1ST WEEK OF ADVENT
St. Nicholas, bishop
Psalter: Week 1 / (Violet/White)
Ps 118:1 & 8-9, 19-21, 25-27a
Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
1st Reading: Is 26:1-6
An oracle concerning Tyre: Wail, O ships of Tarshish, for Tyre is destroyed! When you return from Kittim you will hear the news and wonder.
Keep silent, merchants of Sidon, all you inhabitants of the coast. Your messengers passed over the sea, across the wide oceans; the grain of Shihor, the harvest of the Nile, was your income and you were the fair of the nations.
Be ashamed, O Sidon, refuge on the sea! The queen of the sea wonders: ”Have I not had labor pains and brought forth children? Have I not nourished young men and brought up daughters?”
Those in Egypt will be in anguish when they learn the fate of Tyre.
You who dwell on the coast lands, wail as you pass over to Tarshish.
Gospel: Mt 7:21, 24-27
Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord! Lord!‘ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my heavenly Father.
”Therefore, anyone who hears these words of mine, and acts according to them, is like a wise man, who built his house on rock. The rain poured down, the rivers flooded, and the wind blew and struck that house. But it did not collapse, because it was built on rock. But anyone who hears these words of mine, and does not act accordingly, is like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain poured, the rivers flooded, and the wind blew and struck that house; it collapsed, and what a terrible collapse that was!”
Jesus mentions what is the essential quality of a true disciple. He or she is not to be measured merely by what he says or what he prays. It is not enough, for instance, to keep saying ”Lord, Lord…” That by itself will not bring a person to commune with God. The true disciple is someone who is totally united to God in heart, soul and mind. Such a person is one who listens to Jesus and begins to live a different lifestyle and behavior. To listen to Jesus is to live like him. It is to accept fully and integrate into one‘s being the liberating truth of his message of love and forgiveness. To live a Christian life only on the surface is like building a house on sand. We see that happening frequently when we begin to compromise our values for the sake of our own comfort and security. We fall away very quickly because our faith is not anchored in Jesus. Our values are caught by the dominant market economy of having more and consuming more. The call is to be like that sensible person who builds his house on rock, the firm foundation that is the words and deeds of life, a life built on truth and love.
Daily Reflection 2018
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Biblical Texts are taken from Christian Community Bible, Catholic Pastoral Edition (57th Edition) The New English Translation for the ROMAN MISSAL
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