Category Archives: Gospel

The right approach

James Tissot (1836-1902)
La Samaritaine à la fontaine
opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper
between 1886 and 1894
Brooklyn Museum

The disciples of Jesus left him behind in their search for food, while the woman of Samaria approached him in her search for water. She was blessed by awakening to the presence of the Christ, while the disciples ended up distracted by annoyance and negative judgment at Jesus’ lack of propriety.

Today I will approach the Lord in times of loneliness, fear, sadness, and emptiness instead of being distracted by the things of the world.

A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” His disciples had gone into the town to buy food. (John 4:7-8)

Listen

Alexander Andreyevich Ivanov (1806-1858)
Преображение, 1824

When I listen to the Word of God, what do I hear?
  Peace.
  Do not be afraid.
  Love God and your neighbor and yourself.
  Welcome strangers.
  Feed the hungry.
  Shelter the homeless.
  Do not worry about tomorrow.
  Forgive your enemies.

Today I will listen to the Lord and be transfigured into a brighter image of God’s love and goodness, kindness and compassion.

While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” Matthew 17:5

Sufficient for today

View of Wildflowers, Fields, and Lake Kinnaret (Sea of Galilee) By Adam Jones from Kelowna, BC, Canada [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

View of Wildflowers, Fields, and Lake Kinnaret (Sea of Galilee)
By Adam Jones from Kelowna, BC, Canada [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Let me put my attention and energy on the things that help bring peace and harmony to our fractured world: enjoying friends and family, listening to someone who needs to talk, encouraging someone who is lonely or depressed or afraid, speaking kindly to a stranger, spending time alone in prayer and meditation to be filled again with the love and patience of God.

[Jesus said to his disciples:] “Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span?” Matthew 6:27

Blessed peace

The Sermon on the Mount - Matthew 5-7 JESUS MAFA. The Sermon on the Mount, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. http://diglib.library.vanderbilt.edu/act-imagelink.pl?RC=48284 [retrieved January 29, 2017].

JESUS MAFA. The Sermon on the Mount, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved January 29, 2017].

Now is the time to make peace, forgive those who hurt us, love our enemies.

Now is the time to put nonviolence into practice, to trust love is more powerful than aggression, blame, and division.

Now is the time to bring compassion and mercy to all who are broken, and to all that is broken in our world.

[Jesus taught them,] “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy… Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:7, 9

 

At once

 St. Peter's Church, Kilmore Quay, County Wexford, Ireland photograph by Andreas F. Borchert

St. Peter’s Church, Kilmore Quay,
County Wexford, Ireland
photograph by Andreas F. Borchert

Every day the Lord says to me, “This is my way: Love your neighbor. Forgive your enemies. Pray for those who persecute you. Give to the one who asks of you. Feed the hungry. Take care of the poor, homeless, imprisoned, and vulnerable. Let your light shine for all to see. Come after me.”

How quick am I to leave my old habits and attitudes and behaviors to follow him?

[Jesus] said to them, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” At once they left their nets and followed him. Matthew 4:19-20

Pointing to love

El Greco (1541-1614) San Juan Bautisto oil on canvas, between ca.1600 and ca1605 Museu de Belles Arts de València

El Greco (1541-1614)
San Juan Bautisto
oil on canvas, between ca.1600 and ca.1605
Museu de Belles Arts de València

Today I will join John the Baptist in announcing the presence of Jesus by letting love illuminate and transform my words, thoughts, and actions.

John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” John 1:29

The best gift

JESUS MAFA. <a href=

JESUS MAFA. Visit of the Three Wise Men, from Art in the Christian Tradition, a project of the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, Nashville, TN. [retrieved January 8, 2017]

Pay attention. Listen deeply. Encourage often. Stay in touch. Walk with reverence in all circumstances. Practice warm, welcoming silence.

Go gently, intentionally in the presence of God.

On entering the house [the magi] saw the child with Mary his mother. They prostrated themselves and did him homage. Matthew 2:11