Carry the gospel with you

Posted in christian, Christianity, inspirational, religion, scripture by Mike on March 14, 2014

c9dcf58b1ea41cb273783df850f7927c_w600Gospel reading of the day:

Matthew 5:20-26

Jesus said to his disciples: “I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.

“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment. But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, Raqa, will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court with him. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.”

Reflection on the gospel reading: In the observable universe, there are an estimated 300,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 stars–three followed by 23 zeros–that’s 300 septillion stars. But the God who steers the course of 300 septillion starts in perhaps 100 billion galaxies, is obsessed with you. There is no beat of your heart that goes unnoticed, no step you take that is unanticipated, no word you utter that is not remembered. The same attention poured on 300 septillion stars is showered on each cell as it divides in your body. Few are the men and women who do not agree that murder is an evil, but the God who sees every rupture that isolates one human heart from another notices even the small acts of unkindness that characterize our interactions with each other. For God, everything that exists is great and large: there is nothing that escapes God’s glance. Our striving for kindness and gentleness in even small matters reflects the infinity of significance implied in God’s notice of even the smallest things. In the mind of God, you and I are each weighed equally in the scales as 300 septillion stars. There is nothing inconsequential about us, not even our slightest slight.

Saint of the day: The Servant of God Zita de Bourbon-Parma was born on May 9, 1892, near Lucca, Italy. In 1911, Princess Zita married Archduke Karl of Austria, the great-nephew of Emperor Franz-Joseph. It was a practical marriage but one marked by love for one another and belief in the gospel. In 1914, the assassination of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary, left Karl in the position of heir apparent to the Emperor. ZitaIn 1916, when Franz-Joseph died, the 29-year-old Archduke became Emperor Karl I of Austria, and King Karl IV of Hungary. His first priority, while World War I still ravaged the continent, was the reestablishment of peace. His other priority was social justice.

During the two years of his reign, from 1916 to 1918, Empress Zita stood by her husband’s side, supporting all of his initiatives. At the same time, the couple led an exemplary life, marked by great piety and blessed by the birth of eight children. At the end of the war, Austria-Hungary was dismantled and the Emperor was forced to renounce his power. Karl died on April 1, 1922; the Church beatified him in October 2004. Zita, a widow at the age of 30, expecting a child that would never know her father and lacking any resources, started a long exile in: Spain, Belgium, Quebec (Canada), and the United States. Zita died in Switzerland on March 14, 1989. Her unshakeable faith and her moral strength in adversity make her a model of an exemplary wife and Christian mother. In 2008, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints authorized the opening of the cause of beatification in the Diocese of Le Mans for the Servant of God Zita of Bourbon-Parma.

Spiritual reading: The more light you allow within you, the brighter the world you live in will be. (Shakti Gawain)


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