Obey the truth and you will learn to love…

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English: Gian Lorenzo Bernini - Dove of the Ho...

English: Gian Lorenzo Bernini – Dove of the Holy Spirit (ca. 1660, stained glass, Throne of St. Peter, St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gift:  Fortitude (Courage) – With the gift of courage, we overcome our fear and are willing to take risk as a follower of Jesus. A person with courage is willing to stand up for what is right in the sight of God, even if it means accepting rejection, verbal abuse, or even physical harm and death.

Reading:  Since you have purified yourselves by obedience to the truth for sincere mutual love, love one another intensely from a [pure] heart. You have been born anew, not from perishable but from imperishable seed, through the living and abiding word of God,* for:

“All flesh is like grass,

and all its glory like the flower of the field;

the grass withers,

and the flower wilts;

but the word of the Lord remains forever.”

This is the word that has been proclaimed to you.  (1 Peter 1:22-25)

Observation:  When the Holy Spirit is moving in your heart and compelling you to do certain things that seem out of character for you, that is an opportunity to be obedient to the truth and begin to learn how to react out of love to all situations.  This is what I heard from the first reading today, and I hope I can remember that the word of God is the thing that lasts and not my emotion.

Personification:  Love  It only makes sense to focus on the fruit of love, since obedience is teaching me how to love.  It is funny how our understanding of love in this world is so foreign to the next world’s love.  God’s love is not interested in reciprocation, if we could all learn to love each other this way, we would be on our way to understanding the kind of love that Saint Peter is talking about here.

Prayer:  Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury,pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit. Amen

Sobriety leads to holiness…Did Saint Peter say that? Indirectly, I think he did…He may not have meant what you were thinking…

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English: Saint Peter Church, Ecatepec de Morel...

English: Saint Peter Church, Ecatepec de Morelos, Estado de México, México : Statue of Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

Reading:  Beloved:
Concerning the salvation of your souls
the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours
searched and investigated it
investigating the time and circumstances
that the Spirit of Christ within them indicated
when it testified in advance
to the sufferings destined for Christ
and the glories to follow them.
It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you
with regard to the things that have now been announced to you
by those who preached the Good News to you
through the Holy Spirit sent from heaven,
things into which angels longed to look.

Therefore, gird up the loins of your mind, live soberly,
and set your hopes completely on the grace to be brought to you
at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Like obedient children,
do not act in compliance with the desires of your former ignorance
but, as he who called you is holy,
be holy yourselves in every aspect of your conduct,
for it is written, Be holy because I am holy.  (1 Peter 1:10-16)

Observation:  I thought I took the gift that I chose from the Gospel reading for today’s Mass but it actually came from the Responsorial Psalm.  However, my journal today is on the First Reading.  I tried to narrow it down to one or two verses, but the fact that Saint Peter started out in this letter talking about the prophets foretelling of the glory to come through Jesus, but they were not serving themselves, but those of us who have knowledge of him because of their fidelity to the truth that came to them and now comes to us, from the Holy Spirit.  If we reflect on this at all, it should cause us to pause and realize how awesome it is, that the plan of salvation up to this point, was leading to us.  As the reading says, it should be cause for us to act soberly and increase our knowledge of how this plan of salvation is playing out in our lives, and that with the grace of God, will lead us to holiness.

Personification:  Generosity  Since our second reading last Sunday was from the letter to the Ephesians that mentioned the fruits of the holy Spirit, Father Jaspers focused his homily on how he has struggled with displaying some of the fruits at times, at least he thought he had.  I would hope that the fruit of generosity is something I am displaying by sharing my feelings on the Word of God every day.  I hope that someone gets something out of it, and God is using me and my ability to put myself out there to bring greater glory to Him.

Prayer:  Lord, use me up as you see fit, so that my life can be about nothing but bringing you the glory that belongs to only you.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit. Amen