LISTEN TO HIM

Friday 2nd October – Memorial of the Holy Guardian Angels

Reflection: Exodus 23:20-23

LISTEN TO HIM

Angels are spirit beings sent by God to help his children on their journey of faith. Guardian angels are those assigned to protect and guide each particular person. Today’s reading gives us a clear illustration of what the angels of God are meant to do for us. They are to lead us and protect us from evil (Ex 23:20-23). They shine the light of Christ on our path to salvation and instruct us at crossroads as the prophet Isaiah says: “If you wonder off the road to the right or to the left, you will hear his voice behind you saying, here is the road. Follow it” (Is 30:21). Are we aware of our guardian angels? Do we seek for their help and listen to them?

Beloved, each of us has an angel commissioned by God to watch over us. Yet, your guardian angel will only be as effective as you allow him to be. If you are willing to reverence him and listen to all he says, God promises that He himself will be “an enemy to your enemies, foe to your foes” (Ex 23:22). Youth is indeed an exciting stage of life; we are full of energy and willing to explore as much as we want. As we enjoy this phase of life, let us be open to the voice of our guardian angel and that of the Holy Spirit as they speak to us and direct us through our parents, pastors, teachers, through circumstances around us and in the voice of our conscience. We can be full of confidence that our guardian angel will never lead us astray.

PRAYER: Oh my Guardian Angel, protect me and help to fight on the battle of faith. Lead me on the path to salvation. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 55 – Can we interact with angels?

Yes. We can call on angels for help and ask them to intercede with God. Every person receives from God a guardian angel. It is good and sensible to pray to one’s guardian angel for oneself and for others. Angels can also make themselves noticeable in the life of a Christian, for example, as bearers of a message or as helpful guides. Our faith has nothing to do with the false angels of New Age spirituality and other forms of esotericism

HIDE A TREASURE: “What are the angels, then? They are spirits who serve God and are sent by him to help those who are to receive salvation”. Hebrews 1:14 GNB

Today’s readings: Ex. 23:20-23; Ps 91:1-6, 10-11; Matt 18:1-5, 10

LISTEN TO HIM

Thursday, 6th August – Feast of the Transfiguration of our Lord

LISTEN TO HIM

Mark 9:2-10

At the transfiguration, Moses the publisher of the Law and Elijah the chief of the Prophets were seen shining in the light of Christ who came not to abolish the law and the prophets but to fulfil them (Mt 5:17). As the old covenant God had with the Israelites was on the verge of giving way to the new and everlasting covenant in Christ Jesus, Moses and Elijah appeared to help the apostles see the Redemption promised, prophesied and now accomplished in Jesus.

Just as Moses and Elijah were led by God to the Holy Mountain, to witness His Glory and deliver God’s message to the Israelites (Exodus 33:18, 1King 19:9), so were the apostles are led by Jesus to the mount of transfiguration to witness His glory. It was an encounter intended to keep faith alive in them so that they may not be scandalized by Jesus’ sufferings and death. Christ built His Church on the foundation of the apostles (Eph 2:20), giving them the mandate to make disciples and teach them to observe all He had commanded them. Thus, the apostles and their successors are the custodians of the Christian faith.

“This is my beloved Son, listen to Him”, as the voice of God called the apostles to listen to Christ, so does He call us to listen to the Church and her leaders and as we study and meditate on the Holy Scriptures. Do we take time to listen to our priests and other leaders of the Church or do we label them ‘boring’ and ‘old fashioned’? As we make decisions in life, do we consider the Church’s stand on the choices we make? In the midst of the numerous modifications of the gospel being preached, are we aware of false interpretations and do we turn to the Church for guidance? Do we take into consideration the Church’s stand on exam malpractice, premarital sex, drug abuse, abortion, use of contraceptives and homosexuality? Do we spend time alone in studying Scripture and listening to Christ as He speaks to us? Dear friends, as we celebrate today’s feast, let us make a commitment to listen to the voice of Christ in the Scriptures and in His Church.

PRAYER: Lord help your Church to remain always as light in the darkness of the world. Amen

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 344 Why does the Church also make declarations about ethical questions and about matters of personal conduct?

Believing is a path. One learns how to stay on this path, in other words, how to act rightly and to lead a good life, only by following the instructions in the Gospel. The teaching authority (Magisterium) of the Church must remind people also about the demands of the natural moral law.

HIDE A TREASURE: “You are Peter (or Rock) and on this rock I will build my Church; and never will the powers of death overcome it.” Matthew 16:18 CCB

Today’s Readings: Daniel 7:9-10. 13-14, Psalm 97:1-2. 5-6. 9, 2 Peter 1:16-19, Mark 9:2-10

TAKE HEED

Wednesday, 29th January – Wednesday of week 3 of the year

Reflection: Mark 4: 1-20

TAKE HEED

After the death of the great man of God, Moses, when the mantle of leadership was to fall on Joshua, God promised to abide with Him in his new assignment. However, to have good success, God counseled him to hold on tenaciously to His word (Joshua 1: 1-8). Our Lord Jesus Christ came saying: “The words that I speak to you, they are spirit and they are life” (John 6: 63). This affirms the enduring truth that our Christian faith revolves around the word of God (Hebrews 11:6; Romans 10:17). The devil knows this, hence the intensity and myriads of ways he daily employs to make us lose out on this.

The gospel of today presents us with four categories of people in the parable of the sower. The same viable seeds produced four different results due to the differences in the nature and receptivity of the respective soils. How receptive is your heart and mine when we encounter God in His word? Acts like tweeting, facebooking, pinging and other forms of distractions during Mass are concrete examples of the tricks of the devil aimed at robbing us of God’s blessings.

Today, the Lord is admonishing you and I to eliminate all forms of distraction when we approach Him in His word, to hold on tenaciously to His word in the face of life’s challenges and merriment and to safeguard it against being drowned by our rush after material gains of this life (1John 2: 15-17).

We must each day, make conscious effort to deepen our knowledge and understanding of the word of God and act on it in other to experience the overall kind of success promised Joshua.

PRAYER: Oh Lord! Help me to resist and overcome all the antics of satan that daily seek to cloud my vision and understanding of your word. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 20 – How can we respond to God when he speaks to us?

To respond to God means to believe him. [142-149]

Anyone who wants to believe needs a heart that is ready to listen (see 1 Kings 3:9). In many ways God seeks contact with us. In every human encounter, in every moving experience of nature, in every apparent coincidence, in every challenge, every suffering, there is a hidden message from God to us. He speaks even more clearly to us when he turns to us in his Word or in the voice of our conscience. He addresses us as friends. Therefore we, too, should respond as friends and believe him, trust him completely, learn to understand him better and better, and accept his will without reservation.

HIDE A TREASURE:”Take heed then how you hear; for to him who has will be given, and from him who has not, even what he thinks that he has will be taken away” Luke 8:18 RSV-CE

Readings for today: 2 Samuel 7: 14-17; Psalm 89: 4-30; Mark 4:1-20