Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Mt 9:27-31 Do You Believe I Can Do This?

Mt 9:27-31 Do You Believe I Can Do This?

(Click here for readings)

I know we are never to put God to the test. However, I have asked for miracles in my life and I can say that the Lord has answered many of them (if not all of them) with a “yes”. Why? I have no idea. I don’t deserve it. I didn’t earn it. But I think the Lord gave it because I needed it. One miracle in particular I will never forget. While I was in Rome studying for the deaconate, I corresponded with some of my former students. I had three incredible years as a Formation Dean in a boarding school and it was a wonderful experience. I kept in touch with many of them over the years. One, in particular, would invite me to his hometown to come visit his family. It was impossible. I was in Rome. I don’t decide where I go, not even for vacation. So, I would always tell him…maybe…one day. I knew it was impossible. He lived in Mexico and in a very small town, Aguascalientes. For some reason, I decided to take a chance. I asked the Lord to grant me this request. I wrote it down and prayed for it every single day for six weeks. I say six weeks because on the six week my Superior in Rome requested to see me. I went over to his office and he informed me that once I was ordained a deacon I would be heading to the United States to be the Executive Director of a school in Michigan. I was thrilled! I couldn’t believe it! I thanked him and asked him when I would leave. He told me, “Well, before you go to Michigan, I need you to get some training. I am going to send you to a priest that is working in one of our schools. He’s from Ireland. He’s one of the best.” I thought to myself, Ireland! Wow! Great! “When do I leave?” “You leave next week for Mexico. He’s working there. In a small town called Aguascalientes.” I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I couldn’t even comprehend the miracle that I had just witnessed. I must of looked like a ghost because my Superior probably thought that I was going to faint. It was true. I had a chance to go to Mexico, to Aguascalientes and to see my former student and many others. It was truly a gift from Heaven.

“Do you believe that I can do this?” Do you really believe that the Lord can truly help you? We know he exists. But is he real? Do you believe in a God that is like the moon, He comes and goes? Or is God truly present in MY LIFE! Do I count on him? Do I trust him? Do I seek his presence? Presence and awareness are two different things. I could be in a restaurant eating with my friends and unaware that my best friend is present, just around the corner. He is there, but I am unaware of it. The same can happen in our relationship with the Lord. He exists, but he is not a present in my life.

This Advent, I need to ask the Lord to come into my soul and into my life. That is, my daily life, daily realities, daily activities. What happens on the global scale – the nativity of our Lord, the second coming of our Lord – must happen in my personal world, in my life. He must become present to me!

Two blind men heard about the Lord. Although they could not see, they took three important steps forward. What did they do? First step: They learned about him. They took the time to listen to the stories about him, the miracles that had occurred through him. Second step: They wanted to be a part of his life; his story. They wanted to have a personal experience with the Lord. Third step: They followed him. That was the most important step. They went after him. They didn’t stop until they had found him. It changed their lives, FOREVER! In the end, the had a real, personal relationship with the Lord that changed their lives for good.

Let the Lord do the same for you. Ask him to come into your life on a daily basis. “Lord, increase our faith.” Ask him to touch your eyes, your ears, your hands and your feet. Ask him for the impossible as long as it is good, right and holy. Ask him for a miracle, for patience, for understanding, for love and for forgiveness. Ask him to be a Saint: to be holy, to be his. Do you believe he can do this? Yes, Lord. I believe! (By the way, I am still waiting for this miracle to occur!!!)

As the Lord says in Scripture, “Let it be done for you according to your faith.”


  1. I recently experienced the end of an important relationship. I knew it needed to end or at least change, but I didn’t want to let go. Then the other person just ended it, pretty much slammed the door shut without discussing it, letting me believe it was all my fault and left me with a broken heart.

    This person was someone I had grown to love, hold in high esteem, the holiest person I knew, someone I opened my heart and soul to that I trusted with all my secrets.

    You can imagine the grief for the loss and the shame for being completely at fault that I felt. I was dismayed at the way it ended and not having a chance for closure, it was like someone important just died, only they didn’t die and I had to see this person on a regular basis.

    Then I found out I wasn’t the only one who was treated this way and it wasn’t all my fault, and that this person had a dark side that most people never see and I had been a victim of this person’s inability to work through their own childhood victimization.

    Up to this point I thought my faith in God, my relationship with God and my love for God were built on bedrock. I didn’t think it could be shaken, but I was wrong.

    When my eyes were open to the big picture, I was crushed. I was angry that I had been fooled, allowed to believe untruths about myself, that this person allowed me to accept all the responsibility without taking any, knowing how vulnerable I was.

    That’s when I walked out on God, literally, I was in adoration when the realization occurred and I just walked out never intending to return.

    I decided that if fundamental things I believed about this person weren’t true, what else was a lie? If this ‘holy’ person could do what they did without remorse or taking responsibility for the pain they inflicted during the relationship, how could I trust anyone else?

    How could I trust God, if He even existed? I wasn’t mad at God; I just started doubting everything I thought I knew about him.

    Friends tried to get me to reconsider, telling me this was the devil’s doing. Well if there is no God, there is no devil, so whatever! Faith is believing in something unseen. Well I don’t see the Easter Bunny or the Tooth fairy, why shouldn’t I believe in them?

    I was crying uncontrollably because I had put all my stock in God since the 'break up' and if He wasn’t real, my world would fall apart and I would have nothing. It was like the floor was pulled out from under me, my foundation disappeared. But what else could I do? I didn’t know what was true or what was real.

    It had to be His Grace because the next day, I felt Him pulling my heart to Himself. At first I thought it was just out of habit or OCD, (I couldn’t miss a day), that I felt like going to Him, but no it was a tugging on my heart. He was real and He was my foundation and He alone could I put my trust in and He was waiting for me to realize that all along. That’s why He allowed me to fall, be disillusioned and crushed by this person's words and actions.

    I’m not in any way, shape or form saying this person did me a favor. And I hope they get professional help before they hurt too many more vulnerable people like this.

    I am saying that God took something horrible and made it good.

    I pray that I will never lose my faith like that again and remember that nothing is for sure on this earth and that only in heaven are we safe from the evil that is lurking around waiting to take us to the other side.

  2. Dear Fr. Alfonse,
    I have two questions. Why does Jesus often tell those that he heals to not tell anyone? In today's gospel he even "warned them sternly". So aren't they disobeying Christ?

    What is the significance of First Friday? I know Christ died on a Friday if that has anything to do with it. I never heard of this until I move to Coppell.

    OK, so that was 3 questions! :)

  3. Thank you for this meditation Father.
    I know for me I sometimes expect my prayers to be answered how and when I want them to. But it really is not up to me. It reminds me that if it is not Gods will for me, He is not going to answer that specific prayer. Especially, if it is not good, right or Holy. I did like how He answered yours. Sounds like you were patient and obedient and He answered it in a round about way. That was really cool! Have a great Advent and a pray you have a Merry Christmas!

  4. This is just my own reflection on today's gospel.

    Does God only cure those who have faith? And is the level of curing related to the depth of their faith? I don’t think the answer to either of these questions is “yes”.

    I know that God cures many that have no faith and sometimes this is the turning point on their faith journey. I also know people who have incredible faith that aren’t cured but then again maybe what we think of as a “cure” isn’t the same as what God sees as a cure.

    Maybe sometimes the cure isn’t physical but emotional or spiritual. I am dealing with a lot of physical pain and medical problems but as I go through all of the testing and dealing with the unknown, I have also found a lot of peace during my time with the Lord. I also know that there is a lot of healing going on in me emotionally and spiritually where my wounds run deep (many of which are self-inflicted). And if I had a choice I would much rather have the emotional and spiritual healing than the physical because this is where Satan so easily trips me up and causes me to really struggle.

    I think we often try to explain things about God that aren’t explainable. He doesn’t follow our “rules” or fit into the “box” we sometimes try to put him in. His ways are indescribable and often times a mystery but I think this is where faith steps in.

    Trusting that, although I can’t comprehend why something is happening, God’s plan is perfect and some day it will be revealed to me but for now it remains hidden.

  5. The Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque. This is the reason for the first friday Masses. Then the Lord asks that they not speak of his miracles because "his time has not yet arrived." The Jews wish to put him to death because of his miracles. The culmination is the rising of Lazarus from the dead. Does this help???

  6. Dear Fr. Alfonse,

    Thank you for answering my questions and allowing this forum for a little catechesis. I will have to learn more about the Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and now I know the significance for First Friday.

    I read the story of Lazarus in the Gospel of John and see that after Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead it says, "from that day on they planned to kill him. So Jesus no longer walked among the Jews".

    Thanks for helping me tie this in to why he often tells those that he cures to tell no one.

    I know you mentioned yesterday that this blog is more for you than anyone else, but it is also very helpful for me and gives me inspiration to do my own meditations on holy scripture and to take the time to really listen to God speaking to me.

    God bless and know that you are in my prayers!


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