To Be Forgiven, Reconciled and Know His Love

Daily Reflection – 3/27/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. But early in the morning he arrived again in the temple area, and all the people started coming to him, and he sat down and taught them. Then the scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and made her stand in the middle. They said to him, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the very act of committing adultery. Now in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So, what do you say?” They said this to test him, so that they could have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and began to write on the ground with his finger. But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again, he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in response, they went away one by one, beginning with the elders. So he was left alone with the woman before him. Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, and from now on do not sin anymore.” (John 8:1-11)


Once again, the scribes and Pharisees seek to discredit Jesus in any way they could. Not only does Jesus not enter the trap, but his actions cause them to slink away, and his actions teach us a powerful lesson about mercy, forgiveness and renewal.

Jewish law treated adultery as a serious crime since it violated God’s ordinance and wreaked havoc on the stability of marriage and family life.. If Jesus said the woman must be pardoned, he would be accused of breaking the law of Moses. If he said the woman must be stoned, he would lose his reputation for being the merciful friend of sinners.

Jesus then does something quite unexpected – he begins to write in the sand. The word for “writing” which is used here in the Gospel text has a literal meaning “to write down a record against someone” (for another example see Job 13:26). Perhaps Jesus was writing down a list of the sins of the accusers standing before him. Jesus now turns the challenge towards his accusers. In effect he says: Go ahead and stone her! But let the man who is without sin be the first to cast a stone. 

When the adulterous woman is left alone with Jesus, he both expresses mercy and he strongly exhorts her to not sin again. The scribes wished to condemn, Jesus wished to forgive and to restore the sinner to health. His challenge involved a choice – either to go back to her former way of sin and death or to reach out to God’s offer of forgiveness, restoration, and new life in his kingdom of peace and righteousness. Jesus gave her pardon and a new start on life. God’s grace enables us to confront our sin for what it is – unfaithfulness to God, and to turn back to God with a repentant heart and a thankful spirit for God’s mercy and forgiveness.

The absolute wonder of God is the ability to forgive us. His love is so exponential that it is always there. He asks only that we take the first sin of asking forgiveness. To turn to Him and know that His love will wipe the slate clean of anything that has offended us.

That healing allows a new chapter to occur in our relationship. Unburdened now of guilt, refreshed now in low, we are given the chance to walk with Him. I know from personal experience, as well as countless parishioners over the years, that the renewed walk with Him strengthens us, sustains us, and is a sense of peace and joy.

Don’t ever hesitate. Tale the hand of the One who walks with us every day, who waits for us to renew ourselves in Him. Such a gift! Such a wonder!

Prayer of The Day

“God our Father, we find it difficult to come to you, because our knowledge of you is imperfect. . . But since Jesus came among us, he has shown that you are loving, that you are on our side against all that stunts life, and that our resentment against you was groundless. So, we come to you, asking you to forgive our past ignorance, and wanting to know more and more of you and your forgiving love, through Jesus Christ our Lord. “(Prayer of Augustine of Hippo)

Daily Note

If Jesus stands in mercy with the underdog, that’s where Christians are challenged to stand. Is that where we are?

Without minimizing her sinfulness, Jesus showed the sinner the respect she deserved as a human being, treating her with compassion. Clearly, he valued repentance and conversion more than simple reprisal. Not only did Jesus not condemn the woman, he even gave her hope for the future. Jesus is thus portrayed as a living expression of the Divine Mercy, a wise and kind judge, more concerned with forgiveness and rehabilitation than with punishment and death. God’s grace enables us to confront our sin for what it is – unfaithfulness to God, and to turn back to God with a repentant heart and a thankful spirit for God’s mercy and forgiveness.

Will You Walk With Jesus?

Daily Reflection – 3/24/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus moved about within Galilee; he did not wish to travel in Judea, because the Jews were trying to kill him. But the Jewish feast of Tabernacles was near. But when his brothers had gone up to the feast, he himself also went up, not openly but as it were in secret. Some of the inhabitants of Jerusalem said, “Is he not the one they are trying to kill? And look, he is speaking openly and they say nothing to him. Could the authorities have realized that he is the Christ? But we know where he is from. When the Christ comes, no one will know where he is from.” So Jesus cried out in the temple area as he was teaching and said, “You know me and also know where I am from. Yet I did not come on my own, but the one who sent me, whom you do not know, is true. I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me.” So they tried to arrest him, but no one laid a hand upon him, because his hour had not yet come. (John 7:1-2, 10, 25-30)


The Galileans rejected Jesus because He was not what they expected. They wanted certainty and He brought uncertainty to their beliefs. The Rabbis were not only guilty of that but they also brought a prejudice. Their teaching was that the Messiah would rise as one would restore their dignity and rightful place as the chosen people of God.

In spite of these emotions around Him, Jesus perseveres. He continues to preach the Word of God. He continues to openly declare His relationship with the Father. He continues to publicly affirm His mission and purpose on the earth. Jesus is the Epitome of convictions and passion! Nothing could make Him compromise His convictions. Nothing could make Him lay down His principles of life.

Perhaps we should take a moment and put ourselves in Jesus’ shoes. Imagine what it would be like knowing that people hate or fear you so intensely, that they are plotting to kill you. Jesus truly was a good man. He was a man of deep love and compassion for all peoples. He had never hurt or scorned anyone. Yet, he challenged the Jewish officials and now, they were beginning to plot against him. Did these men truly disagree with Jesus’ teaching? Or were they simply afraid of his popularity and influence with the people?

Finally, Jesus had had it! He spoke loudly to the people and told them: “True, you know who I am and you know where I was born and grew up. Yet, I was sent here by another, someone you do not know. However, I know him well and he sent me to you.” Many of the people were confused by Jesus’ words. The officials were frightened by his power and his influence with the people. They wanted to convince someone to arrest Jesus. However, no one had the courage to lay a hand on Jesus!

Today might be a good day to ask ourselves: “Why do I believe Jesus became one of us?” Seriously, take a moment to explore your belief. And then ask yourself: how does my belief in Jesus, shape my understanding and relationship with him? Do I truly believe that Jesus came to this earth for me as well as every person on earth? Or is this unfolding drama too familiar to us and thus we might allow this familiarity to inhibit us from entering deeply into this mystery?

In the next two weeks, this drama will continue to unfold. Will we allow this drama to unfold in our personal lives? Will we walk and talk with Jesus? Or will we stay at a safe distance from Jesus and simply be a bystander? No one else can make this choice for us! In the days ahead, what will we choose?

Prayer of The Day

Lord, I pray that I act as a witness to the love flowing from Your Heart.  Give me the grace to be real, genuine and sincere.  Help me to become a pure instrument of Your merciful Heart so that all my works will give testimony to Your mercy.  Jesus, I trust in You.

Daily Note

We cannot be indifferent to the claims which Jesus makes on us. We are either for him or against him. There is no middle ground. We can try to mold the Lord Jesus to our own ideas and way of thinking or we can allow his word of truth to free us from our own sinful blindness, stubborn pride, and ignorance. Let each of us accept all that Jesus has taught and done for us with faith and reverence. The consequences are enormous, both in this life and in eternity.

Opening Our Hearts To Jesus

Daily Reflection – 3/23/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus said to the Jews: “If I testify on my own behalf, my testimony is not true. But there is another who testifies on my behalf, and I know that the testimony he gives on my behalf is true. You sent emissaries to John, and he testified to the truth. I do not accept human testimony, but I say this so that you may be saved. He was a burning and shining lamp, and for a while you were content to rejoice in his light. But I have testimony greater than John’s. The works that the Father gave me to accomplish, these works that I perform testify on my behalf that the Father has sent me. Moreover, the Father who sent me has testified on my behalf. But you have never heard his voice nor seen his form, and you do not have his word remaining in you, because you do not believe in the one whom he has sent. You search the Scriptures, because you think you have eternal life through them; even they testify on my behalf. But you do not want to come to me to have life. “I do not accept human praise; moreover, I know that you do not have the love of God in you.  I came in the name of my Father, but you do not accept me; yet if another comes in his own name, you will accept him. How can you believe, when you accept praise from one another and do not seek the praise that comes from the only God? Do not think that I will accuse you before the Father: the one who will accuse you is Moses, in whom you have placed your hope. For if you had believed Moses, you would have believed me, because he wrote about me.  But if you do not believe his writings, how will you believe my words?” (John 5:31-47)


Can you hear the frustration of Jesus in this Gospel passage? Does its message possibly reflect who you are?

Jesus’ opponents refused to accept his authority to speak and act in the name of God. And they refused to believe that he was sent from the Father in heaven. They demanded evidence for his claim to be equal with God. Jesus answers their charges with the supporting evidence of witnesses: John the Baptist, the miracles that Jesus performed, the authority of God, his father, and the words of Moses.

But for some in his audience it was not enough. For too many today, it is not enough.

Jesus said: ‘As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.’  He is the source of our light.  It is Jesus who turns the darkness of our judgements, pettiness, prejudice, and discrimination into light.  When we have Jesus in our hearts and our lives then our attitude changes.  Jesus, the light of the world, helps us to emerge from our darkness and to walk in the light of faith and truth.

Yet far too many view this as a challenge. Again, and again, we are confronted with the light and truth of love and yet we close our hearts. We stumble away into some blind alley, clinging to the darkness that seems safe and familiar. We fail to open fully to the life-force that confronts us in the beauty of creation or some tender word of kindness or act of generosity. We turn away from the honest admonishment in a word of truth that we need to hear but refuse to accept.

We are like the people to whom Jesus spoke in John 5. We are faced with light and life but choose darkness and death. The beauty of life calls us to embrace the light of love that is embodied in Jesus in whatever way that light is manifest in our lives.

We are into the fourth week of what should be the Lenten conversion that God wants to work in us.  We need to ask ourselves how indifferent we are to everything God has given us to strengthen our faith and help us to grow in our relationship with Jesus.

Do we still have hatred in our hearts for some long-ago hurt? Do we let words of discrimination – no matter how subtle – leap from our mouths? Do we take the words of Scripture and twist them to fit our personal perspective? Do we wrap the cloak of frequent trips to Church to hide the fact that our daily lives do not reflect the teachings of Jesus Christ? Do we have jealousy in our hearts for someone that has more, acts better, or simply and sincerely tries to live the Gospel?

In the end, the final end, it all comes down to this — we can say that we believed, that we loved God but was that reflected in our lives? For the works that we performed will testify on our behalf.

Prayer of The Day

“Lord, fill me with your Holy Spirit that I may listen to your word attentively and obey it joyfully.”

Daily Note

Scripture tells us that God reveals himself to the lowly, to those who trust not in themselves but in God alone. The lowly of heart listen to God’s word with an eagerness to learn and to obey. The Lord Jesus reveals to us the very mind and heart of God. Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, he opens our ears so that we may hear his voice and he fills our hearts and minds with the love and knowledge of God.

Love Defined Through The Eyes of Jesus

Daily Reflection – 3/22/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus answered the Jews: “My Father is at work until now, so I am at work.” For this reason, they tried all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the Sabbath but he also called God his own father, making himself equal to God. Jesus answered and said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, the Son cannot do anything on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; for what he does, the Son will do also. For the Father loves the Son and shows him everything that he himself does, and he will show him greater works than these, so that you may be amazed. For just as the Father raises the dead and gives life, so also does the Son give life to whomever he wishes. Nor does the Father judge anyone, but he has given all judgment to the Son, so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes in the one who sent me has eternal life and will not come to condemnation, but has passed from death to life. Amen, amen, I say to you, the hour is coming and is now here when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. For just as the Father has life in himself, so also he gave to the Son the possession of life in himself. And he gave him power to exercise judgment, because he is the Son of Man. Do not be amazed at this, because the hour is coming in which all who are in the tombs will hear his voice and will come out, those who have done good deeds to the resurrection of life, but those who have done wicked deeds to the resurrection of condemnation. “I cannot do anything on my own; I judge as I hear, and my judgment is just, because I do not seek my own will but the will of the one who sent me.” (John 5:17-30)


This is one of those passages of scripture that should stop us cold. It is a profound declaration that defines the perfect love. And it comes from the lips of Jesus Christ.

The news of God’s love for us and His plan for us is laid out for you and me. So, let’s walk through this slowly.

When the religious leaders charged that Jesus was making himself equal with God, Jesus replied that he was not acting independently of God because his relationship is a close personal Father-Son relationship. He and the Father are united in heart, mind, and will. The mind of Jesus is the mind of God, and the words of Jesus are the words of God.

Jesus tells us that his identity with the Father is based on complete trust and obedience. Jesus always did what his Father wanted him to do. His obedience was not just based on submission, but on love. He obeyed because he loved his Father. Isn’t that what obedience is supposed to be? The Father loves the Son and shares with him all that he is and has. We are called to give our lives to God with the same love, trust, and obedience which Jesus demonstrated for his Father.

Jesus then reminds us of what that love means. “I will never forget”, says the Lord. This is God’s perfect love. This is how we are loved by him. Even if all our earthly loves were to crumble and we were left with nothing but dust in our hands; God’s unique and faithful love is always burning for all of us. Always burning for you and me.

The perfect love. Unbridled. Constant. Always forgiving. Forever committed.

To prove that love to us, He made it manifest in action. Jesus took our sins upon himself and nailed them to the cross. He, who is equal in dignity and stature with the Father, became a servant for our sake to ransom us from slavery to sin. He has the power to forgive us and to restore our relationship with God because he paid the price for our sins.

I am overcome when I reflect on that. The ultimate love shed for you and for me. The ultimate love which is God. That’s how much you and I are loved. Unto death and beyond.

Are you ready to accept the totality of this love? Are you ready to become a true follower of His way?

Prayer of The Day

“Lord, increase my love for you and unite my heart and will with yours, that I may only seek what is pleasing to you”.

Daily Note

Jesus took our sins upon himself and nailed them to the cross. He, who is equal in dignity and stature with the Father, became a servant for our sake to ransom us from slavery to sin. He has the power to forgive us and to restore our relationship with God because he paid the price for our sins. Jesus offers us abundant, life, peace, and joy.

Do You Want To Be Healed? To Be Freed?

Daily Reflection – 3/21/2023

Sacred Scripture

There was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is in Jerusalem at the Sheep Gate a pool called in Hebrew Bethesda, with five porticoes. In these lay a large number of ill, blind, lame, and crippled. One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been ill for a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be well?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; while I am on my way, someone else gets down there before me.” Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your mat, and walk.” Immediately the man became well, took up his mat, and walked. Now that day was a sabbath. So the Jews said to the man who was cured, “It is the sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to carry your mat.” He answered them, “The man who made me well told me, ‘Take up your mat and walk.'” They asked him, “Who is the man who told you, ‘Take it up and walk’?” The man who was healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had slipped away, since there was a crowd there. After this Jesus found him in the Temple area and said to him, “Look, you are well; do not sin any more, so that nothing worse may happen to you.” The man went and told the Jews that Jesus was the one who had made him well. Therefore, the Jews began to persecute Jesus because he did this on a Sabbath. (John 5:1-16)


That question was asked in Bethesda, but it is still being asked today.

Do You Want To Be Well?

Are you so numbed by the violence of the world that you no longer react? Are you carrying a personal tragedy whose weight is getting heavier and heavier? Do you just wish that someone or something would happen in your life to change it? To refresh it? To make you feel alive again.

You’re not alone.

Jesus is still asking you – asking all of us – that question. But until we can answer the question “Do you want to be well?” honestly, we are stuck on the mat.

We are all the man on the mat, we are all at various times, left behind – or at least it feels that way. We are all pretty used to our mat, even if we hate our mat.

 The first essential step is the desire for change. If we desire that change in our lives, we must be aware of our true inner condition.

That means truthfully admitting that we are spiritually dry. Or that we have rote actions and responses that make us look like a Christian. We must be ready not to answer the question of whether we attend Church but rather that the Church is in us.

We can’t ask to be forgiven if we have not forgiven. We can’t ask to be filled with his love if we are not responding in love.

Jesus wants our response to be filled with thirst and enthusiasm, “He wants us to say, “Yes, Jesus, I trust in you!”  In each miracle, Jesus did not cure merely a physical paralysis but a spiritual one, and he does it in such a way that he wants us, in faith, to trust in his healing power and cooperate, however little, in the miracle. He wants us to participate in our own healing and set out more fully on the journey of faith.

It’s critical that this Lent to ask ourselves whether we are advancing in His Living Water, whether we’re allowing Jesus to raise within us whatever is dead. Jesus wants to cure us of our spiritual stagnation! But he wants us to want to be cured!

Today, let’s begin walking with the Lord through our souls and heal our paralysis.

What is waiting for us beyond our paralysis is truly amazing.

Prayer of The Day

Lord Jesus, I look to you with faith, knowing that you are the Lord of all. I hope in your boundless mercy since without you I can do nothing. I want to love as you deserve, so I come to you in this prayer to console you and bring you the joy of this moment together. Help me to be humble of heart so you will heal me.

Daily Note

That is a good question to ask ourselves as we travel through Lent.  Do we have any idea what God’s will is for our lives?  Are we learning to listen to Him a little more each day, through an active prayer and sacramental life?  If we have not grown very much closer to God during this Lenten season, then perhaps today’s readings could be taken as a reminder to seek the Lord in prayer and listen for Him in periods of silence throughout our day.  Self-will is a good thing, but God’s will is even better.

The Faith That Every Christian Needs

Daily Reflection – 3/20/2023

Sacred Scripture

At that time Jesus left [Samaria] for Galilee. For Jesus himself testified that a prophet has no honor in his native place. When he came into Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him, since they had seen all he had done in Jerusalem at the feast; for they themselves had gone to the feast. Then he returned to Cana in Galilee, where he had made the water wine. Now there was a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and asked him to come down and heal his son, who was near death. Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” The royal official said to him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” Jesus said to him, “You may go; your son will live.” The man believed what Jesus said to him and left. While the man was on his way back, his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live. He asked them when he began to recover. They told him, “The fever left him yesterday, about one in the afternoon.” The father realized that just at that time Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live,” and he and his whole household came to believe. Now this was the second sign Jesus did when he came to Galilee from Judea. (John 4:43-54)


Today’s Gospel is all about faith – solid, unwavering faith. The kind of faith that many do not have.

Yet the events around the world  witness to the need for a solid faith. A faith that cries out each day “Lord, I trust in you.”

We need to understand and believe that the grace of faith given to each of us is the rock unto which we need to moor the essence of our lives.

Too often we over-think and question how God is working in our lives and where he is trying to heal and love us. At one point we may believe wholeheartedly in his power to save and heal and a moment later we may completely doubt his love.

Our faith needs to be anchored in both our mind and our emotion.

We know that Jesus lived. Throughout the centuries, many have tried to debunk that and make it a question. But there is too much history that He lived. His life is proven by the thousands of his followers who died for Him as He does for us. Men, women, and children who went to their deaths because they believed.

And believe we must.

Our lives are richer, more powerful and more at peace when our faith is active. An active faith is simply one that is not only present but ALIVE in us. We walk with Jesus, we talk with Jesus, we trust in Jesus.

Faith is not contained in a prayer by itself. Faith is not practiced solely by going to Church. Faith is a constant companion each day of our lives.

Do we only believe in Jesus if He answers our prayers exactly as we request? Or do we trust that, no matter the outcome, our God is there to strengthen us, to guide us, and to lead us home. Do we truly believe that Jesus does gift and grace us?

We need to be open and to listen deeply. Jesus WILL answer our prayer. We need to be open and trust Jesus to bless us and grace us, as we truly need!

We must hold on tightly to our faith in Jesus and never give up no matter what our present circumstances are. Our faith in Jesus is much bigger than any trial or problem that we may face.

Jesus’ miraculous healings show his generous kindness and extravagant love – a love that bends down in response to our misery and wretched condition. Is there any area in your life where you need healing, pardon, change, and restoration? If you seek the Lord with trust and expectant faith, he will not disappoint you. He will meet you more than halfway and give you what you need. The Lord Jesus never refused anyone who put their trust in him. Surrender your doubts and fears, your pride and guilt at his feet, and trust in his saving word and healing love.

Today, right now, is a good time to reflect on your own level of faith and trust.  And work to discern the actions of God in your life so that those actions produce greater faith.  Cling to Him, believe He loves you, know that He holds the answer you need and seek Him in all things. 

He will never leave you.

Prayer of The Day

“Lord, please increase my faith.  Help me to see You acting in my life and to discover Your perfect love in all things.  As I see You at work in my life, help me to know, with greater certainty, Your perfect love.  Jesus, I trust in You.”

Daily Note

John concludes his Gospel by saying, “He and his whole household came to believe.” He helped his family grow to faith that it was precisely Jesus’ healing word that worked the miracle. The Lord Jesus wants us to help us to grow to a similar responsiveness, to walk by his word in faith, to trust in his word, to journey according to his promises.

YOUR Miracle !

Daily Reflection – 3/17/2023

Sacred Scripture

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, “Which is the first of all the commandments?” Jesus replied, “The first is this: ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” The scribe said to him, “Well said, teacher. You are right in saying, ‘He is One and there is no other than he.’ And ‘to love him with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself’ is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And no one dared to ask him any more questions. (Mark 12:28-34)


It is incredible. Simply incredible.

The Miracle became a Miracle. God became Man. Then that man became a miracle by giving up his earthly body and rising again to be with His Father, God with God. God as God.

Why is that so astounding?

Because God did that for you!

You brought that miracle alive the moment you acknowledged Jesus Christ as God. The moment you said, “Yes God, you are my Savior” The moment you entrusted your life to Him. The moment you gave thanks for His presence. The moment you acknowledged that all you have comes from Him. That moment in your life when you were saddened, or fearful, or ill, or when the tears flowed over the loss of one you loved and you knew no other recourse but to turn to Him

All those moments completed the miracle so that you and the Lord would be one.

One. Why is that correct? He wants you to be with Him forever. So the miracle became another miracle when He gave himself through the Holy Spirit to dwell within you.

That’s a miracle. A miracle of love. Love that has flown in you since you were created. Love that abides in you. Love that is always there whatever the circumstances. Love to sustain you.

All that He asks is for you to live and share that love.

Jesus calls you and I to love him with all our mind. So, we must ask how much of our mind do we dedicate to God? Do we try to think as God thinks in our decisions?

Jesus likewise calls you and I to love him with all our heart. So, we must ask do we really love God more than we love everything and everyone else in our life?

He calls us to love him with all our strength. How much effort do we make to love him? Do we battle through distractions in prayer? Do we prioritize Church and seek to be with others who believe as we do?

He calls you and I to love him with all our soul.  Do we seek to stay free of all sin or do we compromise with sin and give in to gossip, complaining, holding grudges and the like?

Jesus goes a step further with His challenge to love him with everything we are and have. He tells us that our love for God will be shown in our love for neighbor. Jesus says “Love one another as I have loved you. “

That means that Jesus is calling us to love our neighbor, to love others in our community, to love our family members, to love strangers and even enemies with all our heart, all our mind, all our souls and all our strength.

Jesus who is love, who gave us love, whose spirit resides in us as love asks only that we love as He loves.

With the power of His love, how dare we say “no.”

Prayer of The Day

Lord, I realize that to love You above all else I must come to know You.  Help me to be faithful to you in my commitment to know You and to seek to discover all the glorious truths of Your life. 

Daily Note

 The ‘commandment’ of love is only possible because it is more than a requirement. Love can be ‘commanded’ because it has first been given. … based on an intimate encounter with God, an encounter that has become a communion of will, even affecting my feelings. Then I learn to look on this other person not simply with my eyes and my feelings, but from the perspective of Jesus Christ. His friend is my friend.

But Is Jesus First In Your Life ?

Daily reflection – 3/16/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus was driving out a demon that was mute, and when the demon had gone out, the mute man spoke and the crowds were amazed. Some of them said, “By the power of Beelzebub, the prince of demons, he drives out demons.” Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven. But he knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house. And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand? For you say that it is by Beelzebub that I drive out demons. If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your own people drive them out? Therefore, they will be your judges. But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. When a strong man fully armed guards his palace, his possessions are safe. But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him, he takes away the armor on which he relied and distributes the spoils. Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.” (Luke 11:14-23)


Talk about hardened minds and hearts.

The scribes and Pharisees had not only turned their necks and backs toward Jesus, they refused to accept that any of the incontestable exorcisms happened by the finger of God. They accused Jesus of working exorcisms by the power of the prince of devils. Their hardened hearts had led them to a hardening of the brain.

Jesus not only rebuts them but he takes the opportunity of introducing the thought that no kingdom divided against itself can survive for long. Look around the world today and see the divisions that abound. . .  the horrifying tales of genocide that we read . . . the ethnic cleansing that occurs . . . nations against nations . . . countries riddled with divisions over partisan politics. . . and on and on.

There is one constant factor in all of it. The power of evil that thrives in division, animosity and hatred. It never goes away, does it?

Jesus came to defeat evil. He preached a Gospel that is the very antithesis of evil. He came to create his Father’s kingdom on earth. He came to save us from the damning effect of evil. That battle continues through today, doesn’t it?

The evil one will use anything he can to try to get a foothold in us so that he can begin dividing us from the Lord and others. If he can get us to have a hardened heart to the voice of the Lord in Sacred Scripture, that’s where he’ll start, because he knows that partially hardened hearts leads to hardening of the spiritual arteries and backs turned toward the Lord. If he can harden our hearts by tempting us not to forgive someone else, that’s where he’ll start. If he can harden our hearts through resentment of a superior’s request or command, he will. Any way that he can seek to divide us, within ourselves, among ourselves, or in our relationship with God through sin or tepidity, he will, seeking to metastasize that spiritual cancer later.

Rather than turning our backs toward Him, we need to turn our faces to Him in prayer and in thanksgiving. Rather than hardening our hearts, we need to soften them, by responding to his merciful help to love ever more all that he teaches us, listening to his words as words to be done, and then helping others to receive and live by this same gift of mercy. Rather than stiffening our necks, he wants us to turn with him when he turns to the Father, when he turns to the poor that he wants us to help, when he turns toward our family members that we need to forgive, when he turns toward Sacred Scripture in order to instruct us in his ways.

We can’t have divided hearts. We either love Our Lord and follow His gospel of love or we admit that we follow a different Master. It’s our choice. Each day.

Prayer of The Day

“Lord Jesus, be the ruler of my heart and the master of my home. May there be nothing in my life that separates me from the healing power of your love.”

Daily Note

Jesus makes it very clear that there are no neutral parties in this world. We are either for Jesus or against him, for the kingdom of God or against it. There are ultimately only two kingdoms which stand in opposition to one another – the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness which is under the rule of Satan. If we disobey God’s word, we open to door to the power of sin and Satan. If we want to live in true freedom, then our “house” (the inner core of our true being) must be occupied by Jesus where he is enthroned as Lord and Savior. The Lord assures us of his protection from spiritual harm and he gives us the help and strength we need to resist the devil and his lies (James 4:7).

Our Destination ? To LIVE The Love of Jesus Christ

Daily Reflection – 3/15/2023

Sacred Scripture

Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments will be called greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:17-19)


Today’s readings strongly emphasize the importance of God’s laws. In Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus makes it clear to his disciples that the law of the Old Testament still stands. Although people of Jesus’ time may have thought that Jesus came to replace the rules of the Old Testament, Jesus states that he did not come to erase God’s commandments or to open a “back door” into heaven for his followers. Rather, Jesus came to challenge us all not only to follow God’s commandments, but to lead others to follow them as well.

How do we do that? By living as Jesus Christ did. Jesus is the personification of love and the fulfillment of the law. Jesus is both the fullest expression of the love of God for us, and the fullest expression of the human response to that love. In Jesus, the medium is the message. The entire content of Christianity has been abstracted from the person and life of Jesus. The whole content of Christianity can be expressed in one word, Jesus. When you’ve said Jesus, you’ve said it all.

That is why the very goal of our lives is to strive to know Jesus more intimately, love him more ardently and follow him more closely. To be a Christian is to be committed to Jesus. And since Jesus is God, it means with the totality of the First Commandment. You shall love Jesus with your whole heart, your whole soul and your whole mind.”

A follower of Christ must learn to live a life grounded in mercy and love not in negative prohibitions but rather molding our lives, on the positive commandments of Jesus, the total love of God and neighbor which he showed forth in his life and death.

There will be “roadblocks” that seem to have the potential of taking us off the path of following Jesus. Just as there were roadblocks to the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ. But Christ prevailed. Not solely because he was man made God but because he came to show us a way of life. A way of life, which through the centuries has brought many to step forward and give their lives because of Jesus Christ. The followers of Christ saw that we must personify His love. Our entire life is a journey to and for Him. If we focus on the destination, nothing can fully stop us.

We are given the chance to bring Him alive in our lives!

That is THE Way. The WAY of Christ is not a destination. It is a continually lived experience. It is a transformation of ourselves that literally brings His word alive.

You and I are called to do that. You and I are called to bring his commandments alive. By living our lives in full accord with His commands, we continue the procession of men and women who change the world through the goodness and love they bring.

What a beautiful gift our lives can be.

Prayer of The Day

“Jesus, Do not let me be content simply to do the minimum that my faith asks of me. Do not let me be content simply with avoiding grave sin. Help me to live the fullness of the law of love and charity. I want this Lent to be a time of growth in love.”

Daily Note

Let us each of us  take a few moments to think about ways that we can enter more fully into God’s kingdom. Are we following God’s commandments because we have to? Or have we allowed God’s commandments to enter into our lives? God wants us all to obey his commandments and lead others to follow him; he wants us to be called greatest in his Kingdom!

Paying Our Debt to God

Daily Reflection – 3/14/2023

Sacred Scripture

Peter approached Jesus and asked him, “Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus answered, “I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times. That is why the kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who decided to settle accounts with his servants. When he began the accounting, a debtor was brought before him who owed him a huge amount. Since he had no way of paying it back, his master ordered him to be sold, along with his wife, his children, and all his property, in payment of the debt. At that, the servant fell down, did him homage, and said, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back in full.’ Moved with compassion the master of that servant let him go and forgave him the loan. When that servant had left, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a much smaller amount. He seized him and started to choke him, demanding, ‘Pay back what you owe.’ Falling to his knees, his fellow servant begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’ But he refused. Instead, he had him put in prison until he paid back the debt. Now when his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were deeply disturbed, and went to their master and reported the whole affair. His master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?’ Then in anger his master handed him over to the torturers until he should pay back the whole debt. So will my heavenly Father do to you, unless each of you forgives your brother from your heart.” ( Matthew 18:21-35)


In Christ, God offers us forgiveness of a debt that none of us could ever pay – the debt of sin.

The debt that is owed is harder to pay because we let our ego get in the way.  When we refuse to forgive the little offenses others cause us, we handcuff God’s mercy and put ourselves under a stricter justice. Previously, Christ pointed out, “For as you judge, so will you be judged, and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you” (Matthew 7:2).

But this lesson is hard for us to learn. We tend to resent not only willful offenses, but also innocent mistakes. Whenever someone else causes us even a tiny inconvenience, we can easily lash out at the offender.. And it’s especially the case close to home – we often have less patience with our siblings, parents, spouses, children, or roommates than we do with strangers and acquaintances.

In this parable, as in the Lord’s Prayer, Jesus gives us the secret to forming a patient, forgiving heart. It consists in recognizing the immense evil of our own sin, and thereby perceiving the vastness of God’s goodness in forgiving it.

The second aspect is that each of us is in a constant situation of needing to receive forgiveness as well as to give it.  Forgiveness is a foundational block of the Christian community’s flow of life.  In an imperfect world, each disciple is, at the same time, saint and sinner.  

Forgiveness is like a powerful river flowing from the heart of God, that sweeps up everyone and everything in its path.  God’s unconditional, forgiving love washes over sinners, gathers them up and carries them along in the same flow of forgiveness.  

For a sinner to refuse forgiveness to another requires that sinner to withdraw from that flow of forgiving love, to swim to the bank, as it were, and to stay there alone, cold, and self-absorbed – out of the reach of God’s love. Who would ever want that?

We are commanded to forgive because forgiveness is all about love. Remember, the two greatest commandments are to love God and to love others. There is no way to forgive without loving, and there is no way to love without forgiving. We are all fallen humans, full of sin, selfishness, and short-sightedness. If we want to stay together in fellowship, then we must learn to forgive. And if you are obeying God’s command to love him and his creation, then you know how to forgive.

Stop for a moment. Reflect on the hurts you have experienced. Understand that by holding on to them, you are still captive to them. Pray for the person(s) who hurt you. Forgive them deep within your heart. Thank them for this opportunity to learn how to love God with all your soul and all of your heart.

Prayer of The Day

“Jesus, forgiveness is harder for me in some cases than others. Free me from this snare of the devil. Teach me to forgive, no matter how I feel. Refresh my embittered heart. May I always be refreshed by your love and, in turn, pass that love on to all in my life.”

Daily Note

Forgiveness is harder for many people. Some who have been wounded feel that some don’t deserve to be forgiven. And yet, God offer his forgiveness to them. Why, then, should we resist? Pray that we can be freed from the snare of the devil. Pray that we can learn to forgive. Pray that our embittered hearts can be made anew.