For Jesus, his primary claim to greatness is service to others. He was the willing servant of anyone who needed him. How does that fit in an age that is so very impressed with credentials and degrees and titles and positions in the company? You and I are followers of Jesus Christ so let’s do our best to make the gospel become a reality in our lives.
“Why is it that we could not expel the demon? This kind you can drive out only by prayer.” Unless we maintain contact with God, we lose vitality and humility. Ministry based on a foundation of prayerful solitude provides a great balance in life.
Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time –
I think Jesus is talking about loving the people we must live with, and work with, and rub shoulders with day after day. Some of these people can be very unpleasant, unkind, and unfair. They say things we don’t like. They take us for granted. They show no appreciation for the good things we do for them. Their presence makes our little part of the world very difficult. Could it be that these are the people Jesus had in mind when he asked us to love our enemies?
Chair of St. Peter –
Perhaps some of the diversity we find in the church today is prefigured in the work of St. Peter and St. Paul. They dealt with diversity of opinion in their day and we find the same situation today. The important thing is to find the truth in God. It is important for all of us to be able to live with some ambiguity in life, in other words we need to be open to the working of the Holy Spirit.
St. Peter Damian –
The Cross reveals the true nature of sin, it unveils the power of sacrificial goodness and it challenges what we have taken for granted. The church cannot face this world as Peter originally had in mind. The cross is at the center of our faith. What are we going to do about it? It is easy to follow Jesus on Sundays. What about the rest of the week? Do we allow the cross to challenge us?
Each twenty-four hours God offers us a new day like a blank page. The best moment of all is the present moment that we can fill with serious and positive thoughts, thoughts of joy and optimism, thoughts of peace for ourselves and for others.
In his healing of the blind man, Jesus challenges us to see one another as more than “walking trees,” to look with the light of his compassion and forgiveness to realize our ability and responsibility to be the means of reconciliation and healing for the broken and troubled; to perceive God’s Spirit prompting us to realize the many opportunities we have to bring light into the darkness of ignorance and dispel the shadows of fear.
One of the challenges of being a Christian is to see the face of Jesus in others. Today, may the light of Jesus take away any blindness so that we can recognize the face of Jesus in everyone we meet.
Our lives are filled with signs: our families, communities and friends who love and support us, the wonders of creation, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, the beauty of a sunrise or sunset, a child’s smile, the grace of someone’s kindness, support and forgiveness.What we doneed is the openness of heart and the vision of faith to realize those signs in our midst.
Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time –
External religious observance has its place but will never suffice to make us authentic followers of Christ. It is relatively easy to observe rituals and to affirm doctrines but, unfortunately, such observance can easily co-exist with an interior attitude that is judgmental and unforgiving. As the gospel reminds us, reconciliation with the alienated people in our lives and often families is more important than meticulous, or even scrupulous, religious observance.