Saturday, September 20, 2014
24th Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: 1 Cor 15:35-37,42-49
Gospel: Luke 8:4-15
As a great crowd gathered and people came to him from every town, Jesus began teaching them through stories, or parables, “The sower went out to sow the seed. And as he sowed, some of the grain fell along the way, was trodden on and the birds of the sky ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, and no sooner had it come up than it withered, because it had no water. Some fell among thorns; the thorns grew up with the seed and choked it. But some fell on good soil and grew, producing fruit – a hundred times as much.” And Jesus cried out, “Listen then, if you have ears to hear!” (…)
Now, this is the point of the parable: Those on the rocky ground are people who receive the word with joy, but they have no root; they believe for a while and give way in time of trial. Among the thorns are people who hear the word but as they go their way, are choked by worries, riches, and the pleasures of life; they bring no fruit to maturity. The good soil, instead, are people who receive the word and keep it in a gentle and generous mind, and persevering patiently, they bear fruit.
(Daily Gospel in the Assimilated Life Experience)
The devil afflicts us with pride, apprehensions, temptations and happiness (p.a.t.h.). The letter “I” at the center of “pride” stands for the selfish me. When I am proud, “I” am at the center of the world. Unfortunately there is no place for proud people in the church. At the center of the word “Church” we find the letters “u” and “r”. Yes, you are at the center of the church, not “I”. The devil is aware of the implications of this play of words and strives to sow the seed of pride in the Church.
Aside from pride the devil also sows the seed of apprehensions which result to doubts and fears. Jesus had already declared to his followers that fear is useless and what is needed is trust.
Aside from pride and apprehensions the devil also sows the seed of temptations. The devil starts tempting people with good things and slowly leads them to minor infractions until they get to the slippery slope that makes them fall headlong into bigger sins. Let us arm ourselves by not giving the devil the first base. Never discuss with the devil in the first place.
Finally, the devil comes with his major come-on of happiness. To counter this let us distinguish between happiness and joy. Happiness, which the devil promises if we do what he tells us, depends on happenings. Joy is what we keep in our heart as we do the will of God. The word “joy” is a good guide on how to arrange our values to have joy in our hearts. “J” stands for Jesus, “O” for others and “Y” for yourself. If we maintain the order of these values we radiate joy from our hearts as we walk away from the devil’s p.a.t.h. – Rev. Fr. Dan Domingo P. delos Angeles, Jr., DM. Email:firstname.lastname@example.org. Website: www.frdan.org.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY: God our Father, grants us great hearts to love you more than life itself so that we may never exchange you for anything else in this world. Amen.
SAINT OF THE DAY: Fr. Andrew Kim Taegon, Seminarian Paul Cheong and 78 lay persons suffered martyrdom between 1839 and 1846. The Martyrs of Korea, as they are known, met their death by beheading, strangulation or torture. They represented only a fraction of the thousands who died in the persecutions that accompanied the evangelization of Korea. Fr. Andrew Kim Taegon, the first Korean priest, was born near Seoul in 1821. After his ordination at Shanghai in 1845, he returned secretly to Korea and was assigned to arrange for the entrance of foreign missionaries. In the process, he was arrested by the border patrol and beheaded at the Han River near Seoul.