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9th Week Of O.T. – Cycle A

March 6th, 2011

 

Deeds, Not Words!

 

 

Reading 1

Dt 11:18, 26-28, 32

 

Moses told the people,
“Take these words of mine into your heart and soul.
Bind them at your wrist as a sign,
and let them be a pendant on your forehead.

“I set before you here, this day, a blessing and a curse:
a blessing for obeying the commandments of the LORD, your God,
which I enjoin on you today;
a curse if you do not obey the commandments of the LORD, your God,
but turn aside from the way I ordain for you today,
to follow other gods, whom you have not known.”

 

Ps 31:2-3, 3-4, 17, 25

Responsorial Psalm

 

R. (3b) Lord, be my rock of safety.
In you, O LORD, I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame.
In your justice rescue me,
incline your ear to me,
make haste to deliver me!
R. Lord, be my rock of safety.
Be my rock of refuge,
a stronghold to give me safety.
You are my rock and my fortress;
for your name’s sake you will lead and guide me.
R. Lord, be my rock of safety.
Let your face shine upon your servant;
save me in your kindness.
Take courage and be stouthearted,
all you who hope in the LORD.
R. Lord, be my rock of safety.

 

Rom 3:21-25, 28

Reading 2

 

Brothers and sisters,
Now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law,
though testified to by the law and the prophets,
the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ
for all who believe.
For there is no distinction;
all have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God.
They are justified freely by his grace
through the redemption in Christ Jesus,
whom God set forth as an expiation,
through faith, by his blood.
For we consider that a person is justified by faith
apart from works of the law.

 

Mt 7:21-27

Gospel

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’
will enter the kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.
Many will say to me on that day,
‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?
Did we not drive out demons in your name?
Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’
Then I will declare to them solemnly,
‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them
will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock.
And everyone who listens to these words of mine
but does not act on them
will be like a fool who built his house on sand.
The rain fell, the floods came,
and the winds blew and buffeted the house.
And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

 

Seems like we are always doing something to keep our house structurally sound, airtight (if there such a thing), treated for mold, mildew, sprayed each year for bugs, most especially wasps (I can't stand wasps) or spiders (I really can't stand spiders), almost deathly afraid of them. Every time I see one, I think it wants to attack me, even the little ones. Oh yes, and the appliances in our house has to working ok. We have warrantees for those things. We have home owners insurance in case of some terrible storm, which I am not afraid of, or a tornado, which I am, and which in this part of the country, develops quite often.
 

 

But as prepared as the house is, it must still face the uncertainty of storms, high winds, hail, winter's ice storms, and other possible disasters, and a tornado can wipe it all out in a flash.  So then, that is why we have those protections in order.

 

One would think that it is the same way in life, tragedies do happen, pain and suffering is a part of our daily lives,  We make mistakes, we falter at times, we sin.  That is the nature of who we are as human beings.  As focused as we can be as a Christian, these kind of things are going to happen, and Jesus uses this house construction thing in today's gospel as a metaphor that we should not just listen to his words, but to act on them;  to act on them to ensure solid  Christian faith foundation, as his words conclude his sermon on the mount that we have heard before.

 

In today's gospel, Jesus says, "It is not those who say to me, Lord, Lord who will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but the person who does the will of my Father."  Before he said that, he had indicated that will very clearly.  He had started with the beatitudes, but after that he spoke about law, anger, adultery, divorce, vows, revenge, enemies, charity, prayer, fasting, justice, and human relations – all things to be done in this world.  Our fight is not in the air, between ideals and ideas.  Our fight is here and now, as it was in the early days of the church when people were martyred for their belief and living out the gospel message.

 

It should be clear to us that discipleship is not only about just listening to his words my friends, it is more about doing.  Jesus is interested in people who are doers.  The solid foundation of our faith is based on what we do in his name;  that we took his words and put them into action.  He said in another gospel, when pressed as to what will be said at judgment time, and this is not a quote per say but a summary of the truth:  "When I was hungry, did you feed me?  When I was thirsty, did you give me drink;  naked, did you clothe me;  in prison, did you visit me;  homeless, did you shelter me."  And some will say, "Lord when did we do those things" and he will say, "When you did them to the lest of my brethren, you did them unto me.  And these are the ones that will inherit the kingdom.

 

And to those who will say, "But Lord, when did we not do those things," and he will say, "when you did not do them for my brethren, you did not do them for me."  And he won't be too pleased.

 

In order to really live a life of Christ, we are called to be doers of his word, not just listeners, and doers despite all of the struggles we face in our life.  Jesus isn't looking for preachers folks, he is looking for servants, folks who will serve each other.  Not butlers, not maids, but servants, and we are all called to do that, however we have been blessed to do so.  If we only have a little, then we give 100 per cent of that "little."  If we have been given much, then give an even greater portion, and I'm not talking about money.  In short, we are called to live out the gospel message.  We can memorize the complete text of the bible, and if we have not put those words into action, then we have wasted our time. 

 

As noted,  it is not those who shout, Lord, Lord, Christianity, Christianity, Church, Pope, Bishop, Minister, Preacher, Priest, Deacon, Elder, who enter the Kingdom of God, but those who do the will of God by refusing a bribe, taking up a child, establishing justice, and living out the gospel message.  They have a faith in Jesus Christ that will justify them and their world.

 

In prayerful consideration, let us ponder these things, not to be overwhelmed, for to follow Christ is what will free us from the slavery of ourselves, that we can serve him side by side and hand in hand as his servants, friends, children.  Wishing you a grace filled week ahead.  I know that there is much going on in the world and in our country that concerns us.  Let us remain vigilant in prayer, that though most always we cannot see through the fog, GOD can, and HE is in control in HIS world.  Peace!

 

 

Deacon Steve A. Politte

March 5th, 2011

 

 

 

 

One Pair Of Hands-Carroll Roberson

 

 

 

 

The Ties That Bind!


Release from your heart
those things that drag you down.
Cherish close and hold firmly
all the love that you have found.

Be not concerned about failure,
or labor in vain attempts;
try to reach for the best of things,
for all things to us are lent.

Realize your great potential
to reach long, far, and wide,
you will always make a difference,
when you spread your wings and fly.

Do not hurry to accomplish
all the goals that you have set,
be content with who you are;
give thanks for the friends you've met.

Each person is but a vessel
who can hold an ocean of love;
realize the blessings given you
from the Master's throne above.

We are all but His children
who longs for his heart so pure,
love will sustain and nurture us
when any evil knocks upon our door.

All that we have are gifts from God,
to be shared in joy with each other;
to be nurtured with on this journey,
side by side, as sisters and brothers.

We should never be afraid to cling to
faith, hope, and love divine;
these we should desire always to grasp,
bring us together into one fold;
for these are the ties that bind!


© Steve A. Politte
2007

 


 

 

 

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