Readings 20141212

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

CHRIST WITHIN

“Thereupon Mary set out, proceeding in haste into the hill country to a town of Judah, where she entered Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth.” —Luke 1:39-40
When we think of Our Lady of Guadalupe, we think of her miraculous image on the tilma, the miracle of the roses, the great basilica, and especially the millions of conversions. The cause of all these wondrous works is symbolized by the black sash at the center of the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. This sash is a sign that Mary was pregnant with Jesus. Jesus, Who was in Mary, has done and continues to do countless miracles through Our Lady of Guadalupe. Jesus through Mary continues to convert millions to new life in Him.

On this great feast day, let us accept God’s grace to be like Our Lady of Guadalupe. Let us be filled with Jesus. Let us be like Mary and visit all the Elizabeths and Johns in our lives (Lk 1:39ff). Christ in us is our Hope of glory (Col 1:27). “There is One greater in you than there is in the world” (1 Jn 4:4). As we are conscious of Jesus living within us (see 2 Cor 13:5), Jesus will do miracles through us and give salvation to countless thousands.

Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us to be like you. May we let Jesus within us transform the world around us. We are servants of the Lord; let it be done to us according to His word (Lk 1:38).

Prayer: Jesus, during Advent prepare us to be full of Life this Christmas, for You are the Way, the Truth, and the Life (Jn 14:6). Promise: “See, I am coming to dwell among You, says the Lord.” —Zec 2:14 Praise: Our Lady of Guadalupe left her image on the cloak of a Mexican Indian, and it is still miraculously intact today. (For a related teaching, order our tape on Renewing Our Culture on audio AV 80-3 or video V-80.)
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant my permission to publish One Bread, One Body covering the period from December 1, 2014 through January 31, 2015.
†Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 30, 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 seek God’s way of peace and wisdom for your life? The prophets remind us that God’s kingdom is available to those who are teachable and receptive to the word of God. Through their obedience to God’s word and commandments, they receive not only wisdom and peace for themselves, but they, in turn become a blessing to their children and their offspring as well. Jesus warns the generation of his day to heed God’s word before it is too late. He compares proud teachers and vain scholars with stubborn playmates who refuse to follow wise counsel and instruction.
Jesus parable about a group of disappointed musicians and their stubborn friends who refuse to sing or dance at the appropriate occasion challenge us to examine whether we are selective to only hear and do what we want to hear. The young music players in Jesus’ parable react with great dismay because they cannot get anyone to follow their instruction. They complain that if they play their music at weddings, no one will join in their festive song and dance; and if they play mournful tunes and songs at funerals, no one will join in at all. This parable echoes the wisdom of Ecclesiastes 3:4 – “there is a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Are you in tune with the message of God’s kingdom? And do you heed God’s word of wisdom and truth as if your life depended on it?

Spiritual indifference and deaf ears can block God’s word for us
Jesus’ message of the kingdom of God is a proclamation of good news that produces great joy and hope for those who listen and obey – but it is also a warning of bad consequences and disaster for those who refuse to accept God’s gracious invitation. Why did the message of John the Baptist and the message of Jesus meet with resistance and deaf ears? It was out of jealously and spiritual blindness that the scribes and Pharisees attributed John the Baptist’s austerities to the devil and they attributed Jesus’ table fellowship as evidence for pretending to be the Messiah. They succeeded in frustrating God’s plan for their lives because they had closed their hearts to the message of John the Baptist and now they close their ears to Jesus, God’s anointed Son sent to redeem us from bondage to sin and death.

What can make us spiritually dull and slow to hear God’s voice? Like the generation of Jesus’ time, our age is marked by indifference and contempt, especially in regards to the things of heaven. Indifference dulls our ears to God’s voice and to the good news of the Gospel. Only the humble of heart can find joy and favor in God’s sight. Is you life in tune with Jesus’ message of hope and salvation? And do you know the joy and blessing of believing and obeying God’s word?

“Lord Jesus, open my ears to hear the good news of your kingdom and set my heart free to love and serve you joyfully. May nothing keep me from following you wholeheartedly.”

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