They shall know that I, the Lord, am their God.  - Ezek 34:30

Reflection.  He was born in an obscure village / the child of a peasant woman. / He grew up in still another village, / where He worked in a carpenter shop / until He was thirty. / Then for three years / He was an itinerant preacher. / He never wrote a book. / He never held an office … / He was nailed to a Cross / between two thieves. / While He was dying, / His executioners gambled for His clothing, / the only property He had on earth. / When He was dead, / He was laid in a  borrowed grave / through the pity of a friend. / Nineteen centuries have come and gone, / and today He is the central figure / of the human race.   - One Solitary Life

Prayer.  Jesus, Your life is an inspiration to me.  I bow before You as I await Your coming at Christmas.

God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not perish but attain eternal life.  - Jn 3:16

Reflection.  Say yes to life, cheerfully enthusiastically, ecstatically.  Believe in the immortality and everlasting effects of your goodness.  - Robert Mueller

Prayer.  Assist me, dear Lord, in understanding the great mystery of Your love. 

For the Father Himself loves you because you have loved Me and have believed that I came forth from God.  - Jn 16:27

Reflection.  Faith in Jesus is at the heart of all spiritual progress.  Jesus teaches us that God is gentle, God is kind.  When we finally grasp the simplicity of this mystery, it changes our whole outlook.

Prayer.  Lord Jesus, send the fire of Your love into my heart to purify it.  Let the fire blaze, giving light to those lost in darkness and heat to those who suffer from the cold of loneliness. 

How wonderful and delightful it is for people to live together in unity … For there the Lord has bestowed His blessing, life forevermore.  - Ps 133:1-3

Reflection.  When a family is full of love, it is a sign of the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Every member of the family should cooperate in creating an atmosphere of emotional comfort for all concerned.

Prayer.  Lord, help me to do my share in making my home more peaceful and loving, and do not let me be too hard on myself.  If others disrupt the peace, this is a heavy cross, and I need Your help to carry it.

Whatever you do in word or in work, do all in the Name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.  - Col 3:17

Reflection.  The Jesuits put these letters A.M.D.G. on everything they write.  They stand for the Latin words Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam, which means “All is offered for the greater glory of God.”  In this spirit, everything they do or say is offered in humble gratitude.

Prayer.  Lord, I commit myself this day to make the world a better, happier place and to give You greater glory.

Jesus came and proclaimed peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near.  - Eph 2:17

Reflection.  Peace is offered to those close to God and those far away.  He loves all His children even those who do not love Him.  Let the Lord into your heart and relax in His love.  The gift of peace is the fruit of obedience to God’s law of love.

Prayer.  Lord, I do welcome You.  I bathe in the wonder of Your loving presence.  I am at peace. 

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom.  - Prov 1:7

Reflection.  Everyone who has suffered from scrupulosity knows that an excessive fear of God’s judgment can have devastating effects on one’s emotional life.  Scruples are more related to one’s nervous symptoms than to morality.  God is not offended by trifles.  When you make a sensible effort to be good, God is pleased.  Perfectionism is not Christianity.

Prayer.  Father, help me to trust in Your mercy.  I know You love me. 

The Kingdom of God is close at hand.  - Mt 1:15

Reflection.  Today is the great feast of the Immaculate Conception.  Mary was conceived in a state of perfect purity.  This event signals the beginning of God’s magnificent plan to make all things new.  In this mystery, we see how well God plans ahead.  He is already planning your entry into heaven.

Prayer.  Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you.  We pray for those most in need of God’s mercy. 

May the Father grant you to be strengthened with power through His Spirit … and to have Christ dwelling in you through faith.  - Eph 3:16-17

Reflection.  St. Paul prays that you will be strengthened with the power of the Holy Spirit.  His prayers for you are ongoing.  You will be made strong.  The fear and timidity you once knew are receding.  You will be given courage and fortitude to cope with life and all its problems.  Believe it.

Prayer.  Jesus, in You I live and breathe and have my being.  Let me enjoy Your company.

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you.  Not as the world gives do I give it to you.  Do not let your hearts be troubled.  - Jn 14:27

Reflection.  Loneliness can be a big obstacle to peace of mind.  But it can also be a spur for us to become more creative.  Once we accept the fact that we will always have a certain amount of loneliness in our lives, we can live with it, and stop looking for false solutions.  God is the only One Who will ultimately fill that void.

Prayer.  Dear Jesus, You offer me Your peace, and I accept it.  I also accept my loneliness as a reminder that I am never really alone, for You are with me always.

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