September 25, 2017

Sept. 25

September 25, 2017:  Monday, 25th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Crown' tie bar:  Cyrus, King of Persia (1st reading)

  • 'Plant' pin:  Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing (psalm)

  • Silver- and gold-colored accessories:  Their neighbors helped them with silver, gold,... (1st reading)

  • 'Lights' tie:  Let your light shine (gospel)

In the 1st reading, the Lord visited his people and returned them to Jerusalem.  'Visited' is important in salvation history; every act of redemption is a visitation.  When the Lord visits us he gives us joy; he puts us in a state of consolation.  You have sowed in tears, but the Lord gives us spiritual consolation.  Consolation happens not only at a certain moment but also is a state in the spiritual life of every Christian.
Wait for the Lord’s visitation.  The Lord will help us sense his presence through spiritual consolation.  Christians must learn to recognize consolation, because false prophets trying to trick us can seem to console us.  The Lord’s consolation moves you, makes you grow in charity and hope, and makes you weep for your sins.  We weep with Jesus in his Passion.  Your soul is elevated to the things of God and quieted in God's peace.
Thank the Lord in prayer, that he may visit us and help us go forward in hope to carry our cross.  Remember consolation as God’s people remembered its liberation; wait for it, recognize it, and conserve it.  Peace, the highest level of consolation, will remain.
    Wordle: Readings 9-23-13
  • Ezr 1:1-6  King Cyrus:  “God gave me kingdoms of the earth, charged me to build him a house."
  • Ps 126:1b-6  "The Lord has done marvels for us."  Sow in tears; reap rejoicing.
  • Lk 8:16-18  “No one who lights a lamp conceals it; they place it so those who enter see the light.  All that's hidden will become visible, and all that's secret will come to light.  Take care how you hear.  To anyone who has, more will be given....”
  • Creighton:  In today’s 1st reading Cyrus calls out to those who "belong to any part of his people" to build a "house for the Lord."  Christ Jesus reminded us that what we do for the least, we do for him; we're called at times of great destruction, and every day, to share with and be in solidarity with one another. I can't be complacent and leave that obligation to others.  Matthew conveys the same gospel message:  "You are the light of the world.  People don't light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand to give light to all.  Let your light shine before others, so they may see your good works and give glory to your Father."  Your light and mine are needed; it's our duty and joy to respond, model, and share it.  Lord, give me the courage and grace to ‘be the light....’
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Despite failures":  We who share God's Word can expect failures, so we may feel like keeping the Word to ourselves, but the Lord commands us to put the Light on the lampstand of our lives and give light to all.  If we hear and act on his Word, Jesus promises he'll consider us his mother, brothers, and sisters.  People need to hear the word of the Lord to believe....
  • Passionist:  In medieval times the church was the center of the village, because God was the center of people’s lives.  Now our currency declares, “In God We Trust,” but our architecture tells us it’s the dollar we worship.  In today's 1st reading, the temple the returning exiles are going to rebuild is described as the light of the world; in the gospel, the lamp is displayed on a stand, to be a light for people.  The light each of us can bring to our broken world is a treasure. Today, it might just mean smiling at someone or asking how they're doing.  May we penetrate the darkness with the light of Christ, the core of our lives.
  •  "Every secret shall come to light":  Lamps in enable people to see and work in the dark and to avoid stumbling.  Light expresses God's inner beauty, truth, and goodness:  in his light we see light; "Your word is a guiding lamp."  God illumines our darkness and fills us with spiritual light, joy, and peace.  Jesus disciples are to live in the light of his truth and love.  As natural light illumines our visual darkness, so Christ shining in our hearts enables us to see God's kingdom. We're to be light-bearers of Christ so others may see gospel truth and be freed from their blindness.  We can try to hide things from people, ourselves, and God, but God sees it all.  Live in God's light, experience freedom and joy, and receive his wisdom, guidance, peace, and blessing.

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