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, March 22, 2013

John 10:31-42 Loving Words, Great Actions

The Jews picked up rocks to stone Jesus.  Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from my Father.  For which of these are your trying to stone me?” 
It turns out the Voyager I has officially left our solar system.  Interesting…  When it comes to technology, we have made some incredible progress.  But when it comes to relationships, far too many of us are still living in the Stone Age.
“I hear the whisperings of many:  ‘Terror on every side!  Denounce!  Let us denounce him!”  All those who were my friends are on the watch for any misstep of mine” (Jer. 20:10).
Do you believe in Divine Providence?  Today, I celebrated two Masses for two local Catholic High Schools.  This reading could not have been more perfect for the occasion.  So many High School kids suffer in so many ways from their peers. 
“I hear the whisperings of many.” [I hear them talking about me.] “Denounce!  Let us denounce him!”  [Let’s gossip about him/her.]  “All those who were my friends are watching for any misstep of mine.”        
A while back, a young man messed up royally in the final minutes of a basketball game.  His error, in the last seconds of the game, caused his team to lose the game.  Now this boy is extremely hard on himself and took his mistake very hard.  To make matters worse, before the game he was arguably the most popular kid in school.  So after his mistake, you would think there would be an outpouring of support and affection for him.  No!  Not at all.  Instead, his “friends” took advantage of his error and crushed him for screwing up.  We know this is all part of the pecking process and order for teenage boys.  Well, he didn’t know that.  He thought he really had a ton of friends.  I hope this experience taught him a great lesson in friendships. 
Actions speak louder than words.  When it comes to dating, far too many teenage boys and girls get hoodwinked by their “significant” other.  Words are cheap, especially loving words.  In fact, the more loving words you use, the better the deals you get!  How easy it is for a boy to tell a girl that he “loves” her and get back something worth much more than just words!  We need to teach our kids that actions speak louder than words and that true love is best expressed by sacrifice, not by words; by laying down one’s life for the other, not by getting laid. 
Today I read in The Telegraph that Pope Francis will be breaking another tradition by celebrating Holy Thursday Mass in a juvenile detention center on the outskirts of Rome.  He is expected to wash and kiss the feet of 12 inmates, a gesture that commemorates Jesus’ humility towards his disciples and humble service towards others. 
As the English newspaper pointed out, “this is very much in keeping with his past in Argentina, where he washed the feet of Aids sufferers and met with street prostitutes.”
Though words may be cheap, they still remain necessary, for they are a very practical way of reinforcing authentic love.  This is shown by another beautiful example of the Holy Father that was recently revealed.
The Catholic News Agency reported today that Pope Francis surprised the owner of a kiosk in Buenos Aires with a telephone call to explain that he will no longer need his newspaper delivered each morning.
The son’s owner, Daniel Del Regno, answered the call and could not believe it.  He thought it was a prank.  The Pope insisted, “Seriously, it’s Jorge Bergoglio, I’m calling you from Rome.”
“I was in shock, I broke down in tears and didn’t know what to say…He thanked me for delivering the paper all this time and sent best wishes to my family.” 
Del Regno remembered how he would put a rubber band around each newspaper that was delivered to the cardinal.  “At the end of the month, he always brought them back to me.  All 30 of them!  I know what he is like.  He’s one of a kind.”
Thanking people for what they do for us is a no-brainer.  But it continues to be a rarity.  And at the highest levels of power, gratitude towards the humble is nearly extinct.
The Pope’s love for Jesus Christ and St. Francis, and his extraordinary simplicity, humility and sincerity, appears to be softening the hardest of hearts.  A self-proclaimed atheist recently left a comment that read: 
I would “merely add an atheist’s view that this new chap has done more in a week than his predecessor did in 8 years to:  engage directly with believers; appeal to non-believers; and by his actions, justify trust in the organization which he leads. 
By the end of the Ratzinger papacy I was convinced the Roman Catholic Church would wither to its eventual death, and that this would be a good thing.  I no longer hold either of those views.  This man seems a genuine force for good.”
I think miracles are happening!  I for one never imagined enjoying a comment left by an atheist.  I actually agree with some of his statements.
Jesus said to the Pharisees and scribes, “If I do not perform my Father’s works, do not believe me, but if I perform them, even if you don’t believe me, believe the works…”
The Pope doesn’t appear to care much if people like him or not.  I think he just cares that we show great love for others, especially the poor, the marginalized and the sick.

Resolution:  I will be steadfast in my prayers to Jesus Christ, for prayer, like Christ, makes the heart grow fonder and softer.

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