Meditation for the Day

Thursday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time, January 23

May God Inflame Our Hearts With a Burning Love for Him and an Expectant Faith in His Saving Power, Drawing Us Ever Closer in Our Relationship of Love with Him.

The Responsorial antiphon today presents us with a theme that is prevalent in today’s Readings, a theme about which we also reflected in yesterday’s meditation – “In God I trust; I shall not fear.”

Today’s Gospel passage begins with a statement about Jesus’ popularity. People were coming from all over to experience healing, or at least to see it happen, which was a stark contrast to the rejection our Lord was experiencing from the religious authorities.

It is clear to many that Jesus was a “wonder worker” of sorts, and it is equally clear that He was not rejecting that reputation, even though He had to find ways of keeping Himself from being physically harmed by the crowds. For we are told that the disciples had to have a boat ready, just in case the crowd, in all its exuberance, would begin to crush in on Him.

What many find strange, however, is Jesus ordering the unclean spirits not to reveal His true identity! Right now, He seems only to want to be known for what He does, rather than for who He is! And many Scriptural scholars refer to this as the “Messianic secret”.

The Scriptures tell us today that “…whenever unclean spirits saw him they would fall down before him and shout, ‘You are the Son of God.’ He warned them sternly not to make him known.” Jesus’ mission in fulfilling His Father’s will was not to glorify Himself, or to have others glorify Him, but rather to teach us what pleases the Father the most – humility, obedience, the selfless giving of love, and compassionate mercy.

It was Jesus’ personality which allowed others to draw close to Him. It was His compassionate Mercy and selfless Love which became a beacon of Divine Light, illumining and driving away the shadows of darkness for all those who were hungering and thirsting for spiritual nourishment.

And in Jesus’ humility and obedience to His Father’s will, He became the Divine Physician, who drew to Himself all those who were suffering spiritually and physically, healing the sick and the despairing – inspiring the people to live the words of the psalmist, “In God I trust; I shall not fear.”

In our First Reading for today, Saul was a person who embodied the exact opposite of what Jesus represented. Saul was filled with pride and arrogance; and he was a jealous king who despised the fame which followed David after the slaying of Goliath.

In the pettiness of his own thoughts, Saul was offended by the song that the women were singing, “Saul has slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands.” And Scripture tells us, “Saul was very angry and resentful of the song, for he thought: ‘They give David ten thousands, but only thousands to me.’”

And yet, it was David’s humility and unfailing trust in God, which allowed him to stand up to the terrifying Philistine. And it was David’s faith that would guide him to continue to trust in God, regardless of Saul’s continuing contempt for him.

“In God I trust; I shall not fear.”

How do you and I trust unreservedly in God? How do we let go of the fear or anxiety which envelopes our mind and our heart at times when the various trials and tribulations of life seem to confront us head-on?

Saint Paul tells us in his Second Letter to the Corinthians that “…we must trust not in ourselves, but in God.”

I wrote about this in yesterday’s meditation, but it is a point which I feel is important enough to repeat. To trust – and I mean to trust completely in the God who gives us life, in the God who gave us His Only-Begotten Son – is to empty oneself completely of ego, to empty oneself completely of pride and self-importance, to let go of what constrains us and what controls us, and to allow the God of Mercy, the God of Love, the God of Compassion to truly take control of our lives.

If we can find it within ourselves to “let go and let God”, according to an age-old adage, then God will give us the grace to accept whatever may come our way.

David lived it; Christ encouraged it.

May God inflame our hearts with a burning love for Him and with an expectant faith in His saving power. And may His Infinite Love for each one of us set us free from all that hinders you and me from drawing ever closer in our relationship of love with Him.

For only then shall we be able to exorcise the fears and anxieties which reside within our hearts and truly trust in God’s providential Love for you and me.

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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

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Prayer for the Day

“O Sovereign Goodness

of the Sovereign Providence of my God!

I abandon myself forever to Your arms.

Whether gentle or severe,

lead me henceforth wherever You will.

“I will not regard the way through which You will have me pass,

but keep my eyes fixed upon You, my God, who guides me.

My soul finds no rest without the arms

and the bosom of this Heavenly Providence,

my true Mother, my strength and my rampart.

“Therefore, I resolve with Your Divine assistance,

O my Savior, to follow Your desires and Your ordinances,

without regarding or examining why You do this rather than that;

but I will blindly follow You according to Your Divine will,

without seeking my own inclinations…Amen.”

Saint Jane Frances de Chantal

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