Friday, October 30, 2015

Romans 9:1-5, Psalm 147:12-15, 19-20, Luke 14:1-6


Romans 9:1-5, Psalm 147:12-15, 19-20, Luke 14:1-6

Romans 9:1-5

My Beloved, would that we too had the great, overwhelming and crushing sorrow that St. Paul suffered because the people to whom he belonged, the people whom God chose, singled out from all the nations to reveal His awesome plan of salvation. From whom were chosen the prophets, to whom were given the law and to whom God made irrevocable covenants. He suffers because they have not accepted You as the Messiah, the Redeemer, the Savior of the world. Instead, they rejected You and put You to death stubbornly refusing to believe that You were the Christ.  We know so many people who have rejected You and cut You off from their lives – we ought to suffer just as St. Paul did and we must pray for them with sighs and groans and tears that You may bring them home someday. 
Psalm 147:12-15, 19-20

My Beloved, while every prophecy has been fulfilled through the nation, the race, the people You chose and despite the fact that they rejected You we have been the beneficiaries of their rejection for the Gospel has been preached to the ends of the earth and we have heard and we believe.

You fill our mouths with the finest wheat in the Holy Eucharist. We are filled with sweet honey from the Rock of our Salvation. We carry with us the mark of life received through our Baptism. Your Holy Spirit dwells in us and is our Guide, our Counselor, our Paraclete and our Friend. He leads and guides us. He inspires us to listen to You and to walk in the Way that You have shown us the way of Truth that leads to Life. Thank You my Beloved. Your Covenant is eternal and someday the people chosen by God will also acknowledge that You are the Son of God and the Savior of the world.

Luke 14:1-6

My Beloved, once again You confront the Pharisees many of whom followed the low rigorously, meticulously and scrupulously including all the additions which were added to it. They looked down with self righteous scorn on those who did not. You knew exactly how shallow they were and that they only followed the letter of the law while completely ignoring its spirit. When You questioned them they chose to be silent for they knew that their answer would show them up for what they truly were if they answered truthfully. They lacked compassion and would rather see someone suffer than break the Sabbath law. Time and time again You healed on the Sabbath and instead of seeing that only the power of God could make such healings possible they preferred to nitpick and harangue the people for coming to be healed on the Sabbath.  They showed more compassion to their livestock than they did to their fellow Jews.

Are we any different my Lord? We too prefer to go with the flow than to do what conscience dictates to be right because we prefer to follow the crowd and not rock the boat of common opinion. We would rather be silent than speak on the side of truth when that truth is unpalatable.

Give me a spirit of boldness and courage Lord as well as a spirit of gentleness and kindness.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Romans 8:31b-39, Psalm 109:21-22, 26-27, 30-31, Luke 13:31-35

Romans 8:31b-39, Psalm 109:21-22, 26-27, 30-31, Luke 13:31-35

Luke 13:31-35

My Beloved, You have given me a mission. God created me for a purpose and He has equipped me with everything I need to accomplish it. I can be a coward or I can prefer to do what I will rather than do what God desires me to do. However, if I choose to do each day joyfully all You ask of me, then no harm can come to me until all that You wish me to do is completed. No one can harm a head on my head unless You permit it for a greater good.

My life is Yours and You have power over me. You desire only what is good for me and if I trust You in all things that I know that I will have joy in the midst of suffering and perfect joy with You in heaven.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Ephesians 2:19-22, Psalm 19:2-5, Luke 6:12-16


Ephesians 2:19-22, Psalm 19:2-5, Luke 6:12-16

Ephesians 2:19-22

My Beloved, I belong to the family of God. I am a member of the Church where the fullness of Truth dwells. The One, Holy, Catholic Church has for its foundation the Apostles and prophets with You as the Cornerstone and in You all her members are held as one. This is the place where God dwells – we are a living temple and we are holy because Your Spirit makes His dwelling place in this Church made up of saints and sinners and helps us to become holy and perfect just as You my Beloved are holy and perfect. I am not a stranger nor am I a traveler who has to move on, I belong.  Your Father is our Father, You are our Brother and the Holy Spirit unites us in love to You and to my brothers and sisters.

My Beloved, all of creation, the earth, the sky and the oceans teeming with life and astounding in beauty are constant reminders of Your love for us. The whole world speaks of the glory, majesty and power of God who holds all things in perfect harmony. Every living creature from the greatest to the least bears the imprint of its Creator and each gives praise to God from the rising of the sun to its setting. Grant my Lord that my voice and my life joins in this beautiful song of praise because You give me life and You make it beautiful.  

Luke 6:12-16

My Beloved, just as You called the disciples and chose from among them the Twelve Apostles so too have I been chosen by God. I too have a mission. Just as all creation fulfills the purpose for which it was created so too must I, who have been called from darkness into Your marvelous light, preach the Good News in season and out of season in just living my life from moment to moment in every thought word and action. You have not withheld anything from me but poured upon me every grace, gift and blessing to help me fulfill Your purpose for my life. I have the witness of the Apostles, martyrs and Saints to encourage me. I belong to the family of God and there is a cloud of witnesses to prove to me that a life of holiness is possible for the Spirit dwelling in me and in the Church helps me to work out my salvation in fear and trembling for the hope of someday seeing You my Beloved face to face.  

Monday, October 26, 2015

Romans 8:12-17, Psalm 68:2 & 4, 6-7AB, 20-21, Luke 13:10-17


Romans 8:12-17, Psalm 68:2 & 4, 6-7AB, 20-21, Luke 13:10-17

Romans 8:12-17

My Beloved, the road to hell is broad and easy and we find ourselves on it when we choose the path of least resistance and give free rein to the desires of the flesh. We do not battle alone in Your loving kindness and because You understand that we are constantly faced with temptation You have given us Your Holy Spirit and with His help it is possible to choose the way of life rather than death. 

We are privileged to be called children of God and so we are by virtue of our baptism. We dare to call God Abba because we are grafted to You in Baptism and Your life is given to us. You are our Brother and we have a share in Your inheritance. However, we must first be ready to suffer as You suffered without constantly complaining, whining all the while dragging our cross discontentedly behind us. Joy in the midst of suffering is possible because You count us worthy to have a share in Your suffering so we may share in Your glory in eternity.


Psalm 68:2 & 4, 6-7AB, 20-21

My Beloved as verse 20 reminds us You daily share our burdens as our Savior, Redeemer and Friend. You yoke Yourself to us so we find our burdens easy and our load light. You have saved us and because You took our death upon Yourself so we may receive Your life we have hope of eternal joy with You, the Father and the Holy Spirit in heaven.  This is reason to sing Your praises always as we recall Your great mercies. Thank You for sheltering us in Your Sacred Heart and for watching over us always. Thank You for Your mighty protection that keeps us safe through the power of Your Holy Spirit from the wiles of the enemy.

Luke 13:10-17

My Beloved, sin robs us of our dignity as children of God. What sin had this poor crippled woman committed in her youth when she stood tall and beautiful – what grave sins did carry the burden of which had bent her double giving Satan power over her? We will never know but You did when You saw her on the Sabbath in the synagogue – man made rules were not going to stop You from releasing her from the clutches of evil that had weighed on her for years – all she could see was the dust of the earth while her whole being yearned to stand tall and gaze once more with wonder at the sky and see once more the beauty of the world around her. Your heart was moved to pity and compassion and although You knew that the narrow minded authorities would be up in arms at what they considered work on the Sabbath You called her and when she came before You she heard You speak, “Woman, you are freed from your infirmity.” You then lay Your hands on her and she was healed. Praise and thanksgiving filled her whole being as she  exultantly gave glory to God.

I too can be a hypocrite Lord. I find fault because I am jealous, self righteous, or because I am too busy looking for specks in my neighbors eye and refusing to acknowledge the glaring planks in my own. I pretend to want what is good while secretly harboring selfish thoughts. I am called to do good and to always choose tenderness, mercy and compassion over any law that would restrict me from doing what I can to ease another’s burden.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Jeremiah 31:7-9, Psalm 126:1-6, Hebrews 5:1-6, Mark 10:46-52


Jeremiah 31:7-9, Psalm 126:1-6, Hebrews 5:1-6, Mark 10:46-52

Jeremiah 31:7-9

My Beloved, we ought to be a people of exultant praise to our God who never tire of proclaiming all the wonderful things that God our Father has done for us in and through You. Every promise that He made through the mouths of the prophets in the Old Testament has been fulfilled in You. All that was hinted at, all that was veiled in oaths, promises and Covenants find their perfect expression in this amazing and awesome truth. The Father loved us so much that He sent You into the world to be our Savior. Sin made us exiles and orphans but we rejoice because You healed the breach created by sin and You won for us mercy, forgiveness and pardon.

You have restored our sight, You have gathered us from every corner of the globe, You have healed our wounds and our spiritual disabilities. You have saved us. You give us living water that never runs dry and You take us by the hand and walk with us every step of the way as You lead us in the Way that will take us to the Kingdom of God. Thank You.

Psalm 126:1-6

My Beloved, as Your followers, Your disciples, as people who are called Christians because we belong to the One anointed by the Father and sent into the world to redeem us we must be joyful always. Despite suffering, hardship and whatever cross the Lord sees fit and necessary to lay one us we must never lose sight of this truth – that we are created by God to know Him, love Him, serve Him and to be happy with Him not only in the hereafter but in this life as well.

This is possible because You give Yourself to us as Food in the Holy Eucharist. You grant us forgiveness of all our sins in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. You have given us the Gift of the Holy Spirit to enable us to do what would otherwise be impossible on our own strength  - strive to live holy lives with His help and the grace that He channels into our hearts.

We are the people of God who rejoice always because we have been saved.

Hebrews 5:1-6

It will do us well to always remember my Beloved, that we are called. We do nothing of our own accord. Whoever we may be, all the baptized are given a mission. God has a plan for each one of us some are called to have greater responsibility to lead, preach, teach and serve but all of us are part of the mission to spread the Good News to the ends of the earth. Each according to our vocation is priest, prophet and king although we are sinners and we have the sinless High Priest who redeemed us as our example. We must fix our gaze on You always and follow in obedience where You lead no matter where it make take us.

Mark 10:46-52

My Beloved, we are told that You were leaving Jericho to go to Jerusalem for the Passover festival and a large crowd along with Your disciples were with You. What was the motive of those in the crowd who accompanied You? Some would have been there only because being part of a large group would ensure that they were safe from thieves and robbers who often lay in wait for pilgrims. Some would have been there because they had heard about You and were curious. Still others may have been there because they were attracted to Your message and wanted to follow You. But I am sure it is safe to say that many were only there because it was convenient to make the journey from Jericho to Jerusalem in a large group.

Jericho represents the place that we are at as sinners and Jerusalem represents the place where we are prepared to sacrifice our lives for our neighbor as You did. Bartimaeus represents every sinner who genuinely repents of his sins and desires to encounter God. He is prepared to rid himself of every attachment that holds him back from truly embracing God’s will just as Bartimaeus who jumped up when he was told that You called him, threw his cloak and ran joyfully to You. You asked him what he wanted You to do for him just as You ask all who seek You not for Your sake but for ours since You are God and know all things. We need to know what we truly want and then in all humility, faith, hope, and trust ask for it. “Master, that I may see.” Bartimaeus yearned for more than physical sight. He recognized You as the Messiah when he called out, “Son of David have pity on me.” He wanted to know You and have a personal relationship with You. He wanted to be Your disciple and this is why, once You granted him his sight he followed You.