TRUE HAPPINESS

Saturday 28th February – Saturday of the 1st week of Lent

Reflection: Psalm 118: 1-8

TRUE HAPPINESS

Tade was confused. She had made new friends during registration week on her new campus but as they settled down to work, she realised she was becoming more and more alone. All her friends had new boyfriends whom they were into sexual relationships with and were very excited about it as they had all the pleasure they wanted and money to throw around. Should I just join them and enjoy this new exciting life of theirs or should I keep up with my quest for holiness and remain lonely, missing out on all the fun? Tade wondered.

Many young people are familiar with Tade’s experience It is not unusual to find ourselves been lured by peers into immoral relationships, partying, drugs, exam malpractice etc. Those who engage in it are happy; why should I deny myself all the fun, we ask ourselves. Dear friend, true happiness is only found in living the life God our creator has called us to. The excitement sin offers is the devil’s way of luring us into sin; yet, the happiness sin offers is shallow, temporal and filled with regrets.

Do you desire pure and lasting happiness? Do you desire to live with peace of mind, devoid of regrets? God calls you today to a life of blessedness. “They are happy whose life is blameless, who follow God’s law! They are happy who do his will, seeking Him with all their hearts” (Ps 119: 1-2). Set your mind on pleasing God and ask for the grace to overcome the temptation around you. Have you already succumbed to the lure of Sin? Dear friend, it is not too late; repent, approach God in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and begin again. His grace is sufficient for you. Only in following God’s law would you find true happiness.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, please help me to seek true and lasting happiness in you. May I obey you in all I do and seek to please you always. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 407 – Why is the Church against premarital sexual relations?

Because she would like to protect love. A person can give someone else no greater gift than himself. “I love you” means for both: “I want only you, I want all that you are, and I want to give myself to you forever!” Because that is so, we cannot, even with our bodies, really say “I love you” temporarily or on a trial basis.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Blessed are they who treasure His word and seek Him with all their heart.” Psalm 119: 2 CCB

Today’s Readings: Deuteronomy 26: 16-19; Psalm 119: 1-8; Matthew 5: 43-48

TRUE LOVE: THE BEST WAY TO PLEASE GOD.

Friday 6th February – Memorial St Paul Miki & Companions, Martyrs

Reflection: Hebrews 13: 1-8

TRUE LOVE: THE BEST WAY TO PLEASE GOD.

The desire to please God should be at the heart of our desire as Christians. For anyone who takes His Christian faith seriously, each day brings the challenge and the opportunity of pleasing God. Christ makes it clear to us that to please God is to obey His commandment – the commandment to love one another just as Christ has loved us. (John 13:34-35).

We express this true love by hospitality to all, even to strangers; by sharing in the pains of those who suffer and in the joys of those who rejoice without any form of envy. We express this love by being tolerant; keeping no grudges, being faithful to our promises especially to God and our spouses, bearing in mind that judgment awaits all those who are immoral.

Beloved, the essence of true love in the life of a Christian cannot be over-emphasised. The gospel is itself a message of love – a love that led God to allow the blood of His only son to be shed so that we can be reconciled to Him and become partakers in His divine nature. Let us therefore open our hearts to others in true love, bearing in mind that love is the essence of our lives as Christians and is our path to truly pleasing God. Be alert for the opportunities to love others today!

PRAYER: Lord, please give me the grace to always be willing to love others sacrificially just as you have done for me. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 280: What reasons do Christians give for human dignity?

Every person, from the first moment of his life in the womb, has an inviolable dignity, because from all eternity God willed, loved, created, and redeemed that person and destined him for eternal happiness.

HIDE A TREASURE: Do not neglect to offer hospitality, for by doing it some have entertained angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings Hebrews 13:1-8; Psalm 27: 1-9; Mark 6:14-29

GOD-PLEASERS

Tuesday 8th April – Tuesday of The 5th Week Of Lent

Reflection: John 8:21-30

GOD-PLEASERS

There is a life that pleases God, and this life is first attained by believing in the Son of God- Jesus Christ. Having believed and been welcomed into God’s family through Baptism there is a continuous journey towards righteousness. Jesus declares today that he always does what is pleasing to the Father (John 8:29). This should be the sole desire of every child of God.

In your relationship with your fellow men, you should always seek to do the will of God; share the divine nature of God to all around you; resist temptation by the grace of God in you; and pull down the stronghold of hypocrisy in and around you. By doing these you declare that you are a God-pleaser. It is also rather important to note that those who seek to please God must not rely on their own human efforts, but rather on the grace that God gives. All the same, pleasing God becomes most interesting to you, when your lifestyle is that of communion with the Father through prayer. Hence, you should pray for God’s help and guidance each day. At the same time you should pray for everyone you may encounter during the course of each day, for by so doing, you will receive grace to deal with them in the love and wisdom of God.

Prayer: Father, I receive grace today to be a God-pleaser. Help me to live my whole life doing your will alone. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 479 – What can we learn from the way in which Mary prayed?

To learn from Mary how to pray means to join in her prayer: “Let it be to me according to your word” (Lk.1:38). Prayer is ultimately self-giving in response to God’s love. If we Yes as Mary did, God has the opportunity to lead his life in our life. [CCC. 2617-2618, 2622, 2674]”

HIDE A TREASURE: “… Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” Philippians 2:12 RSV-CE

Readings for today: Numbers 21:4-9; Psalm 102: 2-3, 16-21; John 8:21-30.

GOD HAS NO FAVORITE

Friday, 7th February – Friday of week 4 of the year.

Reflection: Sirach 47:2-13

GOD HAS NO FAVORITE

God said to Moses: I shall forgive whom I forgive and have pity on whom I have pity (Romans 9:15). Often times when we read this scripture we think of predestination, which implies that some are destined to be saved while others to be condemned. However, if God has destined some for hell, how can He call all to live a holy life and why did He send His only son to die for all? If God calls us to a relationship of love and faithfulness with Him (Hosea 2:20), it is because we are free and responsible to choose (Sirach 15:11-20). It is our free will to respond to the call of the living God within us that makes us His favorite.

Abraham was said to be a “Just Man”, because he gave in totally to God. His descendants, the people of Israel, were called “the Chosen”, because of God promises to their fathers. God plagued the land of Egypt to set His people free, He divided the Sea to make way for His people and fed them in the desert, He destroyed nations for their sake. Yet when the people of Israel disobeyed Him, He left them to the hands of their enemies and allowed them to suffer. God was an enemy to their enemies and blessed their path as long as they obeyed Him and kept His precepts (Leviticus 26: 1- 46). Thus, God’s mercy endures from age to age on those who fear Him and walk in His path (Sirach 15:19). King David was called “a man after God’s heart”, not because he was perfect, rather because he strived to please God, despite his weaknesses. He was a man that feared God.

Dear friends, since we are aware that God has no favorite, but that any man, from any tribe or nation, who does His will and keep His precepts is acceptable to Him (Acts 10:34-35). Let us then strive daily to please God and walk in His path for only in this do we prove our love for Him.

Prayer: Lord, take all that I have and make them yours. Give me the grace to freely respond to you in faith. Amen

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 1730 – MAN’S FREEDOM

God created man a rational being, conferring on him the dignity of a person who can initiate and control his own actions. “God willed that man should be ‘left in the hands of his own counsel,’ so that he might of his own accord seek his Creator and freely attain his full and blessed perfection by cleaving to Him.”

HIDE A TREASURE: “Now if you listen to me and keep my covenant, you shall be my very own possession among all the nations” Exodus 19: 5 CCB

Readings for today: Sirach 47:2-13, Psalm 18: 30, 47-51, Mark 6:14-29