Reflections

Advent - Prepare

Saturday 28th November 2020

Advent - Prepare

There is a note of high hope about this Advent season, Mark 13:31-37,. It proclaims the message that God has not abandoned His people. And we are to wait in joyful hope for our Lord and Saviour to be revealed. Echoed and re-echoed throughout the readings is the warning 'Be on guard, stay awake because you never know when the time will come'. To be found wanting and unworthy of the kingdom on that occasion will be painfully frustrating. The real challenge of Advent is to prepare ourselves in body and soul for that great moment, by letting God's presence and power get to work in our lives.


Christ The King

Saturday 21st November 2020

Christ The King

The feast of Christ the King brings the church's year to a close and with it comes a reminder that the cycle of our own lives here on earth will also reach its completion. The end of the year is review time and gives us opportunity to reflect on our behaviour as members of God's household. The gospel, Matthew 25:31-46, points out very strongly that admission into our eternal home depends on the effort we make to aid and comfort the needy. We will be assured of a place in Christ's kingdom only if we treat others as Christ would treat them.


Our God Given Talents

Saturday 14th November 2020

Our God Given Talents

There is a side to us which identifies with the insecurity of the man who is severely punished for his laziness in not using God's gifts. He was so wrapped up in himself and his personal concerns that he failed to face up to his responsibilities. At the end of his day he had nothing to show for his years on earth because he did not avail of the opportunities that came his way. His life was not a success story as he was mean in the service of God and showed little or no enthusiasm for Christian living.


Spiritual Health Check

Saturday 7th November 2020

Spiritual Health Check

This parable of the bridesmaids, Matthew 25:1-12, who were excluded from the wedding feast and forced to remain locked out in the dark could easily be understood for regarding their sensible companions as a selfish group in refusing to share their oil with them. To our way of thinking the punishment of having the door of the wedding banquet slammed in their face is too severe. At worst they deserved a reprimand for their last minute rush. However the gospel story is not about forgetting to bring along extra oil for the lamp, but about how we view the invitation extended to us all to take our place in the kingdom of God. We only have ourselves to blame if we fail to arrive or are unprepared when the time comes. Being ready beforehand is what matters most and a last minute hurry to get ourselves into spiritual shape is not to be recommended. If we are to have an eternity of joy we shall have to prepare for it whole heartedly.


All Saints' Day

Saturday 31st October 2020

All Saints' Day

We are given a glimpse into our ultimate future as we celebrate the glory of countless millions of people who won through the centuries and have gone home to God. Those who are now gathered in heaven with Christ were men and women who worked and suffered for the love of God. They took their faith seriously enough to allow it to shape their lives in order to complete the task that God has given them. Those who are canonised are only a fraction of God's friends. In the hard experience of life they managed to keep their sight on the living God, trusting that He would work all things for the good. Their outstanding quality was faithful perseverance in the long and painful task.


The great two commandments

Saturday 24th October 2020

The great two commandments

The gospel, Matthew 22:34-40, emphasises the two commandments which Jesus described as the greatest - love of God and love of neighbour. No matter how often we hear these words we are struck by the demands they put on us. Jesus brings together the love of God and love of our neighbour as something inseparable like two sides of a coin. Love of God is false if it is not complemented by the love of the people whom we encounter every day. Loving our neighbour as ourselves is a necessary element in giving our hearts and minds to God and that is where the challenge lies. It is wonderful in theory but difficult to put in practice.


Give to God

Saturday 17th October 2020

Give to God

(Matthew 22:15-21) When the Pharisees dragged the name of Caesar into their dispute with Jesus, it was a clever attempt to trick him into making an incriminating statement. He was in a no-win situation because to state that tax should be paid would have made Him appear a traitor to his country. While a denial would have left Him behind bars as enemy of Rome. Aware of their malice, He sidesteps the issue giving attention on the tax coin saying, 'Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and give to God what belongs to God.' He challenges them to take their responsibility to God as seriously as their obligations to the state.


Preparing For The Banquet

Saturday 10th October 2020

Preparing For The Banquet

How could the poor man in the gospel story, Matthew 22:1-14, be expected to have the necessary clothes at such short notice when he was hauled off the street into a wedding reception? And he found himself in serious trouble as he was not suitably dressed for the occasion. The parable is not about wearing the right outfit at a wedding. The message goes much deeper because the banquet referred to is eternal life in the kingdom of heaven. Jesus is saying that while God the Father has opened wide the doors of heaven and invited everybody into His kingdom, entrance is by no means automatic and should not be taken for granted.


Reflection

Saturday 3rd October 2020

Reflection

Rejection is something we all encounter on our journey through life and Jesus was no exception. The son of God came to earth, showed His love in every possible way and was rejected. In this gospel, Matthew 21:33-43, we are exposed to the truth that God has done everything possible for us as a people by sending His Son to live among us. In return we might have turned our back and offered him nothing but indifference. In this parable we can perhaps see ourselves as tenants cultivating a small portion of God's vineyard and when harvest time arrives we are expected to produce the fruits of right living, by displaying a way of caring, sharing and showing forth the charity of the gospel in our daily lives.


Saying Yes to God

Saturday 26th September 2020

Saying Yes to God

The liturgical reading today, Matthew 21:28-32, points out that there must be a connection between what we say and what we do. We possess the freedom to say yes or no to God and ability to change the direction of our lives. And one way or another we are responsible for our conduct and accountable for our behaviour. The varying attitudes of the two sons in the gospel give us cause to think carefully because whether we like it or not, there is a mixture of both personalities in us. If Christian faith is not accompanied by upright Christian living, what we profess to believe has no value and amounts to lip service or idle promises which are worthless. We are uttering words but are not changing our hearts.


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