Posts Tagged ‘love’


Have you counted the cost of loving the Lord Your God and loving your neighbour thereafter? The cost of discipleship that demands we love God and others more than we love ourselves. The cost of loving without benefits only than to love. To carry our cross to follow after Jesus is to love as He does to the very end. So let us reflect on this a little more…

Do I truly love my spouse such that I would never look at anyone else lustfully let alone entertain the thought of adultery? Do I love my children with an endearing love that I should punish them when they do wrong with my Lord in mind and without starving them of my love? Do I love my aged parents tenderly even though I might struggle with the demands of my own life and family? Do I love my sisters and brothers in Christ inspite of their many faults and shortcomings, striving to be patient with them as my Lord was patient with me? Do I love the stranger that comes before me hoping only to see the face of Christ? Do I love such that my eyes are opened to see those who are poor, sick and in need, and do what I must to help them? Our only debt indeed as St Paul says, is the debt of mutual love. If we remember nothing else today, let us remember this… Love is the one thing that cannot hurt your neighbour; that is why it is the answer to every one of the commandments. (Rm 13:10)

Lord Jesus I embrace my cross for love of You. Lead me to where You want me to go. Amen

First reading

Romans 13:8-10 ·
Your only debt should be the debt of mutual love

Avoid getting into debt, except the debt of mutual love. If you love your fellow men you have carried out your obligations. All the commandments: You shall not commit adultery, you shall not kill, you shall not steal, you shall not covet, and so on, are summed up in this single command: You must love your neighbour as yourself. Love is the one thing that cannot hurt your neighbour; that is why it is the answer to every one of the commandments.

Gospel

Luke 14:25-33
Anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple

Great crowds accompanied Jesus on his way and he turned and spoke to them. ‘If any man comes to me without hating his father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, yes and his own life too, he cannot be my disciple. Anyone who does not carry his cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.
‘And indeed, which of you here, intending to build a tower, would not first sit down and work out the cost to see if he had enough to complete it? Otherwise, if he laid the foundation and then found himself unable to finish the work, the onlookers would all start making fun of him and saying, “Here is a man who started to build and was unable to finish.” Or again, what king marching to war against another king would not first sit down and consider whether with ten thousand men he could stand up to the other who advanced against him with twenty thousand? If not, then while the other king was still a long way off, he would send envoys to sue for peace. So in the same way, none of you can be my disciple unless he gives up all his possessions.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: September 19, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections
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O Lord why do you love me so?

All those years You gently called me home to You and I walked on further away in silence. For had I responded I would have said” Leave me alone I want to live my life my own way!”

O Lord why do you love me so?

And so I ‘loved’ and lived a sinful life exploring the many forms of sexual delights. Unbridled tongue wielded as I pleased. Who was I? But one shrouded in my own mystery.

O Lord why do you love me so?

The further I travelled down the wide open road the harder my heart became. The seven daily Sins were my companions! Who could love me now? When I did know or understand love? Love is something you say or ‘do’ to get what you want!

O Lord why do you love me so?

Troubled, restless, despairing at my loss of my identity retaining only a shred of sanity and a tiny morsel of human dignity, I found myself at Your feet before the Blessed Sacrament weeping for all I had done and all I had failed to do. Then I set my gaze upon You and saw that You loved me and had never stopped! I was liberated from a debt I could not pay! You O Lord are Love!

I no longer ask “O Lord why do you love me so?” But instead ask, “Lord have I loved You more this day.” Amen

First reading

1 Timothy 4:12-16 ·
Be an example to all the believers

Do not let people disregard you because you are young, but be an example to the believers in the way you speak and behave, and in exhaling love, your faith and your purity. Make use of the time until I arrive by reading to the people, preaching and teaching. You have in you a spiritual gift which was given to you when the prophets spoke and the body of elders laid their hands on you; do not let it lie unused. Think hard about all this, and put it into practice, and everyone will be able to see how you are advancing. Take great care about what you do and what you teach; always do this, and in this way you will save both yourself and those who listen to you.

Gospel

Luke 7:36-50
Her many sins have been forgiven, or she would not have shown such great love

One of the Pharisees invited Jesus to a meal. When he arrived at the Pharisee’s house and took his place at table, a woman came in, who had a bad name in the town. She had heard he was dining with the Pharisee and had brought with her an alabaster jar of ointment. She waited behind him at his feet, weeping, and her tears fell on his feet, and she wiped them away with her hair; then she covered his feet with kisses and anointed them with the ointment.
When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, ‘If this man were a prophet, he would know who this woman is that is touching him and what a bad name she has.’ Then Jesus took him up and said, ‘Simon, I have something to say to you.’ ‘Speak, Master’ was the reply. ‘There was once a creditor who had two men in his debt; one owed him five hundred denarii, the other fifty. They were unable to pay, so he pardoned them both. Which of them will love him more?’ ‘The one who was pardoned more, I suppose’ answered Simon. Jesus said, ‘You are right.’
Then he turned to the woman. ‘Simon,’ he said ‘you see this woman? I came into your house, and you poured no water over my feet, but she has poured out her tears over my feet and wiped them away with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but she has been covering my feet with kisses ever since I came in. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. For this reason I tell you that her sins, her many sins, must have been forgiven her, or she would not have shown such great love. It is the man who is forgiven little who shows little love.’ Then he said to her, ‘Your sins are forgiven.’ Those who were with him at table began to say to themselves, ‘Who is this man, that he even forgives sins?’ But he said to the woman, ‘Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: September 17, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections
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Can you fathom a mother’s anguish of losing an only beloved son in the beginning of her twilight years. The sorrowful tears and despair of losing the love of her life whom she bore into the world now to being all alone. Perhaps very soon she might join him as there was no one else to fend or care for her. What work will there be for her to earn her keep? How will she live? Perhaps in the Gospel of today the mother too had already ‘died’ with her son. Then we see the great love of our ever loving God, Jesus who looked upon her with her great compassion and mercy. He raised them both from the dead! Two lives were restored, made whole once again and everyone rejoiced as they praised God for visiting His people.

Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13:8). He is ever loving and compassionate and will always be by our side in our own moments of anguish and despair. He will surely come to comfort and restore us for He hears us crying out to Him. How great indeed is our God!

We are all called to be merciful, compassionate and kind. More is therefore expected of us called to lead His flock and so we must model ourselves after our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ who is mercy and love personified. Amen

First reading

1 Timothy 3:1-13 ·
The president must be of impeccable character

Here is a saying that you can rely on: To want to be a presiding elder is to want to do a noble work. That is why the president must have an impeccable character. He must not have been married more than once, and he must be temperate, discreet and courteous, hospitable and a good teacher; not a heavy drinker, nor hot-tempered, but kind and peaceable. He must not be a lover of money. He must be a man who manages his own family well and brings his children up to obey him and be well-behaved: how can any man who does not understand how to manage his own family have responsibility for the church of God? He should not be a new convert, in case pride might turn his head and then he might be condemned as the devil was condemned. It is also necessary that people outside the Church should speak well of him, so that he never gets a bad reputation and falls into the devil’s trap.
In the same way, deacons must be respectable men whose word can be trusted, moderate in the amount of wine they drink and with no squalid greed for money. They must be conscientious believers in the mystery of the faith. They are to be examined first, and only admitted to serve as deacons if there is nothing against them. In the same way, the women must be respectable, not gossips but sober and quite reliable. Deacons must not have been married more than once, and must be men who manage their children and families well. Those of them who carry out their duties well as deacons will earn a high standing for themselves and be rewarded with great assurance in their work for the faith in Christ Jesus.

Gospel

Luke 7:11-17
The only son of his mother, and she a widow

Jesus went to a town called Nain, accompanied by his disciples and a great number of people. When he was near the gate of the town it happened that a dead man was being carried out for burial, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a considerable number of the townspeople were with her. When the Lord saw her he felt sorry for her. ‘Do not cry’ he said. Then he went up and put his hand on the bier and the bearers stood still, and he said, ‘Young man, I tell you to get up.’ And the dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him to his mother. Everyone was filled with awe and praised God saying, ‘A great prophet has appeared among us; God has visited his people.’ And this opinion of him spread throughout Judaea and all over the countryside.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: September 12, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections
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Too hard it is to follow the loving ways of our Lord and His command to love. Formation after formation, retreat after retreat amounts to nothing if there is no change of heart, of will and fortitude to endeavour the trials of carrying the cross which we are to bear in love. How are we ever going to love our enemies when we cannot love our own family who knows how to push our buttons let alone to love our neighbour? How are we going to bless those who curse us when we are quick to curse them back so as not to fall victim? What about those who treat us badly or ‘slap’ us? ”Ooh I cannot wait for them to try and cross me again” we utter with vengeance in our heart. So indeed it is no effort at all to love those who love us in return!

The painful falls we took to learn to ride a bike, rollerblade (skate), the pains of riding a horse for the first time, the endurance of climbing/hiking up a mountain, the cuts, burns and criticisms when learning to cook, the long hours and hardships of completing a project, all of these at the very end brought us a great sense of accomplishment and overwhelming joy! In addition wonderful lasting memories. How much more will we receive when we love and endure all for Christ Jesus our Lord! It all begins with baby steps in His love. To endure a little more each day, putting on a small piece of cloth of love upon us each time, as a badge of our success. Before we know it we will have a full length cloak upon us, a woven tapestry of love.

Then we can truly sing high praises and hymns to the Lord our God with great gratitude of heart, for we would have become more like Him, compassionate, merciful, most of all loving. Amen Alleluia!

First reading

Colossians 3:12-17 ·
Be clothed in love

You are God’s chosen race, his saints; he loves you, and you should be clothed in sincere compassion, in kindness and humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another; forgive each other as soon as a quarrel begins. The Lord has forgiven you; now you must do the same. Over all these clothes, to keep them together and complete them, put on love. And may the peace of Christ reign in your hearts, because it is for this that you were called together as parts of one body. Always be thankful.
Let the message of Christ, in all its richness, find a home with you. Teach each other, and advise each other, in all wisdom. With gratitude in your hearts sing psalms and hymns and inspired songs to God; and never say or do anything except in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Gospel

Luke 6:27-38
Love your enemies

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘I say this to you who are listening: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who treat you badly. To the man who slaps you on one cheek, present the other cheek too; to the man who takes your cloak from you, do not refuse your tunic. Give to everyone who asks you, and do not ask for your property back from the man who robs you. Treat others as you would like them to treat you. If you love those who love you, what thanks can you expect? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what thanks can you expect? For even sinners do that much. And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive, what thanks can you expect? Even sinners lend to sinners to get back the same amount. Instead, love your enemies and do good, and lend without any hope of return. You will have a great reward, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he himself is kind to the ungrateful and the wicked.
‘Be compassionate as your Father is compassionate. Do not judge, and you will not be judged yourselves; do not condemn, and you will not be condemned yourselves; grant pardon, and you will be pardoned. Give, and there will be gifts for you: a full measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be poured into your lap; because the amount you measure out is the amount you will be given back.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: August 23, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections
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If we declare that we love the Lord our God with all our heart. Then we would have already entered into a deep and personal relationship with Him. We are fully aware of His abundant love for us individually as well as collectively. We should therefore love ourselves as uniquely created in the image and likeness of our Lord and God. And it is through His love and with that same love for ourselves that we are called to love others.

Love not as an emotion but love that wills the good of another. One that wills that the other have joy and peace in their hearts. Love that is faithful to the end. In a sense to love when no one else can and will. Such great love can only come from our faithful ever loving God. A love which gives us the strength, power and fortitude to put that love into action for His glory. His mercy flows most profoundly from such radical love. And we have witnessed this in the many lives touched by the Saints who had responded wholly to that call to love, most recent of which are St John Paul II, St Theresa of Calculta.

We can witness the making of such Saints in our midst too, Parents who care lovingly for their helpless child, especially those with special needs, sons and daughters who care for their aged parents, especially those who are sick, suffering terminally, struggling with dementia, those who care for the outcast and downtrodden in society to name a few.

Sweet heart of Jesus reign in my heart. Let my love not be one of speech alone but one put into action for love of You. Through my love may all encounter Your love for them. Amen

First reading

Ruth 1:1,3-6,14-16,22 ·
Ruth the Moabitess is brought to Bethlehem by Naomi

In the days of the Judges famine came to the land and a certain man from Bethlehem of Judah went – he, his wife and his two sons – to live in the country of Moab. Elimelech, Naomi’s husband, died, and she and her two sons were left. These married Moabite women: one was named Orpah and the other Ruth. They lived there about ten years. Then both Mahlon and Chilion also died and the woman was bereft of her two sons and her husband. So she and her daughters-in-law prepared to return from the country of Moab, for she had heard that the Lord had visited his people and given them food. Then Orpah kissed her mother-in-law and went back to her people. But Ruth clung to her.
Naomi said to her, ‘Look, your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her god. You must return too; follow your sister-in-law.’
But Ruth said, ‘Do not press me to leave you and to turn back from your company, for

‘wherever you go, I will go,
wherever you live, I will live.
Your people shall be my people,
and your God, my God.’

This was how Naomi, she who returned from the country of Moab, came back with Ruth the Moabitess her daughter-in-law. And they came to Bethlehem at the beginning of the barley harvest.

Gospel

Matthew 22:34-40
The commandments of love

When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees they got together and, to disconcert him, one of them put a question, ‘Master, which is the greatest commandment of the Law?’ Jesus said, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second resembles it: You must love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments hang the whole Law, and the Prophets also.’