Meditation for the Day

Thirtieth-first Sunday in Ordinary Time, November 3

May We Be Eternally Grateful for All that Our Lord Wishes to Bestow upon Us – an Imperishable Crown Which Will Neither Wither Nor Fade, a Life of Eternal Peace and Joy Which Shall Never End!

If there was a single theme which could be identified as weaving itself throughout all our Readings today, it could be summed up in the last few words of today’s Gospel, “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.”

Salvation – not a very large word; yet, its meaning and significance which it holds for you and me is the difference between eternal life, eternal peace, eternal happiness – and the despair and untold suffering which accompanies eternal death.

Saint Monica realized this when she spent her entire life praying for the conversion of her son Augustine, who was living a completely dissolute and immoral life engaging in all forms of pleasures of the flesh. Yet, it was her constancy and persistence in prayer which reminds us of the words we read today from the Book of Wisdom –

“But you spare all things, because they are yours, O LORD and lover of souls, for your imperishable spirit is in all things! Therefore you rebuke offenders little by little, warn them and remind them of the sins they are committing, that they may abandon their wickedness and believe in you, O LORD!”

Monica’s prayer was answered and she saw the conversion of her son before her death. And the power of a mother’s prayer is such that Augustine became one of the greatest saints in the history of Christianity.

Monica believed in the power of God’s saving grace, and her son experienced the salvation which comes from a God who wishes to lose no one to the grips of Satan. For the Mercy of God is unfathomable and incomprehensible; His Mercy is as deep as a bottomless ocean and infinitely greater than the widest expanse of the universe itself!

In spite of all this, in spite of this unbelievable gift of salvation earned for us through the salvific nature of the suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we have also been given the gift of free will to reject it – to turn our backs and walk away from all that our Creator and our Savior offers to each one of us.

It is so natural to ask ourselves the question, “Why? Why would anyone act so irrationally as to reject the life of peace and happiness which awaits us?” The answer lies in the relationship man has with his or her God. All we need to do is look at the world in which we live.

The Bible tells us that, even from the very beginning, man has always fought against the will of God, for the desires and the cravings of the flesh – be it fame, fortune, power or sex – all fight against the spirit. For it is the cravings of the flesh which undermine man’s relationship with God – a relationship which is to be forged through faith, a relationship which is to be based upon love, virtue and holiness.

That is why prayer is so efficacious, so effective in calling upon God’s saving grace – not only for ourselves, but also for all of our loved ones. Many people reach out directly to God; many also seek heavenly intercession from our Blessed Mother and the saints; many ask family and friends for prayer.

Even Saint Paul tells us in our Second Reading today, “We always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and powerfully bring to fulfillment every good purpose and every effort of faith, that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, in accord with the grace of our God and Lord Jesus Christ.”

And it was Saint Faustina who wrote in her Diary, “Divine Mercy in My Soul”“In whatever state the soul may be, it ought to pray. A soul which is pure and beautiful must pray, or else it will lose its beauty; a soul which is striving after this purity must pray, or else it will never attain it; a soul which is newly converted must pray, or else it will fall again; a sinful soul, plunged in sins, must pray so that it might rise again. There is no soul which is not bound to pray, for every single grace comes to the soul through prayer.” (Diary, 146)

When we look at our own lives, when we remember back to the time we first felt God’s call in our life, how did we respond? Where we as joyful and exuberant as Zacchaeus was in today’s Gospel, when Christ called out to him and said, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house” ?

Whether we were joyful or hesitant, grateful or tentative, God’s Spirit never stopped calling out – nudging us, relentlessly urging us, persistently and constantly inviting us to take that first and most important step in developing our love relationship with Himself. And because of God’s uncompromising Love for you and me, we should be eternally grateful for all that He wishes to bestow upon us – an imperishable crown which will neither wither nor fade, a life of eternal peace and joy which shall never end!

For as Christ tells us today and every day, “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.” May we take His words truly to heart, knowing that we are each called to live a holier, a more loving and intimate relationship with the God who continually calls us into oneness with Himself.

May God bless you, God love you, and may God always keep you.

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.

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Scripture for the Day

  • “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.” (Luke 19:10)
  • “But you spare all things, because they are yours, O LORD and lover of souls, for your imperishable spirit is in all things! Therefore you rebuke offenders little by little, warn them and remind them of the sins they are committing, that they may abandon their wickedness and believe in you, O LORD!” (Wisdom 11:26–12:2)
  • “We always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and powerfully bring to fulfillment every good purpose and every effort of faith, that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, in accord with the grace of our God and Lord Jesus Christ.” (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)
  • “And we have this confidence in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in regard to whatever we ask, we know that what we have asked him for is ours.” (1 John 5:14-15)
  • “The LORD is far from the wicked, but the prayer of the just he hears.” (Proverbs 15:29)
  • “Listen, God, to my prayer; do not hide from my pleading; hear me and give answer…At dusk, dawn, and noon I will grieve and complain, and my prayer will be heard. He will redeem my soul in peace…” (Psalm 55:2-3a, 18-19a)
  • Every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one.(1 Corinthians 9:25)
  • “Blessed is the man who perseveres in temptation, for when he has been proved he will receive the crown of life that he promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12)
  • “And when the chief Shepherd is revealed, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.” (1 Peter 5:4)

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Prayer for the Day

“God our Heavenly Father, hear our daily prayer

and let the radiance of Your Divine Love

illumine our hearts and strengthen our faith.

May the Light of Your Loving Presence within us

guide us in our service to our neighbor.

“So that, with attention, reverence and devotion,

we may always reach out with selfless love

to each of our brothers and sisters,

giving You fitting praise and worship.

We humbly ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.”

cf. LOH Psalter-Prayer

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