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!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Mt 5:38-42 Offer No Resistance

Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
(Click here for readings)

Jesus said to his disciples: "You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I say to you, offer no resistance to one who is evil...."
In today's first reading, we are introduced to the influences of Jezebel, the bible's wicked witch of the Middle East.   An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth was her motto.  She coerced, seduced, and murdered her victims all for power and revenge.  She is the pinnacle of unholiness and evil.  A protagonist of ill will, many books and songs have been composed in her name.

Jezebel represents a rotting soul filled with greed, jealousy, hate, and revenge.  By contrast, Jesus represents a blooming soul filled with love, compassion, forgiveness, and acceptance.

Our Lord desires for us to offer no resistance toward one who is evil. In fact, the fruits of the Holy Spirit can help us.  Saint Paul writes:

....The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such there is no law.  Now those who belong to Christ have crucified their flesh with its passions and desires. (Galatians 5:22-24)

How can we handle the nastiness of the Jezebels in our lives?  How can we "keep calm and carry on" when so much evil lurks around us? 

Here are some examples of how to offer no resistance under the guidance of the fruits of the Holy Spirit:

Turn the other cheek   (Fruits: peace, self-control)  When a person strikes our right cheek with criticisms, insults, and negativity, the best thing is to remain self-controlled. Don't return the venom.  Turn the other cheek straight in their direction as if to say, "I know you're angry with me.  I've offended you even though I may not have meant to. You can say what you wish. I'm sorry for harm."  Many times people are ready for the brawl; however, simply acting in a passive manner throws them off guard.

Self-control allows peace to enter our hearts and minds in ways that are pleasing to the Lord.

Hand over your cloak  (Fruits: gentleness, faithfulness)  Many lawsuits, along with hefty legal fees, can be prevented if people settled their disagreements.  Faith and trust have been violated. One party feels as if they have been cheated by another.  When we acknowledge our guilt, and make amends for what we have done wrong, we demonstrate good character and judgment.  Symbolically, we hand over to the prosecutor our own cloak saying, "I wish to obey the law from now on.  Here is a token of my commitment."

When we have faith in one another, we become more gentle and caring.

Walk another two miles  (Fruits: patience, kindness)  When we volunteer to help others in need, sometimes we are asked to commit more time than planned.  Perhaps an elderly person wants to chat at the nursing home a while longer.  A child asks to be read a second or third story before going to sleep. The fruit of patience encourages us to walk that extra mile.  Service to others is a  rewarding experience that should never be taken for granted.

Patience allows us to love and appreciate others as children of God.

Give to one who asks  (Fruits: joy, generosity)  When driving down the street, we may notice a homeless person holding a sign requesting a handout.  A co-worker may ask to borrow $20  to fill up the gas tank. In each one of these cases, a person is asking for another's help.  We should never turn our back to others in need regardless of our dislikes or pre-conceived notions. When we wipe away our prejudices, and help others with kindness and compassion, we are filled with an inner joy.

The inner joy as a result of our generosity is truly liberating.

Life's Jezebels  Those who are evil (the Jezebels of life) will try every trick in the playbook to get us to lose our tempers, fight, argue, manipulate and hate.  Don't give into sinful temptations.  Allow God to handle difficult matters in his own way and on his own time frame.  The Jezebels in our lives can serve a meaningful purpose: to teach us a valuable lesson.  We can learn good behavior by observing the bad deeds in others, determined not to repeat them.  Best of all, we see God in action when justice is served.  The wicked will not stand a chance again the Almighty power of God.  

Always remember that the greatest fruit of the Holy Spirit is Love.  When we love one another, including our enemies, we put on the mind of Christ.  Offer no resistance and keep the Sacred Heart of Jesus nestled close to your own heart!

He will provide the way and the means, such as you could never have imagined. Leave it all to Him, let go of yourself, lose yourself on the Cross, and you will find yourself entirely. (Saint Catherine of Siena)

This meditation was written by Jennifer Burgin.  Please visit her blog:  Jennifer's Spectrum of Spirituality


  1. I like that you break down each of these actions into recognizable virtues. It asserts that Jesus preaches something more than utter passivity in the face of evil, but active good. There's a sense of daring in turning the other cheek, a magnanimity in giving one's coat, of personal excellence in walking the extra mile, of general charity in giving. One does not submit or oblige because of inferiority or weakness, but out of strength provided by God. The milquetoast Christian resorts to these lines as an excuse for doing nothing in the face of evil when in fact it should motivate him to do even more to encourage the good.

    Unlike Jezebel who preyed on the weak, St. Catherine of Sienna exhibited the love and power of God as she nursed those afflicted with the plague, dictated her dialogues with God (which led to her status as a "Doctor" of the Church), and urged the Pope to return to Rome. Her life attests to the truth of her statement that one finds oneself entirely on the Cross.

    1. There was the story of Mother Teresa who went into bakery asking for bread for a starving child. The baker spit in Mother Teresa's face. Mother Teresa said, "Thank you for that gift, and now something for the child?"

      Charity and magnanimity can really disarm people. Love is really the best weapon we have.

      On another note, please keep our All Saints and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton teens (and adult leaders!) from Mission Possible in your prayers this week! We need it!


Updated: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. Comments must be concise and to the point.Comments are no longer accepted for posts older than 7 days.