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!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Mt 16:13-23 Honest And Thoughtful

Thursday of the Eighteenth Week In Ordinary Time
Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi and he asked his disciples:  “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
I wish I was like the Son of God:  humble and thoughtful.   I think we all wish we could be like that.
But I am not.  And as hard as I try, I routinely fall flat on my face. 
But maybe that’s the point.  Maybe it’s not all about trying but more like seeking or praying. 
Who do you say that I am?  Let me take a few steps backward.  Let me ask myself a question before I pose this question to others.  Let me ask myself:  “Who do I want to be?”
That is the question!  Do I want to be a man of my word and a man of the Word?  Do I want to be a man with integrity?  Or do I find pleasure in being detached from all my responsibilities? 
Do I wish to live in fear all my life? 
You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.  How did Peter know?  Well, the Lord tells us:  “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah.  For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.” 
The Father revealed Christ’s identity to Peter.  But Peter was no fool.  He could also see in Christ’s eyes and heart a holy man; a good man; a welcoming and compassionate man.
I should be more like that!  I can be more like that!  Who do I want to be?
Be humble and thoughtful.  It’s not enough to be a good debater.  It’s not even enough to be a logical man, for I can be entirely logical in all my deliberations and a mad man in all my thoughts.  My logic can flow like honey and my thoughts like dung.
Christ had it all.  He preached and lived a simple life.  He walked the talk humbly and thoughtfully.  Peter saw someone remarkable in the person of Jesus Christ.  I wonder how often Peter got that “crazy” idea in his head that Jesus might be the Son of God.  How often do you get a crazy idea in our head about someone?  Maybe more often than you’d like.  Do you verbalize it?  Hardly ever!
But this time Peter verbalized it.  This time he was ready to put his money where his life is.   He was inspired to say it; to finally say that his heart had been telling him for so long:  “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
We need to say these words every day, otherwise we run the risk of being incoherent and inconsistent with our thoughts and actions.  It doesn’t take much (or long) for something like that to happen.  Not too soon after Peter made his confession of faith to Jesus, the Apostle was already telling Jesus (God) what to do!
Jesus fixed this problem immediately:  “Get behind me, Satan!  You are an obstacle to me.  You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.”
Thinking is what we do best.  Praying is what the Lord did best. 


  1. Father Alfonse - I wish you could've posted this meditation earlier this morning. I think your thoughts might have prevented me from acting so hateful and irritable today.

    I experienced one of the worst days in a long time. I can't stand the manual labor aspect of my job. I had to work in the 100+ degree warehouse all day today. I could've been humble and gracious. I could've been more appreciative of my coworkers who did everything they could to make me more comfortable since they know I'm not used to working in non-AC. Instead I mumbled and I grumbled. I cursed, spoke mean about people (gossip), and pretty much complained all day long!

    I wonder "Who am I?" when I'm horribly cranky. I certainly don't act like a good Christian woman. In fact, I act like a hypocrite going against everything our Lord teaches. I get so frustrated with myself and think how disappointed God must be with me!!

    Who do I want to be? I want to be a holy woman of God. I want to be able to handle uncomfortable circumstances with humility. I want people to see Christ in me and through me. I want to be able to control my "runaway thoughts" that seem to cause me so much scorn: total smelly dung heap!!


    1. "I experienced one of the worst days in a long time."

      I know how you feel and I can relate!

    2. If we are honest with ourselves & God we have all known the frustration that Jennifer articulates. I strive each day to be more like Jesus than the day before. Failure stinks but trying feels like what Jesus expects of us.

      But I also believe that God loves me for trying and on occasion succeeding. Thank you Father Alfonse for your thoughtful writings.

  2. >>Thinking is what we do best. Praying is what the Lord did best<<

    It's also what a Catholic priest did best in Missouri on Sunday. His intervention was miraculous! The events underscore the power of God, of prayer, of the sacraments, of the priesthood, of the great gift of our holy Catholic Church. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ, King of Kings!

    1. Don't you wonder if the priest was actually an angel, or perhaps even Jesus himself? I want to say Jesus is under the disguise of a priest, however he is THE High Priest!!! If the roads were blocked off for quite a distance, where did he come from, and why hasn't he come forward?

    2. It is fascinating. I don't think the person was an angel; I think the person is a priest. Only priests have the power to administer sacraments. "You are a priest forever in the line of Melchizedek..." Jesus Himself, or a priest already in communion with God in heaven? Perhaps. I've read reports that the girl called out something to the effect of, "Jesus, come help me!" Her prayer was then mercifully answered--through a priest. Once ordained, a priest is understood to be "alter Christus," another Christ...

  3. Thank you so much for your reflections. They are helping me to find God and find peace in my day and I appreciate that you take the time to do them.

  4. Thank you so much for doing these reflections. I truly feel as if they are helping me find God and find peace in my day. I appreciate you taking the time to do them every day.

  5. You have reverted to the small font that we senior citizens cannot handle very well.

  6. “But maybe that’s the point. Maybe it’s not all about trying but more like seeking or praying.”

    I don’t know where you get these ideas but these thoughts are my thoughts. If I can accept/seek the parts of myself that I do not love (but Christ loves because I’m still human), then I can slowly learn to accept/seek parts of others that I do not love (but Christ does because we are made in His image…. just not there yet). By loving them, I can show them the Love of Christ. That’s it! Totally and completely! Do I accept all of myself/mankind to love as a way for my sanctity? If it was good enough for Christ…..while we were still sinners… should be good enough for me.

    Honestly, there are so many people that I do not agree with….starting with myself!!! The selfish, the greedy, the victims, the lazy, the republicans, the democrats, the atheists, the self-righteous… I could go on. I am all of these! But at what level of (lack of) sin am I going to allow myself to begin to accept/love each and every one of them? It is ‘I’ that has to accept and love, not 'them', that I become a saint. I become a saint ‘through’ them. It is because of them, not in spite of them.

    Do I wish to live in fear all my life?

    This is a very gripping question for me, when I allow myself to go there. So, I just don’t allow myself to go there – that is where true evil lies for me. Perfect love casts out fear (evil). I often do fall short and go there - I am sometimes paralyzed by fear! That is when I have to snap out of it and begin to help other people around me - with a smile, a phone call, a walk in the park together, whatever they want. Fear has no where to go - I am too happy (because of others) to let 'him' devour me.

    Easier said than done.

    Beautiful mediation Father, thank you.


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