AN EXAMPLE OF HUMILITY

Saturday 31st May – Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Reflection: Luke 1: 39-56

AN EXAMPLE OF HUMILITY

We all are familiar with the Feast we celebrate today – the Visitation of our Blessed Mother to her cousin, Elizabeth. It is a story we reflect on each time we pray the joyful mysteries of the Rosary. What can we possibly learn from this visitation and the wonderful exchange that took place between these two righteous women?

Our Blessed Mother gives us an example of humility. She had just been informed of the great plan God had in mind – to become man through her! What a great privilege. However the moment she was told that her cousin who had been barren was with child, she forgot herself completely and went off to stay with Elizabeth to rejoice with her and be of help to her. She did not think herself too important to offer the necessary help her elderly cousin would need. Moreso, she did so without being asked.

Beloved, sometimes, we find ourselves in places of honour because of some gifts and talents God has given to us. As young people, we can easily be tempted to think of ourselves as “important” and start to look down on others, much less, attend to their needs. Let us imitate our Blessed Mother, who, rather than glorifying herself, turned to God in thanksgiving and sought to help her cousin in her time of need. Remember, God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. (James 4:6).

Prayer: Loving Father, thank You for the great plans You have in store for me. Please help me to recive your blessings in humility always. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 501 – Jesus is Mary’s only son, but her spiritual motherhood  extends to all men whom indeed he came to save: “The Son whom she brought forth is he whom God placed as the first-born among many brethren, that is, the faithful in whose generation and formulation she cooperates with a mother’s love.”

HIDE A TREASURE: “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” James 4:6 RSV-CE

Readings for today: Zephaniah 3: 14-18; Isaiah 12; Luke 1: 39-56

DO NOT BE AFRAID

Friday 30th May – Friday of the 6th week of Easter

Reflection: Acts 18: 9-18

DO NOT BE AFRAID

Atheists have always had two things to ponder on with respect to their disbelief of God: Fear and Immortality! If there is no God and indeed man is the source and summit of himself, then, why do men fear, what are they afraid of and why do they die? The fact that we both fear and die is a pointer to the truth that we are not an end to ourselves and there is something greater than man.

In some sorts, we all have a bit of atheism in us when we doubt God or refuse to trust him enough, but allow fear to rule us. For the knowledge of God casts out fear. This is what God is saying to Paul today and indeed to all of us: do not be afraid! However, Jesus does not delude us to the basic reality of life, to the fate of man on earth, but told the Apostle the truth: You will weep and mourn, you will grieve”, but he comforts them even more when he said, “you will rejoice, and your joy, no one can take away…” (John 16: 20,22)

Like Paul, most of us may be in a state of transition; (for Paul it was turning from persecutor to preacher), for us it might be as little as changing from one academic level to the other, transiting from student to graduate, from graduate to worker, or even some more weightier matters like getting married or starting a lifelong commitment; the words of God is still the same……..do not be afraid! Yes, there will be challenges, there will be persecutions, but in the end, you will rejoice, and your joy, none shall take away.

PRAYER: Lord, the shepherd of your people, guide and guard us in our life’s pilgrimage, keeping us always safe in your arms from the wiles of the evil one, Amen

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 476 – How did Jesus pray as he was facing his death?

When face to face with death, Jesus experienced the utmost depths of human fear. Yet he found the strength even in that hour to trust his heavenly Father: “Abba, Father, all things are possible to you; remove this chalice from me; yet not what I will, but what you will [be done]”

HIDE A TREASURE: “The knowledge of the kingdom of God has being given to you, but to the rest it comes by means of parables, so that they may look but not see, and listen but not understand” Luke 8: 10GNB

Readings for today: Acts 18: 9-18; Psalm 47: 2-7; John 16: 20-23

THE GIFT OF UNDERSTANDING

Thursday 29th May – Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

Reflection: Ephesians 1: 17-23

THE GIFT OF UNDERSTANDING

The word understanding is a common word which everyone is well acquainted with. Unfortunately, we often use it only in relation to academic excellence. Today, we are being told that there is such thing as “the eye of your understanding”. (Ephesians 1:18). Beloved, there is a kind of understanding that is purely spiritual and is from God. This divine understanding commands confidence and boldness in the life of anyone who possesses it.

The Psalmist says today, “Sing ye praises with understanding” (Psalm 47: 7b). This means that there may be times when we as Christians may just be singing songs or reciting prayers without any form of spiritual significance attached to it because understanding is lacking. Little wonder that on the mountain of the ascension, the disciples asked Jesus a funny question: “Lord, will you at this time give the kingdom back to Israel” (Acts 1:6). All the while they had been with Jesus they lacked the basic understanding that Jesus had come to bring another kingdom on earth, which is the kingdom of God.

Beloved, the level of your spiritual understanding is not measured by the length of years you have been a Christian. No it is a gift that God gives. So if you are in need of this precious gift, humbly ask of the Father who will graciously give it to you, for as scripture says: “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh from the down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (James 1:17).

Prayer: Father of mercy, giver of good gifts, today I pray earnestly for the gift understanding. Please grant me this in the name of Jesus Christ your Son. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 310: What are the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit?

The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. With these, the Holy Spirit “endows” Christians, in other words, he grants them particular powers that go beyond their natural aptitudes and gives them the opportunity to become God’s special instruments in the world.

HIDE A TREASURE: “By wisdom is a house built and by understanding it is established.” Proverbs 24:3 RSV-CE

Readings for today: Acts 1:1-11; Psalm 47: 2-3, 6-9; Ephesians 1:17-23; Matthew 28:16-20

THE POWER OF TRUTH

Wednesday 28th May – Wednesday of the 6th week of Easter

Reflection: John 16: 12-15

THE POWER OF TRUTH

Dear friend, I hope you are expectant of the coming of the Holy Spirit as this year’s Feast of Pentecost draws near? There is always an encounter with the Spirit of Truth at each Pentecost. As a youth, you are most in need of the revealed truth of God in your life. Scripture says today, “But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will lead you to the complete truth.” (John 16:13).

One of the principal functions of the Holy Spirit in our lives is to give us divine revelation. Why do we need divine revelation? It is simply because there is so much information that you cannot gather by mere human knowledge – the wisdom of man. Hence, there is need for divine revelation in knowing the things of God. One important truth you must know is that ‘revelation is a booster of faith’. When a thing is revealed to you, you gain an immeasurable understanding of that thing. Hence there is no room for any form of doubt over that matter.

So, today be bold to ask your father in heaven for revelation in any area of your faith and life. He will surely answer you. Just ask with expectation and be sensitive to the answer He brings. He is faithful.

Prayer: Father, give unto me the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of you this day. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 453 – What does our relationship with the truth have to do with God?

Living in respect for the truth means not only being true to oneself. More precisely it means being truthful. Being true to God, for he is the source of all truth. We find the truth God about and about all of reality quite directly in Jesus, who is “the way, and the truth, and the life” (Jn. 14:6) [CCC 2465-2470, 2505].

HIDE A TREASURE: “And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” John 8:32 RSV-CE

Readings for today: Acts 17: 15, 22 – 18:1; Psalm 148:1-2, 11-14; John 16:12-15.