A few verses that really stood out for me today:
The gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. (the Church)
“Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah.
For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.
For from him and through him and for him are all things.
To him be glory forever.
I will give thanks to your name,
because of your kindness and your truth:
When I called, you answered me;
you built up strength within me.
As Catholics, we rely upon the Magisterium for interpretation of scripture. We are discouraged from pulling verses out of scripture to prove a point – usually because it’s our own point we wish to prove! We must read scripture as a whole – using the paragraphs surrounding the verses as context clues – just as we would do as a student in a reading class. A Catholic Study Bible is highly recommended, as in the footnotes, it explains history important to understanding a passage, cultural innuendos and translation issues. All of those aspects are important in understanding the scriptures.
That being said, one of the wonderful things about the Word of God is that it is a living word. It is not something that was written thousands of years ago that has lost its relevancy for modern times. I find that each time I read a passage, depending on what is going on in the world at the time, or what is going on in my life, I will discover another facet of the jewel that is God’s Word.
Today, the words that I posted at the top spoke to me – giving me strength and hope for this day. Often times, I feel that our Church – the same beautiful one that Jesus instituted – has become a mess. Sometimes, I wonder if it will ever get straight again. Then I read the reassuring line, “the gates of the netherworld will not prevail against it.” No matter how imperfect it is, it will not succumb to evil, because the Lord has promised this Himself.
When speaking to Peter, Jesus tells him that God has revealed to Peter Jesus’ true identity. I really believe that God operates like this still today. If we pray for His will – and His alone – If we make the time for Him – time to be silent – amidst the noise and chaos – if we are humble like a child – He reveals Himself to us.
From Him, through Him and For Him are all things. Being a former English teacher, I must tell you that my favorite part of speech is the preposition – “anywhere a bird can fly.” There are 3 very meaningful ones used in this short passage that say soooo much. We come from His desire, His love, His creative hands. From love, He calls us into being. Through Him – I’m still thinking about that one. Hmmm. For Him. Did He need us? No. Yet, we were created For Himself. We live For Him. We were created to know, to love and to serve Him…Remember that little ditty?
Finally, I give thanks to God who is Truth. I thank Him for Truth, which in loving Him, we are blessed to possess. There is this awesome little video that I will post at the bottom of my page, “Isn’t Truth Relative?” – great for pondering!! When we pray, He always hears us. He always answers us. We might not get the answer we want, but He always provides the strength needed for whatever it is that we may be facing. Often, we have difficulty with God when someone we love dies, or gets cancer. We think, “If You love me like You say that You do, why did You let this happen to me?” Jesus is God’s beloved ONLY Son. As an only child, we can imagine how very much Jesus meant (means) to Him. He allowed Jesus to suffer a horrible death for a greater good. If this happened to Jesus, what makes us think we should be exempt?
I hope that I gave you some food for further thought on today’s readings. Here’s the video I promised: