READINGS for 2009-10-03
WITH NEW EyES
“I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned, you have revealed them to the childlike.” – Luke 10:21
I was exhausted from cooking. It was New Year’s Day and we had a family lunch. I was resting on the sofa when my three-year-old nephew approached me, armed with children’s books. “Tita, read to me,” he said. I looked at the books and realized they were fairy tales. I groaned silently. All I wanted to do was put my feet up and rest. But my little nephew’s eyes lit up at the idea of opening the books. I may have heard the fairy tales hundreds of times but my nephew was going to hear these stories for the first time. To him, everything was new.
I shook my head as I realized how we adults take many things for granted. Things that used to delight us as children bore us now. Many times, we look at the world with tired eyes. God reveals Himself to us every day, but with tired eyes, we miss so much!
At that moment, I felt God was revealing Himself to me through my nephew — reminding me to be more loving. God was telling me to open my eyes and my heart because He was in this child. I smiled at the little boy with the armful of books in front me. I motioned to a spot beside me and asked him to sit. I flipped to the first page and began, “Once upon a time…”Cess Cosico
How has God revealed Himself to you today? Look at the world like a child, with new eyes.
Lord, make my eyes and heart childlike.
It is not essential for God that He be tied to a particular piece of land or a particular cult practice in a temple. What is important is that He is in relationship with His people. This is why we will constantly see in the stories of the Old Testament the understanding that even in defeat the people can acknowledge the presence of God with them. Even when in exile, this sentiment will endure indicating that religion for the Jew is primarily founded on personal relationship with God.
Baruch 4:5-12. 27-29
5 Fear not, my people! Remember, Israel, 6 You were sold to the nations not for your destruction; it was because you angered God that you were handed over to your foes. 7 For you provoked your Maker with sacrifices to demons, to no-gods; 8 you forsook the Eternal God who nourished you, and you grieved Jerusalem who fostered you. 9 She indeed saw coming upon you the anger of God; and she said: “Hear, you neighbors of Zion! God has brought great mourning upon me, 10 for I have seen the captivity that the Eternal God has brought upon my sons and daughters. 11 With joy I fostered them; but with mourning and lament I let them go. 12 Let no one gloat over me, a widow, bereft of many: For the sins of my children I am left desolate, because they turned from the law of God. 27 Fear not, my children; call out to God! He who brought this upon you will remember you. 28 As your hearts have been disposed to stray from God, turn now ten times the more to seek him; 29 for he who has brought disaster upon you will, in saving you, bring you back enduring joy.”
P S A L M
Psalm 69:33-35. 36-37
R: The Lord listens to the poor.
32  “See, you lowly ones, and be glad; you who seek God, may your hearts revive! 33  For the LORD hears the poor, and his own who are in bonds he spurns not. 34  Let the heavens and the earth praise him, the seas and whatever moves in them!” (R) 35  For God will save Zion and rebuild the cities of Judah. They shall dwell in the land and own it, 36  and the descendants of his servants shall inherit it, and those who love his name shall inhabit it. (R)
G O S P E L
Christianity is all about relationships, not power. Power as exercised by Christians takes the form of love — a decision to be in relationship with another person, whether friend or foe. Only when we understand the power of God as associated with love will we be able to understand what we mean when we say, “God loves you.” In other words, “God chooses to place Himself in relationship with you.” What an amazing truth this is, a truth we are called to share with others.
17 The seventy-two disciples returned rejoicing, and said to Jesus, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us because of your name.” 18 Jesus said, “I have observed Satan fall like lightning from the sky. 19 Behold, I have given you the power ‘to tread upon serpents’ and scorpions and upon the full force of the enemy and nothing will harm you. 20 Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” 21 At that very moment he rejoiced [in] the holy Spirit and said, “I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will. 22 All things have been handed over to me by my Father. No one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.” 23 Turning to the disciples in private he said, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. 24 For I say to you, many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.”
think: Christianity is all about relationships, not power.
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 Sirach 21-23
Of JOy, simplicity And humility
The disciples return and report that their mission was very successful. We can imagine their joy and enthusiasm. But Jesus seems to dampen their joy: “Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you.”
Jesus had to tell them and us that real joy cannot be found in our successes. Such joy is fragile and imperfect because the true source of real joy is God alone. Jesus tells us today also that only He has the power over evil, power over Satan and over evil spirits. That is why Jesus came into the world to overthrow Satan. As disciples of Jesus, we have been given spiritual authority and power for overcoming evil. Whenever we are able to overcome evil in ourselves or in our society, it is not because of our own strength but because Jesus won this victory for us.
We have only few passages in our Bible that quote a prayer of Jesus. Today we are allowed to listen to one and so have a glimpse into the prayer life of Jesus. What a prayer! It is not a prayer memorized from a prayer book. It comes from the heart. It breaks out from Jesus like a shout of joy. It is in praise of the Father. I think we can learn a lot from this prayer of Jesus and replace our often too many petitions with more praises and words of thanksgiving. Jesus thanks His Father for revealing to His disciples the wisdom and knowledge of God. His prayer expresses the fundamental truth that God is both Father and Lord of the universe. He is the Creator of all that we see around us. At the same time, He is a loving Father who cares day and night for us His children. No, not our successes give us real joy but the knowledge that we are God’s beloved children and that our “names are written in heaven.” What makes the Christian faith different from all others is that we know that God is our Father whom we know through Jesus, and that we can approach Him always with childlike humility and confidence. Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
When I pray the “Our Father,” do I pray to my heavenly Father with joy and confidence in His love and care for me?
Lord, give me a child-like simplicity and trust in Your profound love. Remove from my heart and mind every doubt and pride which would hinder me from receiving Your Word with trust and humble submission.
St. Gerard of Brogne, Abbot, pray for us.
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