Dear God, open a door for my message, so that I may proclaim the mystery of Christ. I pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Colossians 4:3-4

R4C

R4C
Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You. ~ Reconciliation and Forgiveness ~ I am Sorry * Please Forgive Me * Thank You * I Love You.
Psalm 19:14, May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Monday, 31 July 2017

Prayer of Miraculous Trust and Help of Our Lady of Tepeyac (Our Lady of Guadalupe the “Virgin of Tepeyac” )


Sign of the Cross

By the power of Our Lord, Jesus Christ
to the honour of Our Lady, the Immaculate Conception
in service to her Immaculate Heart
I ask you Lord 
(state intention here and 
ask for the intercession of the saint of your choice)
 I thank you for hearing my prayer. 
 Thy will be done. 
 Amen.

Sign of the Cross

What the kingdom of heaven is like


What can mustard seeds and leaven teach us about the kingdom of God? The tiny mustard seed literally grew to be a tree which attracted numerous birds because they loved the little black mustard seed it produced. God's kingdom works in a similar fashion. It starts from the smallest beginnings in the hearts of men and women who are receptive to God's word. And it works unseen and causes a transformation from within.

Hidden power of transforming seeds and leaven 
Leaven is another powerful agent of change. A lump of dough left to itself remains just what it is, a lump of dough. But when the leaven is added to it a transformation takes place which produces rich and wholesome bread when heated - the staple of life for humans.

God's word has power to transforms us 
The kingdom of God produces a transformation in those who receive the new life which Jesus Christ offers. When we yield our lives to Jesus Christ and allow his word to take root in our heart, we are transformed and made holy by the power of the Holy Spirit who dwells in us. Paul the Apostle says, "we have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us" (2 Corinthians 4:7). Do you believe in the transforming power of the Holy Spirit?

Heavenly Father, fill me with your Holy Spirit and transform me into the Christ-like holiness you desire. Increase my zeal for your kingdom and instill in me a holy desire to live for your greater glory.

source: From the desk of Don Schwager, 
hosted by Kairos Europe and the Middle East

St. Padre Pio’s Sacred Heart Novena Prayer



O my Jesus, You have said: “Truly I say to you, ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you.” Behold I knock, I seek and ask for 
the grace of (here name your request)
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You.


O my Jesus, You have said: “Truly I say to you, if you ask anything of the Father in My name, He will give it to you.” Behold, in Your name, I ask the Father for 
the grace of (here name your request).
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You.


O my Jesus, You have said: “Truly I say to you, heaven and earth will pass away but My words will not pass away.” Encouraged by Your infallible words I now ask for 
the grace of (here name your request)
Sacred Heart of Jesus, I place all my trust in You.

O Sacred Heart of Jesus, for whom it is impossible not to have compassion on the afflicted, have pity on us miserable sinners and grant us the grace which we ask of You, through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Your tender Mother and ours.

Say the Hail, Holy Queen


Hail, holy Queen, Mother of mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve: to thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then,most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus, O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary!
Amen.

St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Prayer to Jesus and the Apostles (Thirteen Blessed Soul) in urgent times and needs


** This prayer can be either said in 13 consecutive days (once each day) or 13 consecutive hours (once every hour).




Start with the Sign of the Cross, then Our Father, then one Hail Mary, and finally follow with the prayer below:


Oh my thirteen Blessed souls so wise and understanding, 
I ask you for the Love of God that my request be answered. 
Oh my thirteen Blessed souls so wise and understanding, 
I ask you for the Love of God that my request be answered. 
Of you I ask for the sake of the blood 
that Jesus shed that my request be answered. 
My Lord Jesus Christ 
that your protection wrap me with your arms. 
Guard me with your eyes. 
O God of kindness 
you have been my defender in life and death. 
I ask that you free me from the difficulties that torment me. 
My thirteen blessed souls so wise and understanding 
having received the grace I seek from you
(mention your specific intention) 
I will be devoted to you. 
Amen.

End with the Sign of the Cross.

** Publish / share the prayer immediately after the thirteenth day or thirteenth hour as thanksgiving.



Have Faith and Trust in the Lord, 
your prayer will be answered. 


JESUS alone is the Mighty one, and 
HE NEVER FAILS.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

The heavenly treasure and the pearl of great price


What do you most treasure and how do you keep it secure? In a peasant community the best safe was often the earth. The man in the parable "went in his joy" to sell everything. Why? Because he found a treasure worth possessing above everything else he had. He did not, however, have enough to buy the treasure. Fortunately, he only needed enough money to buy the field. In a similar fashion, God offers his kingdom as incomparable treasure at a price we can afford! We can't pay the full price for the life which God gives us; but when we exchange our life for the life which God offers, we receive a treasure beyond compare.

Searching for the greatest treasure of all 
The pearl of great price also tells us a similar lesson. Pearls in the ancient world came to represent the supremely valuable. Jesus remarked that one should not cast pearls before swine (Matthew 7:6). Why would a merchant sell everything for a peerless pearl? No doubt because he was attracted to what he thought was the greatest treasure he could possess.

Discovering heavenly treasure
Discovering God's kingdom is like stumbling across hidden treasure or finding the one pearl of great price. When we discover the kingdom of God we receive the greatest possible treasure - the Lord himself. Selling all that we have to obtain this incomparable treasure could mean many things - our friends, job, our "style of life", what we do with our free time. Treasure has a special connection to the heart, the place of desire and longing, the place of will and focus. The thing we most set our heart on is our highest treasure.

In this parable what does the treasure of the kingdom refer to? It certainly refers to the kingdom of God in all its aspects. But in a special way, the Lord himself is the treasure we seek. If the Almighty is your gold and your precious silver, then you will delight yourself in the Almighty (Job 22:22-23). Is the Lord the treasure and delight of your heart?

Lord Jesus, reveal to me the true riches of your kingdom. Help me to set my heart on you alone as the treasure beyond compare with any other. Free my heart of any inordinate desires or attachment to other things that I may freely give to you all that I have in joy and gratitude for all that you have given to me. May I always find joy and delight in your presence.

source: From the desk of Don Schwager, 
hosted by Kairos Europe and the Middle East

God of goodness, grace, compassion and mercy



God loved us with an everlasting love and came down to this earth to bear all our sorrows and curses on the cross for us.

Therefore, let us brush aside all our grief and move forward comforting ourselves saying, "My Lord Jesus Christ is walking before me bearing all my curses and sorrows on the cross. I have nothing to fear or worry."

God's grace saves us, "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God" (Ephesians 2:8)

God is moved with compassion when you look unto Him and He will perform a miracle for you, whenever Jesus Christ performed a miracle, He was moved with compassion.

Matthew 9:35-36; Matthew 14:14; Matthew 15:32; Matthew 20:34; Mark 6:34; Luke 7:13-14; Acts 10:38

Take all your problems and needs to Him and you shall see His mighty wonder working power manifest in your life. When you invite Him into your heart, He will come in and comfort your broken heart. He will wipe away your tears and fill you with exceeding joy.

The grace which God gives us is surely effective in our lives, "For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace" (Romans 6:14)

Help me to lead a life pleasing to You. Increase the hope within me that I will receive everything according to Your plan. Lord, I humble myself. Grant me Your grace and heal me.

"I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, for You have considered my trouble; You have known my soul in adversities" (Psalm 31:7), trials and tribulations may come; but remember our Lord Jesus will never forsake us during such times. He promises to give us victory in all our tribulations.

Heavenly Father, You do wonders without number. You are a God of compassion and love to do miracles when people cry out to You in distress. I thank You that You always answer me whenever I cry out to You. Fill me with Your goodness and mercy. Let Your love and grace follow me all my days. In Jesus Name I pray.

"If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Luke 9:23) "No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you." (John 15:15)

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Ask in My name, I will do it


If you ask anything in My name, I will do it 
(John 14:14)

Ask and it shall be given. Everyone who asks receives.
Ask, and it will be given you;....
(Matthew 7:7)

When you carry every problem unto His feet in prayer, He will definitely give you whatever you ask of Him. He will forgive your trespasses and transgressions. He will cast aside all your evil habits and create a new heart in you besides solving all your personal problems. He will meet all your needs.

Declaration of Financial Blessing


Father, I stand upon Malachi 3:10-12 which states, “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. I will prevent pests from devouring your crops and the vines in your field will not drop there before it is ripe.”

Father, I stand upon Philippians 4:19 which states, “My God will meet my needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus”. I thank you that I do not have to put trust in my ability to meet my needs, but I put my trust in Your ability to effectively work through me.

Father, urge us to seek You in our troubles and struggles



Our purpose on this earth is to help others. Whether we struggle to part with our money, or have trouble accepting God’s generous blessing, help us to be focused on You. 

Urge us to seek You in Your Word, and prayerfully consider Jesus’ example on this earth.

You know our heart’s intentions and our struggles. You are the only one equipped to balance and judge, and You consistently say that we are Yours and remind us, through Your Word, of Jesus’ sacrifice for us. Nothing we do or say can add or subtract from His sacrifice… or from who He is. 

Thank You for providing for us, Father. Just the fact that we are skimming over these words is prove that You’ve provided for another day for us. Help us to seek You first in everything, each day.

In JESUS name, we proclaim. AMEN.

Lord help me in my urgent need, in my days of trouble; I need You, have mercy on me Lord




Help in my day of trouble O Lord, 
Hear me Lord, do not forsake me Lord.
Help Lord overcome all my past mistakes 
which cause me to be in my current situation. 
Lord I repent for my past actions 
and really want You to help change me 
and deliver me from my troubles. 
Send Your angels Lord 
to lift me up from my troubles. 
I need to raise MYR $,$$$ 
to settle my pending problems. 
I know Lord You have said 
"Do no be afraid, I am here to deliver you" 
and "Be still and know I am God" 
but Lord my human senses tend 
to make me worry. 
Yet Lord I trust and hope 
in You alone my God. 
I seek You Lord, 
I come knocking at Your door Lord, 
hear my cries and answer me Lord. 
I need Lord now and forever,
cause WITHOUT You 
I am NOTHING Lord.
I believe in You Lord, 
and I know Lord nothing 
is impossible for You.
I thank You Lord for being with me,
I thank You Lord for all You have DONE 
and in the process of DOING.
I trust You will make a way for me,
to attain my need in this urgent time.
Your miraculous wonders will some how
direct the blessing to my bank account.
You work in mysterious ways 
and Your timing is always perfect.
You alone are Good all the time.
Your cares are upon me.
Have mercy on me O Lord. 


AMEN.


Lord if it is Your will, 
may You send forth Your angels here on earth
to lift me and help me.
Thank you Lord,
I am confident You Will.
I Trust and Hope in You Alone
my Lord and Saviour.

Direct banking (Malaysia only)

Hong Leong Bank
Stanley
AC#-158-50-09065-0




An adulterous generation seeks for a sign


What would the Lord Jesus say about our generation? Jesus gave a rather stern warning to his generation when they demanded a sign from him. It was characteristic of the Jews that they demanded "signs" from God's messengers to authenticate their claims. Jesus faulted them for one thing: spiritual adultery. The image of adultery was often used in the Scriptures for describing apostasy or infidelity towards God.

Signs from God 
When the religious leaders pressed Jesus to give proof for his claims to be the Messiah sent from God, he says in so many words that he is God's sign and that they need no further evidence from heaven than his own person. The Ninevites recognized God's warning when Jonah spoke to them, and they repented (Jonah 3:5). And the Queen of Sheba recognized God's wisdom in Solomon (1 Kings 10:1-9). Jonah was God's sign and his message was the message of God for the people of Nineveh. Unfortunately the religious leaders of Jesus' day were not content to accept the signs right before their eyes. They had rejected the message of John the Baptist and now they reject Jesus as God's Anointed One ( Messiah) and they fail to heed his message.

Simeon had prophesied at Jesus' birth that he was destined for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is spoken against... that thoughts out of many hearts may be revealed (Luke 2:34-35). Jesus confirmed his message with many miracles in preparation for the greatest sign of all - his resurrection on the third day.

The Holy Spirit's gift of wisdom and understanding 
The Lord Jesus, through the gift of his Holy Spirit, offers us freedom from sin and ignorance, and he gives us wisdom and understanding so that we may grow in knowledge of God and his ways. Do you thirst for God and for the wisdom which comes from above? James the Apostle says that the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insincerity (James 3:17). A double-minded person cannot receive this kind of wisdom. If we wish to be wise in God's ways, then we must humble ourselves before him, like attentive students who wish to learn, and submit our heart and mind to his will for our lives.

The single of heart and mind desire one thing alone - God who is the source of all wisdom, goodness, truth, and knowledge. Do you wish to be wise and loving as God is wise and loving? Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you with the wisdom which comes from above and to free your heart from all that would hinder God's loving action in your life.

Lord Jesus, fill me with your Holy Spirit that I may grow in wisdom and knowledge of your love and truth. Free me from stubborn pride and willfulness that I may wholly desire to do what is pleasing to you.

source: From the desk of Don Schwager, 
hosted by Kairos Europe and the Middle East

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Memorial of Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary ~ 26 July 2017


The Catholic Church commemorates the memorial of Saints Joachim and Anne, the parents of Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God. After years of childlessness, an angel appeared to announce to Anne and Joachim that their sorrow will end and they would soon have a child. Anne promised that the child would be dedicated to God. It was part of God's great plan for our salvation that all generations would honor their future child, as this child will bear our Saviour Jesus Christ.


O Lord, God of our Fathers, who bestowed on Saints Joachim and Anne this grace, that of them should be born the Mother of your incarnate Son, grant, through the prayers of both, that we may attain the salvation you have promised to your people. 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.


Reading 1
Exodus 16:1-5, 9-15
The children of Israel set out from Elim,
and came into the desert of Sin,
which is between Elim and Sinai,
on the fifteenth day of the second month
after their departure from the land of Egypt.
Here in the desert the whole assembly of the children of Israel
grumbled against Moses and Aaron.
The children of Israel said to them,
"Would that we had died at the LORD's hand in the land of Egypt,
as we sat by our fleshpots and ate our fill of bread!
But you had to lead us into this desert
to make the whole community die of famine!"

Then the LORD said to Moses,
"I will now rain down bread from heaven for you.
Each day the people are to go out and gather their daily portion;
thus will I test them,
to see whether they follow my instructions or not.
On the sixth day, however, when they prepare what they bring in,
let it be twice as much as they gather on the other days."

Then Moses said to Aaron, "Tell the whole congregation
of the children of Israel:
Present yourselves before the LORD,
for he has heard your grumbling."
When Aaron announced this to the whole assembly of the children of Israel,
they turned toward the desert, and lo,
the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud!
The LORD spoke to Moses and said,
"I have heard the grumbling of the children of Israel.
Tell them: In the evening twilight you shall eat flesh,
and in the morning you shall have your fill of bread,
so that you may know that I, the LORD, am your God."

In the evening quail came up and covered the camp.
In the morning a dew lay all about the camp,
and when the dew evaporated, there on the surface of the desert
were fine flakes like hoarfrost on the ground.
On seeing it, the children of Israel asked one another, "What is this?"
for they did not know what it was.
But Moses told them,
"This is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat."



Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 78:18-19, 23-24, 25-26, 27-28
R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.
They tempted God in their hearts
by demanding the food they craved.
Yes, they spoke against God, saying,
"Can God spread a table in the desert?"
R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.
Yet he commanded the skies above
and the doors of heaven he opened;
He rained manna upon them for food
and gave them heavenly bread.
R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.
Man ate the bread of angels,
food he sent them in abundance.
He stirred up the east wind in the heavens,
and by his power brought on the south wind.
R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.
And he rained meat upon them like dust,
and, like the sand of the sea, winged fowl,
Which fell in the midst of their camp
round about their tents.
R. The Lord gave them bread from heaven.


Alleluia
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
All who come to him will live for ever.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Gospel
Matthew 13:1-9
On that day, Jesus went out of the house and sat down by the sea.
Such large crowds gathered around him
that he got into a boat and sat down,
and the whole crowd stood along the shore.
And he spoke to them at length in parables, saying:
"A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path,
and birds came and ate it up.
Some fell on rocky ground, where it had little soil.
It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep,
and when the sun rose it was scorched,
and it withered for lack of roots.
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it.
But some seed fell on rich soil, and produced fruit,
a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold.
Whoever has ears ought to hear."

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Feast of St. Anne ~ 2017 ~ Port Klang, Selangor, Malaysia


Heavenly things revealed to infants


Do you want to know the mind and thoughts of God? Jesus thanks the Father in heaven for revealing to his disciples the wisdom and knowledge of God. What does Jesus' prayer tell us about God and about ourselves? First, it tells us that God is both Father and Lord of earth as well as heaven. He is both Creator and Author of all that he has made, the first origin of everything and transcendent authority, and at the same time he shows loving care and goodness toward all his children. All fatherhood and motherhood is derived from him (Ephesians 3:14-15).

Pride and inordinate love of self 
Jesus' prayer also contains a warning that pride can keep us from the love and knowledge of God. What makes us ignorant and blind to the things of God? Certainly intellectual pride, coldness of heart, and stubbornness of will shut out God and his kingdom of peace, joy, and righteousness. Pride is the root of all vice and the strongest influence propelling us to sin. It first vanquishes the heart, making it cold and indifferent towards God. It also closes the mind to God's truth and wisdom for our lives. What is pride? It is the inordinate love of oneself at the expense of others and the exaggerated estimation of one's own learning and importance.

Simplicity of heart 
Jesus contrasts intellectual pride with child-like simplicity and humility. The simple of heart are like "infants" in the sense that they see purely without pretense and acknowledge their dependence and trust in the one who is greater, wiser, and more trustworthy. They seek one thing - the "summum bonum" or "greatest good," who is God himself. Simplicity of heart is wedded with humility, the queen of virtues, because humility inclines the heart towards grace and truth. Just as pride is the root of every sin and evil, so humility is the only soil in which the grace of God can take root. It alone takes the right attitude before God and allows him, as God, to do all. God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble (Proverbs 3:34, James 4:6). Only the humble in heart can receive true wisdom and understanding of God and his ways. Do you submit to God's word with simple trust and humility?

Jesus reveals the Father to us 
Jesus makes a claim which no one would have dared to make - he is the perfect revelation of God. One of the greatest truths of the Christian faith is that we can know the living God. Our knowledge of God is not simply limited to knowing something about God, but we can know God personally. The essence of Christianity, and what makes it distinct from Judaism and other religions, is the knowledge of God as our Father. Jesus makes it possible for each of us to personally know God as our Father. To see Jesus is to see what God is like.

In Jesus we see the perfect love of God - a God who cares intensely and who yearns over men and women, loving them to the point of laying down his life for them upon the Cross. Jesus is the perfect revelation of God - a God who loves us completely, unconditionally, and perfectly. Jesus also promises that God the Father will hear our prayers when we pray in his name. That is why Jesus taught his followers to pray with confidence, Our Father who art in heaven ..give us this day our daily bread. Do you pray to your Father in heaven with joy and confidence in his love and care for you?

Lord Jesus, give me the child-like simplicity and purity of faith to gaze upon your face with joy and confidence in your all-merciful love. Remove every doubt, fear, and proud thought which would hinder me from receiving your word with trust and humble submission.

source: From the desk of Don Schwager, 
hosted by Kairos Europe and the Middle East

Thursday, 13 July 2017

Prayers for those living with debt


Father, we pray for the many who are trapped by growing burdens of debt, 
who see no way out, and who despair for their future: 
give them courage to tackle the problems they face, 
clarity in taking decisions which will turn their situation around, 
and faith that, as they cry to you in their trouble, 
you will deliver them from their distress; 
through Jesus Christ our Lord. 
Amen.



God of power, you are strong to save 
and you never fail those who trust in you. 
Keep under your protection all who suffer as 
a result of debt: 
help them through their time of darkness, 
give wisdom to all who seek to help, 
and bring them to know true freedom 
in your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 
Amen.

In You alone, my Lord, I take refuge and put all my Trust

Psalm 71

1 In you, O Lord, I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame.
2 In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me;
incline your ear to me and save me.
3 Be to me a rock of refuge,
a strong fortress, to save me,
for you are my rock and my fortress.

4 Rescue me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked,
from the grasp of the unjust and cruel.
5 For you, O Lord, are my hope,
my trust, O Lord, from my youth.
6 Upon you I have leaned from my birth;
it was you who took me from my mother’s womb.
My praise is continually of you.

7 I have been like a portent to many,
but you are my strong refuge.
8 My mouth is filled with your praise,
and with your glory all day long.
9 Do not cast me off in the time of old age;
do not forsake me when my strength is spent.
10 For my enemies speak concerning me,
and those who watch for my life consult together.
11 They say, “Pursue and seize that person
whom God has forsaken,
for there is no one to deliver.”

12 O God, do not be far from me;
O my God, make haste to help me!
13 Let my accusers be put to shame and consumed;
let those who seek to hurt me
be covered with scorn and disgrace.
14 But I will hope continually,
and will praise you yet more and more.
15 My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,
of your deeds of salvation all day long,
though their number is past my knowledge.
16 I will come praising the mighty deeds of the Lord God,
I will praise your righteousness, yours alone.

17 O God, from my youth you have taught me,
and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.
18 So even to old age and gray hairs,
O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might
to all the generations to come.
Your power 
19 and your righteousness, O God,
reach the high heavens.

You who have done great things,
O God, who is like you?
20 You who have made me see many troubles and calamities
will revive me again;
from the depths of the earth
you will bring me up again.
21 You will increase my honor,
and comfort me once again.

22 I will also praise you with the harp
for your faithfulness, O my God;
I will sing praises to you with the lyre,
O Holy One of Israel.
23 My lips will shout for joy
when I sing praises to you;
my soul also, which you have rescued.
24 All day long my tongue will talk of your righteous help,
for those who tried to do me harm
have been put to shame, and disgraced.

Prayer to Our Lady of Light / Pragasa Matha Prayer


*    *    *    *    *    *

*    *    *    *    *    *


Oh Lady of Light, Owner of all Graces,
Cover us with Your mantle resplendent,
For You are the Light that Guides us through darkness,
And through Your immense mercy You give us,
Strength and nourishment to follow our path,
That takes us to You, Oh Full of Grace.

Our Lady, illuminated through the Holy Spirit,
Mother of Our Lord, Our Fountain of Light,
You are our strength and our way,
And You protect us among mountains and valleys,
Through deserts and islands, in the suffering and tortures,
In the persecutions and temptations that we suffer.

Oh Our Lady of Light, Our Mother,
Cover us with Your interminable Glory,
And continue to illuminate our way,
With Your interminable and Divine Light,
That nothing else do we want to see,
Only the wonders of Your Presence.

Oh Our Lady of Light, Mother of God,
Help us through Your infinite goodness,
To face all dangers and temptations,
So that with Your precious aid,
We may follow our way with Your Light,
And far from the Shadows of Darkness. 

Amen

Saint Francis of Assisi ~ How to preach?

When one of Saint Francis of Assisi’s followers insisted that he teach him how to preach, he answered thus: “Brother, when we visit the sick, help children, and feed the poor, we are already preaching.”

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

The salt of the earth and light of the world


Jesus used ordinary images, such as salt and light, to convey extraordinary truths that transform our minds, hearts, and lives. What does salt and light have to teach us about God and the transforming power of his kingdom? Salt was a valuable commodity in the ancient world. People traded with it, like we trade with valuable goods, such as gold and stock. Salt also served a very useful purpose, especially in warmer climates before the invention of electricity and refrigeration. Salt not only gave rich flavor to food, it also preserved food from going bad and being spoiled.

God's power at work within us purifies and enriches our lives 
Jesus used the image of salt to describe the transforming effect of God's work in our lives - and how the Holy Spirit wants to work in and through us to bring the power and blessing of God's kingdom to others. As salt purifies, preserves, and produces rich flavor for our daily food, we, too, as disciples of Jesus, are "salt" for the world of human society. The Lord wants to work in and through us to purify, preserve, and spread the rich flavor of God's kingdom everywhere - his "kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit" (Romans 14:17).

Don't lose your saltiness 
What did Jesus mean by the expression "if salt has lost its taste... it is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trodden under foot" (Matthew 5:13)? Salt in the ancient world was often put into ovens to intensify the heat. When the salt was burned off and no longer useful it was thrown out on the ground where it would get stepped on and swept away (Matthew 5:13).

How can we lose our "saltiness" - the power of God's rich grace and strength at work in us? If we allow the world (which is opposed to God's truth and moral goodness), and sinful habits, and Satan's lies and deception to corrupt our minds and hearts, then we will lose the rich flavor and strength of God which preserves us from moral and spiritual corruption. The Lord wants us to preserve and enrich our "saltiness" - through Godly living and the rejection of sin - not only for our own sake but also for the sake of others who will be impacted by our witness and behavior.

Paul the Apostle reminds us that we are called to be "the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life" (2 Corinthians 2:15-16 ). Do you allow the fragrance of Christ's love, truth, and holiness to permeate every area of your life, your thoughts, words, actions, and relationships?

Let the light of Christ shine brightly in and through you for all to see
Jesus used the image of light and a lamp to further his illustration of God's transforming work in and through us. Lamps in the ancient world served a vital function, much like they do today. They enable people to see and work in the dark and to avoid stumbling. The Jews also understood "light" as symbol or expression of the inner beauty, truth, and goodness of God. In his light we see light ( Psalm 36:9). His word is a lamp that guides our steps (Psalm 119:105). God's grace not only dispels the darkness in our lives, it also fills us with the light of Christ's truth, wisdom, joy, and peace.

Jesus used the image of a lamp to describe how his disciples are to live in the light of his truth and love. Just as natural light illuminates the darkness and enables one to see cleary, so the light of Christ shines in the hearts of believers and enables us to see the heavenly reality of God's kingdom (Ephesians 5:13-14). Our mission is to be light-bearers of Jesus Christ so that others may see the truth of the Gospel and be freed from the blindness of sin and deception.

There is great freedom and joy for those who live in the light of God's truth and goodness. Do you know the joy and freedom of living in God's light?

Lord Jesus, you guide me by the light of your saving truth. Fill my heart and mind with your light and truth and free me from the blindness of sin and deception that I may see your ways clearly and understand your will for my life. May I radiate your light and truth to others in word and deed.

source: From the desk of Don Schwager, 
hosted by Kairos Europe and the Middle East