The following reflection is courtesy of Don Schwager (c) 2015, whose website is located at DailyScripture.net
What can bring us true freedom and joy? In Jesus we see the healing power of God’s love and mercy in action. Wherever Jesus went, people gathered to hear him speak about the kingdom of heaven and God’s promise to bring freedom and healing to those who put their trust in God. His gracious words brought hope, joy, and favor to those who were ready to receive him.
Jesus began his public ministry in his own land of Galilee where he was reared. His proclamation of the fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy of Isaiah brought wonder to the people. Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would come in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring freedom to those oppressed by sin and evil (see Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus awakened their hope in the promises of God. They, in turn, received his words favorably and wondered what would become of “Joseph’s son”. Their hearts were hungry for the word of life and they looked to Jesus with anticipation and wonder. Do you look to Jesus with confidence and hope in the fulfillment of all God’s promises?
The word “gospel” literally means “good news”. Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would come in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring freedom to those who suffered from physical, mental, or spiritual oppression (see Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus came to set people free, not only from their infirmities, but from the worst affliction of all – the tyranny of slavery to sin, Satan, and the fear of losing one’s life. God’s power alone can save us from dejection, hopelessness, and emptiness of life. The Gospel of salvation is “good news” for everyone who will receive it. Do you know the joy and freedom of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came to bring us the kingdom of heaven?
“Lord Jesus, you are the fulfillment of all our hopes and dreams. Through the gift of your Holy Spirit you bring us truth, freedom, and abundant life. Fill me with the joy of the Gospel and inflame my heart with love and zeal for you and for your kingdom of peace and righteousness”.
The following reflection is courtesy of PresentationMinistries.com (c) 2015. Their website is located at PresentationMinistries.com
OUR LIVES AND THIS YEAR
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me; therefore, He has anointed Me. He has sent Me to bring glad tidings to the poor, to proclaim liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind and release to prisoners, to announce a year of favor from the Lord.” Luke 4:18-19
This year can be one of the greatest fulfillments of Jesus’ proclamation of Isaiah’s prophecy of “a year of favor” (Lk 4:19; Is 61:1ff). If Jesus has His way, this year the poor of the world will hear as never before the good news of “liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind and release to prisoners” (Lk 4:18).
Do you believe that this can be the year of multiplied miracles? Do you believe that you were created and your life orchestrated in detail so that you can be your part in Christ’s body?
“Do not quench the Spirit” (1 Thes 5:19, RSV-CE). “Do not despise prophecies” (1 Thes 5:19, our transl). Let each of us do all that we can to let the Holy Spirit renew the face of the earth this year (Ps 104:30). Do you believe? “Everyone begotten of God conquers the world, and the power that has conquered the world is this faith of ours” (1 Jn 5:4). Believe in the Lord Jesus. Alleluia!
Prayer: Abba, may this day be the occasion for a special outpouring of graces. Promise: “We, for our part, love because He first loved us.” 1 Jn 4:19 Praise: Jesus healed Brett of terminal cancer. (For a related teaching, order our tape I Believe in Miracles on audio AV 63-3 or video V-63.)
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