Archive for November, 2012

The Kingdom of heaven is close at hand.  … “Prepare the way of the Lord, make His paths straight.”  – Mt 3:2-3

Reflection.  Today you can pull into the driveway, and use a remote control to open a garage door, and a cell phone to announce that you are home.  However, these gadgets cannot help you predict the day or the hour you will be called home to God.

Prayer.  Lord, help me to be prepared when You call me home.  

For everything there is a season, … a time to weep, and a time to laugh.  – Eccl 3:1, 4

Reflection.  After giving a homily on joy, I often given the congregation this advice: “If you have the slightest bit of joy in your heart, please notify your face.”  St. Teresa of Avila put it another way, “God, deliver me from sullen Saints.”

Prayer.  Dear Lord, help me to realize that the time to smile is right now.  

A kindly glance gives joy to the heart, and good news refreshes the bones.  – Prov 15:30

Reflection.  Winter waits for spring, and spring waits for summer.  Everything happens in its proper time.  There is no need to force God’s timetable.  There is ” a time to tear down, and a time to build up.  A time to weep, and a time to laugh” (Eccl 3:3-4).

Prayer.  Dear God, help me to put up with my worrisome mind.  Teach me to trust You more.  

I prayed, and understanding was given to me; I pleaded and the spirit of Wisdom came to me.  – Wis 7:7

Reflection.  The most important thing that wisdom can bring us is the knowledge that God is our friend.  This friendship is the basis of all our future happiness both here and in heaven.  Start with the firm conviction that God is love.  His love for you is personal and eternal.

Prayer.  Heavenly Father, I thank You for the gift of wisdom.  

Abide in Me, as I abide in you … You cannot bear fruit unless you abide in Me.  – Jn 15:4

Reflection.  It is only in the present moment that we find true joy.  Enjoy your food; enjoy the fresh air you breathe; enjoy your work; and enjoy your leisure time.  The books of wisdom teach us to live in the present moment.

Prayer.  Dear Lord, give me the grace to live in Your love, while I enjoy my precious life here and now.  

See what love the Father has bestowed on us, enabling us to be called the children of God.  – 1 Jn 3:1

Reflection.  God loves you no matter how badly you may feel about yourself.  He forgives you no matter how guilty you may feel.  Laugh at your feelings.  They are not true.

Prayer.  Lord, help me to live by faith not by feelings.  When I am in darkness, I know You are at my side protecting me.  

If your eyes are sound, your whole body will be filled with light.  – Mt 6:22

Reflection.  Mark Twain said, “I can live for two days on a good compliment.”  People need affirmation.  Why not be more alert to the needs of others.  When you touch them with kindness, they will invite you into their hearts.

Prayer.  Lord, give me a more loving heart.  

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

Reflection.  Tears are good for the soul.  Sometimes our disappointments are overwhelming.  When you feel your worst, and your tears begin to flow, offer them to the Lord.  “Your tears are collected by the Angels and placed in a golden chalice.  You will find them again one day when you present yourself before God” (St. Padre Pio).

Prayer.  Dear Lord, I offer You all my joys and sorrows.  

Alleluia!  Praise, you servants of the Lord, praise the Name of the Lord.  – Ps 113:1

Reflection.  Beauty nourishes our souls the way food nourishes our bodies.  Search for the beauty that is all around you, and try to see God’s face in every person you meet.  “‘Joy’ is beholding the beauty of God in all creation” (Blessed Julian of Norwich).

Prayer.  Dear Lord, help me to see You in everyone I meet.  

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us exult and rejoice in it.  – Ps 118:24

Reflection.  Did you know that the central message of Christianity is joy?  Pope John Paul II said, “Christ came to bring joy; joy to children, joy to parents, joy to families and friends, joy to the sick and elderly.  Christ came to bring joy to all people; go therefore and become messengers of joy.”

Prayer.  Dear Jesus, help me to choose joy as the dominant motif of my life.