Monday, March 31, 2014

10th Station of the Cross

Tenth Station: Jesus is Stripped of His Garments


  Jesus has come to the spot where He will lose His life. He is tired and beaten down. Now as He stands there before the masses He is stripped of His garments. He stands before them exposed and humiliated. 

   Before Jesus is nailed to the cross for forgiveness of our sins He is stripped down, almost naked. Almost fully exposed to the world. There are a few ways that come to mind about being stripped down and exposed. 

   The first is with confession/ reconciliation.  This is how we need to be when we are asking for forgiveness and God’s Love. We need to strip away those sins and expose who is under all those layers to Jesus so we may know and feel that sense of forgiveness and love. The idea of going to confession bothers some because they feel they are like Jesus and will be exposed. That the Priest will hold them to those sins that we are confessing. Yes, I must admit sometimes it is hard to expose my sins but after it is done there is that feeling of release. 

    The second is part of my retreat experience this past weekend. I was stripped of those outside connections to the world. Stripped of the noises and voices. I was stripped of , not only, my connections to the world but of a voice for the weekend. I am someone who’s phone is constantly checked, used to text, and check facebook. When I am home the TV is on, the phone is by my side and the computer is on. There is that constant chatter. Yet, this weekend, those things were silent. I needed those things to be stripped from me so I can focus and be disconnected to the world so I may reconnect with God, Jesus, Holy Spirit and Mary. 

     If someone asked you “ Who are you? Tell me about yourself ? Explain to me what makes you, you?” What would you say? Would you list your occupation? Your Marital status? Children? Religion? Where you live? Would you say what you own and have? Each one of these are layers that we place on ourselves or allow them to be placed on us by others. If you now strip all of that away, who are you? What is at your core? It is only when we strip all of the titles or categories can we see that at the core we are all children of God. All of the titles and layers we add, shape how we are and viewed in the world. We have to be exposed and stripped so others see first and foremost that we belong to God. That we are not ashamed of being who we truly are meant to be in the world. 

      We do not want to be stripped and exposed because we do not want to see the mocking glances of others, hear their whispers or face rejection of who we really are inside. Jesus stood as He was stripped of the earthly garments to not expose Himself but the sins of the world. When we go before God we will be stripped of all those things that are of this secular world so we may hope to gain the Heavenly Kingdom. Really look at yourself and strip down all those things that bind you to this world so you can stand before God. Strip down so you may gain forgiveness and salvation.    

Until tomorrow, God Bless, and may you expose your true self to not only others but to yourself as well.   

Tuesday of the Fourth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 245
Reading 1
EZ 47:1-9, 12
The angel brought me, Ezekiel,
back to the entrance of the temple of the LORD,
and I saw water flowing out
from beneath the threshold of the temple toward the east,
for the fa├žade of the temple was toward the east;
the water flowed down from the right side of the temple,
south of the altar.
He led me outside by the north gate,
and around to the outer gate facing the east,
where I saw water trickling from the right side.
Then when he had walked off to the east
with a measuring cord in his hand,
he measured off a thousand cubits
and had me wade through the water, 
which was ankle-deep.
He measured off another thousand
and once more had me wade through the water,
which was now knee-deep.
Again he measured off a thousand and had me wade;
the water was up to my waist.
Once more he measured off a thousand,
but there was now a river through which I could not wade;
for the water had risen so high it had become a river
that could not be crossed except by swimming.
He asked me, “Have you seen this, son of man?”
Then he brought me to the bank of the river, where he had me sit.
Along the bank of the river I saw very many trees on both sides.
He said to me,
“This water flows into the eastern district down upon the Arabah,
and empties into the sea, the salt waters, which it makes fresh. 
Wherever the river flows,
every sort of living creature that can multiply shall live,
and there shall be abundant fish,
for wherever this water comes the sea shall be made fresh.
Along both banks of the river, fruit trees of every kind shall grow;
their leaves shall not fade, nor their fruit fail.
Every month they shall bear fresh fruit,
for they shall be watered by the flow from the sanctuary.
Their fruit shall serve for food, and their leaves for medicine.”
Responsorial Psalm
PS 46:2-3, 5-6, 8-9

R. (8) The Lord of hosts is with us; our stronghold is the God of Jacob. 
God is our refuge and our strength,
an ever-present help in distress.
Therefore we fear not, though the earth be shaken
and mountains plunge into the depths of the sea.
R. The Lord of hosts is with us; our stronghold is the God of Jacob. 
There is a stream whose runlets gladden the city of God,
the holy dwelling of the Most High.
God is in its midst; it shall not be disturbed;
God will help it at the break of dawn.
R. The Lord of hosts is with us; our stronghold is the God of Jacob. 
The LORD of hosts is with us;
our stronghold is the God of Jacob.
Come! behold the deeds of the LORD,
the astounding things he has wrought on earth.
R. The Lord of hosts is with us; our stronghold is the God of Jacob.
Gospel
JN 5:1-16

There was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
Now there is in Jerusalem at the Sheep Gate
a pool called in Hebrew Bethesda, with five porticoes.
In these lay a large number of ill, blind, lame, and crippled.
One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years.
When Jesus saw him lying there
and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him,
“Do you want to be well?”
The sick man answered him,
“Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool
when the water is stirred up;
while I am on my way, someone else gets down there before me.”
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your mat, and walk.”
Immediately the man became well, took up his mat, and walked.

Now that day was a sabbath.
So the Jews said to the man who was cured,
“It is the sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.” 
He answered them, “The man who made me well told me,
‘Take up your mat and walk.’“
They asked him,
“Who is the man who told you, ‘Take it up and walk’?”
The man who was healed did not know who it was,
for Jesus had slipped away, since there was a crowd there.
After this Jesus found him in the temple area and said to him,
“Look, you are well; do not sin any more,
so that nothing worse may happen to you.”
The man went and told the Jews
that Jesus was the one who had made him well.
Therefore, the Jews began to persecute Jesus

because he did this on a sabbath.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Know When to Leave : Part 2

Know When to Leave : Part 2


   The other day I wrote the blog about knowing when to leave and stand up for the faith, and since then I have felt the need to add more to it. There is more to “Leaving” then when the situation is bad or things are not right. Sometimes it is even when all is good and all is ok, that we need to pack up, stand up and walk out the door that is opened. 

    If all is ok why would you need to leave you may ask? Well, sometimes it has to be done to expand your experiences, test and strengthen your faith, or for a greater good. We all become stagnate at times and with that comes the need to be stirred up. Shake things up sometimes. I know for myself sometimes I just need to get in my car and head out to find different scenery. With that change of scenery I find a new sense of clarity and understanding. It can be as simple as changing the time you go to mass, attending mass at a different church or even attending a parish mission. The idea is to just keep that fresh and open sight into what God is wanting you to see and experience. Our minds start to wander and with that so does our attention to what is going on. This way a simple change may just keep our minds more focused on the new environment, new people, new message we are receiving. 

   Now for the real reason why I felt there needed to be a part two. This is not going to be easy to say to some people and including myself in this. Sometimes WE need to leave a perfect situation where everything seems to be great, everything is working out, everything has fallen into place, and everything is just as we want it to be. Yet, we are no longer to be there. It is time to leave and trust that the new door that is opening is where we are now to head. This is the hard part. I think it is actually harder to leave a good situation then a bad one. It is clear when things are not right. Not saying it is easy to leave a bad situation. This is where having faith and trust in God is put to the test for ourselves. I know for myself it is hard to leave when things are good, even pointless to leave. You know “ Don’t leave a good thing”. Yet, going through discernment has taught me that sometimes “There is a Greater Good” that we are being asked to do or experience. 

  What is “Greater Good”? I wish I could give an answer that makes it clear to each of us and would really love to have it be very clear for myself to be honest. That “Greater Good” is different for each of us and maybe you are already experiencing or living that “Greater Good”. What it is to me is that even though you are doing good or part of something good, does not mean that is what you are ultimately to be doing. That there is something more for you that God created you to do. God created us with special gifts and talents that is unique to each person. There is a reason or better yet, a purpose that we were given those special talents and gifts. It does not mean what we were doing is not good but we are not at that full experience we are being called to do. Just think for a moment of your greatest joy or a great moment in your life..... now think what if there was something even greater then that you are being called to do or be? It is something that I think we all need to pray and think on. 

    This “Greater Good” can come in different forms from jobs, relationships, or ministries that we are involved in. It is hard to leave anyone of those and start new somewhere else or add more to our lives. I look back at all my different experiences and see the hand of God in many of them and sometimes I left before it was time or stayed longer then I should have or even did not return as I should have. Each of those times altered a part of me that God saw that needed to be. I am now longing and searching for my “Greater Good” that God has chosen for me. The days of finding my own greatness is done and over with. We have to turn over our will to be able to see that “Greater Good” in our lives. Maybe you will find that you are already there and then can sit back with a sigh and Thank God for it. Others will need some time to pray and think. Then the rest is ready to pack up and ready to start the next part of life. 

    I hope and pray that each and everyone of us finds that “Greater Good” in our lives or recognize we have that “Great Good” already. 

Until tomorrow, God Bless, and be ready and willing for the Greater Good to come into your life. 

Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent
Lectionary: 244
Reading 1
IS 65:17-21
Thus says the LORD:
Lo, I am about to create new heavens
and a new earth;
The things of the past shall not be remembered
or come to mind.
Instead, there shall always be rejoicing and happiness
in what I create;
For I create Jerusalem to be a joy
and its people to be a delight;
I will rejoice in Jerusalem
and exult in my people.
No longer shall the sound of weeping be heard there,
or the sound of crying;
No longer shall there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not round out his full lifetime;
He dies a mere youth who reaches but a hundred years,
and he who fails of a hundred shall be thought accursed.
They shall live in the houses they build,
and eat the fruit of the vineyards they plant.
Responsorial Psalm
PS 30:2 AND 4, 5-6, 11-12A AND 13B

R. (2a) I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.
I will extol you, O LORD, for you drew me clear
and did not let my enemies rejoice over me.
O LORD, you brought me up from the nether world;
you preserved me from among those going down into the pit.
R. I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.
Sing praise to the LORD, you his faithful ones,
and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger lasts but a moment;
a lifetime, his good will.
At nightfall, weeping enters in,
but with the dawn, rejoicing.
R. I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.
“Hear, O LORD, and have pity on me;
O LORD, be my helper.”
You changed my mourning into dancing;
O LORD, my God, forever will I give you thanks.
R. I will praise you, Lord, for you have rescued me.
Gospel
JN 4:43-54

At that time Jesus left [Samaria] for Galilee.
For Jesus himself testified
that a prophet has no honor in his native place.
When he came into Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him,
since they had seen all he had done in Jerusalem at the feast;
for they themselves had gone to the feast.

Then he returned to Cana in Galilee,
where he had made the water wine.
Now there was a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum.
When he heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea,
he went to him and asked him to come down
and heal his son, who was near death.
Jesus said to him,
“Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.”
The royal official said to him,
“Sir, come down before my child dies.”
Jesus said to him, “You may go; your son will live.”
The man believed what Jesus said to him and left.
While the man was on his way back,
his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live.
He asked them when he began to recover.
They told him,
“The fever left him yesterday, about one in the afternoon.”
The father realized that just at that time Jesus had said to him,
“Your son will live,”
and he and his whole household came to believe.
Now this was the second sign Jesus did
when he came to Galilee from Judea.

Fourth Sunday of Lent Lectionary: 31

Fourth Sunday of Lent
Lectionary: 31

Reading 1
1 SM 16:1B, 6-7, 10-13A
The LORD said to Samuel:
“Fill your horn with oil, and be on your way.
I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem, 
for I have chosen my king from among his sons.”

As Jesse and his sons came to the sacrifice, 
Samuel looked at Eliab and thought, 
“Surely the LORD’s anointed is here before him.”
But the LORD said to Samuel: 
“Do not judge from his appearance or from his lofty stature, 
because I have rejected him.
Not as man sees does God see, 
because man sees the appearance 
but the LORD looks into the heart.”
In the same way Jesse presented seven sons before Samuel, 
but Samuel said to Jesse, 
“The LORD has not chosen any one of these.”
Then Samuel asked Jesse,
“Are these all the sons you have?”
Jesse replied,
“There is still the youngest, who is tending the sheep.”
Samuel said to Jesse,
“Send for him; 
we will not begin the sacrificial banquet until he arrives here.”
Jesse sent and had the young man brought to them.
He was ruddy, a youth handsome to behold 
and making a splendid appearance.
The LORD said,
“There—anoint him, for this is the one!”
Then Samuel, with the horn of oil in hand, 
anointed David in the presence of his brothers; 
and from that day on, the spirit of the LORD rushed upon David.
Responsorial Psalm
PS 23:1-3A, 3B-4, 5, 6

R/ (1) The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.
R/ The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
He guides me in right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
that give me courage.
R/ The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
R/ The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.
R/ The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Reading 2
EPH 5:8-14

Brothers and sisters:
You were once darkness, 
but now you are light in the Lord.
Live as children of light, 
for light produces every kind of goodness 
and righteousness and truth.
Try to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.
Take no part in the fruitless works of darkness; 
rather expose them, for it is shameful even to mention 
the things done by them in secret; 
but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 
for everything that becomes visible is light.
Therefore, it says:
“Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will give you light.”
Gospel
JN 9:1-41

As Jesus passed by he saw a man blind from birth.
His disciples asked him,
“Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, 
that he was born blind?”
Jesus answered,
“Neither he nor his parents sinned; 
it is so that the works of God might be made visible through him.
We have to do the works of the one who sent me while it is day.
Night is coming when no one can work.
While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
When he had said this, he spat on the ground
and made clay with the saliva,
and smeared the clay on his eyes,
and said to him, 
“Go wash in the Pool of Siloam” —which means Sent—.
So he went and washed, and came back able to see.

His neighbors and those who had seen him earlier as a beggar said, 
“Isn’t this the one who used to sit and beg?”
Some said, “It is, “
but others said, “No, he just looks like him.”
He said, “I am.”
So they said to him, “How were your eyes opened?”
He replied,
“The man called Jesus made clay and anointed my eyes
and told me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash.’
So I went there and washed and was able to see.”
And they said to him, “Where is he?”
He said, “I don’t know.”

They brought the one who was once blind to the Pharisees.
Now Jesus had made clay and opened his eyes on a sabbath.
So then the Pharisees also asked him how he was able to see.
He said to them,
“He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and now I can see.”
So some of the Pharisees said,
“This man is not from God,
because he does not keep the sabbath.”
But others said,
“How can a sinful man do such signs?”
And there was a division among them.
So they said to the blind man again, 
“What do you have to say about him,
since he opened your eyes?”
He said, “He is a prophet.”

Now the Jews did not believe 
that he had been blind and gained his sight 
until they summoned the parents of the one who had gained his sight.
They asked them,
“Is this your son, who you say was born blind?
How does he now see?”
His parents answered and said, 
“We know that this is our son and that he was born blind.
We do not know how he sees now,
nor do we know who opened his eyes.
Ask him, he is of age;
he can speak for himself.”
His parents said this because they were afraid
of the Jews, for the Jews had already agreed 
that if anyone acknowledged him as the Christ,
he would be expelled from the synagogue.
For this reason his parents said,
“He is of age; question him.”

So a second time they called the man who had been blind 
and said to him, “Give God the praise!
We know that this man is a sinner.”
He replied,
“If he is a sinner, I do not know.
One thing I do know is that I was blind and now I see.”
So they said to him,
“What did he do to you?
How did he open your eyes?”
He answered them,
“I told you already and you did not listen.
Why do you want to hear it again?
Do you want to become his disciples, too?”
They ridiculed him and said, 
“You are that man’s disciple;
we are disciples of Moses!
We know that God spoke to Moses, 
but we do not know where this one is from.”
The man answered and said to them,
“This is what is so amazing, 
that you do not know where he is from, yet he opened my eyes.
We know that God does not listen to sinners, 
but if one is devout and does his will, he listens to him.
It is unheard of that anyone ever opened the eyes of a person born blind.
If this man were not from God,
he would not be able to do anything.”
They answered and said to him,
“You were born totally in sin,
and are you trying to teach us?”
Then they threw him out.

When Jesus heard that they had thrown him out,
he found him and said, ADo you believe in the Son of Man?”
He answered and said, 
“Who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?”
Jesus said to him,
“You have seen him,
the one speaking with you is he.”
He said,
“I do believe, Lord,” and he worshiped him.
Then Jesus said,
“I came into this world for judgment, 
so that those who do not see might see, 
and those who do see might become blind.”

Some of the Pharisees who were with him heard this 
and said to him, “Surely we are not also blind, are we?”
Jesus said to them,
“If you were blind, you would have no sin; 
but now you are saying, ‘We see,’ so your sin remains.
Or
JN 9:1, 6-9, 13-17, 34-38

As Jesus passed by he saw a man blind from birth.
He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva,
and smeared the clay on his eyes,
and said to him, 
“Go wash in the Pool of Siloam” — which means Sent —.
So he went and washed, and came back able to see.

His neighbors and those who had seen him earlier as a beggar said, 
“Isn’t this the one who used to sit and beg?”
Some said, “It is, “
but others said, “No, he just looks like him.”
He said, “I am.”

They brought the one who was once blind to the Pharisees.
Now Jesus had made clay and opened his eyes on a sabbath.
So then the Pharisees also asked him how he was able to see.
He said to them,
“He put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and now I can see.”
So some of the Pharisees said,
“This man is not from God,
because he does not keep the sabbath.”
But others said,
“How can a sinful man do such signs?”
And there was a division among them.
So they said to the blind man again, 
“What do you have to say about him,
since he opened your eyes?”
He said, “He is a prophet.”

They answered and said to him,
“You were born totally in sin,
and are you trying to teach us?”
Then they threw him out.

When Jesus heard that they had thrown him out,
he found him and said, “Do you believe in the Son of Man?”
He answered and said, 
“Who is he, sir, that I may believe in him?”
Jesus said to him,
“You have seen him, and
the one speaking with you is he.”
He said,

“I do believe, Lord,” and he worshiped him.

Friday, March 28, 2014

9th Station of the Cross

Ninth Station: Jesus falls a third time.


   Jesus falls for the third time as He gets closer to Calvary and  He will take His last breath. The road is getting harder and harder to continue on but He knows how this must end so we may live. His life needs to end so we can live in the next life.

     There are things in each of our lives that continue to bring us down and take us from where or what we need to be doing. Others around us may yell, mock, or look down on us because we have “fallen” again. Those people are like those who watched Jesus fall again and pushed, beat, and yelled at Him to continue on. This does not help those who have fallen but only helps with keeping them down. It is hard enough to get back up on your own but when those who are around you, do nothing to help but criticize, it becomes even harder to get back up. 

     It is easier to stay down when we fall. Easier to just keep on sinning because “ Why not, I have already sinned anyway”. This idea only keeps that gap that is between us and God from closing. This idea only promotes destruction and does nothing to close or bridge that gap. That bridge or that thing that closes the gap is confession of our sins and admitting to ourselves what causes us to fall. Look sin dead on and challenge yourself to gain control over it. 

     I know I beat myself over some sins over and over because I feel I should have by now a better understanding on how to avoid those things that bring me closer to sin then to God. Once those sins start around me it is easier to fall back to them and allow those sins to multiply. This is where I need to grow and ask those to help and even pray for me in the areas. It is in my weakness that I have to be strong in Jesus as well as each of us do. The strength is in the getting back up each time and continuing on the journey to heaven. 

     Our crosses get heavier when we are at our weakest and lighter when we are at our strongest. It does not mean we have more to deal with always, it can be that we are just tired from the weight of the problems or sins in our lives. The more we sin the weaker we get and the harder it is to carry our crosses. To get that strength we have to keep sin at a distance so we can stay focussed on the path we want to take. The path that will lead us to the eternal life. 

        Now matter if it is the third time you have fallen or the thirtieth, Jesus is there for you. Remember that. Jesus will be there, is there, and forever will be there. 

Until tomorrow, God Bless, and may we all continue fighting to stay the course and not fall. 

Saturday of the Third Week of Lent
Lectionary: 242
Reading 1
HOS 6:1-6
“Come, let us return to the LORD,
it is he who has rent, but he will heal us;
he has struck us, but he will bind our wounds.
He will revive us after two days;
on the third day he will raise us up,
to live in his presence.
Let us know, let us strive to know the LORD;
as certain as the dawn is his coming,
and his judgment shines forth like the light of day!
He will come to us like the rain,
like spring rain that waters the earth.”

What can I do with you, Ephraim?
What can I do with you, Judah?
Your piety is like a morning cloud,
like the dew that early passes away.
For this reason I smote them through the prophets,
I slew them by the words of my mouth;
For it is love that I desire, not sacrifice,
and knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.
Responsorial Psalm
PS 51:3-4, 18-19, 20-21AB

R. (see Hosea 6:6) It is mercy I desire, and not sacrifice.
Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness;
in the greatness of your compassion wipe out my offense.
Thoroughly wash me from my guilt
and of my sin cleanse me.
R. It is mercy I desire, and not sacrifice.
For you are not pleased with sacrifices;
should I offer a burnt offering, you would not accept it.
My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;
a heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spurn.
R. It is mercy I desire, and not sacrifice.
Be bountiful, O LORD, to Zion in your kindness
by rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem;
Then shall you be pleased with due sacrifices,
burnt offerings and holocausts.
R. It is mercy I desire, and not sacrifice.
Gospel
LK 18:9-14

Jesus addressed this parable
to those who were convinced of their own righteousness
and despised everyone else.
“Two people went up to the temple area to pray;
one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector.
The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself,
‘O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity — 
greedy, dishonest, adulterous — or even like this tax collector.
I fast twice a week,
and I pay tithes on my whole income.’
But the tax collector stood off at a distance
and would not even raise his eyes to heaven
but beat his breast and prayed,
‘O God, be merciful to me a sinner.’
I tell you, the latter went home justified, not the former;
for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled,

and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Thursday, March 27, 2014

8th Station of the Cross

Eighth Station: Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem



  Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem. Those who Jesus counted as close friends are nowhere to be found as He continues to carry His cross. There are those, like the women of Jerusalem who are there as He continues on His journey. 

    Sometimes the people in our lives disappoint us and are not there when we feel they should be there by our side. It is hard for us when this happens and we may become angry and bitter at those people. We expect them to be there because maybe we have been there for them and expect the same in return. It is natural to feel hurt because there is an expectation that you feel has not been fulfilled and that you are not as important to that person. When this happens we need to step back and look at the whole picture.

    The next part of course applies to our own personal relationships and not that of the relationship between Jesus and the apostles. We have to talk to that person and see what happened. Maybe they did not know what was going on? Maybe things were also going on for them that they couldn’t be there? Maybe our expectations are to high for that person? Maybe they may not feel the same way as we do? No matter what one of these questions it involves, there still needs to be a conversation.

     We need to be honest with ourselves and with that person. An open discussion needs to happen so a resolution can happen. It may not be the resolution you expected or wanted. Sometimes people will get caught up in what is going on with them and not see what is going on with others around them. Sometimes people may feel it is not there place to step in or that you do not want them there. Sometimes we expect more from people then what they are able or want to give. It is hard to get over these feelings and answers and sometimes there really is not a resolution that both people can except.  The relationship will change when this happens and it can either get better or worse. It is up to both people to see where they go on from here.

     The same is said when it comes to how God and Jesus are in our lives. We all have disappointed them in our lives. The disappointment comes from and out of the sins we commit. Yet, when we ask for forgiveness we are forgiven and move on from there. We will always be forgiven, as long as we are truly sorry. Think about that when someone disappoints you and they are asking for forgiveness or for you to just move past this and move on. Do not get me wrong and think that every time this happens we need to just forgive and move on with the relationship. Sometimes all we can do is wish a person well and pray for them. Only you can decide for yourself what you feel in your heart and soul is right. 

      
     Disappoints will come in this life. There is nothing that we can do to prevent people from disappointing at times but it is how we handle them that make us who we are. You can forgive and move on with the relationship, forgive and the relationship changes or forgive and go your separate ways. In each of those cases, the act of forgiving is there. 

Until tomorrow, God Bless, and forgive as you would like to be forgiven. 

Friday of the Third Week of Lent
Lectionary: 241
Reading 1
HOS 14:2-10
Thus says the LORD:
Return, O Israel, to the LORD, your God;
you have collapsed through your guilt.
Take with you words,
and return to the LORD;
Say to him, “Forgive all iniquity,
and receive what is good, that we may render
as offerings the bullocks from our stalls.
Assyria will not save us,
nor shall we have horses to mount;
We shall say no more, ‘Our god,’
to the work of our hands;
for in you the orphan finds compassion.”

I will heal their defection, says the LORD,
I will love them freely;
for my wrath is turned away from them.
I will be like the dew for Israel:
he shall blossom like the lily;
He shall strike root like the Lebanon cedar,
and put forth his shoots.
His splendor shall be like the olive tree
and his fragrance like the Lebanon cedar.
Again they shall dwell in his shade
and raise grain;
They shall blossom like the vine,
and his fame shall be like the wine of Lebanon.

Ephraim! What more has he to do with idols?
I have humbled him, but I will prosper him.
“I am like a verdant cypress tree”– 
Because of me you bear fruit!

Let him who is wise understand these things;
let him who is prudent know them.
Straight are the paths of the LORD,
in them the just walk,
but sinners stumble in them.
Responsorial Psalm
PS 81:6C-8A, 8BC-9, 10-11AB, 14 AND 17

R. (see 11 and 9a) I am the Lord your God: hear my voice.
An unfamiliar speech I hear:
“I relieved his shoulder of the burden;
his hands were freed from the basket.
In distress you called, and I rescued you.”
R. I am the Lord your God: hear my voice.
“Unseen, I answered you in thunder;
I tested you at the waters of Meribah.
Hear, my people, and I will admonish you;
O Israel, will you not hear me?”
R. I am the Lord your God: hear my voice.
“There shall be no strange god among you
nor shall you worship any alien god.
I, the LORD, am your God
who led you forth from the land of Egypt.”
R. I am the Lord your God: hear my voice.
“If only my people would hear me,
and Israel walk in my ways,
I would feed them with the best of wheat,
and with honey from the rock I would fill them.”
R. I am the Lord your God: hear my voice.
Gospel
MK 12:28-34

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him,
“Which is the first of all the commandments?”
Jesus replied, “The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, 
with all your soul, 
with all your mind, 
and with all your strength.
The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these.”
The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher.
You are right in saying,
He is One and there is no other than he.
And to love him with all your heart,
with all your understanding, 
with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself
is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding,
he said to him,
“You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”

And no one dared to ask him any more questions.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

7th Station of the Cross

Seventh Station: Jesus Falls the Second Time


   Jesus falls for the second time as He is carrying the cross to Calvary. The weight of the cross is becoming heavier and heavier as Jesus becomes weaker and weaker. The soldiers force Jesus back up by yelling and beating Him to get back up. 

    With Jesus falling a second time we see again the human side of Him. It helps to remind us that He was not only Devine but Human as well. Jesus is an example of no matter how many times we fall carrying our cross, He understands and is there to help us.  

    We fall many times in our lives and sometimes it is the same sins that aid us in our falling. Each time sin comes our way, it brings with it the chance of us falling away from God, Jesus and the church. When we do fall we need to get back up as quick as we can. It gets harder to get back up the longer we wait. Time goes by and you may grow further and further away from the life you were leading. The new fallen life starts to become the norm in your life and it gets harder to see the way back. 

    One of the ways for us to not fall and to stay on track is to go to confession. Confession is that antibiotic to the sins in our lives. It gets rid of that virus that goes through to our souls and gets us off track. You will find that the more you go to confession the easier the life becomes and the less you fall.

    We are reminded that carrying our crosses are never easy and we will fall many times but just as Jesus got back up so can we. 

Until tomorrow, God Bless, and receive the vaccine of confession as often as you can. 

Thursday of the Third Week of Lent
Lectionary: 240
Reading 1
JER 7:23-28
Thus says the LORD: 
This is what I commanded my people:
Listen to my voice;
then I will be your God and you shall be my people.
Walk in all the ways that I command you,
so that you may prosper.

But they obeyed not, nor did they pay heed.
They walked in the hardness of their evil hearts
and turned their backs, not their faces, to me.
From the day that your fathers left the land of Egypt even to this day,
I have sent you untiringly all my servants the prophets.
Yet they have not obeyed me nor paid heed;
they have stiffened their necks and done worse than their fathers.
When you speak all these words to them,
they will not listen to you either;
when you call to them, they will not answer you.
Say to them:
This is the nation that does not listen
to the voice of the LORD, its God,
or take correction.
Faithfulness has disappeared;
the word itself is banished from their speech.
Responsorial Psalm
PS 95:1-2, 6-7, 8-9

R. (8) If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
Come, let us sing joyfully to the LORD;
let us acclaim the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us joyfully sing psalms to him.
R. If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
Come, let us bow down in worship;
let us kneel before the LORD who made us.
For he is our God,
and we are the people he shepherds, the flock he guides.
R. If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
Oh, that today you would hear his voice:
“Harden not your hearts as at Meribah,
as in the day of Massah in the desert,
Where your fathers tempted me;
they tested me though they had seen my works.”
R. If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
Gospel
LK 11:14-23

Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute,
and when the demon had gone out,
the mute man spoke and the crowds were amazed.
Some of them said, “By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons,
he drives out demons.”
Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
But he knew their thoughts and said to them,
“Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste
and house will fall against house.
And if Satan is divided against himself, 
how will his kingdom stand?
For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul,
by whom do your own people drive them out?
Therefore they will be your judges.
But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons,
then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
When a strong man fully armed guards his palace,
his possessions are safe.
But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him,
he takes away the armor on which he relied
and distributes the spoils.
Whoever is not with me is against me,

and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”