Learn more about St. Agnes: http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=106
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/012117.cfm
Jesus came with his disciples into the house. Again the crowd gathered, making it impossible for them even to eat. When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him, for they said, “He is out of his mind.
Even today people tell those who follow Jesus that they are out of their minds! Nothing changes. No matter what He did, many people did not believe in Him. The evidence was there and they still did not believe. 2,000 years of evidence and many still do not believe. What does it take? What do you believe?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I believe in you and if people think I am out of my mind, I know they thought it of you first. I have seen the miracles, I believe what you have done for me is nothing short of a miracle. Thank you Lord and I give you honor and praise, Amen!
God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/012017.cfm
Jesus went up the mountain and summoned those whom he wanted and they came to him. He appointed Twelve, whom he also named Apostles, that they might be with him and he might send them forth to preach and to have authority to drive out demons: He appointed the Twelve: Simon, whom he named Peter; James, son of Zebedee, and John the brother of James, whom he named Boanerges, that is, sons of thunder; Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus; Thaddeus, Simon the Cananean, and Judas Iscariot who betrayed him.
Do you ever wonder why Jesus chose Judas as an Apostle? Many think He was forecasting the time when we would lie to ourselves and desert Him. Others think it was to show the Church that all sinners are welcome – but it is up to us to accept Him and change. When we look at how Peter denied Christ, but did not walk away, we see hope for us all. Judas lost that hope, he believed the lie that he did something that was not forgivable. But Peter shows us the way to hope, repentance, joy and the love of God. Whom do you believe? Peter or Judas? Hope or death?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I choose hope in you. I know there have been times I denied you, turned my back on you and even walked away from you. But I never lost your hope, the hope that you would be waiting for me, and you were. And for that, I give you my hope in you and in Jesus, Amen!
Kindness and truth shall meet.
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/011917.cfm
Jesus withdrew toward the sea with his disciples. A large number of people followed from Galilee and from Judea. Hearing what he was doing, a large number of people came to him also from Jerusalem, from Idumea, from beyond the Jordan, and from the neighborhood of Tyre and Sidon. He told his disciples to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd, so that they would not crush him. He had cured many and, as a result, those who had diseases were pressing upon him to touch him. And whenever unclean spirits saw him they would fall down before him and shout, “You are the Son of God.” He warned them sternly not to make him known.
Once people saw what Jesus could do, they flocked to Him for healing. It is too bad today that even when we know what Jesus can do so many deny it. The unclean spirits knew Him and satan still knows Him today. Do you deny Jesus?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I know who you are, I ask you to always be in my life and never leave me. I pray Lord, that I can help others to know you and bring them to you. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen.
Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will.
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/011817.cfm
Jesus entered the synagogue. There was a man there who had a withered hand.They watched Jesus closely to see if he would cure him on the sabbath so that they might accuse him. He said to the man with the withered hand, “Come up here before us.” Then he said to the Pharisees, “Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?” But they remained silent. Looking around at them with anger and grieved at their hardness of heart, Jesus said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately took counsel with the Herodians against him to put him to death.
The Pharisees hated what Jesus stood for and everything He did. They were blinded to the good He did because He did not follow what they considered their laws. In His mercy He did what needed to be done, regardless of the day. Jesus kept the sabbath, sacred and holy by showing mercy to the least of His brothers. Do you show mercy? Do you follow God’s laws or man’s?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, in your mercy you touched me and healed me, you made me whole. For that I give you all my love, praise and worship, Amen!
You are a priest forever, in the line of Melchizedek.
Learn more about St. Anthony, Abbot: http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=23
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/011717.cfm
As Jesus was passing through a field of grain on the sabbath, his disciples began to make a path while picking the heads of grain. At this the Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?” He said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions were hungry? How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest and ate the bread of offering that only the priests could lawfully eat, and shared it with his companions?” Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”
He was telling them who He was but they did not have the eyes to see or the ears to hear. Are your eyes and ears open to the word of God? If we listen carefully, we will know what the Lord is trying to say to us. Are you willing to let the world go and let the Lord in?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, you gave me the ears to hear and the eyes to see. My big regret is that it took me so long to them. May I never again be blinded by the things of the world and place it before you. In Jesus’ holy name, I give you honor, praise, glory and eternal gratitude that you did not give up on me, Amen.
The Lord will remember his covenant forever, Alleluia!
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/011617.cfm
Brothers and sisters: Every high priest is taken from among men and made their representative before God, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins. He is able to deal patiently with the ignorant and erring, for he himself is beset by weakness and so, for this reason, must make sin offerings for himself as well as for the people. No one takes this honor upon himself but only when called by God, just as Aaron was. In the same way, it was not Christ who glorified himself in becoming high priest, but rather the one who said to him: You are my Son: this day I have begotten you; just as he says in another place, You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. In the days when he was in the Flesh, he offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence. Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered; and when he was made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.
All Priests are called by God. They take from Jesus the example of praying, serving and obedience. They are Priests forever in the line of Melchizedek, the last High Priest who offered bread and wine instead of animal sacrifice. Priests today offer bread and wine and through the power of the Holy Spirit it becomes the body and blood of Jesus. They are obedient to the command of our Lord, making perfect the sacrifice of Christ today.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of the Priesthood to your people. They offer us your gifts and without them, we would be left without the source and summit of our faith and our life. Receiving you daily is a great honor and privilege for me, one I do not deserve, but greedily accept. And in Jesus’ holy name I give you praise, honor and glory, Amen.
You are a priest forever, in the line of Melchizedek.
Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/011517.cfm
John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world. He is the one of whom I said, ‘A man is coming after me who ranks ahead of me because he existed before me.’ I did not know him, but the reason why I came baptizing with water was that he might be made known to Israel.” John testified further, saying, “I saw the Spirit come down like a dove from heaven and remain upon him. I did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘On whomever you see the Spirit come down and remain, he is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ Now I have seen and testified that he is the Son of God.”
John knew who Jesus was and he knew that his role was to proclaim the new kingdom of God. He testified to what he saw and knew. He told his story – gave his testimony. Do you know your story? Do you testify to what the Lord has done in your life? Do you know when the Lord has been present in your life? Look closely and see where God has been and tell your story. Be like John, testify where you have seen the Son of God in your life.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, you were in my life, even when I did not see you. When I look back, Lord I see the times you have walked with me, been with me, helped me and rescued me. I thank you Father for always being there in my life, being the father I did not have in my life. I give all the praise and thanks I have to you my Lord, in Jesus’ holy name, Amen.
Here am I, Lord; I come to do your will.