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!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Lk 9:57-62 Walk Like A Pilgrim

Wednesday of the Twenty-Sixth Week In Ordinary Time
(Click here for readings)


But he replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.”
But he answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead.
But you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God.”

Jesus wants us to join Him, but he does not want the world. He wants us entirely, body, soul, and mind, but he deplores the world that has entered our body, soul, and mind. He makes his home in us, in our hearts, while in the world, he “has nowhere to rest his head.”This then means that if we carry the world in us, he cannot make a home in us; this means we must remove ourselves from the world and imitate Christ so that he can take His place in our hearts.

Christ was a pilgrim, so in imitation of Him, we must become pilgrims ourselves. Despite the advances in transportation, communication, and hospitality, most people in developed countries remain more fixed to their setting than ever, hoping to plant their roots deep into it and thrive.

Sure, people may travel, but they do not set out on a pilgrimage. Traveling allows them a change of scene, a change in perspective, a different experience, but it does not allow a change in the soul. The pilgrimages of yore, the ones recounted in recounted in the
Canterbury Tales, the ones that preceded the Crusades, the ones in which people dropped everything to make their way to a holy place and find God, do not occupy the modern imagination anylonger. We visit and take pictures, nothing more.  

The pilgrimage, whether to Rome, Canterbury, or Jerusalem, served as a powerful spiritual exercise for those who undertook it. Those who traveled to these places, not in luxury but in humility, could truly internalize the reality of the spiritual pilgrimage all men make in life: the path is time, the guide is Jesus, the shrine is Heaven. Passing from town to town allowed the pilgrim to see how he passed from moment to moment in his life. The transience of life would become all the more apparent, and the need for true permanence all the more pressing. The pilgrim learned that he had no home here the world, but in Heaven with the Father. The sooner a Christian learned this, the sooner he could live a holier life.

Today, we travel like tourists, not pilgrims, and accordingly our life has the character of tourism instead of pilgrimage. We reach sites in a hurry, not really noticing the space covered or places encountered on the way. Similarly, we live life in a hurry, unconcerned with spiritual progress we make or do not make. As good tourists, we visit sites as an escape from our daily lives, which still preoccupy our thoughts even as we behold the world's most impressive monuments. This carries into our thoughts of Heaven, which we think of more as a place to visit, but not really inhabit. Like tourists, we approach Heaven as outsiders thinking of our homes on earth, not of the new everlasting home that Christ lets us enter.

During His own pilgrimage, Jesus encounters some of these same tourists. They only want to visit Heaven, not stay there. They travel in order to appreciate home all the more. They consider “the journey,” their allotted time for personal growth, more important than the actual destination where they would be perfect. They find comfort in the world of the dead, the world of tourism and visiting, the restless world, the passing world. If only they could extract themselves from that place, both where they stand, and in their hearts, but that place has a greater hold on them than any faith they have in Jesus.

Today marks the feast day of the great saint, Therese of the Child Jesus. Ironically, she did not travel much at all, or make pilgrimages, but lived her life in the confinement of a Carmelite convent and died at the age of 24. In heart though, she made the greatest and most perilous journey of all, the one that Jesus made and invited others to make with Him. Suffering from a painful illness and great spiritual adversity, much like Christ, she passed into eternal life with her Father. In Him, she found her home; in Him she ended her pilgrimage of life.

We should pray for her intercession that we might have the same courage to make the same journey, and finally leave our homes here on Earth when God calls us.


  1. "We should pray for her intercession that we might have the same courage to make the same journey, and finally leave our homes here on Earth when God calls us."

    Amen. Today my lunchtime conversation with my spouse went something like this. "Have you heard about ebola coming to Dallas?" (we're both a little behind on the news.) "So what." I said. "Well, I think we should be worried about it. I mean you can die from ebola." "So what." I said. "Did you hear what I said? We could die. The kids could die." he exclaimed! "So what." "I don't care for your flippant attitude." he said. "I am not being flippant. Death is OK. Isn't it what we are born for? Isn't it what we are working towards?"

    I could tell he was perturbed but I reassured him that God loves us so much. He is faithful unitl the end. We don't have to fear what lies ahead. We sing "Be Not Afraid" in mass but are we really listening to what we are saying? Have faith. God is steadfast in his love. He seemed reassured by the end of our conversation.

    When I was in college I was misdiagnosed with a terminal form of lupus. It was 2 weeks of hell. Turned out it was just rheumatoid arthritis. I have always seen my RA as a true blessing. It reminds me to be thankful for the good days and to remember that I am completely dependent on God. After the 2 weeks of hell, I remember learning how to let go and let God. If we really believe in the Resurrection, we know this life is only temporal. We are here to fulfill God's mission on earth for each of us and when we're done, He will call us home. Our children are not even our children. They're God's. We are just here to be good caretakers while we are here on earth.

    As for pilgrimages, I have had 3 friends and family members venture to Spain in the last couple of months to walk the Camino. I am jealous. But I remind myself that we have so many opportunities for holiness in our daily lives if we just take the time. Daily mass, rosary, adoration, lectures, etc. There are so many opportuunities that God has provided us with so we can know and love Him if we just say yes to Him. He is there waiting with open arms. You don't need to go to Spain or Italy or Portugal to find Him. Just go to mass.

  2. Dear Violin,

    Your words are Providential as I sit by my son's bedside in the ER tonight...Be Not Afraid is one of my favorite hymns. Thank you for the reminder of our Lord's greater plan for our lives and the lives of our children. I must learn to trust in Him, always.

    1. Dear Anonymous,

      You and your son are in my prayers. Today, October 2, is the Memorial of the Guardian Angels. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says, “Beside each believer stands an angel as protector and Shepard leading him to life.” I know your son's Guardian Angel is watching over him. Peace.


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