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Going Deeper – Gospel Reflections

Readings for Wednesday 7/8/2020

Reading 1 HOS 10:1-3, 7-8, 12

Israel is a luxuriant vine
whose fruit matches its growth.
The more abundant his fruit,
the more altars he built;
The more productive his land,
the more sacred pillars he set up.
Their heart is false,
now they pay for their guilt;
God shall break down their altars
and destroy their sacred pillars.
If they would say,
“We have no king”—
Since they do not fear the LORD,
what can the king do for them?

The king of Samaria shall disappear,
like foam upon the waters.
The high places of Aven shall be destroyed,
the sin of Israel;
thorns and thistles shall overgrow their altars.
Then they shall cry out to the mountains, “Cover us!”
and to the hills, “Fall upon us!”

“Sow for yourselves justice,
reap the fruit of piety;
break up for yourselves a new field,
for it is time to seek the LORD,
till he come and rain down justice upon you.”

Responsorial Psalm 105:2-3, 4-5, 6-7

R. (4b) Seek always the face of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Sing to him, sing his praise,
proclaim all his wondrous deeds.
Glory in his holy name;
rejoice, O hearts that seek the LORD!
R. Seek always the face of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Look to the LORD in his strength;
seek to serve him constantly.
Recall the wondrous deeds that he has wrought,
his portents, and the judgments he has uttered.
R. Seek always the face of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
You descendants of Abraham, his servants,
sons of Jacob, his chosen ones!
He, the LORD, is our God;
throughout the earth his judgments prevail.
R. Seek always the face of the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia MK 1:15

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Kingdom of God is at hand:
repent and believe in the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel MT 10:1-7

Jesus summoned his Twelve disciples
and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out
and to cure every disease and every illness.
The names of the Twelve Apostles are these:
first, Simon called Peter, and his brother Andrew;
James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John;
Philip and Bartholomew,
Thomas and Matthew the tax collector;
James, the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddeus;
Simon the Cananean, and Judas Iscariot
who betrayed Jesus.

Jesus sent out these Twelve after instructing them thus,
“Do not go into pagan territory or enter a Samaritan town.
Go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’”

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.

Miracles and Faith

Jesus summoned his Twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out and to cure every disease and every illness. Matthew 10:1

Jesus gives His Apostles a sacred authority.  They were able to drive out demons and heal the sick.  They also won many converts to Christ by their preaching.

It’s interesting to look at this extraordinary charism the Apostles had to act miraculously.  It’s interesting because we do not see this happen that often today.  However, at the beginnings of the Church it seems that miracles were quite common.  One reason for this is that Jesus made quite a statement in the beginning to set things in motion.  The miracles He did and those of His Apostles were powerful signs of the power and presence of God.  These miracles helped the preaching of the Apostles to be more believable and bring forth many converts.  It seems that, as the Church grew, miracles in such great numbers were not as necessary for the authentication of the Word of God.  The personal lives and witness of believers eventually were sufficient to spread the Gospel without the help of numerous miracles.  Martyrdom and acts of great faith became the true signs of God’s presence.

This is helpful to understand because we see something similar in our own lives of faith and conversion.  Often times, in the beginning of our faith journey, we have many powerful experiences of God’s presence.  There may be deep consoling spiritual feelings and a clear sense that God is with us.  But over time, these feelings can start to disappear and we can wonder where they went or wonder if we have done something wrong.  There is an important spiritual lesson here.

As our faith deepens, the spiritual consolations we may receive at the beginning can often fade away because God wants us to love and serve Him out of a more purified faith and love.  We should believe and follow Him not because He makes us feel good, but because it is good and right to love and serve Him.  This can be a difficult lesson to learn but an essential one.

Reflect, today, upon how deep and sustaining your faith is.  Do you know and love God even when things are hard and when He seems far away?  Those moments, more than any, are the moments when your personal faith and conversion can grow the strongest.

Lord, help my faith in You and my love of You to be deep, stable and strong.  Help me to rely upon that faith more than upon any external “miracles” or feelings.  Help me to love You first and foremost out of a pure love for You.  Jesus, I trust in You.

Source of content: mycatholic.life

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