Daily Reflection for Friday, February 25 2022
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: James 5:9-12
Responsorial: Psalms 103:1-2, 3-4, 8-9, 11-12
Gospel: Mark 10:1-12
Our reflection on Friday’s readings:
“Do not complain, brothers and sisters, about one another.” James 5:9
I was struck by a Taylor Swift lyric that I saw on a sweatshirt recently. It said, “So casually cruel in the name of being honest.” I haven’t heard the song yet, but I think the quote describes something we see amplified in social and news media everywhere…people casually using cruel words to tear each other down. The first reading’s admonition about complaining shows that this tendency is not new, but it also challenges us to be different. Our words should not tear people down but, as Paul says, encourage people and build them up (1Thessalonians 5:11).
So many people are struggling to keep their heads above water right now, and the world is either ignoring them, giving them short shrift, or weighing them down. In contrast , we should be like lifeguards on the beach. We’ve been given a little patch of sand and ocean, and if we pay attention, we will see around us…
Those who feel lost
Those who are tired
Those battling fear
Those who are controlling
Those struggling to make ends meet
Those choked by their wealth
Those with addictions
Those consumed by hate
Those being used
Those rejected by society
Those with broken hearts
They should all be receiving words of life from us. If we don’t speak life to the people on our patch, who will they hear it from?
How do we tackle such an intimidating task? Jesus approached each drowning person in a unique way. Sometimes he invited them (Mt.4:19), sometimes he asked a question (Jn.1:38), sometimes he told a story (Lk.10:30), sometimes he made a request (Jn.4:7), sometimes he prayed for them (Jn.17:20), sometimes he challenged them (Mt.19:21), and sometimes he was silent (Jn.8:6). And he promised us that when we need to speak, the Holy Spirit will give us the right words to say (Lk.12:12).
How will we know our words are from the Holy Spirit and not from us? We can know they are from God if they are filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, and faithfulness, because those are his fruits (Ga.5:22-23).
Like Jesus, we have been anointed to bring glad tidings to the poor; to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind; and to let the oppressed go free (Lk.4:18). So, let’s start tossing the lifebuoys…they may be all that some people in our patch will have to cling to.
Grace and Peace to you,