Objective of the week:
To be aware that the Gospel bears fruit of apostles of Christ and to allow Him to bring us deeper into the process of forming apostles
Our journey from the time when Jesus has called us, chose us, and formed us is a gift to us and to Catholic Church in particular to the community Verbum Dei (The VDMFa is structured as a dynamic community that participates in a progressive process of formation in as much in the global aspect of the Family as in the personal aspect of the members being formed. Statutes of the VDMFa 65). As we journey with Christ, our experiences, that is, living a life with God, is a beautiful testimony of life. As we look back we have seen how we have fallen, how we become discouraged, and how Jesus strengthened us and help us stand and walked with Him again. It is so amazing how Jesus opens our eyes and changes our perspective from being selfish to being selfless. Each one of us has our own formation and process, a unique journey that Jesus only knows. It is God’s desire that we might be healthy in body and grow in spirit. To grow means to learn, for it is when we stop learning that we stop growing. As we formed ourselves, we equipped ourselves for a mission that Christ has entrusted to us, His very same mission.
God is certain when HE chooses us to be his disciples
While the crowd was pressing in on Jesus and listening to the word of God, he was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret. 2He saw two boats there alongside the lake; the fishermen had disembarked and were washing their nets. 3Getting into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, he asked him to put out a short distance from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. After he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch.” 5Simon said in reply, “Master, we have worked hard all night and have caught nothing, but at your command I will lower the nets.” 6When they had done this, they caught a great number of fish and their nets were tearing. 7They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come to help them. They came and filled both boats so that they were in danger of sinking. 8When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at the knees of Jesus and said, “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” 9For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, 10and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.” 11When they brought their boats to the shore, they left everything and followed him.
Jesus is pretty sure in choosing Peter as one of HIS disciples. At first, we might say how come? Peter? But knowing all the chapter of Peter’s life and how he became the trusted apostle of Christ, we could say It’s awesome to see that Jesus finishes what HE started in the life of Peter. Like Peter each one of us are called to be HIS disciples and HE will finished what HE started in us we just need to believe and cling to HIM.
Jesus believes in our capacity to follow him and be the children of light
But you, brothers, are not in darkness, for that day to overtake you like a thief. 5For all of you are children of the light and children of the day. We are not of the night or of darkness. 6Therefore, let us not sleep as the rest do, but let us stay alert and sober. 7Those who sleep go to sleep at night, and those who are drunk get drunk at night. 8But since we are of the day, let us be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love and the helmet that is hope for salvation. 9For God did not destine us for wrath, but to gain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep we may live together with him. 11Therefore, encourage one another and build one another up, as indeed you do.
(1 Thessalonians 5:4-11)
Jesus believes in our capacity of becoming good and pleasing to God more than we do, He knew our flaws and limitations yet HE is optimistic that in friendship with HIM, time will come that talents in stored in us will be optimized according to Gods plan for our life.
Be faithful and hopeful in the grace of God
1Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, 2to the holy ones and faithful brothers in Christ in Colossae: grace to you and peace from God our Father. 3We always give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, 4for we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and the love that you have for all the holy ones 5because of the hope reserved for you in heaven. Of this you have already heard through the word of truth, the gospel, 6that has come to you. Just as in the whole world it is bearing fruit and growing, so also among you, from the day you heard it and came to know the grace of God in truth, 7as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow slave, who is a trustworthy minister of Christ on your behalf 8and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.
There are moments that we feel discourage in our following and perhaps, there are many times we say “no” to His invitation but Christ is faithful and hopeful in our lives, he does not gave up on us. Be faithful! for our faith is essential in the heart of God and surely grace, courage, and strength will come our way that we may be in formed to be Christ.
Pray without ceasing that we may endure and persevere
9Therefore, from the day we heard this, we do not cease praying for you and asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding 10to live in a manner worthy of the Lord, so as to be fully pleasing, in every good work bearing fruit and growing in the knowledge of God, 11strengthened with every power, in accord with his glorious might, for all endurance and patience, with joy 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has made you fit to share in the inheritance of the holy ones in light. 13He delivered us from the power of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, 14in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
In forming ourselves, we need to be connected to the one who form and mould us as an apostle for it is through praying without ceasing that we gain knowledge of Christ and it is through prayer that we identify where we are in our journey. It is also then necessary that we pray for each other’s journey that through praying for each other strengthen us as a family, as a community, as followers of Christ and thus we might be closer to be being Christ.
Closeness with Jesus entails transformation of mind and Heart
And they said to him, “The disciples of John fast often and offer prayers, and the disciples of the Pharisees do the same; but yours eat and drink.” 34 Jesus answered them, “Can you make the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them? 35But the days will come, and when the bridegroom is taken away from them, then they will fast in those days.” 36 And he also told them a parable. “No one tears a piece from a new cloak to patch an old one. Otherwise, he will tear the new and the piece from it will not match the old cloak. 37Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins, and it will be spilled, and the skins will be ruined. 38Rather, new wine must be poured into fresh wineskins. 39[And] no one who has been drinking old wine desires new, for he says, ‘The old is good.’”
Our faithful following and friendship with Jesus brings us to a perspective of giving up to our own way of thinking, our own ways of doing things rather we become more open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit leading us to the way unfamiliar to us putting into practice what we have learned through the continuous formation provided for us by Christ.
Firmly grounded faith inspire others to follow Jesus
And you who once were alienated and hostile in mind because of evil deedsl 22he has now reconciled in his fleshly body through his death, to present you holy, without blemish, and irreproachable before him, 23provided that you persevere in the faith, firmly grounded, stable, and not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, am a minister.
Our closeness with Jesus improves our life holistically and radiates to our children, parents, siblings, friends, relatives, neighbours, workmates, and schoolmates and somehow inspires them to experience with an encounter with Jesus to be formed and helped others be formed in the image of Christ.
21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Joshua 24:1-2a, 15-17, 18b
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 34
2nd Reading: Ephesians 5:21-32
Gospel: John 6:60-69
Weekly Prayer Guidelines
Read this week's guidelines to help you deepen in the Word of God for today.