Friday, January 30, 2009

4th Sunday of Ordinary Time Year B - 2009

Reading 1
Responsorial Psalm
Reading 2

May the peace of Christ reign in our hearts

Sometimes we just have to face it.
We are not home… This is not our home… and when compared to eternity, the time we will spend here on this earth is just a blink of an eye, a moment.

This incredibly powerful fact, seems so obvious but we all know that it is so easy to forget.

How often do we live as if…
As if this is all there is,
as if this is all that matters,
as if the quality of our life now is more important than our life with God later.

It is just so easy to forget that God made us and our home,
our destiny, is to be with him forever.

How many times a day do we forget that incredibly important fact.

So for most of us or many of us, our lives are spent wandering around
often blinded by our own sins and addictions
and worries
and prejudices
and pride
and whatever.

We spend so much time so much energy trying to find our way home and sometimes a powerful but subtle fear fills our heart.

Is there really anything else… will I ever find my way home ?

God Wants us home.
God want all of us home.

God Created us to be home with Him.
God waits for our return
and God does everything he can to call us to Himself,

And the role of prophets is central to God’s providential loving plan to bring us home,

hrough prophets He regularly calls us out of our darkness.

The first reading and the gospel today speak about prophets.

What is a prophecy and the role of a prophet.?

When I think of a prophet.. the first person I think of is John the Baptist. A voice in the wilderness…
God gives us prophets for a number of reasons.

The voice of a prophet puts everything in perspective.

rophets challenge us to understand that everything that leads us home is good,
and everything that distracts us or takes us off course on our journey home is bad.

The voice of a prophet orients in the darkness and confusion of life.
It directs us guides us back to the path home.

The voice of a prophet gives us hope.
When all seems lost,
when We we are weary from the journey,
When we just can’t seem to find our way,

When we just want to sit down or give up,
Yes the voice of a prophet give us hope.

There will always be the voice of some prophet saying
Come on… don’t give up, don’t be afraid,

Follow me… you can do this.

How many of us have been roused or inspired by a good sermon, or a good confession or the counsel of a friend or the simple innocent faith of a child ?

All of them at one time were prophets to us on our journey.

Now that we have kind of looked at the role of prophets in our life we come to the crux of the first reading.

There are so many voices in our world how do you know which ones is prophetic and which ones are not

The book of Deuteronomy gives us three concrete criteria to judge if someone is really a prophet
or if what someone is saying is really prophecy

“I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their kin,” the Deuteronomy says.

God raises up prohpets
God decides who the prophet should be..

It is not ours task nor our right to declare ourselves prophets.
And that is a really good indication if a prophet or prophecy is real.

If a person believes him/herself better than others.
If a person declares himself a prophet and seem to desire the title and prestige…
of a prophet a caution flag should go up.

We have to be so careful about the authenticity of their words.

Remember only those who are called by God speak for Him not necessarily those who would like to be called.

The second profound truth in that phrase is just as important.

In the first reading we hear “A prophet like you from among you kin.?

So often we look to learned men and women, scholars,,, holy people, as the only source of our prophecy and yes they can be.

However, we must never forget that our friend and our roommate, and our wife and our husband and even our child can often be prophets for us.

Sometimes this is a hard thing to accept.
Remember Jesus’ words “no prophet is accepted in his own town”

How often because of our pride have we missed the prophecies of our loved ones or didn’t take them to heart.

The book of Deuteronomy also says…
I will put my words into his mouth;
he shall tell them all that I command him.

Another way to discern if God is really speaking through someone and If their prophecy is authentic is to compare what they say to the other Words that God has already spoken.

The prophet is only charged with speaking God’s words, he may adapt them to his culture and his experience but the meaning of the words spoken have to be in agreement with other things that God has said.

If someone speaks as a prophet but their word do not conform to God’s word… they are really from the evil one.

Their words do not have the power to save but rather to destroy.

The last truth about prophecy contained in the first reading is simple

If someone is really a prophet.

I we discern that someone has been given a prophetic role in our lives we have an obligation to listen to them to obey them.

We have the obligation to put their words into effect in our lives because they speak for God Himself.

God will never leave us alone

God wants us to find our way home

In the confusion of life
In the challenges of our journey
God will send us many prophets.

They will be Men and women whose love for us and love for God calls, compels them to speak many times reluctantly

Let be attentive.


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