Saturday, May 13, 2017

The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.

“It is not right for us to neglect the word of God to serve at table."  (Acts 6: 2 NABRE).

Note that the above core Principle of the early Church community was not defined by Peter, the head of the apostles but by the Twelve.  This declaration, pronouncement is equivalent to what the modern Church regards as a declaration of the Magisterium at the highest level of authority.  It is defined once and for all time that the core and necessary duty of those chosen, called and anointed to the Sacred Ministry is Prayer and Study and Teaching of the Word of God.

Service at the table will always and everywhere be needed.  Jesus Christ our Savior came to serve and not to be served.  (Matthew 20: 28; Mark 10: 45) But this  notwithstanding, the Twelve appointed "seven reputable men, filled with the Spirit and wisdom, whom we shall appoint to this task."   (Acts 6: 3).   "Whereas we shall devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”  (Acts 6: 4).

"We [all] are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may announce the praises” of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."  (1 Peter 2: 9)

Friday, May 12, 2017

You have changed my mourning into dancing, O Lord my God.

"The disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit."  (Acts 13: 52 RM)

You may call the above Scripture the Mark of the Disciple.
If you are a Christian and you are not joyful, then something is wrong.  Did you receive the Holy when you were confirmed? Are you living in sin?  Perhaps some secret illicit pleasure that offends the Holy Spirit of Jesus?
"Brothers, what shall we do?"  (2: 37)
Repent and confess your sins and you will once more be filled with the Holy Spirit.  (Cf Acts 2: 38  ).

Pope Francis said:  'true Christians have cheerful faces and eyes full of joy'

"You have changed my mourning into dancing, O Lord, and have girded me with joy, alleluia."  (Psalm 30: 12)

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Fear is useless; what is needed is trust.

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. You have faith in God; have faith also in me.   In  my Father’s house there are many dwelling places."  (John 14: 1 - 2 NABRE).

Our heart is anxious and troubled over health, family, and money issues.  Sometimes, it is over our possessions and tools.  Some people spend sleepless nights worrying about the future. 

But God tells us:

"Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.  Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."
(Philippians 4:6-7 NLT)

Below is the prescription of one who is human like ourselves:
"Let nothing trouble you,
let nothing frighten you.
All things are passing;
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things.
He who possesses God lacks nothing: God alone suffices."  (St Teresa of Avila).

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

The favors of the Lord I will sing forever.

"If you know these things, blessed and happy and to be envied are you if you practice them [if you act accordingly and really do them]."
(John 13:17 AMP)

It is not what we know that transforms us.  It is what we do every day.  Habits that lead to addiction is formed one day at a time.   In the middle of winter 2016, I discovered cocoa beverage in the grocery store and enjoyed it every afternoon of winter. Winter is gone and now I am struggling to break the habit.

"Sow a thought and you reap an action; sow an act and you reap a habit; sow a habit and you reap a character; sow a character and you reap a destiny."

Character is Destiny. Period!  Why don't you cultivate the 7 Habits of Saints:
1. Prayer
2. Word of God
3. Eucharist
4. Reconciliation
5. Examination of Conscience
6. Ministry / Sharing your gifts
7. Spiritual Reading

"Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them."
(John 13:17 NIV)

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

The Holy Spirit chooses, calls and equips us for mission.

"While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”   (Acts 13: 2)

The Holy Spirit is Lord and Giver of life.  We see in the above Scripture that He is the Spirit who calls, prepares and sends out for evangelization.

What are the 7 gifts of the Holy Spirit?
1.  Wisdom
2.  Understanding
3.  Counsel
4.  Fortitude
5.  Knowledge
6.  Piety
7.  Fear of God
(CCC #1831)

Through these gifts, the Holy Spirit equips us for mission.

O Holy Spirit of Light and Love, to You we consecrate our minds, hearts and will, for time and eternity.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Jesus Christ is a true, noble, credible and faithful witness.

"The works I do in my Father’s name testify to me."  (John 10: 25)

Jesus Christ is the faithful and true witness.  (Cf Revelation 1:5; 3: 14)

A very important element of the act of witnessing or testifying to the truth is the character of the witness.  Is the witness a credible character or not?  Jesus Christ is a credible character.  He bore testimony to who He is by His words and works.  His words point to His works and His works clarify His words.

By this standard, is Martin Luther a true, faithful and credible witness?

Sunday, May 07, 2017

I will lay down my life for the sheep.

"I am the good shepherd. A good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.   A hired man, who is not a shepherd and whose sheep are not his own, sees a wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away."  (John 10: 11 - 12 NABRE)

The above word from Jesus may be called the story of the Good Shepherd and the hired hands.  Think of all the politicians who promise to save us from everything.  How many of them are the true Moses?

"Be shepherds of God's flock that is under your care, watching over them  --  not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve."  (1 Peter 5: 2).

On the Cross, our Good Shepherd laid down His life for us.  He did not run away. When He was challenged to come down from the Cross, He did not.

The Holy Spirit is the Abundant life, the fullness of life.

"I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows]."  (John 10: 10 AMP)

What is Abundant life?
Jesus revealed Himself as the Bread of life. (John 6: 35).  In Isaiah, He promised that we shall eat bread without money and drink choice wine without worrying how we pay for it.  (Isaiah 55: 1 - 3). This time is now.  Are you still dreaming and waiting for Abundant life?

Abundant life consists of:
Faith, Patience, Wisdom, Humility, Courage, Peace, Contentment.

How do you form the habit that leads to and maintains Abundant life?
Prayer, Word of God, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Maintaining a clear conscience through daily examination of conscience, Ministry or sharing your gifts, Spiritual reading.
You may call this: The 7 Habits of a saint.

Where does this Abundant life apply in your life?
Health, Family, Money, Job, Tools and Possessions, Food and Peace over your Future.
You may call this:  The 7 War Zones, the areas where Satan wars against you to deprive you of Faith, Peace and Abundant life.

To capture an image of Abundant life, look no further than the life of Jesus and the saints.  They radiate pure joy, peace and contentment.

"I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows]."  (John 10: 10 AMP)

The Holy Spirit is the Abundant life, the fullness of life.