READINGS for 2009-08-10
A HouSE foR A HouSE
Consider this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. – 2 Corinthians 9:6
I looked at the floor plan that the architect had drawn for us. I couldn’t help but feel overwhelmed. This was going to be our house. It was hard to imagine how the rooms would look based on the two-dimensional drawing I was looking at, but for me, the house was as good as standing.
As I silently thanked the Lord for His mammoth blessing, I was reminded of a promise He made to me many, many years ago…I was praying in a tiny chapel at our community center when the Lord brought my attention to the tabernacle behind the altar. It was a simple but elegant receptacle that our Bible sharing group had donated when the chapel was being built. We were still young then, and hardly earning, so some of us probably gave our lifetime savings to purchase it. Then I felt the Lord speak to my heart, “You have provided a home for me; I will provide a home for you.”
Today, our house is on its way to completion. And so is God’s promise to me. He has returned to me a thousand-fold of what I had sacrificially offered to Him years ago. He never forgets His promise. Rissa Singson-Kawpeng
Don’t expect to reap where you have not sown. What kinds of seeds have you planted?
Jesus, You cannot be outdone in Your generosity. Teach me to be as generous as You.
St. Paul speaks of a reality that very few people have ever managed to live. He reminds us that in the end, the only thing that matters is how we are positioned in the race to eternal life. Thus, striving to attain material possessions and all that goes with seeking the applause and acclaim of the world will mean very little when we die. What matters from a spiritual point of view is often neglected or completely forgotten by the world.
2 Corinthians 9:6-10
6 Brothers and sisters: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each must do as already determined, without sadness or compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 Moreover, God is able to make every grace abundant for you, so that in all things, always having all you need, you may have an abundance for every good work. 9 As it is written: “He scatters abroad, he gives to the poor; his righteousness endures forever.” 10 The one who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed and increase the harvest of your righteousness.
P S A L M
Psalm 112:1-2. 5-6. 7-8. 9
R: Blessed the man who is gracious and lends to those in need.
1 Blessed the man who fears the LORD, who greatly delights in his commands. 2 His posterity shall be mighty upon the earth; the upright generation shall be blessed. (R) 5 Well for the man who is gracious and lends, who conducts his affairs with justice; 6 he shall never be moved; the just man shall be in everlasting remembrance. (R) 7 An evil report he shall not fear; his heart is firm, trusting in the LORD. 8 His heart is steadfast; he shall not fear till he looks down upon his foes. (R) 9 Lavishly he gives to the poor; his generosity shall endure forever; his horn shall be exalted in glory. (R)
G O S P E L
The dying wheat grain is completely destroyed as it is broken open in the process of germination. Its full potential is reached when it has grown into a mature plant and give off seed itself. This is a seasonal process in plants — it is a lifetime work in a person. Let us be willing to open up our lives completely to the transforming power and work of the Spirit of God so that they will bear the fruits that they should bear.
24 Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit. 25 Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life. 26 Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there also will my servant be. The Father will honor whoever serves me.”
think:Let us be willing to open up our lives completely to the transforming power and work of the Spirit of God so that they will bear the fruits that they should bear.
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 Judith 1-4
linking uP With st. lAWrence oF old
Our saint for today is particularly associated with the City of Rome. St. Lawrence, in fact, was a deacon there and he is the most famous of the Roman martyrs. There are at least four churches in Rome which honor him and keep alive his memory. One, in fact, is located on the same street where the Sentro Filipino (the Basilica of Sta. Pudenziana, the church especially designated for the Filipino chaplaincy in Italy) is located. Nearby is a tiny church, administered by the Oblates of St. Joseph, built in the Middle Ages on top of ruins believed to have been the prison where St. Lawrence was confined before his martyrdom.
Somehow, the links are there, between the ancient Rome of the martyrs, and us 21st-century Christians. St. Augustine puts it in a remarkable sentence, given in a sermon of his, precisely for the occasion of St. Lawrence’s feast: “It is not true that the bridge was broken after the martyrs crossed; nor is it true that after they had drunk from it, the fountain of eternal life dried up.”
Our Lord, meanwhile, tells us in today’s Gospel (specially chosen one for the feast today): “Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there also will my servant be.”
Hence, there is this sense of continuity, this tradition (“passing on” or “handing over”), this uninterrupted bond beginning with our Lord Jesus Christ, and then extending to the saints like St. Lawrence, and to us today. St. Lawrence might have been in prison chains, but all of us also form an unbroken chain across the centuries, linked by one Faith, one Hope and one Love.
Only that our martyrdoms nowadays are of a different sort. Even those who are punished and persecuted for the Faith are not anymore grilled over blazing flames like what they did to St. Lawrence. And never will there be majestic churches raised in our honor. But the memory and the prophecy will still be there, for sure, for and by the countless men and women who, like St. Lawrence of old, follow Jesus — yes, if need be, until death. Fr. Martin Macasaet, SDB
Choose one saint, read about his life and try to follow his ways.
Lord, grant me the courage and tenacity to follow You like the saints.
St. Lawrence, Deacon and Martyr, pray for us.
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