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EVERYDAY STEWARDSHIP – RECOGNIZE GOD IN YOUR ORDINARY MOMENTS

Guided by the spirit

There will always be something behind us and before us. Time moves on and the world continues to rotate. Will we miss that which exists right before our eyes because they are shut while we are consumed by the past or worried about the future?

When we go about whatever work God has set for us this day, large or small, we cannot get it done if we are looking behind us. Being mindful means to live for the present. It sounds like the simplest thing in the world, but we forget it (I forget it at least once every day). We must be guided by the Spirit.

What I’m talking about here is a radical abandonment of ourselves to God — over, and over, and over again. We cannot put our hand to the plough, while our eyes are looking backward at what is left behind. We cannot turn back if we are to move forward.

When we take up the yoke of stewardship, we will never be able to bear it if we rely on our own strength. When we put our hands to the plough, we will never get the job done if we look backwards at our own track record for inspiration. There is no inspiration there. Let the dead bury their dead.

— Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS ©LPi

LA CORRESPONSABILIDAD DIARIA – RECONOCER A DIOS EN LOS MOMENTOS ORDINARIOS (Everyday Stewardship)

Guiado por el espíritu

Siempre habrá algo detrás de nosotros y antes que nosotros. El tiempo pasa y el mundo sigue girando. ¿Extrañaremos lo que existe justo ante nuestros ojos porque están cerrados mientras nos consume el pasado o nos preocupa el futuro?

Cuando realizamos cualquier trabajo que Dios nos haya asignado este día, ya sea grande o pequeño, no podremos hacerlo si miramos hacia atrás. Ser consciente significa vivir el presente. Suena como la cosa más simple del mundo, pero lo olvidamos (yo lo olvido al menos una vez al día). Debemos ser guiados por el Espíritu.

De lo que estoy hablando aquí es de un abandono radical de nosotros mismos a Dios, una y otra y otra vez. No podemos poner la mano en el arado mientras nuestros ojos miran hacia atrás, a lo que queda atrás. No podemos dar marcha atrás si queremos avanzar.

Cuando tomamos el yugo de la corresponsabilidad, nunca seremos capaces de soportarlo si confiamos en nuestras propias fuerzas. Cuando ponemos nuestras manos en el arado, nunca haremos el trabajo si miramos hacia atrás a nuestro propio historial en busca de inspiración. Allí no hay inspiración. Deja que los muertos entierren a sus muertos. — Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS ©LPi

LIVE THE LITURGY – INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEK

God calls us in the midst of ordinary things. Often only looking for God in the dramatic, spectacular, the ritual or the sacred places, we miss that He is walking beside us. Every moment of every day, in every circumstance and experience, God is calling to us, “Follow me.” Sometimes, we are too distracted to hear this call. Other times, we would rather ignore it or pretend it wasn’t heard. God, however, is very persistent. Whether we fine tune our hearing to receive this invitation now or when we close our eyes in death, we need to make a choice. The choice involves leaving some things behind and moving forward, taking risks. Choosing to keep focused and single-minded, the lens we then use to see our world and one another is God’s, not our own. Life is no longer about what is important or matters to me but what matters to God. We acquire a new filter and are asked to use that filter to make choices, establish priorities, and determine what direction we will take, and how to love. Once we accept God’s invitation, we cannot keep looking back to what was left behind, only forward to the surprises yet to come.

©LPi

VIVIR LA LITURGIA – INSPIRACIÓN DE LA SEMANA (Live the Liturgy)

Dios nos llama en medio de las cosas ordinarias. A menudo, solo buscando a Dios en lo dramático, espectacular, el ritual o los lugares sagrados, nos perdemos que Él está caminando a nuestro lado. En cada momento de cada día, en cada circunstancia y experiencia, Dios nos está llamando: “Sígueme”. A veces, estamos demasiado distraídos para escuchar esta llamada. Otras veces, preferimos ignorarlo o fingir que no se escuchó. Dios, sin embargo, es muy persistente. Ya sea que sintonicemos nuestra audición para recibir esta invitación ahora o cuando cerremos los ojos en la muerte, debemos tomar una decisión. La elección implica dejar algunas cosas atrás y seguir adelante, asumiendo riesgos. Al elegir mantenernos enfocados y decididos, el lente que usamos para ver nuestro mundo y los demás es de Dios, no el nuestro. La vida ya no se trata de lo que es importante o me importa a mí, sino de lo que le importa a Dios. Adquirimos un nuevo filtro y se nos pide que lo usemos para tomar decisiones, establecer prioridades y determinar qué dirección tomaremos y cómo amar. Una vez que aceptamos la invitación de Dios, no podemos seguir mirando hacia atrás a lo que se quedo, solo hacia las sorpresas que están por venir. ©LPi

GOSPEL MEDITATION – ENCOURAGE DEEPER UNDERSTANDING OF SCRIPTURE

June 26, 2022 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time

And to another he said, “Follow me.” In every moment of every day, in every circumstance and experience, God is calling us. We can easily get distracted and not hear it or simply ignore it, pretending it wasn’t even heard. When we do hear it and favorably respond, there are some conditions that must be met. Jesus makes it clear that once we say yes to his invitation, we must stay focused and forge ahead. We cannot keep looking behind or worry about unfinished business. There are some tasks, and discipleship is one, that require our full devotion.

There are many “masters” vying for our attention. We need something or someone to give us direction. Human nature requires it. Our motives and actions reveal what has our allegiance. It is tempting to give ourselves to masters that lure us with intriguing promises. When given the choice between a “master” that promises worldly success, abundant wealth, status, privilege, and security versus a “master” that asks for self-sacrifice, hardship, suffering, ridicule, and death, to whom do we go? While the promise of immediate pleasure is enticing, there is always a catch. For all that secular masters can promise, they always keep us looking behind, checking on ourselves, second guessing choices, calculating options, and being slaves to excessive worry. Our guard can never come down. Only one master really promises life: Jesus Christ. Hearing his call, we either trust him or we don’t.

Saying yes to following Christ does come with a risk. But it also comes with the brightness of future hopes and dreams. There is no need to keep looking behind. Sins are forgiven and regrets serve no effective purpose. God is not there. He’s moved beyond all that stuff. God is in the today and the tomorrow and what he can continually do with our daily affirmation to follow Him. All we need to do is be obedient. St. Gianna Molla is credited with saying, “The stillness of prayer is the most essential condition for fruitful action. Before all else, the disciple kneels down.” Begin with prayer. We will not only hear God’s call but find the courage to trust that He will guide us where we need to be. God uses us in the most ordinary of ways through the simple daily expression of our lives. ©LPi

MEDITACIÓN EVANGÉLICO – ALENTAR ENTENDIMIENTO MÁS PROFUNDO DE LA ESCRITURA (Gospel Meditation)

26 de junio de 2022 13º Domingo del Tiempo Ordinario

La Pascua se ha ido, las solemnidades especiales también, nuevamente iniciamos el Tiempo Ordinario. Tiempo de reflexión en las enseñanzas de Jesús para su seguimiento al discipulado. “Hemos sido llamados por Dios y llamados a permanecer con Jesús, unidos a él. Es precisamente la ‘vida en Cristo’ lo que garantiza la fidelidad de nuestro servicio. Contemplarlo, adorarlo y abrazarlo en nuestro encuentro con Cristo en la Eucaristía, en nuestra vida de oración, en nuestros momentos de adoración, y también reconocerlo presente y abrazarlo en las personas más necesitadas (Papa Francisco).

“Los zorros tienen cuevas y las aves tienen nidos, pero el Hijo del Hombre ni siquiera tiene donde recostar la cabeza” (Lucas 9:58). Seguir a Jesús, implica caminar con él sin cosas que nos impidan ver su camino. Emprender el viaje con Jesús en este Tiempo ordinario, será todo un reto. El Señor nos llama a cada uno a seguirlo de acuerdo a la vocación que hemos elegido. Una firme determinación es esencial. Se espera, que, no seamos cristianos del pero no estoy listo, pero cuánto tiempo debo servir, pero tengo muchas limitaciones. Ojalá, que el Señor nos ayude a ser valientes y decididos con esa libertad alegre de la que nos habla Pablo, en su Carta a los Gálatas. Servirnos unos a otros con amor. Para vivir dignamente el cristianismo, no bastan las ideas. Hay que llevar a cabo los hechos, que aunque pequeños, si salen del corazón, son la expresión de fe y seguimiento a Jesús.  ¿Listos para la aventura de seguir a Jesús en este Tiempo Ordinario? ¿Está mi determinación firme a pesar de mis dudas? ©LPi

LIVING THE GOSPEL IN A SECULAR WORLD

Serve one another through love. Galatians 5:13

1 Kings 19:16b, 19-21
Galatians 5:1, 13-18
Luke 9:51-62

How do I fit the practice of my faith into the demands of everyday life?

Putting our faith into action is the challenge of every believer. We are pulled between making time for prayer and good works on the one hand and raising a family and holding down a job on the other. It is difficult to pray the rosary or study the Bible when supper needs to be prepared, the kids need a ride to soccer practice or when we have to work overtime on a project. It is difficult to keep our minds focused on the kingdom of God when so many other demands are made on our time and energy.

Nonetheless, Jesus calls us to love him no matter what the circumstances of our life may be. We are to give ourselves totally in his service whether we are a priest or parking lot attendant, nun, or nurse.

This Sunday’s readings give us some important clues on how to balance the practice of our faith with the demands of life in the 21st century.

In the second reading, Saint Paul reminds us to “serve one another through love.” Love is the calling of every Christian. It makes everything we do pleasing to God. By adding a little love, we can take whatever we’re doing and make it an opportunity to serve Jesus. When we offer our thoughts, words, and actions up to God in love, then the demands of job and family no longer get in the way of our life of faith, but actually help us to grow closer to God and others. They become opportunities for prayer as we draw on the power of his Spirit to enable us to love as he does.

The gospel reading gives us another clue. Jesus tells one of the men who wishes to follow him, “The Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.” Jesus had no permanent place in this world. It is a reminder to us that we have no permanent home here either. Our final destination is heaven. We are not meant to get too comfortable here on earth. Whether we have been blessed with abundance or are struggling to get by, our homes and possessions are not ours to keep. Remembering that helps keep our work in perspective. We are called to something greater than the status and prestige that money promises.

Finally, we must be always ready to serve the needy around us. In today’s gospel, two of the people who approach Jesus have excuses for not following him. But Jesus did not have time to wait around for them. It was “now or never.” How many times have we used the demands of family life or of our job as an excuse not to practice charity? Jesus tells us very plainly that when we fail to feed the hungry or give drink to the thirsty, it is really him whom we are ignoring. Are our heads buried so deeply in the details of our everyday lives that we miss Jesus when he passes by? If we are to become holy in the 21st century we must not let our busy schedules be an excuse for not doing good.

We do not have to give up on the hope of becoming saints because we have jobs and families. By offering our work up to God in love, by not valuing the accumulation of wealth too highly and by not allowing our busy lives to be an excuse to overlook the needs of others, we can discover a sure path to holiness in our everyday lives. Douglas Sousa, S.T.L.