Readings 20141128

The following reflection is courtesy of PresentationMinistries.com (c) 2014. Their website is located at PresentationMinistries.com  

PASSED AWAY  

“My words will not pass.” —Luke 21:33   To describe death, we say: “He passed away.” “The heavens and earth will pass away” (Lk 21:33; Rv 21:1). “Created things will pass away” (Heb 12:27). “The world with its seductions is passing away” (1 Jn 2:17). “The world as we know it is passing away” (1 Cor 7:31). Almost everything is passing away.

All this passing away is a terrible problem for all human beings, for the Lord “has put the timeless” into our heart (Eccl 3:11). Our heart for the timeless is threatened and disturbed by all this passing away.

This interior conflict is resolved by the few things that don’t pass away. God doesn’t pass away, and His Word and kingdom don’t pass away (Heb 12:28). Even we don’t pass away. Although our bodies temporarily pass away, they will be raised up on the last day, and our spirits at death go to heaven, purgatory, or hell. So they don’t experience even a temporary passing. Whenever you hear the term “passed away,” smile inside, for God, His Word, His kingdom, and you will never pass away. Alleluia! Praise Jesus, the Resurrection and the Life! (Jn 11:25)  

Prayer: Jesus, thank You for everlasting life. Promise: “Then I saw new heavens and a new earth.” —Rv 21:1 Praise: Though her friends and family have died, Sarah looks forward to each day — and the last day.   (To be holier, learn more about the Bible. You may wish to order our Overview of the Bible, a small series which has six audio tapes starting with AV 10A-1 or a three video tape series starting with V-10A.)   

Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant my permission to publish One Bread, One Body covering the period from October 1, 2014 through November 30, 2014.†Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 24, 2014.  The rescript is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted ecclesial permission agree with the contents, opinions, or statements The following reflection is courtesy of Don Schwager (c) 2014, whose website is located at DailyScripture.net

Do you recognize the signs of God’s presence and action among us today? Jesus used the image of a fig tree to teach his disciples an important lesson about reading the “signs of the times.” The fig tree was a common and important source of food for the Jews. It bore fruit twice a year, in the autumn and in the early spring. The Talmud said that the first fruit came the day after Passover. The Jews believed that when the Messiah came he would usher in the kingdom of God at Passover time.

The early signs of a changing season, such as springtime, summer, or autumn, are evident for all who can see and observe the changes. Just so are the signs of God’s kingdom and his return in glory on the day of judgment. The “budding” of God’s kingdom begins first in the hearts of those who are receptive to God’s word. Those who trust in God’s word will bear the fruits of his kingdom. And what are the fruits of that kingdom? “The kingdom of God ..is righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17). The Lord gives the first-fruits of his kingdom to those who open their hearts to him with expectant faith and trust in his word.

We do not know the day nor the hour when the Lord Jesus will return again in glory. But the Lord does give us signs, not only to “wake us up” as a warning, but also to “rouse our spirits” to be ready and eager to receive his kingdom when he comes in all his power and glory. The “Day of the Lord” will strike terror in those who have ignored or rejected God, but it will be a day of joy and rejoicing for those who long to see the Lord face-to-face. The Lord Jesus wants us to be filled with joyful anticipation for his coming again.

While we wait for the Lord’s physical return in glory, we can know his presence with us through the work and action of the Holy Spirit who dwells in our hearts. The Lord Jesus comes daily and frequently to those who long for him and he speaks tenderly to our hearts like a lover who whispers in the ear of the beloved. He comes to show us the way to our heavenly Father and to give us the hope of eternal life. Do you recognize his presence and do you listen to his word?

“Lord Jesus Christ, you are the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end of all history, and the lord of all creation. Give me joyful hope and assurance that I will see you face to face and be united with you forever when you return in glory.”

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