Archive for August, 2011

Hope does not disappoint, because the charity of God is poured forth in our hearts by the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us.  - Rom 5:5

Reflection.  The charity or love of God flows like a fountain.  It pours out living waters to you all day long.  Mentally, keep a small pitcher close by and draw from it throughout the day.  It will refresh you, and all you meet.

Prayer.  Come, Holy Spirit, fill the heart of this faithful one, and inspire in  me the fire of Divine Love.  Let the love flow through me to all the living.

Our citizenship is in heaven, and from there we await our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.  He will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be conformed to His glorified body by the power that also enables Him to make all things subject to Himself.  – Phil 3:20-21

Reflection.  St Paul pleads with us to remain courageous.  We are not yet Saints, but we are Saints in training.  Why not be brave?  Goodness is its own reward.

Prayer.  Lord Jesus, with You at my side, I can do all things.  You are my strength and my joy.

If you are reviled for the Name of Christ, consider yourself blessed, for upon you rests the Spirit of glory and of God.  - 1 Pet 4:14

Reflection.  To have the Spirit of God resting on you is the greatest compliment you can receive.  If it comes from someone who intends to punish you in some way for your beliefs, so be it.  It is still a compliment.

Prayer.  Father, help me to understand this mystery.  Teach me how to accept my pain with courage, even as I seek healing and relief.  I offer all my sufferings and humiliations in a spirit of reparation, and with the help of Your grace.  I promise obedience and love.

Whoever does not love Me does not keep My words.  - Jn 14:24

Reflection.  Jesus came to bring joy, but this joy is the consequence of obedience to His advice and His commands.  He asks us most emphatically to love one another because when we do, life will flow beautifully.  When we do not, the suffering begins.

Prayer.  Give me the grace, O Lord, to follow You with a childlike spirit.  I want to do Your Will.  Give me the courage to carry out my good intentions. 

What I say to you in the dark, proclaim in the daylight, and what you hear whispered, shout from the housetops.  - Mt 10:27

Reflection.  Jesus committed to His followers the main task of preaching the Gospel.  How?  In three ways — by our prayers, our words, and our actions.  In prayer we receive power; in our words and actions, we give it away.  It is like breathing in and breathing out.

Prayer.  Lord, fill my mind with knowledge and my heart with love, and then help me to give it all away.

Evildoers simply cannot understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand it completely.           - Prov 28:5

Reflection.  Excesses often mar high-sounding goals.  In his encyclical Rich in Mercy, Pope John Paul II alluded to this problem:  “It is obvious in fact that in the name of an alleged justice (for example, historical or class justice) the neighbor is sometimes destroyed, killed, deprived of liberty, or stripped of fundamental human rights.”  This history of atheistic Marxism is filled with such abuses.

Prayer.  Dear God, make me wise so that I may see what is right and just, and make me childlike that I may put others before myself. 

Blessed are you who are poor, for the Kingdom of God is yours.  - Lk 6:20

Reflection.  How to live the Christian life?  That is the question.  How to live and receive love in communion with others?  How to forgive those who offend us?  How to pray to the Father with Jesus in the Holy Spirit?  How to go out to those in need, without looking for praise or thanks?  All this takes meekness and humility.

Prayer.  Father, I want to be poor in spirit so that I may live the Christian life fully.  This is the only true happiness worth pursuing. 

Take heart … your sins are forgiven.  - Mt 9:2

Reflection.  Before Jesus said to the paralytic, “Take up your bed and walk,” He said, “Take heart, son, your sins are forgiven.”  Healing and forgiveness are continually combined in the Gospels.  We are paralyzed until we accept — really accept — the fact that God forgives us.  Once we do, we are freed to love, forgive, and accept ourselves.  Then the joy of healing begins.

Prayer.  Thank You, Lord, for Your healing in my life.  I am like the paralytic, and You have made me whole. 

Just as a branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it remains attached to the vine, so you cannot bear fruit unless you abide in Me.  I am the vine, you are the branches.  - Jn 15:4-5

Reflection.  These words of Jesus contain the essence of His message and the secret of our joy.  His life is joy itself.  Jesus teaches us that God loved us first, and He created us for a particular purpose in life.  Each one of us has a job to do that nobody else in the world can do.

Prayer.  Dear Lord, teach me how to use my life, humble as it is, for Your glory.  Help me to become a conduit of Your love.

The entire Law can be summed up in a single commandment:  “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”  - Gal 5:14

Reflection.  Teaching the Christian view of reality is best done by living it.  We instruct others best by our loving actions, and then our words have the ring of truth.  Teaching is not so much communicating a list of definitions.  Teaching has the more pragmatic goal of helping others to live life as God created us to live it, joyfully.

Prayer.  Maker of heaven and earth, I am Your humble child.  I want to obey Your supreme commandment — to love and be loved.  Help me to overcome my selfishness.