Jesus knows us all…


Scripture: But Jesus would not trust himself to them because he knew them all, and did not need anyone to testify about human nature.  He himself understood it well.  (John 2:24-25)

Observation: Later in the fourth chapter, Jesus says that unless the people see signs and wonders they will not believe.  Even though he was speaking to a different group in the verses above from the 2nd chapter of John, I think the allusion to the faulty human nature is the same.  I was struck this morning by the fact that Jesus knows us even now, after over 2000 years of performing miracles in people lives, we are still waiting for a sign or a wonder to prove somehow that he is the Christ and that he is coming back.

Application: I have been told that I have a faith that abandons this earthly life and focuses only on the spiritual. Even if this is true, I want to be able to do this more in my life.¬† I want to lose track of where I want to go and lose myself completely in God’s will.

Prayer: Lord, please supply me with the grace necessary to bring joy to others by living out your will for me in my life today, and for the rest of my life.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Gift: Piety


Justice shall flourish in his time, and fullness of peace for ever. (Really?) This is the response from the Responsorial Psalm today…

Reading: That he may defend the oppressed among the people, save the poor (Psalm 73:4ab)

Observation: In the readings from Mass today, there was only this section of the verse from the Responsorial Psalm that was speaking to me today.  Even though this was talking about Solomon, I believe that he could be speaking about all of us today who have the ability to defend the oppressed in our society and to save the poor.

Personification: Kindness and Patience  I am hearing the call to display the fruits of kindness and patience today and for the rest of my life.  I will make a special effort to be kind to the oppressed people of our society and to be patient when waiting on the Lord to reveal to me the different ways in which I can give back to the poor.

Prayer: Lord, help me to patiently wait on you Lord with the knowledge and wisdom that comes from only you.  Please send down your spirit to move me to kindness for all of the poor people in our world.  In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Gift: Wisdom


Reading:¬† And he said to them in reply, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind regain their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the good news proclaimed to them.¬† And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me.”

Observation:  The truth of what was revealed by Jesus in his ministry as he walked the earth is that he is the Saviour of the poor and the oppressed.  It is probably not what the disciples of John wanted to hear, because they were all waiting on a Messiah that was going to bring back the glory days of Jerusalem that they had all heard stories about.  Jesus could also be speaking to me right along with the disciples of John today.  I have all of these expectations about what Jesus is going to do to save me and my family, when what I should be doing is being thankful for what He has already done in my life.

Personification:  Long-suffering (Positive Attitude)  The fruit of the spirit that I chose to focus on today is long-suffering.  Although it is easier to see the fruit as a positive attitude, I think that God is revealing to me today that it is only in continuing to stay in the Word of God, not just study it, but live it out every minute of every day of my life, that the eternal life will come to me on earth.

Prayer:  Lord, please continue to reveal the truth that comes from your Word to me today and for the rest of my life.  For my part, I will wait upon you to reveal what the next step is for me in my life and I will stay true to your calling for me with the help of your grace.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Gift: Fear of the Lord (Wonder and Awe)



An 18th century Russian icon of the prophet Zephaniah

Reading: On that day You need not be ashamed of all your deeds, your rebellious actions against me;   (Zephaniah 3:11a)


The LORD has eyes for the just and ears for their cry.

When the just cry out, the LORD hears and rescues them from all distress.

The LORD redeems loyal servants; no one is condemned whose refuge is God.  (Psalm 34:16,18 and 23)


He said in reply, ‘I will not,’ but afterwards he changed his mind and went.¬† (Matthew 21:29)

Observation: I am reading this morning that we are called to turn away from our sinfulness and repent of those sins joyfully.¬† God was calling everyone in the first reading in Zephaniah, even those that had been rebellious…I qualify…In the Responsorial Psalm today, God says that he will rescue those that cry out…In the Gospel reading today, Jesus is telling us that even though we had initially said no to the will of the Father, it is the act of changing our mind to accept the will now that is the act of repentance that he is looking for.

Personification: Modesty  It is my focus today to act with the fruit of modesty in everything that I do.  Since it is not my will that I want to be done in my life, I will need the grace of God to keep focused on what his will is for me, rather than following my own will.

Prayer: Lord, help me to stay focused on you today and for the rest of my life.  Please allow me to see your will and help me to follow it.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

Gift: Piety


Reading: I see him, though not now; I behold him, though not near: A star shall advance from Jacob, and a staff shall rise from Israel, That shall smite the brows of Moab, and the skulls of all the Shuthites, Till Edom is dispossessed, and no fugitive is left in Seir. Israel shall do valiantly, and Jacob shall overcome his foes.  (Numbers 24:17a)

Observation: I just happened to be reading about the prophets in the Saint Mary’s College Study Bible this morning.¬† It mentioned that most of the prophets did not prophesy of distant future events, but rather events that were imminent.¬† I guess you could say that Balaam was not a prophet of the order of the Hebrew people, therefore he does not follow the same pattern, or you could just say that he was speaking of an eventual return to glory of the Israelites that did not require a Messiah.¬† If I remember correctly, David was from the house of Jacob.¬† Anyway, it is not important, in my opinion, for today’s reading about whom he was speaking, rather that he was speaking at all, that is important.

I think we should all join Father Barron, as modern day Balaam, to tell the world the good news…

Personification: Love (Charity)¬† It was easy to choose a fruit of the spirit to focus on today, since my reflection today that I read from the Living Faith daily reflections from Sister Melanie was about love.¬† She used a quote from Saint John of the Cross that, I think, embodies the true spirit of the love…”Where there is no love, put love—and you will find love.”

Prayer: Lord, work on my heart to make me always remember the words of Saint John of the Cross today and for the rest of my life.¬† Saint John of the Cross, pray for us that we may be a church filled with God’s love.¬† I pray today, as always, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.¬† Amen.

Gift: Counsel (Right Judgment)


Reading:  Your kindness should be known to all. The Lord is near.  Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.  (Phillipians 4:5-6)

Observation:¬† I am hearing this morning an admonition to not have anxiety.¬† In Paul’s letter in the the Second reading from the daily Mass readings today, he is exhorting the Phillipians to acts as if the Lord is near.¬† I don’t know if they had instituted the Sacrament of the Eucharist at that time, but it seems to me that we should be clear on the fact that he is near since we have the ability to visit him in the tabernacle or on display in the Monstrance at Eucharistic Adoration.

Personification:  Self-Control  It will be my focus today and for the rest of my life to be in communion with Jesus and show the fruit of kindness to everyone I meet, including my kids.  It is sometimes hard for me to discipline them and still show the kindness that I know God is calling me to show. 

Prayer:¬† Lord, thank you for everything that I have been given in my life and I’m sorry for not being the perfect example of your kindness and love that you have called me to before.¬† Please supply me with the grace necessary to show your kindness and love to everyone I meet today and for the rest of my life…I ask this, in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.¬† Amen.

Remember Jesus, in times of temptation…He’s been there…


Scripture:  Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.  (Hebrews 2:18)


Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are‚ÄĒyet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.¬† (Hebrews 4:14-16)

Observation:¬† When I look back on my last sin, I am left wondering why I didn’t remember Jesus before I sinned.¬† It seems to me that the readings are telling me today that I still have maturing to do in my faith,¬†if I do not remember Jesus in my time of weakness.¬† I certainly see now after reading these readings from the book of Hebrews again today, why there is so much power in the name of Jesus.¬†¬†I have¬†gone through¬†my whole life listening to others or even¬†myself cheapen the name of Jesus by using it in vain.¬† When was the last time I called on Jesus in my time of weakness?¬†

Application:  It will be my focus to call on the name of Jesus when I need to be brought through any time of weakness in terms of temptation.  It has been easy for me to focus on him when I am strong lately, but this reading today has helped me to remember to specifically call on him when I am weak.

Prayer:¬† Jesus, thank you for bringing me through my sinfulness to your grace.¬† I am sorry for not always remembering to call on you when I needed you, and I am sorry for not completely trusting you.¬† Jesus, I will trust in you now and forever.¬† Jesus, please save me from myself, in all times and in all situations keep my focus on you…In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.¬† Amen.