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!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Mk 10:13-16 Fear and Kindness

Mk 10:13-16 Fear and Kindness

(Click here for readings)

The Lord does not in any way, shape or form indulge his children. No, not at all! He lets them fall, and fall hard sometimes. He lets them learn tough lessons, even to the point of death. He is not warm and fuzzy. Nor is he like a Grandpapa. No. God is never referred to as "grandpa" in Scripture. He is The Father, and is willing to allow his children to stumble and fall; to learn how to get back up, even at a tremendous price – the price of his only begotten Son.

In a recent article, I read how a twelve-year-old girl successfully sued her father for not allowing her to go to an end of year “graduation” field trip. The lawyer, having left behind her brain after her bar exam, said she was being denied a significant rite of passage. “This is something that would never happen again in the child’s life. It was the end of a stage in her life.” Huh? Since when has a field trip been a rite of passage? Since when is graduating from elementary school a significant event? Well, we can all see the writing on the wall, nice and clear, that indulging children does them no favors.

I know a mom who was determined to give her children everything that her father did not give to her. She succeeded. She gave her daughter anorexia, drug and alcohol addictions, and no College degree.

“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him, for he knows how we are formed; he remembers that we are dust.” (Ps 103:13-14)

What makes a child so precious in the eyes of God? In the old days it was said that “Children are to be seen and not heard.” They were considered second-class citizens. They were pooped upon by all. Now, it appears as though the citizenship has been reversed. Parents need to defend themselves from their own off-spring. The newly ordained gurus of child therapists consider ancient rites such as spanking as a no-no, even worse, as a criminal offense. And yet, who will save the children from themselves? Who will help them to mature and to grow healthy so that they can one day embrace their children and be blessed by them? Too many educators, coaches, pastors and ministers have distanced themselves from children out of fear and do not wish to get involved. They repeat too often, "It's too risky. It’s not worth it."

The Psalmist does not dare call our God “Our Father.” Instead, he makes a simple analogy to human fatherhood. It will take the Son of God to give us the courage to call God, “Our Father.” And if God is my Father, then I am his beloved child. For this reason the Lord did not rebuke the little children. Instead, he encouraged them, “Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”

The God of Israel created for man “counsel, and a tongue and eyes and ears, and an inventive heart, and filled them with the discipline of understanding. He created in them knowledge of the spirit; with wisdom he fills their heart; good and evil he shows them” (Sir 17:1-15).

Let us begin to fear the Lord and rise above ourselves and grow in authentic kindness. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. It isn’t the end point, but it is a good start. It leads to the greatest gift of kindness ever, Christ.


  1. Thanks for this, Fr.
    Something I've always had trouble grasping is "Fear the Lord", and being a high school student, my friends don't even want to understand how to fear the Lord: it's so much easier to have a kumbayah type of God, when in reality, if our ultimate goal is to become a saint, then we better believe that in fact we do have a demanding God who asks us to drop everything, pick up our cross and follow him.

  2. Fr. Alfonse,

    I have recently been reading your posts. Thank God for people like you who speak the truth of Christ and of God's true nature, a stern and loving Father. Keep up the great work.

  3. Father,
    You are living proof of one who embraces children as God would have... you light up and so do they when you are in their company. We might even include the passage you used, "Let them come to me" as one of your life lived mottos.
    God bless you
    Including you in my rosary today.

  4. There are at least 2 definitions of fear. One is "the instinctive emotion aroused by impending or seeming danger, pain or evil." A second definition is "awe, a feeling of deep wonder and respect for overpowering grandeur." I have great parents, who loved me unconditionally, set boundaries, and let me suffer the natural consequences of overstepping those boundaries. The only "fear" I had of them was the fear of disappointing them. I feel the same way about my Heavenly Father, and I'm trying to share this with my own children. In my opinion, anytime you see the word "fear" in relationship to God, replace it with the word "awe."


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