Saturday, April 26, 2014

Gold Beneath the Clay

Observing the boldness of Peter and John
and perceiving them to be uneducated, ordinary men,
the leaders, elders, and scribes were amazed,
Acts 4:13

Peter and John have just performed a very public miracle in the name of Jesus, earning praise and wonder from the people and anger and consternation from the Jewish leaders. The very ordinariness of the disciples was the greatest mystery for them.

Outward appearance can have the greatest impact on how I perceive people. I know this is wrong yet it is my first natural reaction. Jesus saw past Peter and John's common roughness, seeing gold beneath the miry clay. There is a skill in not judging on appearances. I need to hone up on it.

Lord Jesus, I know that the part of me you love is my inner self. Help me see others in the same light.
Little Flower please pray for me.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Small is Great

for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled,
and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.
Luke 18:14

Jesus has just told the parable of the proud Pharisee and the humble tax collector to a group described as "convinced of their own righteousness".  The boast of the Pharisee is ignored while the heart wrenching confession of the tax collector is heard by God.

I've recently heard a priest say that all sin, all sin, can be traced back to pride. Going by my own experience, I would agree. It seems pride distances me from God while humility draws me nearer to Him.  The same priest commented that it must be hard for gifted people as the greater the gift, the greater the temptation to think its all my doing. 

Humility is a wonderful virtue for me to focus on today.  In truth I am the least.

Jesus, you know how easily pride takes hold of me. Help me be humble to all men that I may appear great to you.
Little Flower, please pray for me.


This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
Ps. 118:24.

Today's psalm gives thanks. Why? Because the rejected stone, Jesus, has become the cornerstone. This day, Friday in the Octave of Easter, ANZAC Day, and every other day is a day for rejoicing.

The joy of the great Paschal Mystery is the fragrance that stays with me today. Alleluia!

Thank you Jesus that You are the source of my joy, today and every other day.
Little Flower, please pray for me.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Power in the Name

And by faith in his name, this man, whom you see and know, his name has made strong, and the faith that comes through it has given him this perfect health, in the presence of all of you.

Peter and John have just prayed for and obtained the healing of a crippled man at the entrance to the temple. People mob them but Peter is quick to give credit where it is due, to the name of Jesus.

Last night we had just finished family prayer time when we received the sort of phone call that you never want to receive. Our baby grandson had suddenly become ill and our daughter and son-in-law were frantic. We immediately went back to prayer, calling on the name of Jesus.

My wife went to meet them at the hospital. It's now morning and she hasn't yet returned. It's tempting to let anxiety take over and spin out. But I keep coming back to the resurrected Jesus and calling on His healing and peace. To whom else can we turn?

Be healed, our precious baby, in the mighty name of Jesus.
Little Flower, please pray for us.

Friday, April 18, 2014

This Death that Kills Death.

An eyewitness has testified, and his testimony is true;
he knows that he is speaking the truth,
so that you also may come to believe.
Jn. 19:35

John is narrating every painful detail of Jesus' torturous death. why? So We may come to believe.

People who figure these things out have calculated that, on average, 40% of the gospels focus on the last week of Jesus' life. In John the percentage is even higher. Why is so much attention and detail given to the betrayal, the humiliation, the torture, essentially what appears to be a catastrophic failure of Jesus' ministry?

Firstly, it convinces me of  the authenticity of the gospels. No human religion Would place SO much emphasis on so great a failure.

Secondly, it tells me Jesus' passion and death is important. It's what it's all about. Without Jesus' death my sins are left with me. Without the resurrection I have no hope of heaven being my home.

As Saint Augustine said, "What is this death that kills death?"
A question for me to ponder today.

Thank you Jesus for dieing that I may live.
Saint John the witness please pray for me.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The children

Thus says the Lord GOD:
I will take the children of Israel from among the nations
to which they have come,
and gather them from all sides to bring them back to their land.
ez 37:21

In today's first reading the prophet Ezekiel foretells of a wonderful time when the children of Israel will return home to a place of peace and blessing.

My fourteen year old daughter is on a weekend Catholic youth camp this weekend. As I read Ezekiel's prophesy I can't help but think of her and her friends and claim that prophesy for them.

Lord Jesus, You know the battle there is for the minds and hearts of our young people. Touch them I pray so they come to know and love You.
Little Flower, please pray for us.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Love Triumphs over Judgement

Remember your servants Abraham, Isaac and Israel...
So the LORD relented in the punishment he had threatened to inflict on his people. 

In the absence of Moses, the Hebrews have lost faith in God and made themselves a golden calf to worship.  God's anger blazes up, threatening to exterminate the rebellious people. However, Moses interceeds for his people, God listens and relents.

If ever there was an example of the power of intercession in the Bible, this is it. With God there is love and there is judgement.  They are sides of the same coin.  The judgement of God was about to fall on the rebellious Hebrew people.  But Moses appealed to the other side of God's nature, to His love, and love won out.

I belong to a weekly men's prayer group that meets each Monday morning before work.  If there is one thing that we do it is to intercede in prayer for our brothers in faith, our families and for the Church.  We ask that Gods mercy will triumph over judgement.  This scripture for Exodus is a great encouragement for intercession.  It can move God's hand.

Father in Heaven, thank you for your love as shown in your Son Jesus Christ.  Lord, in His precious name I rely, that your love for me and my household may always triumph over judgement. 

Little Flower, please pray for us.