Pages

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Daily Bible Readings - June 30,2013

1ST READING
 
Elisha would have understood the significance of Elijah throwing his cloak or mantle over him as a form of anointing or claiming him to follow in his footsteps as prophet. Later we will hear Elisha request a double portion of Elijah’s spirit indicating a full commitment to the ministry of a prophet, even allowing for the fact that he would have been aware of the difficulties and sufferings it would bring as well.
 
1 Kings 19:16, 19-21
16 The Lord said to Elijah: “You shall anoint Elisha, son of Shaphat of Abel-meholah, as prophet to succeed you.” 19 Elijah set out, and came upon Elisha, son of Shaphat, as he was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen; he was following the twelfth. Elijah went over to him and threw his cloak over him. 20 Elisha left the oxen, ran after Elijah, and said, “Please, let me kiss my father and mother good-bye, and I will follow you.” Elijah answered, “Go back! Have I done anything to you?” 21 Elisha left him and, taking the yoke of oxen, slaughtered them; he used the plowing equipment for fuel to boil their flesh, and gave it to his people to eat. Then he left and followed Elijah as his attendant.
 
P S A L M
 
Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-8, 9-10, 11
R: You are my inheritance, O Lord.
Keep me, O God, for in you I take refuge; I say to the Lord, “My Lord are you.” O Lord, my allotted portion and my cup, you it is who hold fast my lot. (R) “I bless the Lord who counsels me; even in the night my heart exhorts me.” I set the Lord ever before me; with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed. (R) Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices, my body, too, abides in confidence; 10because you will not abandon my soul to the nether world, nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption. (R)  11 You will show me the path to life, fullness of joys in your presence, the delights at your right hand forever. (R)
 
2ND READING
 
Freedom is a very slippery word and has many conflicting meanings. Americans think they are the guardians of true freedom but I question what they mean by this. It is imperative that we see freedom along the lines of being free to act for what is true and right and not just freedom from any sort of constraint. It is not a true use of our freedom when we choose the path of sin — it is an abuse of freedom.
 
Galatians 5:1, 13-18
Brothers and sisters: For freedom Christ set us free; so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery. 13 For you were called for freedom, brothers and sisters. But do not use this freedom as anopportunity for the flesh; rather, serve one another through love. 14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you go on biting and devouring one another, beware that you are not consumed by one another. 16 I say, then: live by the Spirit and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh. 17 For the flesh has desires against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you may not do what you want. 18 But if you are guided by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
 
GOSPEL
 
Jesus is unwavering in His commitment to follow His Father’s will. He will not let anything get in the way of His obedience. Jesus knows that Jerusalem will be a place of suffering and trial — possibly He even knew that it would be the place of His death — but He did not waver from setting His path in that direction. This is the level of commitment that God expects from His followers. We all have to ask ourselves whether or not we are willing to give this much.
 
GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Speak, Lord, your servant is listening; you have the words of everlasting life.
 
Luke 9:51-62
51 When the days for Jesus’ being taken up were fulfilled, he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem, 52 and he sent messengers ahead of him. On the way they entered a Samaritan village to prepare for his reception there, 53 but they would not welcome him because the destination of his journey was Jerusalem. 54 When the disciples James and John saw this they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call down fire from heaven to consume them?” 55 Jesus turned and rebuked them, 56 and they journeyed to another village. 57 As they were proceeding on their journey someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 Jesus answered him, “Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.” 59 And to another he said, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.” 60 But he answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” 61 And another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home.” 62 To him Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.”
 
think: Choosing the path of sin is an abuse of our freedom.
 
 
T O D A Y’S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: __________________
 
____________________________________
 
God’s special verse/thought for me today_
_____________________________________
 
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 22-24
                                                                                                           SABBATH PAUSE
My weekly time with God
THANK YOU LIST
Things to be grateful for from the past week
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________
SPECIAL NEEDS
Things to ask God for in the coming week
________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
HIDDEN TREASURE
Most important word God told me this week
 
________________________________________________________________
                                                          _________________________________________________________________
 
 
 
REVIEW OF THE QUARTER
 
Did I fulfill my last quarter goals?
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
What were the most important words the Lord gave to me this quarter?
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
What were my greatest blessings these past three months?
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
What are my most pressing needs for the next quarter?
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
NOTES:
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________
 
________________________________________________________________________

Daily Reflections - June 30,2013

WHO I AM AND WHO I AM NOT

 
I don’t know about you, but at times, I behave exactly like the two hotheads, James and John. Referred to, rather appropriately, as the “sons of thunder,” the two brothers were true to form when they said indignantly, “Do you want us to call down fire from heaven to burn them up?” That was vindictiveness at its best, and at its worst. They probably meant well, for after all, their Master was rebuffed by the Samaritans, whom any true-blooded Jew then did not look too kindly on. The Gospel account is clear. Jesus would not hear any of it. He actually rebuked them.
       I take it they were stopped dead in their tracks. I take it the Lord was teaching them on what it meant to be a loyal follower. Loyalty was a good thing, of course, but obedience to the tenets of discipleship was another.
       As a priest, I have to take a stand on a multiplicity of issues. As a professor of Moral Theology, taking such a stand comes with the territory. It is all part of the package. I cannot stand by idly, while I know that “big ticket items” are being trampled upon, muddled, or lost in the welter of partisan politics or sacrificed on the altar of sordid personal economic gain. While I submit a lot of such issues, including and most especially pro-life issues, are intertwined with a train of other big issues like social justice, poverty and business ethics, I am duty-bound by my ordination, and by my vocation and avocation, to take a stand and take the official side of a teaching Church.
       All these, for one simple reason: I am not the Master. I am not the Lord.  I am but a follower. And although at times, I would rather do a James or a John, and call down “fire and brimstone” from above, I need to do better than to give in to fiery and shallow emotions. I need to take my cue from Him and Him alone. Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
 
REFLECTION QUESTION: Do you usually give in to the human tendency to act on your emotions, especially negative ones?
 
Lord Jesus, You showed us Your gentle spirit. May we learn from You

Friday, June 28, 2013

Daily Bible Readings - June 28,2013


1ST READING
 
God causes a miracle and Sarai gives birth and then God changes her name to Sarah. At the same time, Abram’s name is changed to Abraham to literally reflect the promise that God gave him that he would be a blessing to all the nations. Name changes in the Scriptures always reflect a significant change in the status or direction of the person’s life as they reveal the identity of the person who carries them.
 
Genesis 17:1, 9-10, 15-22
1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said: “I am God the Almighty. Walk in my presence and be blameless. 9 God also said to Abraham: “On your part, you and your descendants after you must keep my covenant throughout the ages. 10 This is my covenant with you and your descendants after you that you must keep: every male among you shall be circumcised.” 15 God further said to Abraham: “As for your wife Sarai, do not call her Sarai; her name shall be Sarah. 16 I will bless her, and I will give you a son by her. Him also will I bless; he shall give rise to nations, and rulers of peoples shall issue from him.” 17 Abraham prostrated himself and laughed as he said to himself, “Can a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Or can Sarah give birth at ninety?” 18 Then Abraham said to God, “Let but Ishmael live on by your favor!” 19 God replied: “Nevertheless, your wife Sarah is to bear you a son, and you shall call him Isaac. I will maintain my covenant with him as an everlasting pact, to be his God and the God of his descendants after him. 20 As for Ishmael, I am heeding you: I hereby bless him. I will make him fertile and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become the father of twelve chieftains, and I will make of him a great nation. 21 But my covenant I will maintain with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you by this time next year.” 22 When he had finished speaking with him, God departed from Abraham.
 
P S A L M
 
Psalm 128:1-2, 3, 4-5
R: See how the Lord blesses those who fear Him.
1 Blessed are you who fear the Lord, who walk in his ways! 2 For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork; blessed shall you be, and favored. (R) 3 Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the recesses of your home; your children like olive plants around your table. (R) 4 Behold, thus is the man blessed who fears the Lord. 5 The Lord bless you from Zion: may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem all the days of your life. (R)
 
GOSPEL
 
Jesus wants us to give glory to God with our lives. Just because a person is sick does not mean that he cannot do this. Why some get healed and others do not will always be a mystery that we cannot fully understand. Faith demands that we trust God because He knows what He is doing; this does not mean that accepting His will gets any easier. Let us pray that the challenges of life will never overcome us; rather, that we will always overcome them.
 
GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Christ took away our infirmities and bore our diseases.
 
Matthew 8:1-4
1 When Jesus came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. 2 And then a leper approached, did him homage, and said, “Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.” 3 He stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, “I will do it. Be made clean.” His leprosy was cleansed immediately. 4 Then Jesus said to him, “See that you tell no one, but go show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses prescribed; that will be proof for them.”
 
think:  Let us pray that the challenges of life will never overcome us; rather, that we will overcome them.
 
T O D A Y’S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: __________________
 
____________________________________
 
God’s special verse/thought for me today_
_____________________________________
 
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 16-18

Daily Reflections - June 28,2013


POWER WORDS

 
Words are really powerful beyond belief. Schools have mottos, and people have their own favorite aphorisms, sayings, or watchwords. Letran has “Arriba,” which roughly means “go up higher,” while La Salle has “Animo,” which is an exhortation to boost up that undefined “spirit” of courage and grit. We in Don Bosco have our own “Forza,” which also meant to boost up the spirit of courage and collective strength. Words tend to become reality and, as someone said, if you think you are lousy, then you are probably right!
       A leper suddenly comes to accost the Lord. Is he being cheeky or pushy? Neither. He knows what he wants, knows his place, and knows with certainty that the One he is asking a big favor from is capable of granting him his request.
       What do you think would one who does not believe do? Isn’t this obvious? He simply won’t draw near, ask, or even bother. If one thinks he cannot be helped, then he is probably right.
       Our faith is confronted daily with so many seeming impossibilities. Like we reflected on yesterday, even Christian faith and systematic theology seem incapable of overhauling the firmly entrenched culture of sin, death and destruction in our society.
       For all his apparent cheekiness and cocksure certainty, the leper really teaches us a lesson. He shows us what claiming something in faith and prayer is all about. “You can cure me, if you will it, Lord.” He uttered that prayer with the confidence of a child sure of a parent’s care and concern, and with the certainty of an adult who simply knows, deep in his heart, that what one asks will be given.
       We live in a world permeated by doubt. The leper shows us that words of faith are powerful. “Heal me, for I know you can.” Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
 
REFLECTION QUESTIONS: Do your words reflect your faith? Do they build up, and not tear down?
 
Help me to always believe that Your words, Lord, are more powerful than all the voices I hear in the world.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Daily Bible Readings - June 27,2013


1ST READING
 
Abram has a moment of doubt and gives in to Sarai’s request that he have a child with her maid Hagar. Hagar gives birth to Ishmael. We will all have moments of weakness and allow doubts to overwhelm us. Let us seek to minimize these times as much as we can. In order to do this, let us pray for the grace of a stronger faith that believes and trusts in the promises of God.
 
Genesis 16:1-12, 15-16
1 Abram’s wife Sarai had borne him no children. She had, however, an Egyptian maidservant named Hagar. 2 Sarai said to Abram: “The Lord has kept me from bearing children. Have intercourse, then, with my maid; perhaps I shall have sons through her.” Abram heeded Sarai’s request. 3 Thus, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, his wife Sarai took her maid, Hagar the Egyptian, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his concubine. 4 He had intercourse with her, and she became pregnant. When she became aware of her pregnancy, she looked on her mistress with disdain. 5 So Sarai said to Abram: “You are responsible for this outrage against me. I myself gave my maid to your embrace; but ever since she became aware of her pregnancy, she has been looking on me with disdain. May the Lord decide between you and me!” 6 Abram told Sarai: “Your maid is in your power. Do to her whatever you please.” Sarai then abused her so much that Hagar ran away from her. 7 The Lord’s messenger found her by a spring in the wilderness, the spring on the road to Shur, 8 and he asked, “Hagar maid of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?” She answered, “I am running away from my mistress, Sarai.” 9 But the Lord’s messenger told her: “Go back to your mistress and submit to her abusive treatment. 10 I will make your descendants so numerous,” added the Lord’s messenger, “that they will be too many to count. 11 Besides,” the Lord’s messenger said to her: “You are now pregnant and shall bear a son; you shall name him Ishmael, for the Lord has heard you, God has answered you. 12 This one shall be a wild ass of a man, his hand against everyone, and everyone’s hand against him; in opposition to all his kin shall he encamp.” 15 Hagar bore Abram a son, and Abram named the son whom Hagar bore him Ishmael. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore him Ishmael.
 
P S A L M
 
Psalm 106:1-2, 3-4, 4-5
R: Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good.
1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his mercy endures forever. 2 Who can tell the mighty deeds of the Lord, or proclaim all his praises? (R) 3 Blessed are they who observe what is right, who do always what is just. 4 Remember us, O Lord, as you favor your people. (R) Visit me with your saving help, 5 that I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones, rejoice in the joy of your people, and glory with your inheritance. (R)
 
 
GOSPEL
 
Not only do we have to build on the foundation of faith that God provides us, but we also have to build with and for Him. If we build for our own glory we will fail and God will not know us on Judgment Day. Our lives are not really about us but about taking the opportunity to give glory and praise to God. This is what any creation does for its Creator. This does not lessen our dignity as we are free to choose whatever we want to do with our lives. We only need to remember that, if we want fulfillment, it will only come if we obey God’s will — that is, follow the Creator’s instruction manual for our lives.
 
GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him and we will come to him.
 
Matthew 7:21-29
21 Jesus said to his disciples: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but only the one who does the Will of my Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ 23 Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’ 24 Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. 25 The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. 26 And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. 27 The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.” 28 When Jesus finished these words, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, 29 for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.
 
think:  Our lives are not really about us but about taking the opportunity to give glory and praise to God.
 
T O D A Y’S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: __________________
 
____________________________________
 
God’s special verse/thought for me today_
_____________________________________
 
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 13-15

Daily Reflections - June 27,2013


SOLIDLY SET ON ROCK?

 
Last year, I had one of the saddest experiences of my life. I brought a group of young priests for their quarterly ongoing formation to the twin tragedy sites of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan, ravaged by typhoon Sendong. As we passed through the areas literally leveled by rampaging waters, or houses flattened by logs that acted like projectiles, washed down by the raging floods from the mountains, I was speechless and close to tears.
       The most depressing sight was that of a middle class subdivision made up of newly constructed and relatively beautiful houses, all standing as mute witnesses not only to the power and fury of nature, but also to the destructiveness of sin, particularly human greed and the wanton destruction of the forests, for love of sordid gain.
       The houses, I must say, were literally built on solid rock. They were supposed to be sturdy and sure, constructed of what we Pinoys love to refer to as materiales fuertes. But in the case of Iligan, it was not difficult to see that it was not the cascading waters that did the subdivision in, but thousands of heavy logs that acted like huge battering rams. The houses made of relatively strong materials were simply no match to the battering rams of greed, selfishness and the irresponsible ways of fellow human beings whose consciences were weak.
       Someone wrote about the “seeming incapacity of Christian faith” to counteract the seeping forces of structural evil in all aspects of our so-called civil lives. The culture of corruption has a firmly entrenched foothold in our society. All we can do now is ask ourselves if we are part or not of this culture of death and destruction.
       Most likely, we all are. We are all in it together. Now is the time for us to realize that not all those who call on Him, “Lord, Lord,” are worthy of the Kingdom. Whose house is set on rock, then? Those who believe and behave accordingly. Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
 
REFLECTION QUESTION: In what ways, big or small, do you contribute to the culture of death and destruction of our society?
 
Teach me, Lord, to behave as I believe.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Daily Bible Readings - June 25,2013



1ST READING
 
Abram leaves most of his wealth behind in Ur when he chooses to obey God’s call to go to the Promised Land. God, in His generosity, allows him to grow rich again. Abram’s trust in God is very strong as he allows Lot to choose the better land and takes for himself the marginal desert areas. God promises him greater wealth for his trust. This is not to say that those who have faith will become wealthy. Many do not and even choose to live lives of physical and material poverty.
 
Genesis 13:2, 5-18
2 Abram was very rich in livestock, silver, and gold. 5 Lot, who went with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents, 6 so that the land could not support them if they stayed together; their possessions were so great that they could not dwell together. 7 There were quarrels between the herdsmen of Abram’s livestock and those of Lot’s. (At this time the Canaanites and the Perizzites were occupying the land.) 8 So Abram said to Lot: “Let there be no strife between you and me, or between your herdsmen and mine, for we are kinsmen. 9 Is not the whole land at your disposal? Please separate from me. If you prefer the left, I will go to the right; if you prefer the right, I will go to the left.” 10 Lot looked about and saw how well watered the whole Jordan Plain was as far as Zoar, like the Lord’s own garden, or like Egypt. (This was before the Lord had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.) 11 Lot, therefore, chose for himself the whole Jordan Plain and set out eastward. Thus they separated from each other; 12 Abram stayed in the land of Canaan, while Lot settled among the cities of the Plain, pitching his tents near Sodom. 13 Now the inhabitants of Sodom were very wicked in the sins they committed against the Lord. 14 After Lot had left, the Lord said to Abram: “Look about you, and from where you are, gaze to the north and south, east and west; 15 all the land that you see I will give to you and your descendants forever. 16 I will make your descendants like the dust of the earth; if anyone could count the dust of the earth, your descendants too might be counted. 17 Set forth and walk about in the land, through its length and breadth, for to you I will give it.” 18 Abram moved his tents and went on to settle near the terebinth of Mamre, which is at Hebron. There he built an altar to the Lord.
 
P S A L M
 
Psalm 15:2-3, 3-4, 5
R: He who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.
2 He who walks blamelessly and does justice; who thinks the truth in his heart 3 and slanders not with his tongue. (R) Who harms not his fellow man, nor takes up a reproach against his neighbor; 4 by whom the reprobate is despised, while he honors those who fear the Lord. (R) 5 Who lends not his money at usury and accepts no bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be disturbed. (R)
 
GOSPEL
 
We need to be careful that we treat with both gratitude and respect all the graces and gifts God gives us. Jesus makes it quite clear that those who do not respect the blessings of God will have them removed from them. This is quite a reasonable position to take. Let us always use well and generously any blessings that God gives to us.
 
GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
I am the light of the world, says the Lord; whoever follows me will have the light of life.
 
Matthew 7:6, 12-14
6 Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces. 12 Do to others whatever you would have them do to you. This is the Law and the Prophets. 13 Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and those who enter through it are many. 14 How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few.”
 
think:  Let us always use well and generously any blessings that God gives to us.
 
T O D A Y’S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: __________________
 
____________________________________
 
God’s special verse/thought for me today_
_____________________________________
 
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 7-9
 

Daily Reflections - June 25,2013


WATERING HOLES AND NARROW GATES

 
The story of Abram and Lot is a familiar one — a story of conflict and choice. It probably revolved around precious water sources, and the resolution required that both agree to disagree and choose which part each wanted for himself. Lot’s choice fell on what I, honestly, would have also chosen myself! Who would not want well-manicured lawns and well-watered gardens to pamper oneself with?
       The nobler one was left with the inferior portion of the property. One man’s choice meant the narrowing down of options for the other, and Abram probably felt that what loomed ahead of him was nothing more than a narrow gate that led to no abundant watering holes.
       But life is not only about choosing and deciding for oneself, no matter how seemingly brilliant and rewarding it may be. Life is also about opening oneself to being surprised by God, to allowing oneself to be led, and letting someone else’s plan unfold. Lot may have gained the better part, but Abram received the greater portion. God’s call for Abram to become the father of a multitude of nations unfolded and attained fulfillment, despite the seeming loss, the apparent defeat, and what seemed to have been the shorter end of the stick.
       While I know very well that, in life, “you win some; you lose some,” there were times when I thought that I was getting the shorter end  of the stick once too often, and cheaters actually win more games. And, in the rough and tumble world of reality, corrupt politicians seem to continue laughing their way to the bank. Good boys finish last, and all I saw before me was a narrow gate that seemed to lead nowhere.
       Lot may have called the shots, but he does not get to write the final chapter. Good boys finish last, but they are never lost. “Enter through the narrow gate. How few there are who find it.” Fr. Chito Dimaranan, SDB
 
REFLECTION QUESTIONS: How open are you to surprises from the Lord? Do you allow yourself to be led by the Lord? How do you react when someone else’s plans get fulfilled?
 
Surprise me, Lord, and lead me to Your plans for my life.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Daily Bible Readings - June 24,2013


1ST READING
 
 
God has a plan for everyone and it is up to us discover this. As we celebrate the birth of John the Baptist, we can wonder what it would be like to have Jesus for our first cousin. But it will be far more productive for us to listen to what God has to say about His will for our lives than focus on something that has more to do with someone else.
 
Isaiah 49:1-6
1 Hear me, O coastlands, listen, O distant peoples. The Lord called me from birth, from my mother’s womb he gave me my name. 2 He made of me a sharp-edged sword and concealed me in the shadow of his arm. He made me a polished arrow, in his quiver he hid me. 3 “You are my servant,” he said to me, “Israel, through whom I show my glory.” 4 Though I thought I had toiled in vain, and for nothing, uselessly, spent my strength, yet my reward is with the Lord, my recompense is with my God. 5 For now the Lord has spoken who formed me as his servant from the womb, that Jacob may be brought back to him and Israel gathered to him; and I am made glorious in the sight of the Lord, and my God is now my strength! 6 “It is too little,” he says, “for you to be my servant, to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and restore the survivors of Israel; I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”
 
P S A L M
 
Psalm 139:1-3, 13-14, 14-15
R: I praise You, for I am wonderfully made.
1 O Lord, you have probed me, you know me: 2 you know when I sit and when I stand; you understand my thoughts from afar. 3 My journeys and my rest you scrutinize, with all my ways you are familiar. (R) 13 Truly you have formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb. 14 I give you thanks that I am fearfully, wonderfully made; wonderful are your works. (R) My soul also you knew full well; 15 nor was my frame unknown to you when I was made in secret, when I was fashioned in the depths of the earth. (R)
 
 
2ND READING
 
Even though Jesus is his first cousin, John acknowledges His preeminence by saying that he is not worthy to undo Jesus’ sandal. This humility is important to reflect upon as it is the basis of obedience in our lives. Without humility it will not be possible to be a disciple of Jesus. Without humility, we will never be willing to even listen to the will of God for us.
 
Acts 13:22-26
22 In those days, Paul said: “God raised up David as king; of him God testified, ‘I have found David, son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will carry out my every wish.’ 23 From this man’s descendants God, according to his promise, has brought to Israel a savior, Jesus. 24 John heralded his coming by proclaiming a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel; 25 and as John was completing his course, he would say, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. Behold, one is coming after me; I am not worthy to unfasten the sandals of his feet.’ 26 My brothers, sons of the family of Abraham, and those others among you who are God-fearing, to us this Word of Salvation has been sent.”
 
GOSPEL
 
John matured in the wilderness. He must have had a sense that he had an important role to play in the work of God, and so he set aside time to prepare himself in a place where there would be few distractions. Today’s world is precisely the opposite to this. It is full of distractions. I cannot help thinking that if we are truly to hear the voice of God clearly, we have to be very disciplined in setting aside times when that is our sole focus.
 
GOSPEL ACCLAMATION
You, child, will be called prophet of the Most High, for you will gobefore the Lord to prepare his way.
 
Luke 1:57-66, 80
57 When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son. 58 Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced with her. 59 When they came on the eighth day to circumcise the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, 60 but his mother said in reply, “No. He will be called John.” 61 But they answered her, “There is no one among your relatives who has this name.” 62 So they made signs, asking his father what he wished him to be called. 63 He asked for a tablet and wrote, “John is his name,” and all were amazed. 64 Immediately his mouth was opened, his tongue freed, and he spoke blessing God. 65 Then fear came upon all their neighbors, and all these matters were discussed throughout the hill country of Judea. 66 All who heard these things took them to heart, saying, “What, then, will this child be?” For surely the hand of the Lord was with him. 80 The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the desert until the day of his manifestation to Israel.
think:  Without humility it will not be possible to be a disciple of Jesus.
 
T O D A Y’S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: __________________
 
____________________________________
 
God’s special verse/thought for me today_
_____________________________________
 
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 1 Chronicles 4-6

Learn How To Build A Semi-Passive Income on the Internet that You and Your Family Can Enjoy

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Interesting Blogs