On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 21, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

Everyday Lord I struggle to remain faithful and true to Your Word. There are so many distractions and just as many temptations. I am somewhat impatient and easily fall sometimes in allowing anger to take control. Still I will embrace the struggle to persevere in holiness for my love of You.

I am not fearful of punishment for sinning against You so much as I am fearful of hurting and letting You down.

Today Lord I am reminded of my responsibility and by Your example that true love is born of sacrifice. A love that wills the good for and in others. Let me also share with all whom I meet, the greatest love story ever to be told. The love story of God our Father’s love for us His children. His great love for us manifested through His loving Son, our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ.

I want to stand ready to greet You, and hear You say to me “Come my good and faithful servant. Come share in your Master’s joy.” Amen

First reading
Ephesians 3:2-12

Gospel
Luke 12:39-48

Jesus said to his disciples:
‘You may be quite sure of this, that if the householder had known at what hour the burglar would come, he would not have let anyone break through the wall of his house. You too must stand ready, because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.’
Peter said, ‘Lord, do you mean this parable for us, or for everyone?’ The Lord replied, ‘What sort of steward, then, is faithful and wise enough for the master to place him over his household to give them their allowance of food at the proper time? Happy that servant if his master’s arrival finds him at this employment. I tell you truly, he will place him over everything he owns. But as for the servant who says to himself, “My master is taking his time coming,” and sets about beating the menservants and the maids, and eating and drinking and getting drunk, his master will come on a day he does not expect and at an hour he does not know. The master will cut him off and send him to the same fate as the unfaithful.
The servant who knows what his master wants, but has not even started to carry out those wishes, will receive very many strokes of the lash. The one who did not know, but deserves to be beaten for what he has done, will receive fewer strokes. When a man has had a great deal given him, a great deal will be demanded of him; when a man has had a great deal given him on trust, even more will be expected of him.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 20, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

Today O Lord my God, while I rejoice at being Your child, I am saddened that are many who still do not know You. They live in darkness and many are lost; some are still searching while others have abandoned hope altogether. I am ashamed that I have done so little to bring Your message of love to them. I’ve let my fear of rejection and weakness overshadow me.

Jesus I place all my faith and trust in You. Guide me and lead me to do Your Will. Let Your light shine through me so that I may lead Your flock home to You. I stand ready and eager to serve You. May You never find me wanting or asleep. All my strength comes from You. Amen

First reading
Ephesians 2:12-22

Gospel
Luke 12:36-38

Jesus said to his disciples:
‘See that you are dressed for action and have your lamps lit. Be like men waiting for their master to return from the wedding feast, ready to open the door as soon as he comes and knocks. Happy those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. I tell you solemnly, he will put on an apron, sit them down at table and wait on them. It may be in the second watch he comes, or in the third, but happy those servants if he finds them ready.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 19, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

Unless one is born in hardship and strive, it is far more difficult to share or to be content with enough. We want more than we need and frequently with the accompanying excuse of saving it for a rainy day. It never seems enough, money, food, clothing, shoes, bags, gadgets, cars, even houses. Often with greed there is selfishness and a whole lot of self centredness. What then becomes of us?

God our Father made us for Himself, we are created for more to be more in His heavenly Kingdom. Where material wealth has no currency. And while we brought sin into the world, which robbed us of our heavenly inheritance, Christ our Lord came to liberate and save us. So that through Him our heavenly inheritance is restored. Let us work tirelessly for treasures not of this world, for which can neither be bought nor earned. Our Father bestows them on us freely in His love. Amen

First reading
Ephesians 2:1-10

Gospel
Luke 12:13-21

A man in the crowd said to Jesus, ‘Master, tell my brother to give me a share of our inheritance.’ ‘My friend,’ he replied, ‘who appointed me your judge, or the arbitrator of your claims?’ Then he said to them, ‘Watch, and be on your guard against avarice of any kind, for a man’s life is not made secure by what he owns, even when he has more than he needs.’
Then he told them a parable: ‘There was once a rich man who, having had a good harvest from his land, thought to himself, “What am I to do? I have not enough room to store my crops.” Then he said, “This is what I will do: I will pull down my barns and build bigger ones, and store all my grain and my goods in them, and I will say to my soul: My soul, you have plenty of good things laid by for many years to come; take things easy, eat, drink, have a good time.” But God said to him, “Fool! This very night the demand will be made for your soul; and this hoard of yours, whose will it be then?.” So it is when a man stores up treasure for himself in place of making himself rich in the sight of God.’


Sunday Reflections – Dr Scott Hahn

Caesar and the King

Readings:
Isaiah 45:1,4-6
Psalm 96:1,3-5, 7-10
1 Thessalonians 1:1-5
Matthew 22:15-21

The Lord is king over all the earth, as we sing in today’s Psalm. Governments rise and fall by His permission, with no authority but that given from above (see John 19:11; Romans 13:1).

In effect, God says to every ruler what he tells King Cyrus in today’s First Reading: “I have called you . . . though you knew me not.”

The Lord raised up Cyrus to restore the Israelites from exile, and to rebuild Jerusalem (see Ezra 1:1-4). Throughout salvation history, God has used foreign rulers for the sake of His chosen people. Pharaoh’s heart was hardened to reveal God’s power (see Romans 9:17). Invading armies were used to punish Israel’s sins (see 2 Maccabees 6:7-16).

The Roman occupation during Jesus’ time was, in a similar way, a judgment on Israel’s unfaithfulness. Jesus’ famous words in today’s Gospel: “Repay to Caesar” are a pointed reminder of this. And they call us, too, to keep our allegiances straight.

The Lord alone is our king. His kingdom is not of this world (see John 18:36) but it begins here in His Church, which tells of His glory among all peoples. Citizens of heaven (see Philippians 3:20), we are called to be a light to the world (see Matthew 5:14) – working in faith, laboring in love, and enduring in hope, as today’s Epistle counsels.

We owe the government a concern for the common good, and obedience to laws – unless they conflict with God’s commandments as interpreted by the Church (see Acts 5:29).

But we owe God everything. The coin bears Caesar’s image. But we bear God’s own image (see Genesis 1:27). We owe Him our very lives – all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, offered as a living sacrifice of love (see Romans 12:1-2).

We should pray for our leaders, that like Cyrus they do God’s will (see 1 Timothy 2:1-2) – until from the rising of the sun to its setting, all humanity knows that Jesus is Lord.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 17, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

Lord have mercy on me for the many times You called on me to serve and I refused. Thinking only of my priorities, my way of life. For fear of hardship and rejection of others, I believed myself unworthy to share Your Word. I thank You for being patient with me and allowing me to return to You, welcoming me back with open arms. I stand ready now to serve You always.

Lord You chose us, men and women to share Your message of salvation to all. Entrusted us with Your Word so that we can be living testimonies of Your love by the way lead our lives and by songs we sing in praise of the many wonders You have worked in our sight. So that the seed of Your love may be planted in the hearts of many; even those who might not listen with attentive hearts initially. And Your healing touch may come upon them through us.

Lord Jesus, I’ve come to do Your Will, use me Lord. Amen

First reading
2 Timothy 4:10-17

Gospel
Luke 10:1-9

The Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them out ahead of him, in pairs, to all the towns and places he himself was to visit. He said to them, ‘The harvest is rich but the labourers are few, so ask the Lord of the harvest to send labourers to his harvest. Start off now, but remember, I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Carry no purse, no haversack, no sandals. Salute no one on the road. Whatever house you go into, let your first words be, “Peace to this house!” And if a man of peace lives there, your peace will go and rest on him; if not, it will come back to you. Stay in the same house, taking what food and drink they have to offer, for the labourer deserves his wages; do not move from house to house. Whenever you go into a town where they make you welcome, eat what is set before you. Cure those in it who are sick, and say, “The kingdom of God is very near to you.”

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 16, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

We often live in fear of the uncertain for it is the nature of the world in which we live in. Who can we trust these days? Hordes of voices are calling out for change and seem to be heard, threatening to change truths on faith and morals of which we hold dear. Whispers and secrets are rampant under the guise of allowing the flow of unfettered discussions. How then can our faith not be shaken?

It will never be shaken if we have built it up on the foundation of our Lord Jesus Christ. The voice of God speaks to our hearts and His tender arms embraces us in our weakest moments. Let us remain steadfast in His love for nothing can separate us from Him. And if we die for the truth and love of Him, it is only the flesh that dies for we will surely be alive in and with Him; in His Kingdom. Amen

First reading
Ephesians 1:11-14

Gospel
Luke 12:1-7

The people had gathered in their thousands so that they were treading on one another. And Jesus began to speak, first of all to his disciples. ‘Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees – that is, their hypocrisy. Everything that is now covered will be uncovered, and everything now hidden will be made clear. For this reason, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the daylight, and what you have whispered in hidden places will be proclaimed on the housetops.
‘To you my friends I say: Do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. I will tell you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has the power to cast into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Can you not buy five sparrows for two pennies? And yet not one is forgotten in God’s sight. Why, every hair on your head has been counted. There is no need to be afraid: you are worth more than hundreds of sparrows.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 16, 2014 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

image

Do I live for myself? Do I want to experience only all that is good and positive? Do I think it best to avoid people who are broken lest they infect me with their negativity? Do I only listen to preaching and teachings that is uplifting for my soul but shut my ears to those which admonish for correction? Do I criticise and kill the spirit of those trying to speak God’s truth or prevent others from listening? Have I helped sinners to be reconciled with God our loving Father or have I shunned them thinking they were not worthy or ready to hear the truth?

Lord Jesus have mercy on me, You who went through unimaginable sufferings for us. You who bore the cross on Your back for a sinner like me. While hanging and dying from the cross You sought forgiveness for us sinners. You who gave up Your life so that we may live. Lord have mercy on me.

By Your example Lord I want to be more compassionate and loving. Help me to overcome my weaknesses so that I may take up my cross and follow You. Amen

First reading
Ephesians 1:1-10

Gospel
Luke 11:47-54

Jesus said:
‘Alas for you who build the tombs of the prophets, the men your ancestors killed! In this way you both witness what your ancestors did and approve it; they did the killing, you do the building.
‘And that is why the Wisdom of God said, “I will send them prophets and apostles; some they will slaughter and persecute, so that this generation will have to answer for every prophet’s blood that has been shed since the foundation of the world, from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was murdered between the altar and the sanctuary.” Yes, I tell you, this generation will have to answer for it all.
‘Alas for you lawyers who have taken away the key of knowledge! You have not gone in yourselves, and have prevented others going in who wanted to.’
When he left the house, the scribes and the Pharisees began a furious attack on him and tried to force answers from him on innumerable questions, setting traps to catch him out in something he might say.