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Home Sections The Daily B.R.E.A.D. Nov 29, 2009 - Sunday Meditation (A New Beginning - Not An Ending)
Nov 29, 2009 - Sunday Meditation (A New Beginning - Not An Ending) PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - The Daily B.R.E.A.D.
Sunday, 29 November 2009 14:09

M ost Christians, it seems to me on this first Sunday of Advent, want to sweep away their pasts or presents and hope that the God of Vengeance doesn’t see even the carpet under which have been swept the disorders. A second group of Christians wants to pretend that the disorders or need for integrity do not exist and they stay alert to their denials. A third group spends their lives obsessed with their doing nothing but the right and corrects things so that a savior for them is quite unnecessary.
 
We are not encouraged to spend time interpreting the signs around us concerning the end of time. We are encouraged to experience the signs within us which indicate disorder and kneel there in the poverty of our truth which will be come-to by the richness of His coming always and again. We as believers are waiting for the new beginning rather than an ending. 
 
 
O ld Testament Reading: Jeremiah 33:14-16  “Behold the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will fulfil the promise I made to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. (15) In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch to spring forth for David; and he shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. (16) In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will dwell securely. And this is the name by which  it will be called: 'The Lord is our righteousness.'”
 
Psalm 25:4-5, 8-9, 10, 14
1 Thessalonians 3:12-4:2
 
L uke 21:25-28, 34-36 And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and upon the earth distress of nations in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, (26) men fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. (27) And then they will see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. (28) Now when these things begin to take place, look up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near." (34) "But take heed to yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a snare; (35) for it will come upon all who dwell upon the face of the whole earth. (36) But watch at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that will take place, and to stand before the Son of man."
 
 

Meditation by Larry Gillick S.J.
 
PRE-PRAYERING

We have almost four full weeks of Advent this year. Time is definitely of the essence. We are preparing with Advent these days and invited to be faithfully and not fearfully watchful.We do not like waiting and so it can become Christmas before Advent has a chance to be a grace. To help us grow in the enjoyment of Advent I desire to offer holy hints for living these days of longing. We could experience our being alone, or left out, or even being lost as an Advent grace. We could remain peaceful while waiting for a phone call or arrival of some person or news.

If we do not pray with the graces which Advent offers, then Christmas might be a celebration of longing rather than arrival.

REFLECTION

Jeremiah is under guard and has been prophesying about the calamities to befall Judah and Israel. What we hear in the First Reading continues a more hopeful promise God has made through Jeremiah to Israel. Jerusalem will be a wasteland and no man nor beast shall dwell therein. What we hear is an advent of life and prosperity. There will be joy, marriages, singing and thanksgiving sacrifices in the temple and new life in the days to come. Remember, Jerusalem has been invaded by the “pagans”.

An image of new life springing from the old is used by Jeremiah to predict recovery and God’s eternal fidelity. A “shoot” or “branch” will bud from the old stalk of David; the new will complete the old. The future will be as safe and righteous as in former times. This “shoot” will be a man whose ways will be those of King David and who will bring about peace with justice. Those who longed for past times of prosperity and integrity, who now sit in exile and darkness, hear this with increased longing and hope.

Something and someone is worth living toward, and living for. Someone is coming who will bring total recovery of national and religious stability.

The Gospel is difficult to hear and understand. The city of Jerusalem is central to the religious sense of the people. Jesus is speaking to His disciples about the total collapse of the city which has been the symbol of God’s eternal fidelity. For the city to fall is similar to the sky falling and all natural orderliness being disturbed.

The stability of the temple as well as the city itself is similar to the order of the sun and moon, the seas and normal living. As with the prophesy we hear in the First Reading, the Pagans or more precisely the foreigners will disturb this order by violating the city. Amid all this turbulence, Jesus encourages His disciples to stand firm, because He is the “shoot of David” who will also appear and reestablish order and recovery of identity.
 
Jesus offers us the encouragement to stand firm against the disorders and tribulations and temptations which lead to disorder. The Man of Justice and Integrity is always coming into the disorderliness of our personal, cultural, and global worlds. It is attractive to spend time interpreting natural and astronomical signs of the coming of the end.

Jesus is always inviting us to be attentive to our own disattractions, disorders, disidentities and thereby watch or be alert to the ways the Son of Man comes to bring back our own sense of integrity.
 
The next two Sundays of Advent will bring John the Baptist onto the stage of preparation. We will hear his callings. Today we are invited to begin preparing for the coming into our lives of a Savior. To do this we are called to check up on the disorders within and around us to which Jesus is constantly arriving. I write the following with some care, based on experience. We do not really want a Savior! We want an approver. We do not want a negative judge whom we fear, but an approving and benevolent assessor.

Most Christians, it seems to me on this first Sunday of Advent, want to sweep away their pasts or presents and hope that the God of Vengeance doesn’t see even the carpet under which have been swept the disorders. A second group of Christians wants to pretend that the disorders or need for integrity do not exist and they stay alert to their denials. A third group spends their lives obsessed with their doing nothing but the right and corrects things so that a savior for them is quite unnecessary.

The Savior has come, is coming and will always come. The signs of disorder are all around and within us. Jesus was not born in stableish-poverty, because here was no room in the inn only. That poverty is ours and He is always being born anew there, but only if we stay alert to the signs of disorder within us.

I had a wonderful African/American friend who lived his whole life in the back-waters of southwest Louisiana in southern United States. He told me once, with great faith and enthusiasm, that if God did not spend all His time forgiving us, God wouldn’t have anything to do all day. Mr. Lienelle trusted his being found, forgiven and freed. He had lived long years in fear of the “white man” and also of the “white God”, but near his last days, he knew racial and especially faith-freedom. His honesty about his life allowed him to be more honest about Jesus’ life.

We are not encouraged to spend time interpreting the signs around us concerning the end of time. We are encouraged to experience the signs within us which indicate disorder and kneel there in the poverty of our truth which will be come-to by the richness of His coming always and again. We as believers are waiting for the new beginning rather than an ending.
 
“The Lord will shower his gifts, and our land will yield its fruit.” Ps. 85, 13
 

Supplementary Reading
GoD AND moNEy

 

You cannot serve God and mammon. – Luke 16:13



T his is one of the Bible verses that lead people to abhor money. After all, “you cannot serve both God and money,” right?

But observe that it originally says God and mammon — not money per se. Mammon is a false god, the god of riches and avarice. That false god you definitely shouldn’t serve. Mammon also refers to greed and materialism. Those things you should not fall into.

But money in itself is neutral. Yes, it has the danger to make you greedy and make you slide into materialism. That’s where you have to be very careful — by checking on your heart, your intentions and your self-control. But money also has the potential to be used for good — for the building of God’s Kingdom! Money is needed to build churches and places of worship. Money can be used to feed the hungry and help the poor. Money is essential to sustain your family with their basic needs. So money in itself is not evil.

Of course, you can’t serve God and money. Make money your god and you’re doomed.

But use money to help others — and you give glory to God! ---Alvin Barcelona
 
REFLECTION

Do you abhor money itself? Why? Do you want to have more money? Why?
 
Dear Lord, purify my thoughts on money so that I can receive more blessings and be more of a blessing to others. Amen.
 
 
For meditation/readings of the previous days/months , please click any of the following links:
http://his-ways-better-than-our-ways.blogspot.com/
http://www.mabuhayradio.com/sections/the-daily-bread.html
http://butuanglobalforum.org/cgi-bin/dboard/YaBB.pl?num=1229339492/220


 
Daily Mass and Gospel Meditation Broadcast (Tagalog) thru DWXI (5am Phil Time), pls click this link:  http://www.eradioportal.com/index.php?p=2&aid=1&sid=62#STS=g1jais7y.zk6

GOD BLESS US ALL!
O Theos Na Mas Evlogisi!
PRAY as if everything depended on HIM. ACT as if everything depended on YOU.
 



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Last Updated on Monday, 30 November 2009 06:54
 

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