“What page, what passage of the inspired books of the Old and New Testaments
is not the truest of guides for human life?” ~Saint Benedict, from the Rule of Saint Benedict (73:3)
“ ‘Like a tree planted by streams of water,’ (Psalm 1:3) the soul is irrigated by the Bible and acquires vigor, produces tasty fruit, namely, true faith, and is beautified with a thousand green leaves, namely, actions that please God. The Bible, in fact, leads us towards pure holiness and holy actions.” ~Saint John Damascene
Monday, February 9 ~ Fifth Week in Ordinary Time
Holy Gospel: 6:53-56 After making the crossing to the other side of the sea, Jesus and his disciples came to land at Gennesaret and tied up there. As they were leaving the boat, people immediately recognized him. They scurried about the surrounding country and began to bring in the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. Whatever villages or towns or countryside he entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed.
Meditation: Believing and trusting in God to act in our lives is only possible by the grace and help of the Holy Spirit who moves the heart and converts it to God. The Holy Spirit opens the eyes of the mind and helps us to understand, accept, and believe God’s word. How do we grow in faith? By simply listening to God’s word above all others, and do so with trust and submission. Faith also grows through testing and perseverance. The Lord wants to teach us how to pray in faith for his will for our lives and for the things he wishes to give us to enable us to follow him faithfully and serve him generously. Jesus gave his disciples the perfect prayer which acknowledges God as our Father who provides generously for his children. The Lord’s Prayer teaches us to seek first the kingdom of God and to pray that God’s will be accomplished in our lives. The Lord in turn, gives us what we need to live each day for his glory. The Lord is neither too distant nor too busy to meet us and to give each of us his blessing.
Prayer: Keep your family safe, O Lord, with unfailing care, that, relying solely on the hope of heavenly grace, they may be defended always by your protection. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Contemplation: Notice how when Jesus disembarked from the boat the people immediately recognized him. What did they recognize in Jesus? Jesus as the prophet, the healer, the Messiah, the Son of God? All of these? For sure they recognized that Jesus had the power from God to heal and to make whole bodies, limbs, minds, and hearts that were diseased, afflicted, and with sin. What happened when they pressed upon him and touched the fringe of his garment? They were made well. Jesus Christ is always ready to meet our needs as well. Do you approach Jesus with expectant faith? If not, what’s holding you back?