Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Wednesday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time

He summoned the Twelve and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal (the sick). He said to them, "Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there and leave from there. And as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town, shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them." Then they set out and went from village to village proclaiming the good news and curing diseases everywhere. (Luke 9: 1-6)

Introductory Prayer: Lord, may your name be held holy in my heart. May this holiness overflow into my life and fill me with a burning desire to spread your name to the ends of the earth. 

Petition: Lord, may burning love for you make me your apostle in my every thought, word and deed.

1. “He… gave them power and authority over all demons…” Christ gave to the apostles and to the Church power and authority over all demons. The only real damaging effect the devil or demons can have on us is to induce us to sin. “Whoever acts uprightly is upright, just as he (Christ) is upright. Whoever lives sinfully belongs to the devil, since the devil has been a sinner from the beginning. This was the purpose of the appearing of the Son of God, to undo the work of the devil.” (1 Jn 3:7-8) In the Sacrament of Penance the Church unleashes in full force its “power and authority over all demons” by absolving us of our sins through the blood of Christ. 

2. “…as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town, shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them." Our Lord is teaching us to use every instant of our time productively in building his Kingdom. How much time is wasted in sentimental lamentation and bouts of discouragement when our listeners are indifferent to the Gospel and do not join us wholeheartedly in spreading the good news! We forget that the absolute best thing we can do for them, for us, and for Christ, is to press onward, tenaciously advancing the Kingdom for the glory of God.  “You will find, apart from Him, that nearly all the trust you place in men is a total loss. Therefore, neither confide in nor depend upon a wind-shaken reed, for "all flesh is grass" and all its glory, like the flower of grass, will fade away. You will quickly be deceived if you look only to the outward appearance of men, and you will often be disappointed if you seek comfort and gain in them. If, however, you seek Jesus in all things, you will surely find Him. Likewise, if you seek yourself, you will find yourself -- to your own ruin. For the man who does not seek Jesus does himself much greater harm than the whole world and all his enemies could ever do” (Imitation of Christ, Bk. II, Ch. 7).

3. “Then they set out and went from village to village proclaiming the good news…” The apostles’ love for Christ is so great that nothing prevents them from pushing forward in their mission, not even persecution. “Now who is going to harm you if you are enthusiastic for what is good? But even if you should suffer because of righteousness, blessed are you. Do not be afraid or terrified with fear of them, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts. Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope.” (1 Peter 3:13-14). 

Dialogue with Christ: Lord, fill me with the joy of knowing you intimately in my soul and allow me to proclaim your holiness in my heart. I know you are calling me to be your apostle. May I fulfill this mission with fidelity and finesse. 

Resolution: I will talk to a small group of friends about Christ today, enkindling love for him in their hearts

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