Daily Reflection for Friday, August 07, 2020
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Friday’s readings at this link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: Nahum 2:1, 3; 3:1-3, 6-7
Responsorial: Deuteronomy 32: 35CD-36AB, 39ABCD, 41
Gospel: Matthew 16: 24-28
Our reflection on Friday’s readings:
“Whoever wishes to follow me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” Matthew 16: 24-25
I can vividly remember the struggle I faced each morning. I was fighting a battle between being overcome by fatigue and resentment or staying the course. Although there were other challenges, my mother’s deteriorating health was the greatest. I did not know where these feelings originated from. Was it the devil or my own ego trying to lead me off course? Each morning in prayer, after reading and reflecting on scripture, I would ask God for help to not only stay the course, but also to project His love as I went through the day. One day at a time, I reaffirmed my “Yes” and walked this journey.
Today’s Gospel helps me “connect the dots” to this time of my life. Jesus tells us today what the conditions of discipleship are. He says, “Whoever wishes to follow me must deny himself, take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” God desires us to seek a relationship with him in which our life revolves around Him. Thy will be done, not ours. My saying “Yes” each day was denying my resistance to staying the course. I could not say ‘Yes” without God’s timely help.
When we ask God for help, we receive His Divine life within us to carry our cross, to deny our will. This Divine life gives us the grace to carry our cross for His sake, with Him by our side and with His strength!
When we let go of “our will and our life” as we desire it, we find “life” as only God can provide. In this passage, the Greek and Latin words used for “life” also mean soul. The root of the Latin word anima is synonymous with animation, life force and breath. When I deny my will and my life, I gain God’s life. My soul, my life, gains His animation, His life force, and His breath!
If you are struggling with saying “Yes” today, ask God for help. Let your soul, your life, be animated with His life force and breath, with Divine life!
Blessings for the journey!