Tuesday TODAY'S READINGS:
DIDACHE | COMPANION | SABBATH
THE REAL MIRACLE
"The works I do in my Father's name testify to me, but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep." – John 10:25-26
When I was a child, the magic of David Copperfield was all the rage. While my siblings and I marveled at the show, my older cousin would be busy making side comments on how the trick was probably being done.
It makes me think of the way the unbelievers must have explained away the miracles in Jesus' time. Even though no trickery was involved, they refused to trust their senses and even concocted a story about how the apostles must have stolen Jesus' body during the resurrection.
I guess that's why, with all the powers at His disposal, Jesus never used miracles as the focus of His ministry. He cured physical ailments but His aim was to heal diseased souls beset by sin.
Author Philip Yancey put it this way: "Jesus never met a disease he could not cure, a birth defect he could not reverse, a demon he could not exorcise. But he did meet sceptics he could not convince and sinners he could not convert."
The real miracle is God's forgiveness and our subsequent repentance and conversion. Are you letting Jesus work His miracle in you?Cecilia Lim (firstname.lastname@example.org)
"Faith does not spring from the miracle, but the miracle from faith." (Fyodor Dostoevsky)
Lord, I do believe. Help me overcome my unbelief!
Didache | Companion | Sabbath | Top
Persecution has scattered the first Christians as they flee for their lives from those who would kill them. This forced missionary movement suddenly discovers that in the previous diaspora of the Jews there is a ready basis upon which to proclaim the Gospel in the towns and places where they now find themselves. God does indeed use suffering and even evil and turn it around for the good of the Gospel.
19 Those who had been scattered by the persecution that arose because of Stephen went as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to no one but Jews. 20 There were some Cypriots and Cyrenians among them, however, who came to Antioch and began to speak to the Greeks as well, proclaiming the Lord Jesus. 21 The hand of the Lord was with them and a great number who believed turned to the Lord. 22 The news about
them reached the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to go to Antioch. 23 When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart, 24 for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and faith. And a large number of people was added to the Lord. 25 Then he went to Tarsus to loo for Saul, 26 and when he had found him he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a
large number of people, and it was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians.
P S A L M
Psalm 87:1b-3, 4-5, 6-7
R: All you nations, praise the Lord.
1 His foundation upon the holy mountains 2 the LORD loves: The gates of Zion, more than any dwelling of Jacob. 3 Glorious things are said of you, O city of God! (R) 4 I tell of Egypt and Babylon among those that know the LORD; Of Philistia, Tyre, Ethiopia "This man was born there." 5 And of Zion they shall say
"One and all were born in her; and he who has established her is the Most High LORD." (R) 6 They shall note, when the peoples are enrolled: "This man was born there." 7 And all shall sing, in their festive dance: "My home is within you." (R)
G O S P E L
It is partially true to say that a Good Shepherd is somewhat dependent upon faithful sheep who do indeed listen and respond to His voice. This is something to think about. How much priority do I give to listening to God's will in my life? God is always leading and guiding us. The most probable explanation to lack of guidance in our lives is lack of attentiveness on our part. Let us pray for the grace that we will never suffer from this problem.
22 The feast of the Dedication was then taking place in Jerusalem. It was winter. 23 And Jesus walked about in the temple area on the Portico of Solomon. 24 So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, "How long are you going to keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly." 25 Jesus answered them, "I told you and you do not believe. The works I do in my Father's name testify to
me. 26 But you do not believe, because you are not among my sheep. 27 My sheep hear my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish. No one can take them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one can take them out of the Father's hand. 30 The Father and I are one."
t h i n k : How much priority do I give to listening to God's voice in my life?
God's special verse/thought for me today________________
T O D A Y ' S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for:____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Deuteronomy 4-7
Didache | Companion | Sabbath | Top
LAYING A STRONG FOUNDATION
We live in a world where there is an "instant" version of almost anything: instant coffee, instant messaging, etc. In fact, we tend to think that something that cannot be delivered immediately is either not worth the effort or broken in one way or another. How wrong we are if we give in to this sort of thinking, particularly when it comes to relationships. Many youth of today have absorbed this mentality and apply it to their relationships. As Christians, we need to work against this mentality by laying strong and lasting foundations for our faith communities so that we can weather the storms and difficulties that may come our way.
Paul spent a year building the community of faith in Antioch and the same experience happened in many of the communities he founded. Today, there are too many supposedly Christian Churches sprouting up here and there with very little foundation to them other than the founder cannot seem to get along with one of the leaders in his previous Church. I find it very difficult to see how such a reality can be claimed to be a "work of the Holy Spirit" as the Spirit is a spirit of unity, not division. The greater challenge, and the one that will bear infinitely more fruit, is found in working through difficulties to build a stronger and more lasting
foundation to the original community. This is what the Catholic Church has done and she still endures 2,000 years later, as strong as ever.
The biggest problem with the proliferation of Christian Churches is the scandal of division that it witnesses to others. It also makes it much easier for the devil to overcome the work of these Churches as they are already divided. The only way for us to combat this problem is to work for the unity of all Christians such that we can all return to the one foundation — Christ and all that He wills for His Church. Fr. Steve Tynan, MGL
How can I help in laying a stronger foundation for my faith community in the Church? How do we, as a community, offer service to the wider Catholic Church?
Jesus, You are the rock, the cornerstone upon which the Church is built. Help me to focus and build my life upon You and thus be a part of the Church You desire and started 2,000 years ago.
St. Zita, pray for us.
Didache | Companion | Sabbath | Top
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