Reflections of Faith
Read and be inspired by a reflection based on today's Gospel made by members of the Verbum Dei Family in Manila.
June 30 2020 - Tuesday
"Why are you afraid, you of little faith."
Jesus awakens from the loud cries for help of His disciples, when their boat was caught up in a stormy sea. Jesus calms the agitated sea. This story reminds us not to let anything disturb our inner peace because God is in control. Jesus has authority over harmful acts of nature, sickness and evil spirits. Everything that torments His people surrender at His command.
In the past, I have of little faith and was greatly frightened when my life was threatened. I succumbed to an overwhelming anxiety, fear and hopelessness that rendered me all the more dysfunctional. But victory dawned on me when I surrendered everything to Jesus and stormed Him with desperate cries of prayer. In His own perfect time, Jesus beautifully redeemed me. My fear and distrust turned into courage and deep faith that grew by leaps and bounds. Let us constantly make use of the greatest weapon we possess - Prayer. St. Padre Pio says, "Prayer is the key that opens the heart of God."
Blessed Mother Mary, please continue to guide us to your Son Jesus, and follow Him in a perfect manner like you do.
June 29, 2020 - Monday
"And I tell you that you are Peter and on this Rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hades will not overcome it."
In the story, Peter was able to give the correct answer when asked who Jesus is; not by his own wisdom, but through a heavenly revelation from God the Father. The Holy Spirit is our divine counselor, who leads us into all truth, so we may not run into pitfalls from the evil schemes of the enemy. Let us strive to become a desirable dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. When we remain in a state of grace, united with Him, we become God's resting place.
Peter was chosen amongst all, despite his weaknesses to be the earthly foundation stone upon which Jesus built His Church. Peter was flawed, but he loves Jesus and passionately protects Him. Like Peter, we may be counted in among the imperfect workers in God's vineyard, flawed, but passionately love God; greatly desire to follow Him and struggle every day to become righteous.
June 28, 2020 Sunday
“Whoever loses his life for my sake will find it”
“Take up your cross and follow me", is meant to allow us to live freely our true identity. When we take that option, our commitment may separate us from people and ways of this world. It doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t love our family and friends.
It is meant to remind us to re-direct our priorities - To love God first then our neighbours. In doing so, we will inherit eternal life, peace and joy that the world cannot give.
June 27, 2020 Saturday
“As you have believed, let it be done for you”
“Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed.” Such display of faith from the Roman Officer, Peter’s Mother In-law and many others.
Faith tested by fire is a gift of grace. This on-going pandemic has put us to test. Has it surfaced our lack of faith or strengthened it? Gold that has been tested by fire is pure and precious. There are no shortcuts or easy ways to remove the dross and impurities.
Having faith is what sets us apart from the world who do not. Today as we continue to adjust to the new normal we pray “Refiners fire, purify and increase our faith.” Amen.
June 26, 2020 Friday
“Heal me and make me clean”
COVID -19 can be likened to leprosy today. It is contagious and has no cure! We are pretty much like the man with leprosy! Clearly, we are invited to imitate him.
To approach Jesus, kneel before him, cry out and pray - “if you are willing, you can heal our world! Protect and preserve us from this virus! And be gone! Jesus, we believe! Amen!
June 25, 2020 Thursday
Gospel: Mt 7:21-29
“Built on solid rock”
“But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.” James1:22
The effectiveness of the word is manifested in our behaviour and attitudes. Our action speaks more of our intentions and words. In the world, the sweet talker most often gets to be recognised, praised and promoted!
On the contrary, Jesus is more concerned about our walk than our talk. The key therefore is listening and action. When we do, we can brave all life’s storms.
June 24, 2020 Wednesday
Gospel: Lk 1:57-66,80
“The hand of the Lord was with him”
The birth of St John the Baptist to aging parents Elizabeth and Zechariah showed great mercy and taught us to learn to trust God. God’s will was clear in his life. St. John prepared the way for Christ with his life and witness. It was no easy path. Tempted in the dessert, locked in prison and had moments of doubts about Jesus being the Messiah.
This is the path of following shown to us, quite the road less-travelled. Yet there is no gratifying comfort and assurance knowing that in all our ways the “hand of the Lord” goes before us.
Lord, help us contemplate in humility what You can do in our lives, as You exceedingly go beyond our imagination.
June 23, 2020 Tuesday
Gospel: Mt 7:6,12-14
“Do to others whatever you would have them do to you”
Jesus has given us the golden rule which said to be the foundation of active goodness and mercy. With the too many pains most people are going through these days of pandemic, the least we can do is to be discerning and ask what would be the most loving thing to do today. Let us remember the kind, merciful and gracious God who forgave our ancestors from their stubbornness and be inspired by the redemptive love of Jesus despite the pain on the cross.
Holy Spirit, bestow upon us the Fruit of the Spirit we need most today, Amen.
June 22,2020 Monday
Gospel: Mt 7:1-5
“Stop judging, that you may not be judged”
According to author/speaker Jim Kwik, "It is easier said than done." The truth is this: the traits that bother us from others are often the behaviours we struggle within ourselves. If left unaware, how easy it is to magnify the vulnerability of others.
Today, we are reminded to take a stock of ourselves. Look inwards and see what’s blocking the love inside of us to flow out to loving oneself and neighbours.
Holy Trinity and Mama Mary, take the blindness from our eyes. Heal us from our brokenness. Help us see the innate goodness and beauty of one another. Each one made into your likeness. Amen.
June 21, 2020 Sunday
Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Fear no one
Who do you fear? Is it the person who keeps on giving you bad criticism? Is it the person who has hurt you for a couple of times? Or is it the person who you look up to the most? Today, Jesus wants you to stop being scared of the people around you. But rather, believe in the one who has the power over them all – God.
In the gospel today, Jesus teaches us whom to fear – not any person here on earth but the one who has dominion over heaven and earth.
Mother Mary, pray for us so that we’ll keep believing that the Lord has the true power over everything else.