FOLLOW YOUR MANUAL

Wednesday 22nd March – Wednesday of the 3rd week of Lent

Reflection: Deuteronomy 4: 1, 5-9

FOLLOW YOUR MANUAL

Every device has a manual which instructs on how to use it. Failure to read and obey the instructions in the manual might lead to ineffective use or even malfunctioning of the device. Likewise, as Christians we have commandments and instructions given to us by God, our Creator and Father which we need to obey in order to live a holy life. As young people we sometimes overlook some of the commandments, believing that God understands that we are young and would be lenient with us. This is mere deception as obedience to God is fundamental to our Christian faith regardless of our age. “Young people, enjoy your youth. Be happy while you are still young. Do what you want to do, follow your hearts desires but remember that God is going to judge you for whatever you do… So remember your creator while you are still young…” (Ecclesiastes 11:9, 12:1).

Beloved in Christ, as we go deeper into this season of repentance, let us tune our ears, hearts and minds to God’s commandments. Always bear in mind Christ’s words in today’s gospel reading: “whoever disobeys even the least important of the commandments and teaches others to do same, will be least in the kingdom of heaven. On the other hand, “whoever obeys the law and teaches others to do same will be great in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:19). Take up your manual, the word of God today and you will live a life of purpose, direction and favour.

To read the Sacred Scriptures means to turn to Christ for advice – Francis of Assisi.

Prayer: Help me Lord to know your word and always obey you in all circumstances. Amen.

Faith Pearls: YOUCAT 16What is the right way to read the Bible?

The right way to read sacred scripture is to read it prayerfully, in other words, with the help of the Holy Spirit, under whose influence it came into being. It is God’s word and contains God’s essential communication to us. The Bible is like a long letter written by God to each one of us.

Hide a Treasure: “Your word is a lamp to guide me and a light for my path.” Psalm 119: 105 GNB

Today’s Readings: Deuteronomy 4:1, 5-9; Psalm 147: 12-20; Matthew 5: 17-19

 

 

DISOBEDIENCE BRINGS REJECTION

Monday 18th January – Monday of Week 2 of the Year

Reflection: 1 Samuel 15:16-23

DISOBEDIENCE BRINGS REJECTION

Because you rejected the Lord’s command, He has rejected you as King” 1 Sam 16:23

Today’s reflections has more eternal consequences than we may have imagined. It is something which affects our daily lives as Christians who are eager to please God. God trains us his beloved children to wholeheartedly follow his dictates, to trust his designs and judgment. This he puts to us by giving us his word in every situation we find ourselves. How great would it be if we never consider our senses and intuition when obeying God. Disobedience brings rejection, Obedience aligns our sacrifice to God’s will. (Is 1:19)

Today’s first reading shows us an example of a “partial” obedience to God’s command. King Saul and his men wanted to apply human wisdom to compliment God’s commands but didn’t know that it was out of place. This made Saul to be rejected as King by God (1Samuel 15:23b). Sometimes, our good intentions towards a plan can be opposed to God’s will and purpose. The Scriptures says that His ways are not ours and what seems to be Gods foolishness is wiser than human wisdom. (1 Cor 1:25). Therefore, our love for God must be unison with obedience to his commands. We must pray for grace to follow this part of self-denial and total surrender his word.

As we continue our journey in this year of Mercy, let us be conscious of our deeds and actions and humbly ask God to lead us and make us walk in his love. Let us not forget that it is our love for God that gives us an unconditional obedience to his commands as Christ tells us: “if you love me you would obey my commandments” (John 14:15). This love is what St. Paul gives as the greatest gift of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 13:3). Beloved, rejection by God while on earth can still meet with God’s mercy by our reconciling with him but we must be ready always for the last day so that we do not hear the words: “I never knew you, Get away from me, you wicked people” (Matt. 7:23b).

 PRAYER: Lord Jesus, help me to know what pleases you and grant prompt obedience without any reservation to your commands. Amen

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 67 – What is sin?

At the core of sin is a rejection of God and the refusal to accept his love. This is manifested in a disregard for his commandments.

HIDE A TREASURE: “It is better to obey him than to sacrifice the best sheep to him”. 1 Samuel 15:22b GNB

Today’s Readings: 1 Samuel 15:16-23; Psalm 50:8-9, 16c-17, 21&23; Mark 2:18-22

TAKE THAT STEP

Friday 1st January – Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God

Reflection: Luke 2: 16-21

TAKE THAT STEP

Each day of our lives presents us with information which needs to be backed up by actions. Sometimes, the appropriate action may be to wait patiently or to get into a discussion with someone or even to make a change in our own personal lives. God chose to bring His Son into the world in the most humble way. He was born of peasants in a manger in the lowly town of Bethlehem and though most of mankind was unaware of the great event that was taking place, God chose to reveal it to the most unlikely of persons: shepherds watching their flocks.

God could have chosen to reveal this wonderful event to the chief priests or religious leaders but He didn’t instead He chose lowly men and these men did not disappoint. As soon as they heard the great news of joy the angels brought, they took the appropriate step – went in search of the new born infant Jesus. Thus, they became instruments of evangelisation to all who heard their message (Lk 2:18). Their response was similar to Mary’s when she heard that Elizabeth was to have a baby and Joseph’s when He was asked by the angel in a dream to take Mary as his wife without fear. Beloved, in what ways did God prompt you in the past year? Did you take the required step? Did He prompt you to intensify your prayer life or to evangelise a friend or to attend daily Masses more regularly? Did He prompt you to change some bad habits or be more loving in your words and deeds? How did you respond?

This New Year offers us a wonderful opportunity to begin again. It offers us the opportunity to make a decision not to delay in acting on the promptings God sends to us. Don’t remain in your comfort zone, take the required step and like the shepherds, you will be playing your part in God’s big plan for your life or the life of others and His blessings are sure to remain with you as you walk in obedience to Him.

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for the opportunity you give me to play a part in my salvation and in those of others. Please help me to respond appropriately to your promptings always. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 22 – How does one go about believing?

Someone who believes is seeking a personal union with God and is ready to believe God in everything that he shows (reveals) about himself.

HIDE A TREASURE: “If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good of the land” Isaiah 1:19 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Num 6:22-27; Psalm 67: 2-8; Galatians 4: 4-7; Lk 2:16-21

WHAT’S YOUR ROLE?

Sunday 27th December – The Feast Of Holy Family Of Jesus, Mary And Joseph

Reflection: Sirach 3:3-7, 14-17

WHAT’S YOUR ROLE?

Today, the Church celebrates the gift of the family as she presents us with the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph as a standard for us to emulate. The first reading focuses on the we  children, giving us an insight into the great blessings awaiting the child who honours his parents. God has placed each one of us under the care and authority of our parents therefore we must respectfully obey and care for them even when they are old. This singular attitude of total obedience to one’s parents in God provokes God’s blessings to be showered on the life of the child; the first of which is long life, answered prayers, forgiveness of sins among many others.

Dear beloved, as a youth, have you realised that God has given your parents authority over you and you have a primary duty to always make them happy in every godly way? Have you ever realised that disobedience to them is disobedience to God who placed you under their care? Even our Lord Jesus whose birth we celebrate this season had to be incarnated in the setting of a family and have parents to care for Him, parents whose authority he submitted to as today’s gospel reading tells us.

Beloved, our role as children is not a passive one; we are not to be at the receiving end always. God calls us to actively love and honour our parents so that just as they rejoiced at our birth, we will remain a source of joy and thanksgiving to them all our lives.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, please give me the grace to be an instrument of change in my family and to the glory of your name. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 371 – How does a child respect his parents?

A child respects and honours his parents by showing them love and gratitude.

HIDE A TREASURE: “For the Lord has given fathers authority over their children and given children the obligation to obey.” Sirach 3:2 GNB

Today’s Readings: Sirach 3: 3-7, 14-17; Psalm 128: 1-5; Colossians 3:12-21; Luke 2: 41-52