Tuesday of the Twentieth Week in Ordinary Time
This little line, tucked in at the end of today’s Gospel, reveals much. It reveals a contradiction between worldly success and eternal success. So often we seek out worldly success and fail to seek the riches that last for eternity.
What’s more important? What do you honestly prefer for all eternity? Do you prefer to be well thought of in this life, even if it means compromising values and the truth? Or are your eyes fixed on the truth and eternal rewards?
Reflect, today, upon the goal of building up treasure in Heaven and the eternal reward promised to those who live lives of fidelity. There is nothing wrong with being well thought of by others in this world, but you must never allow such a desire to dominate you or dissuade you from keeping your eyes on that which is eternal. Reflect upon how well you do this and seek to make the rewards of Heaven your exclusive goal.
My eternal Lord, please help me to seek You and Your Kingdom above all else. May pleasing You and serving Your most holy will be my one and only desire in life. Help me to shed the unhealthy concerns of worldly notoriety and popularity, concerning myself only with what You think. I give to You, dear Lord, my whole being. Jesus, I trust in You. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The Solemnity we celebrate today, that of her Assumption into Heaven, points to God’s acknowledgement of her greatness. God did not allow her to taste death or any consequences of sin. She was Immaculate, perfect in every way, from the moment of her conception to the moment she was taken body and soul into Heaven to reign as Queen for all eternity.
Reflect, today, upon your understanding of our Blessed Mother. Do you know her, understand her role in your life and continually seek her motherly care? She is your mother if you choose to live in the grace of her Son. Embrace that fact more deeply today and choose to make her an even more important part of your life. Jesus will be grateful you do!
Lord, help me to love Your mother with the same love You have for her. As You were entrusted to her care, so I desire to be entrusted to her care. Mary, my Mother and Queen, pray for me as I have recourse to you. Jesus, I trust in You. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C
Jesus said to his disciples: “I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing!” Luke 12:49
It’s interesting to note that Jesus did not only say that He came to set the world on fire; rather, He said that He wished it were already blazing. This desire of our Lord is an invitation to move out of a mediocre and lukewarm existence into a life of radical Christian living. We are not called to be partly transformed, or even mostly transformed. No, we are called to become blazing fires of faith, transformed by God to make a true difference in the world!
Reflect, today, upon the fire within your own soul. How brightly is that fire burning? You need to feed that fire on a daily basis, fanning it into flame with complete commitment. Seek to become that blazing fire that the Lord desires of you and you will be amazed at how fully you can become transformed by grace. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Saturday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time
Jesus offered this gentle rebuke to His disciples for trying to prevent the children from coming to Him. Jesus makes it clear that these children are truly precious to Him and that He wants them each to receive the Kingdom of Heaven.
One frequently missed aspect of this passage is that Jesus laid His hands on the children and prayed for them. What a blessing!
Reflect, today, upon the intimate touch of the Savior upon your soul as you receive Him in Holy Communion. The power of that encounter is of infinite value. Are you open to all that He wishes to bestow? Renew your openness to Him and seek to allow Him to enter your soul more deeply next time you come forward to receive His divine touch.
My Eucharistic Lord, I love You and desire to open my heart more fully next time I receive You in Holy Communion. May I open myself to all that You desire to pour forth upon me. Come into my heart, dear Lord, and transform my life by Your gentle touch. Jesus, I trust in You. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Friday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time
“Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator made them male and female and said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh.” Matthew 19:4-6a
Reflect, today, upon the mystery of the people you are called to love, especially if you are married. To call the other a “mystery” may at first lead to a smile as you acknowledge you cannot figure him/her out. But humbly recognizing the beautiful meaning of “mystery” will lead you to appreciate the uniqueness of others and help you to embrace the call to human unity, especially within marriage.
Lord of true unity, help me to see the beauty and holy mystery of the people You have placed in my life. Help me to love them with a humble love. May I especially deepen my love for my spouse each and every day. Jesus, I trust in You.
Thursday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time
“‘You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?’ Then in anger his master handed him over to the torturers until he should pay back the whole debt. So will my heavenly Father do to you, unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart.” Matthew 18:32-35
That is definitely NOT what you want Jesus to say and do to you! And then to have Him hand you over to the torturers until you pay back all you owe for your sins.
Well, the good news is that Jesus deeply longs to avoid such an awful confrontation. He has no desire to hold any one of us accountable for the ugliness of our sins. His burning desire is to forgive us, pour out mercy, and wipe the debt away. The danger is that there is at least one thing that will keep Him from offering us this act of mercy. It’s our obstinacy in failing to forgive those who have wronged us.
Reflect, today, upon those powerfully piercing words of Jesus. “You wicked servant!” Though they may not be the most “inspiring” words to reflect upon, they may be some of the most useful words to reflect on. We all need to hear them at times because we need to be convinced of the seriousness of our obstinance, judgmentalness and harshness toward others. If that is your struggle, repent of this tendency today and let Jesus lift that heavy burden.
Lord, I do repent of my stubbornness of heart. I repent of my harshness and my lack of forgiveness. In Your compassion please do forgive me and fill my heart with your mercy toward others. Jesus, I trust in You. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Feast of Saint Lawrence, Deacon and Martyr
Lord, help me to let go of my own preferences and ideas in life that are not in accord with Your divine will. Help me to always believe that You have an infinitely better plan. As I embrace that plan, help me to trust that You will bring forth an abundance of good fruit. Jesus, I trust in You.
Tuesday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time
“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.” Matthew 18:3-5
How do we become like children? What is the definition of being childlike? Here are a few synonyms that most likely apply to Jesus’ definition of becoming like children: trusting, dependent, natural, spontaneous, awe-inspired, without airs, and innocent. All of these qualities can easily be applied to our relationship with God. We must trust God to care for us in all things. We must strive to be natural and free, expressing our love without fear, not worrying if it will be accepted or rejected. We must strive to be innocent in the way we see others not giving into prejudice and bias. We must strive to be continually in awe of God and of all the new things He does in our lives.
Lord, help me to become childlike. Help me to find true greatness in the humility and simplicity of a child. Most of all, may I have absolute trust in You in all things. Jesus, I do trust in You. catholic-daily-reflections.com
Monday of the Nineteenth Week of Ordinary Time
“But that we may not offend them, go to the sea, drop in a hook, and take the first fish that comes up. Open its mouth and you will find a coin worth twice the temple tax. Give that to them for me and for you.” Matthew 17:27
This is an interesting situation. The tax collectors of the temple come to Peter and ask him why Jesus doesn’t pay the normal temple tax. Peter, in turn, asks Jesus this question and Jesus makes it clear that He does not owe tax, given who He is. However, He sends Peter to obtain a coin miraculously from the mouth of a fish so that others are not offended.
One thing this story reveals is that, at times, the foolish and unimportant concerns of others are not worth fighting about. This basic principle may apply to many other situations in life. It’s easy to allow unimportant issues to get in the way of our service of God. Humility, when fully embraced, will help us to avoid “offending” people even if we are in the right. Humility, as seen in this situation with Jesus, enables us to see that this or that battle is not worth fighting. catholic-daily-reflections.com