot solution for the leftover fresh meat? Salt, plenty of it.
But they would often forget this wisdom. When Lolo Isidro sees spoiled meat, he wouldn’t ask why it rotted. He’d simply ask: Why, no salt?
When God looks at our society, He won’t ask why corruption exists. He knows. He’d  simply ask: Why, no salt? It’s a tough question to answer. Christians are called to announce “glad tidings” and more. We are also called to denounce injustice. We don’t just “invite people to prayer meetings.” We stand against corruption and help restore conscience in society.
God looks at your place. Is He asking, “Why, no salt?” Jon Escoto
Is your Christianity confined to your prayer room? There’s work to do outside. What is the Lord asking you to denounce to bring your world back to His love and justice?
Jesus, You wept for Your people while I don’t seem to care much about the society You placed me in. Give me the courage and wisdom to denounce the evil in the place where I should be the salt.




Quite often God uses people of unusual origin or circumstances to advance the state of the Kingdom of God here on earth. Moses is no exception to this. It is nothing less than a miracle that Moses lives and then is reared in the palace of the Pharaoh. He is virtual royalty. However, Moses is still reared secretly with the knowledge of his true origins, and his sense of justice ultimately betrays him and forces him to flee. Perhaps we should ask ourselves what it was in Moses that caused him to reveal his true identity when standing up for one of his fellow countrymen who was being ill-treated by an Egyptian.
Exodus 2:1-15a
1 A certain man of the house of Levi married a Levite woman, 2 who conceived and bore a son. Seeing that he was a goodly child, she hid him for three months. 3 When she could hide him no longer, she took a papyrus basket, daubed it with bitumen and pitch, and putting the child in it, placed it among the reeds on the river bank. 4 His sister stationed herself at a distance to find out what would happen to him. 5 Pharaoh’s daughter came down to the river to bathe, while her maids walked along the river bank. Noticing the basket among the reeds, she sent her handmaid to fetch it. 6 On opening it, she looked, and lo, there was a baby boy, crying! She was moved with pity for him and said, “It is one of the Hebrews’ children.” 7 Then his sister asked Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and call one of the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?” 8 “Yes, do so,” she answered. So the maiden went and called the child’s own mother. 9 Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Take this child and nurse it for me, and I will repay you.” The woman therefore took the child and nursed it. 10 When the child grew, she brought him to Pharaoh’s daughter, who adopted him as her son and called him Moses; for she said, “I drew him out of the water.” 11 On one occasion, after Moses had grown up, when he visited his kinsmen and witnessed their forced labor, he saw an Egyptian striking a Hebrew, one of his own kinsmen. 12 Looking about and seeing no one, he slew the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. 13 The next day he went out again, and now two Hebrews were fighting! So he asked the culprit, “Why are you striking your fellow Hebrew?” 14 But he replied, “Who has appointed you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses became afraid and thought, “The affair must certainly be known.” 15 Pharaoh, too, heard of the affair and sought to put him to death. But Moses fled from him and stayed in the land of Midian.
Psalm 69:3. 14. 30-31. 33-34
R: Turn to the Lord in your need, and you will live.
2 [3] I am sunk in the abysmal swamp where there is no foothold; I have reached the watery depths; the flood overwhelms me. (R) 13 [14] But I pray to you, O LORD, for the time of your favor, O God! In your great kindness answer me with your constant help. (R) 29 [30] But I am afflicted and in pain; let your saving help, O God, protect me. 30 [31] I will praise the name of God in song, and I will glorify him with thanksgiving. (R) 32 [33] “See, you lowly ones, and be glad; you who seek God, may your hearts be revived! 33 [34] For the LORD hears the poor, and his own who are in bonds he spurns not.” (R)
There is no doubt in my mind that it is possible to go to hell. Without this possibility, the concept of freedom lacks any credibility. The fundamental truth of life is that I have a choice as to whether I submit my life to God or not. And there are consequences for my actions. If I choose not to believe in God, then I cannot reasonably expect to receive the benefits given to those who believe. What is the lesson we draw from this? That we look carefully at the choices and decisions we make that concern our faith.
Matthew 11:20-24
20 Jesus began to reproach the towns where most of his mighty deeds had been done, since they had not repented. 21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would long ago have repented in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And as for you, Capernaum: ‘Will you be exalted to heaven? You will go down to the netherworld.’ For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. 24 But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”
my reflections
think:If I choose not to believe in God, then I cannot reasonably expect to receive the benefits given to those who do.

God’s special verse/thought for me today________________

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 13-15


A timely reminder
Today the Lord reproaches the unrepentant towns of Chorazin and Bethsaida. What struck me in the Gospel was that Jesus said that if the mighty deeds done in these towns were done in Tyre and Sidon, they would long ago have repented. Perhaps Chorazin and Bethsaida were condemned not because they were actually rotten to the core. Perhaps it was because they felt there was time. And because they thought there was time, they became complacent. Their complacency grew to the point of obstinacy. Yes, the Gospel is full of reminders of God’s patience towards the sinner. In Luke’s Gospel, God is even portrayed as a father who longingly waits for the return of the prodigal son. Yes, we are called to trust in God’s mercy and patience towards our inconsistencies. Trusting in God’s mercy is not the same as presuming God’s mercy. When we become presumptuous, we become complacent. And when we become complacent, we become irresponsible.
Today’s Gospel reminds me of a story about a man named John. He had never gone to Church in his life. No matter how much he was coaxed, he couldn’t be persuaded to attend Mass, even on a special day such as Christmas or Easter. “When it freezes in June ( it doesn’t freeze in June), then I will go to Church,” he would sarcastically say to everyone who dared invite him to Church. One year there was an unusually cold spring, and it stayed that way into June. On the first part of the month, temperature dipped to freezing for several nights. Everyone thought about Bill and what he said. Perhaps this spell of cold weather would finally get him to attend Church. It did. One Sunday, John made his first appearance in the Church building: the organ was playing, six men carried him in. John finally made it, but he was lying in a casket instead of sitting on a pew.
Friend, don’t wait until you’re “frozen” before you enter God’s house. Fr. Joel O. Jason
Reflection Question:
Do you always postpone your conversion? Do you presume God’s mercy and take for granted that there is always time?
Lord, make me a good steward of the time and opportunities You give me. Draw me out of my complacency. Enkindle in me a healthy sense of urgency that I take every moment of the day as an invitation to answer Your call. Amen.
St. Camillus de Lellis, Priest, pray for us.

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