“My mother and brothers are all those who hear God’s word and obey it!”
(c.f. Luke 8: 21)
July 15-21, 2013
Objective of the Week:
To enter in the dynamism of the Word of God as Verbum Dei Family who has its source in the Word of God.
To learn how to listen to the Word of God with faith in order to put into practice in our daily lives what we listen and give testimony of how the Word of God can change lives.
Last week we were introduced to the dynamism of the Word of God. We started by learning about how to welcome the Word with an act of faith.
This week, we will deepen into what it means to listen to the Word of God. Reading the Bible with faith is essential to realize that these written words are the voice and presence of God in our lives, today. As we pray with the Word of God and listen to His Words, the teachings of Jesus are brought forward into our days and with the help of the Holy Spirit, we are able to understand them and live them through the midst of our daily modern challenges.
As Verbum Dei Family, we know how important it is for us to recognize that the Word of God is eternal life and our need to faithfully pray with it daily. The Word of God saved and saves us, gives us life and joy as we listen to it in our Schools of the Word and we share it in our missionary work. There are so many words in our world, there is so much noise around us, that it is vital to stay connected to the source of living waters, the Word of God. Take some time to turn off the TV, your laptop, your gadgets; don’t lose so much time listening to voices of death and anger in the news, looking at vanity photos in Facebook, wasting time playing colorful online games. Take time to be still and know that God is reaching to you through his Word.
To listen to the Word of God, we need to create an environment of silence around us, in which it is easier to recognize the voice of the Good Shepherd. As we prayed last week, “…The word, in fact, can only be spoken and heard in silence, outward and inward. (…) Only in silence can the word of God find a home in us, as it did in Mary, woman of the word and, inseparably, woman of silence.” (Verbum Domini # 66)
Though it is a struggle and an exercise of discipline to be committed to daily prayer with the Word of God, it is also joyful when we listen with confidence to the Word and put it into practice. Then, we allow Jesus to enter into our lives and accompany us in our journey. We witness and experience how the Word of God can change our lives, how much stronger we become when facing challenges. Then we ourselves can become Word to others, as we share our faith and give testimony with our lives that the Word of God is eternal life.
Slowly and steadily, the presence of Jesus in our lives will mold us into His own likeness, our hearts will listen to His voice, we will gently obey His teachings and our lives will be rooted firmly on the rock – The Word of God.
Listen to the Word, His voice
“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I will give them eternal life”
(John 12: 27, 28)
“Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.”
(Revelations 3: 20)
“If only you would listen to his voice today! The Lord says, “Don’t harden your hearts as Israel did…”
(Hebrews 95: 7-8)
Will you listen to Jesus with your heart today? What is He saying?
An environment of silence
“After the earthquake, there was a fire — but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire, there was the soft whisper of a voice.”
(1 Kings 19:11-12)
“Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray.”
“One day soon afterward Jesus went up on a mountain to pray, and he prayed to God all night.”
Do you look for a silent location in your day to pray? Like a chapel or your room. Do you turn off your distractions when you pray? Like cellphone or TV.
A Family dedicated to listening
“Jesus replied, “My mother and my brothers are all those who hear God’s word and obey it.”
(Luke 8: 21)
“We will form ourselves and accompany each other in order that the roots of our faith go deeper and become firm through an abundant contemplative life. This is the motor of our apostolic life…”
(Verbum Dei Constitutions #15)
When you disobey, do you go to confession? How often do you look for spiritual direction to help you discern the voice of God? Is your life’s foundation in the Word of God?
Putting into practice what we listen
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey it, it is like glancing at your face in the mirror”
“Anyone who listens to my teachings and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock”
When praying, do you try to understand where the Word of God can be applied to your daily life? And when you do understand, do you put it into practice even when it may not seem easy to you?
Becoming a Missionary Family who shares their faith in the Word of God
“And how can they believe in Him if they have never heard about Him? And how can they hear about Him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of the messengers who bring good news!”
(Romans 10: 27)
“Christ's message in all its richness must live in your hearts. Teach and instruct each other with all wisdom.”
How do you share your faith with others? And how important it is for you to share what you receive while listening to the Word of God?
Listen to the Word with Mother Mary
“How happy you are to believe that the Lord's message to you will come true!”
“Since you have accepted Christ Jesus as Lord, live in union with him. Keep your roots deep in him, build your lives on him, and become stronger in your faith, as you were taught. And be filled with thanksgiving.”
When you pray, do you listen with a simple heart like Mary?
16th Sunday in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: Genesis 18:1-10
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 15:2-5
2nd Reading: Colossians 1:24-28
Gospel: Luke 10:38-42
Weekly Prayer Guidelines
Read this week's guidelines to help you deepen in the Word of God for today.