Thank you for joining the Good Shepherd Live Stream Mass for Thursday 6/25/2020

Going Deeper – Gospel Reflections

Readings for Thursday 6/25/2020

A reading from the Second Book of Kings
2 KGS 24:8-17

Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he began to reign,
and he reigned three months in Jerusalem.
His mother’s name was Nehushta,
daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem.
He did evil in the sight of the LORD,
just as his forebears had done.

At that time the officials of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon,
attacked Jerusalem, and the city came under siege.
Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon,
himself arrived at the city
while his servants were besieging it.
Then Jehoiachin, king of Judah, together with his mother,
his ministers, officers, and functionaries,
surrendered to the king of Babylon, who,
in the eighth year of his reign, took him captive.
And he carried off all the treasures
of the temple of the LORD and those of the palace,
and broke up all the gold utensils that Solomon, king of Israel,
had provided in the temple of the LORD, as the LORD had foretold.
He deported all Jerusalem:
all the officers and men of the army, ten thousand in number,
and all the craftsmen and smiths.
None were left among the people of the land except the poor.
He deported Jehoiachin to Babylon,
and also led captive from Jerusalem to Babylon
the king’s mother and wives,
his functionaries, and the chief men of the land.
The king of Babylon also led captive to Babylon
all seven thousand men of the army,
and a thousand craftsmen and smiths,
all of them trained soldiers.
In place of Jehoiachin,
the king of Babylon appointed his uncle Mattaniah king,
and changed his name to Zedekiah.

From the Gospel according to Matthew
MT 7:21-29

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the Kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.
Many will say to me on that day,
‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?
Did we not drive out demons in your name?
Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’
Then I will declare to them solemnly,
‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them
will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock.
And everyone who listens to these words of mine
but does not act on them
will be like a fool who built his house on sand.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

When Jesus finished these words,
the crowds were astonished at his teaching,
for he taught them as one having authority,
and not as their scribes.

O Mary,

you always shine on our path
as a sign of salvation and of hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick,
who at the cross took part in Jesus’ pain,
keeping your faith firm.
You, Help of Christians and Mother of Perpetual Help,
know what we need,
and we are sure you will provide
so that, as in Cana of Galilee,
we may return to joy and to feasting
after this time of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform to the will of the Father
and to do as we are told by Jesus,
who has taken upon himself our sufferings
and carried our sorrows
to lead us, through the cross,
to the joy of the resurrection. Amen.
Under your protection, we seek refuge,
Holy Mother of God.
Do not disdain the entreaties of we who are in trial,
but deliver us from every danger,
O glorious and blessed Virgin.
Amen.

Strength

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock.” Matthew 7:24-25

This passage above is followed by the contrast of one who built his house on sand.  The wind and rains came and the house collapsed.  It’s a clear contrast that leads anyone to conclude that having your house built on solid rock is much better.

The house is your life.  And the question it raises is simply, how strong am I?  How strong am I to face the storms, hardships and crosses that will inevitably come my way?

When life is easy and all goes smoothly, we do not necessarily need great inner strength.  When money is plentiful, we have many friends, we have our health and our family all gets along, life can be good.  And, in that case, life can even be easy.  But there are few who can go through life without facing some storm.  When that happens, our inner strength is tested and the strength of our inner convictions is required.

In this story from Jesus, the rain, floods and wind that buffeted the house are actually a good thing.  Why?  Because they allow the foundation of the house to manifest its stability.  So it is with us.  The foundation of our lives must be our fidelity to the Word of God.  Do you believe the Word of God?  Have you pondered it, studied it, internalized it and allowed God’s Word to become the foundation of your life?  Jesus makes it clear that we will have a solid foundation only when we listen to His words and act on them.

Reflect, today, upon how deeply you believe all that Jesus says.  Do you trust in every word He has spoken?  Do you believe Him enough to rely upon His promises even in the midst of life’s greatest challenges?  If you are not sure, then this is a good day to recommit yourself to the prayerful reading of His Word.  All He says in Scripture is true and those truths are what we need to create a firm foundation for the rest of our lives.

Lord, help me to listen to Your words and to act on them.  Help me to believe in Your promises and to trust You even when the storms of life seem fierce.  Jesus, I trust in You.

Source of content: mycatholic.life

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