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!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Jn 6:30-35 What Sign Can You Give?

Jn 6:30-35  What Sign Can You Give?
(Click here for readings)
The crowd said to Jesus:  “What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you?  What can you do?”

I have received some complaints about my comments regarding the novel and movie, “The Hunger Games”.  Some people did not agree with me at all.  They said that author Suzanne Collins never once mentions God in her novels.  I noticed that too.  But I immediately assumed that this Roman Catholic author wanted to illustrate what a futuristic world without God would look like.  And what exactly does it look like?  Bleak.  Ms. Collins does a fantastic job in illustrating this point.  No one in the movie or novel ever appears happy, truly happy, not even the bubbly Effie Trinket.  No one in the movie ever feels very secure, not even President Snow.  There is no real peace or justice or compassion, that’s obvious.  There is no end to poverty, sickness and disease, famines and killings.  The last war that was fought was not over religion; it was over power, again.  And it was brutally suppressed with toxic bombs. 

What does a real world look like where there is no God?  Take a look at a nation like Russia, the former communist (atheist) Soviet Union, where suicide and abortion rates are among the highest in the world; where child pornography is mass produced; where alcoholism, depression and pessimism is decimating the male population.  Did you know that the average life expectancy of a Russian male is around fifty-five? 

When the crowd asked Jesus, “What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you”, I truly think they were asking this without ever really expecting an answer.  What the Lord gave them was better than an answer.  What he gave them was His Life.  And then he gave them a sign.  Actually, he gave them a mirror. Look at yourselves.  What do you see? 

The answer is obvious: we see ourselves.  And what exactly do we see but the only alternative to God:  ourselves.  That the world is not in favor of Jesus can clearly be seen by the absence of Christianity on all major media productions.  Not because they want to show a world without God, but because they want a world without God.  They want to show themselves.  They want a show!  Give the people a show!  Sound familiar? 

There is no sign of Jesus on TV because those in power do not want to promote him, embrace him, encourage him or live with him.  They want to ignore Him.  And if they can’t ignore Him, then they create shows that mock Him, like “Good Christian Bitches”.  This is where Hollywood ends its embargo on Christianity and opens a door for us only to slam the door back in our face.  

What do you see without me?  Well, on our quest for an alternative to God, we run into a lot of interesting alternatives.  What has the age of Enlightenment and reason and logic given to us?  Entertainment!  But not the brain stimulating and thought provoking entertainment you would expect from a first world.  Not the type you would expect from a modern society but rather the type you would expect from a more decadent society (or futuristic society without God).

Our cameras turn to ourselves on the big screen not because we search for the golden calf but because we seek the cash cow:  the money maker.  And the god of money speaks louder and clearer than any other; regardless of how people suffer. Just like in The Hungar Games where we make entertainment out of people who are in misery, today, we bring you “My Strange Addiction”, where you can follow a young girl who drinks her own urine or another young lady that daily sips some gasoline.  I don't expect to ever find homosexuals on this program, but I do predict that the urine drinkers and gasoline sippers will be off it some day.  After all, all the “brave” and “courageous” that come out of the closet are eventually accepted for being who they are.  There are many other programs similiar to this one: the Hoarders, the overweight, etc…  But it is always the same “gospel”, just different producers.

Jesus asked the crowd, “Look at me; what do you see?”  The answer is obvious.  The answer is powerful.  The answer is thought provoking and heart wrenching.  The answer is Jesus Christ, the Son of God.  The answer is:  someone not like us.


  1. The picture of Caesar Flickerman from "The Hunger Games" with that jazzy blue hair & eyebrows immediately grabbed my attention!! I read the book and watched the movie. I'm now almost finished reading the 2nd book "Catching Fire." I can see where people would not agree with your original post because "God" isn't discussed. There's no religious vibe whatsoever. However, I liked your comparison of Katniss to Mary Magdalene. They were both strong women living in two different worlds: Katniss in a futuristic society with little faith and hope but only despair and misery. Mary Magdalene living in society of devout Jewish faith yet completely converted to Christ's teachings. Darkness (Panem) versus lightness (Christianity). Suffering, death, starvation (Panem) versus faith, hope, charity (Christianity). "The Hunger Games" has received much criticism for its age appropriateness and is listed on the ALA list of banned books. The disturbing tale interpreted from a Christian's point of view makes the book very compelling. I see one Christian principle that runs throughout and that's love! Even amongst all of the tragedy there's that little ounce of love and compassion in actions of some of the characters.



    P.S. I was wondering if you were going to post twice today since you skipped Monday. :)

  2. "chances are the reverse will happen; that is, the “urine drinkers” and “gasoline sippers” that are “brave” and “courageous” for having come out of the closet will one day be accepted by all for who they are."

    I thought we were supposed to accept people for who they are. We shouldn't praise their wrong behavior, applaud their 'courage' and start having parades in honor of their perverted behavior, but shouldn't we accept them? I thought that was the Christian thing to do.

  3. My Dear Anonymous. We should love everyone. C.S. Lewis wrote an interesting essay on the difference between kindness and love. Kindness almost implies making someone feel better. It doesn't imply making someone better. Love implies that. That's probably why Jesus said "love one another" and not "Be kind to one another." When you say "we should accept someone for who they are" are you saying hands off? That's what it sounds like to me. But love doesn't mean that. Love means getting your hands dirty, caring about the other more than you care about yourself; that you are willing to risk losing a friendship because you need to tell someone that they are going down the wrong path. It means running a risk and calling a spade a spade, a sin a sin. It doesn't mean accepting someone for who they are. That's not love. Love means helping someone be even better. And that person will make you even better.

  4. Father,

    I am not saying 'hands off'. I'm regret that I came across like that to you.

    I absolutely believe that we have an obligation to lead others to truth even if it may hurt them, myself or my relationship. I believe Ezekiel 33:7-9 tells us we will be accountable if we see others sinning and do not warn them.

    You, son of man—I have appointed you as a sentinel for the house of Israel; when you hear a word from my mouth, you must warn them for me. When I say to the wicked, “You wicked, you must die,” and you do not speak up to warn the wicked about their ways, they shall die in their sins, but I will hold you responsible for their blood. If, however, you warn the wicked to turn from their ways, but they do not, then they shall die in their sins, but you shall save your life.

    I have struggled with this passage many times. Even in the most loving way, it may not be accepted and I may suffer the loss of a relationship or a serious strain on a relationship. But knowing that I am sacrificing myself for the good of the other person and ultimately, myself as well, makes it easier. And I have to say, the truth always comes out eventually and sometimes they thank you for your love. But I never hold my breath on that one!

    So I’m glad you elaborated. We can love others just the way they are, but help them become even better. I guess that’s kind of what God does:)

  5. great reflection! It's amazing how much the content of our media has changed over time.

    "It used to be that the most popular biographies were the lives of good men for the sake of imitation, rather than scandals for the sake of making ourselves believe we are more virtuous." ~Archbishop Fulton Sheen

  6. Dear Anonymous: Excellent comment. I love comments that make me (and others) think and hopefully make this blog useful and better!!!


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