Read this week's guidelines and be nourished as you journey with our Community in Cebu.
Guidelines for Prayer: November 13-19, 2017 - So devoted to you and happy to share our own lives
So devoted to you and happy to share our own lives
November 13-19, 2017
All I have is yours, and all you have is mine (John 17:10)
- To experience deeply the ownership of God over our lives.
- To live being conscious that everything I have comes from Him except sin, and to be encouraged to live everything for Him as an apostle.
- To walk with the saints this month as examples having Him as their king.
Objective of the week:
To know God’s work of ownership in our lives.
To give our lives to Him in the same work.
It is indeed so amazing to meditate how God owns us and loves us. He desires for us to be founded on Him and to be happy. Thus He leads the way.
During this week, let us recall how the Lord works, opening our eyes and making us realize that we are owned and loved by Him dearly. When God was forming us in our mother’s womb, he has already owned us. He has placed in us the seed of faith as a sign of his ownership.
God works in us by healing our wounds (whether physical, emotional, spiritual, social, etc.) that is caused by sin which in turns heals our relationship first with Him and then with our neighbors. Even today as we are journeying with Him, His work in us does not stop; it continues as we grow in love and self-giving. We live because of Him and His work in us and through us. Let us recognize everything that He has done to us from the beginning of our lives until now that we have found him. His work in our lives is for a lifetime. It does not stop. Look and find how the Lord works in your life. Savor his mercy, his love, his grace, and his might. By His work, we get inspired to do the same to give our lives to Him by opening the eyes of our brethren, that they too are owned and loved by God, that the Lord does not stop working until they have found Him. I found the love of my heart. I held him and would not let him go (Songs of Songs 3:4).
As His own, God gives us the gift of faith
(Memorial of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini)
Jesus said to his disciples, “Things that make people fall into sin are bound to happen, but how terrible for the one who makes them happen! It would be better for him if a large millstone were tied around his neck and he were thrown into the sea than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. So watch what you do! “If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him. If he sins against you seven times in one day, and each time he comes to you saying “I repent,' you must forgive him.” The apostle said to the Lord, “Make our faith greater”. The Lord answered, “If you had faith as big as a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, “Pull yourself up by the roots and plant yourself in the sea! And it would obey you.
God gave us as a gift, the seed of faith, a faith that can do great things if we nourish it; a faith that can change our ways of life and our perspectives. This faith in God helps us to keep watch over ourselves and our brothers and sisters, especially when challenges, temptations, and trials come in our way. Let us help each other cultivate this gift of faith so that we may not fall into sin, but if we fall let us not hesitate to ask forgiveness and forgive as well.
Have we cultivated the gift of faith that God gave us? Are there things we do that makes other people sin? Are there people who need our forgiveness or to whom we need to ask for forgiveness?
As His own, He brings salvation and forgiveness
(St. Joseph Pignatelli)
As Jesus made his way to Jerusalem; he went along the border between Samaria and Galilee. He was going into a village when he was met by ten men suffering from a dreaded skin disease. They stood at a distance and shouted, “Jesus Master! Have pity on us!”Jesus saw them and said to them, “Go and let the priest examine you.” On the way they were made clean. When one of them saw that he was healed, he came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself to the ground at Jesus' feet and thanked him. The man was a Samaritan. Jesus spoke up, “There were ten who were healed; where are the other nine? Why is this foreigner the only one who came back to give thanks to God?” And Jesus said to him, “Get up and go; your faith has made you well.
Jesus' works in us bring peace, salvation, and forgiveness. He has come to heal the sick humanity (whether it is physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, and other kinds of sickness). All we have to do is ask and be grateful for His works in us. Jesus desires for us to be clean and be pleasing to the Father. Have we recognized the works God is doing with us? Are we grateful to Him for the peace, healing, and salvation he brings?
As His own, He promised eternal life
(Memorial of St. Albert the Great)
When God created us, he did not intend for us to die; he made us like himself. It was the Devil's jealousy that brought death into the world, and those who belong to the Devil are the ones who will die. But the righteous people are protected by God and will never suffer torment. It is a foolish mistake to think that righteous people die and that their death is a terrible evil. They leave us, but it is not a disaster. In fact, the righteous are at peace. It might appear that they have suffered punishment, but they have the confident hope of immortality. Their sufferings were minor compared with the blessings they will receive. God has tested them, like gold in a furnace, and found them worthy to be with him……(continue Reading)
God as the owner of our lives, loves us greatly that He made us in the image of His own nature. As His own, God promises blessings, protection, peace, and acceptance to all who are striving for righteousness and for all of us who trust in Him. He even gave us the hope of eternal reward, i.e. eternal life. How beautiful it is to live in His love! Do we recognize the work of God in us, showed in His desire for us to be always in His care? Do we also recognize the effort we put to be in His love always?
As His own, He continues His work of conversion
(Memorial of St. Margaret of Scotland & St. Gertrude)
1 Thes. 2:7-9
Even though, as apostles of Christ we could have made demands on you. But we were gentle when we were with you, like a mother taking care of her children. Because of our love for you we were ready to share with you not only the Good News from God but even our own lives. You were so dear to us! Surely you remember, our friends how we worked and toiled! We worked day and night so that we would not be any trouble to you as we preached to you the Good News from God.
Like St. Paul, let us recall the work of God in us in convincing us and in calling us personally through the community. Our own conversion once demands perseverance, weariness, and struggles for the apostle of Christ who journey with us. Let us do the same for others. Have we recognized the work of Christ in our own conversion? What is God’s invitation for us to do for the conversion of others?
As His own, we persevere to be faithful
(Memorial of St. Elizabeth of Hungary)
At that time the Kingdom of heaven will be like this. Once there were ten young women who took their oil lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and the other five were wise. The foolish ones took containers full of oil for their lamps. The bridegroom was late in coming, so they began to nod and fall asleep. It was already midnight when the cry rang out, “Here is the bridegroom! Come and meet him! The ten young women woke up and trimmed their lamps. Then the foolish ones said to the wise ones, “Let us have some of your oil because our lamps are going out'. No, indeed, the wise ones answered, there is not enough for you and for us. ….(Continue Reading)
The Lord demands faithfulness and perseverance from us whom He has chosen and claimed as His own, especially during the dark night of our lives and nothing more can be done; no further work except fidelity of heart. Our perseverance and fidelity of heart is the oil where the Lord can work in us, even when we cannot feel His presence that He is there. Our perseverance and fidelity can help save a world that seeks truth everywhere and does not know to which Lord to surrender. How is our fidelity and perseverance in God, especially during the dark night of our lives? Are we aware of its impact in the world we live in?
As His own, we are happy to share our lives
(Memorial of the Dedication of the Basilicas Sts. Peter and Paul, Apostle)
At that time the Kingdom of heaven will be like this. Once there was about to leave home on a trip; he called his servants, and put them in charge of his property. He gave to each one according to his ability; to one he gave five thousand gold coins, to another he gave two thousand, and to another he gave one thousand. Then he left on his trip. The servant who had received five thousand coins went at once and invested his money and earned another five thousand. In the same way the servant who had received two thousand coins earned another two thousand. But the servant who had received one thousand coins went off, dug a hole in the ground, and hid his master's money….(Continue Reading)
God has given us so many talents and capabilities that we can use. Let us be a good and faithful servant who gives back to God what has been given to us by sharing our talents and abilities , using it in transmitting God’s ownership to all of us. Where are we investing our lives and how are we using our talents?
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Proverbs 31:10-13, 19-20, 30-31
Psalm: Ps 128
2nd Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5:1-6
Gospel: Matthew 25:14-30