Reflection for 22-23 Aug 2020
Meditation: At an opportune time Jesus tests his disciples with a crucial question: Who do men say that I am and who do you say that I am? He was widely recognized in Israel as a mighty man of God, even being compared with the greatest of the prophets, John the Baptist, Elijah, and Jeremiah. Peter, always quick to respond, exclaimed that he was the Christ, the Son of the living God. No mortal being could have revealed this to Peter; but only God.
Lord Jesus, I profess and believe that you are the Christ, the Son of the living God. You are my Lord and my Savior. Make my faith strong like Peter's and give me boldness to speak of you to others that they may come to know you personally as Lord and Savior and grow in the knowledge of your great love.
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=aug23 )

REFLECTION FOR WEEK OF 3 MAY 2020
​​When *GOD* wanted to create fish, *HE* spoke to the sea.
When *GOD* wanted to create trees, *HE* spoke to the earth, but when *GOD* wanted to create human, *HE* talked to Himself. 
​Then *GOD* said: "Let us make human in our own image and likeness".
Please note: If you take a fish out of water, it will die; and when you remove a tree from the ground, it will also die.
Likewise, when human is disconnected from *GOD*, he dies.
*GOD* is our natural environment.  We were created to live in *His* presence.  We must be connected to *Him* because it is only in *GOD* that life exists. 
Let's stay connected to *GOD*.
We recall...
*GOD* without human is always *GOD* but human without *GOD* is nothing..
So think about yourself  and your existence, are you connected to God or 
disconnected...this is the moment you get yourself connected to your God. 


REFLECTION FOR 20/21 JUNE 2020

REFLECTION FOR MOTHER'S DAY, 10 MAY 2020
Motherhood is a very high calling.
Happy Mother's Day to our (Living and Deceased) Mothers.
The most inspiring aspects of Mary's life is the profound suffering that she endured  The mothers we serve suffer the harsh realities of a life of extreme poverty.  They lack access to healthcare and medicine, education, food and safe water.  Some women suffer discrimination and stigma.  Others struggle to find safety while raising children in a war zone.  We meet mothers who have been abandoned, widows, grandmothers who are raising grandchildren on their own.  These are the realities that cause deep, daily suffering for many of the women we serve.​
But where there is sadness, there is also joy.  We witness tears of happiness and smiles when healthy babies are born, when sick children get well, and when prayers are answered.  Motherhood is a very high calling.  Please join us as we pray for all mothers.  Their devotion, guidance and strength are precious gifts and certain signs of God's love.  
Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers (living and deceased).
CMMB. ​

REFLECTION FOR 25/26 JULY 20
What do you treasure the most and how do you keep it from being lost or stolen?  In a peasant community the best safe was often the earth.  The man in the parable (Matthew 13:44) "went in his joy" to sell everything.  Why? Because he fund a treasure worth possessing above all else he had.  He did not, however, have enough to buy the treasure.  Fortunately, he only needed enugh to buy the field.  In a similar fashion, God offers his kingdom of righteousness, peace, and joy (Romans 14:17) as incomparable treasure at a price we can afford!  We can't pay the full price for the life which God gives us; but when we exchange our life for the life which God offers, we receive a treasure beyond compare.  
​copyright 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.new, author Don  Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit  https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=jul26

REFLECTION 25 December 2020
Meditation: Have you read the news today - the "good news" of Jesus Christ, the Son of God and son of Mary who was born for us and for our salvation. The word gospel literally means good news! Jesus' birth in Bethlehem fulfilled the prophecy that the Messiah would descend from David and be born in David's city, Bethlehem (Isaiah 9:6-7, 11:1-2; Micah 5:2-4).
The first to hear the good news of the savior's birth were not the rulers and religious leaders of Israel who were robed in riches and power. The angels first came to those who were humble and ready to receive the newborn king who was born in poverty and was now lying in a manger made for animals. Just as God had chosen and anointed David, a lowly shepherd of Bethlehem to become the shepherd king of Israel, so Jesus, likewise chose the path of humility and lowliness in coming to Israel as the good shepherd king who would lay down his life for their sake and salvation. After the angels had sung their hymn of glory in the presence of the shepherds, the shepherds made haste to adore the newborn king and sing their hymn of glory as well.
Why was it necessary for the Word of God to become flesh? We needed a savior who could reconcile us with God. Throughout the ages Christians have professed the ancient Nicene Creed: "He became man for our sake and for the sake of our salvation." The eternal Word became flesh for us so he could offer his life as an atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world through the shedding of his blood on the cross. The Word became flesh to show us the infinite love and tender mercy of God for us sinners.
The joy of Christmas is not for a day or a season. It is an eternal joy, a joy that no one can take from us because it is the joy of Jesus Christ himself made present in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who dwells within us (see Romans 5:2-5). The Lord gives us a supernatural joy which no pain nor sorrow can diminish, and which neither life nor death can take away. Do you know the joy of your salvation in Jesus Christ?
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=dec25)

REFLECTION/MEDITATION  15-16 AUG 20
Do you ever feel "put-off" or ignored by the Lord?
This passage (Matthew 15:21) describes the only occasion in which Jesus ministered outside of Jewish territory.  (Tyre and Sidon were fifty miles north of Israel and still exist today in modern Lebanon.)  A Gentile women, a foreigner who was not a member of the Jewish people, puts Jesus on the spot by pleading for his help.  At first Jesus seemed o pay no attention to her, and this made his disciples feel embarrassed.  Jesus does this to test the woman to awaken faith in her.  
SEEK THE LORD JESUS WITH EXPECTANT FAITH
Jesus praises a Gentle woman for her faith and for her love.  She made the misery of her child her own and she was willing to suffer rebuff in order to obtain healing for her loved one.  She also had indomitable persistence.  Her faith grew in contact with the person of Jesus.  She began with a request and she ended on her knees in worshipful prayer to the living God.  No one who ever sought Jesus with earnest faith - whether Jew or Gentile - was refused his help.  Do you seek the Lord Jesus with expectant faith? 
copyright@2020  Servants of the Word, source: dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
For full Reflection, please visit https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=aug16​

REFLECTION: 19-20  SEPTEMBER 2020
​​Meditation: What can work and wages, welfare and the unemployed tell us about the kingdom of God? In the parable of the laborers in the vineyard we see the extraordinary generosity and compassion of God (Matthew 20:1-16). There is great tragedy in unemployment, the loss of work, and the inability to earn enough to live and support oneself or one's family. In Jesus' times laborers had to wait each day in the marketplace until someone hired them for a day's job. No work that day usually meant no food on the family table. The laborers who worked all day and received their payment complain that the master pays the late afternoon laborers the same wage. The master, undoubtedly, hired them in the late afternoon so they wouldn't go home payless and hungry.
Lord Jesus,fill me with your Holy Spirit that I may serve you joyfully and serve my neighbor willingly with a generous heart, not looking for how much I can get, but rather looking for how much I can give.
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=sep20

REFLECTION: 24 - 25 October 20
Meditation: What is the purpose of God's law and commandments? The Pharisees prided themselves in the knowledge of the law of Moses and the ritual requirements of the law. They made it a life-time practice to study the 613 precepts of the Torah - the books of the Old Testament containing the Law of Moses - along with the numerous rabbinic commentaries on the law. The religious authorities tested Jesus to see if he correctly understood the law as they did. Jesus startled them with his profound simplicity and mastery of the law of God and its purpose.
God's love rules all
Jesus summarized the whole of the law in two great commandments found in Deuteronomy 6:5 - "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might" - and Leviticus 19:18 - "you shall love your neighbor as yourself". God's love directs all that he does - His love is holy, just, and pure because it seeks only what is good, beneficial, and life-giving - rather than what is destructive, evil, or deadly. That is why he commands us to love - to accept and to give only what is good, lovely, just, and pure and to reject whatever is contrary.
Lord Jesus, your love surpasses all. Flood my heart with your love and increase my faith and hope in your promises. Help me to give myself in generous service to others as you have so generously given yourself to me.

REFLECTION FOR 8th SUNDAY IN EASTER, 31 MAY 2020
PENTECOST MESSAGE.

Peace be with you.  Receive the Holy Spirit as the Father has set me, so I send you  The Holy Spirit works  to renew all creation and the face of the earth.  Pentecost peace involves more than peace among human beings.  As we celebrate Pentecost, we remember how the Holy Spirit emboldened those gathered in the upper room to proclaim the Gospel to the diverse cultures gathered in Jerusalem, extending Jesus message of peace to all.  We look back so that we can recognize the Spirits continuing work in the Church, uniting us as we celebrate our diversity of gifts and bringing the peace of Christ through forgiveness of sins  May our celebration of Pentecost inspire us to be people of hope and peace.  With whom do you need to find peace.  Let us ask the Holy Spirits guidance and take steps toward forgiveness and reconciliation.  

Meditation: 27 - 28 March 2021
Meditation: Does the King of glory find a welcome entry in your home and heart? Jesus went to Jerusalem knowing full well what awaited him - betrayal, rejection, and crucifixion. The people of Jerusalem, however, were ready to hail him as their Messianic King! Little did they know what it would cost this king to usher in his kingdom. Jesus' entry into Jerusalem astride a colt was a direct fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy of Zechariah (9:9):
Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion. Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem. Lo, your king comes to you; triumphant and victorious is he, and riding on an donkey and upon a colt the foal of a donkey.
Jesus Christ came to bring us the kingdom of God. He is the true King who offers peace, joy, and everlasting life for those who accept his kingship. Does the King of glory find a welcome entry in your heart and home? Do your walls echo with the praise of his glory?
Lord Jesus, be the King and Ruler of my heart, mind, life, and home. May my life reflect your meekness and humility that you may be honored as the King of glory!
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=mar28)

Meditation: 13 - 14 February 2021
Do you seek the Lord Jesus with expectant faith? No one who sought Jesus out was refused his help. Even the untouchables and the outcasts of Jewish society found help in him. Unlike the people of Jesus' time who fled at the sight of a leper, Jesus touched the leper who approached him and he made him whole and clean. Why was this so remarkable? Lepers were outcasts of society. They were driven from their homes and communities and left to fend for themselves. Their physical condition was terrible as they slowly lost the use of their limbs and withered away. They were not only shunned but regarded as "already dead" even by their relatives. The Jewish law forbade anyone from touching or approaching a leper, lest ritual defilement occur. 
How do you approach those who are difficult to love, or who are shunned by others because they are deformed or have some defect? Do you show them kindness and offer them mercy and help as Jesus did? The Lord is always ready to show us his mercy and to free us from whatever makes us unclean, unapproachable, or unloving towards others. 
Lord Jesus, inflame my heart with your love and make me clean and whole in body, mind, and spirit. May I never doubt your love nor cease to tell others of your mercy and compassion. 
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=feb14)


REFLECTION: 10-11  OCTOBER 2020
​​​Meditation: What can a royal wedding party tell us about God's kingdom? One of the most beautiful images used in the Scriptures to depict what heaven is like is the wedding celebration and royal feast given by the King for his newly-wed son and bride. Whatever grand feast we can imagine on earth, heaven is the feast of all feasts because the Lord of heaven and earth invites us to the most important banquet of all - not simply as bystanders or guests - but as members of Christ's own body, his bride the church! The last book in the Bible ends with an invitation to the wedding feast of the Lamb - the Lord Jesus who offered his life as an atoning sacrifice for our sins and who now reigns as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The Spirit and the Bride say, Come! (Revelations 22:17). The Lord Jesus invites us to be united with himself in his heavenly kingdom of peace and righteousness. God invites each of us as his friends to his heavenly banquet that we may celebrate with him and share in his joy. Are you ready to feast at the Lord's banquet table? Lord Jesus, may I always know the joy of living in your presence and grow in the hope of seeing you face to face in your everlasting kingdom.
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=oct11)

REFLECTION: 5-6 SEPTEMBER 2020
Meditation: What's the best way to repair a damaged relationship? Jesus offers his disciples spiritual freedom and power for restoring broken or injured relationships. Don't brood over an offense - speak directly and privately What can we learn from Jesus' instructions about how to mend a damaged relationship (Matthew 18:15-20)? If you feel you have been wronged by someone, Jesus says the first step is to speak directly but privately to the individual who has done the harm. One of the worst things we can do is brood over our grievance. This can poison our mind and heart and make it more difficult to go directly to the person who caused the damage. Set no obstacle in seeking to heal your brother's wound When you are offended, are you willing to put aside your own grievance and injury in order to help your brother's wound? The Lord Jesus wants to set us free from resentment, ill-will, and an unwillingness to forgive. The love of Christ both purifies and sets us free to do good to all - even those who cause us grief. The call to accountability for what we have done and have failed to do is inevitable and we can't escape it, both in this life and at the day of judgment when the Lord Jesus will return. But while we have the opportunity today, we must not give up on praying for those who cause us offense. With God's help we must seek to make every effort to win them with the grace and power of God's healing love and wisdom. Do you tolerate broken relationships or do you seek to repair them as God gives you the opportunity to mend and restore what is broken? Lord Jesus, make me an instrument of your healing love and peace. Give me wisdom and courage to bring your healing love and saving truth to those in need of healing and restoration. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager (For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=sep6)

REFLECTION: 14 - 15  November 20
Meditation: What can economics and productivity teach us about the kingdom of heaven? Jesus' story about a businessman who leaves town and entrusts his money with his workers made perfect sense to his audience. Wealthy merchants and businessmen often had to travel abroad and leave the business to others to handle while they were gone.  The essence of the parable seems to lie in the servants' conception of responsibility. Each servant entrusted with the master's money was faithful up to a certain point. The servant who buried the master's money was irresponsible. One can bury seeds in the ground and expect them to become productive because they obey natural laws. Coins, however, do not obey natural laws. They obey economic laws and become productive in circulation. The master expected his servants to be productive in the use of his money. God rewards those who use their gifts for serving him and the good of others
What do coins and the law of economics have to do with the kingdom of God? The Lord entrusts the subjects of his kingdom with gifts and graces and he gives his subjects the freedom to use them as they think best. With each gift and talent, God gives sufficient means (grace and wisdom) for using them in a fitting way. As the parable of the talents shows, God abhors indifference and an attitude that says it's not worth trying. God honors those who use their talents and gifts for doing good. Those who are faithful with even a little are entrusted with more! But those who neglect or squander what God has entrusted to them will lose what they have. There is an important lesson here for us. No one can stand still for long in the Christian life. We either get more or we lose what we have. We either advance towards God or we slip back. Do you seek to serve God with the gifts, talents, and graces he has given to you?
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date
=nov15)

REFLECTION 12 - 13 December 2020
Meditation: Do you know the favor of the Lord? Every 50 years the people of Israel were commanded to celebrate a Year of Jubilee - a year of favor by the Lord (Leviticus 25:10-12). God did not want his people to forget all the blessings and favors he had shown them over the years. Isaiah prophesied in a year of Jubilee that God would send his anointed one to bring his people back from their time of exile (Isaiah 61). The anointed one would bring good news (the same word as "gospel") - news of freedom for those who were oppressed by sin, darkness, despair, and brokenness (Isaiah 61:1-2).  Do you point others to Jesus Christ - the one true Lord and Savior of the world?
John was the greatest of the prophets, yet he lived as a humble and faithful servant of God. He pointed others to Jesus, the true Messiah and Savior of the world. The Christian church from the earliest of times has given John many titles which signify his mission: Witness of the Lord, Trumpet of Heaven, Herald of Christ, Voice of the Word, Precursor of Truth, Friend of the Bridegroom, Crown of the Prophets, Forerunner of the Redeemer, Preparer of Salvation, Light of the Martyrs, and Servant of the Word. Do you point others to Jesus Christ by the example and witness of your life? Lord Jesus, make me a herald of your word of truth and grace. Help me to be a faithful witness of the joy of the Gospel and to point others to you as John did through his testimony. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager (For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=dec13)

REFLECTION 19 - 20 December 2020
Meditation: Does the proclamation of the Gospel message fill you with joy and hope? When the Lord comes to redeem his people he fills us with his Holy Spirit, the source of our joy and hope in the promises of God When God made a covenant with David as King over Israel he made a promise to David and to his descendants that David's dynasty would endure forever through the coming of the Messiah King (2 Samuel 7:16). This King would establish an everlasting kingdom of peace and security for his people. We often think of peace as the absence of trouble. The peace which the Messiah brings cancels the debt of sin and restores our broken relationship with God our heavenly Father. God gives us the grace to say "yes" to his will and to his transforming work in our lives What is the key that unlocks the power and grace of God's kingdom in our personal lives? Faith and obedience for sure! God gives us grace and he expects us to respond with the same willing obedience and heartfelt trust as Mary did. When God commands he also gives the help and means to respond. We can either yield to his grace or resist and go our own way. Do you believe in God's promises and do you yield to his grace? Heavenly Father, you offer us abundant grace, mercy, and forgiveness through your Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. Help me to live a grace-filled life as Mary did by believing in your promises and by giving you my unqualified 'yes' to your will and plan for my life. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager (For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=dec20)

Meditation: 13 - 14 March 2021
Meditation: Do you know the healing power of Christ's redeeming love and victory which he won for us on the cross? The Old Testament prophets never ceased to speak of God's faithfulness and compassion towards those who would turn away from sin and return to God with repentant hearts, trust, and obedience (2 Chronicles 36:15). When Jesus spoke to Nicodemus he prophesied that his death on the cross would bring healing and forgiveness and a "new birth in the Spirit" (John 3:3) and eternal life (John 3:15). The proof of God's love for us How do we know, beyond a doubt, that God truly loves us and wants us to be united with him forever? For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). God proved his love for us by giving us the best he had to offer - his only begotten Son who freely gave himself as an offering to God for our sake and as the atoning sacrifice for our sin and the sin of the world. Jesus shows us the paradox of love and judgment. We can love the darkness of sin and unbelief or we can love the light of God's truth, beauty, and goodness. If our love is guided by what is true, and good and beautiful then we will choose for God and love him above all else. What we love shows what we prefer. Do you love God above all else? Do you give him first place in your life, in your thoughts, decisions and actions?
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=mar14)

REFLECTION: 12-13  SEPTEMBER 2020
Meditation: Does mercy overlook justice? Justice demands that everyone be given their due. So when is it right to show mercy and pardon to those who have acted unjustly or wrongly? The prophet Amos speaks of God forgiving transgression three times, but warns that God may not revoke punishment for the fourth (see Amos 1:3-13; 2:1-6). When Peter posed the question of forgiveness, he characteristically offered an answer he thought Jesus would be pleased with. Why not forgive seven times! How unthinkable for Jesus to counter with the proposition that one must forgive seventy times that.

Lord Jesus, you have been kind and forgiving towards me. May I be merciful as you are merciful. Free me from all bitterness and resentment that I may truly forgive from the heart those who have caused me injury or grief.

copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=sep13)​​

REFLECTION FOR SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY 

7 JUNE 20

(Trinity) God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, we ask you to give us all around PEACE in our mind, body, soul and spirit.  We want you to heal and remove everything that is causing stress, grief, and sorrow in our lives and Nation today.  May God of Peace help us to be peacemakers each day in our life, in our families, in our nations.  Guide our path through life and make our enemies be at PEACE with us. 

Pope Francis

Meditation: 27 - 28 February 2021
Meditation: What can blind us or keep us from recognizing God's glory and presence in our lives? Sin and unbelief for sure! Faith enables us to see what is hidden or unseen to the naked eye. Through the eyes of faith Abraham recognized God and God's call on his life. He saw from afar not only what God intended for him, but for his descendants as well - an everlasting covenant of friendship and peace with the living God. Abraham is the father of faith because he put his hope in the promises of God. Faith makes us taste in advance the light of God's glory when we shall see him face to face (1 Corinthians 13:12; 1 John 3:2). The Lord Jesus reveals his glory in fulfilling his Father's will Are you prepared to see God's glory? God is eager to share his glory with us! We get a glimpse of this when the disciples see Jesus transfigured on the mountain. Jesus' face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white (Mark 9:2,3). The Lord wants to share his glory with each of us The Lord Jesus not only wants us to see his glory - he wants to share this glory with us. And Jesus shows us the way to the Father's glory: follow me - obey my words - take the path I have chosen for you and you will receive the glory and blessings of my Father's kingdom - your names will be written in heaven (Luke 10:20). Stay awake spiritually - Don't miss God's glory and action Luke's Gospel account tells us that while Jesus was transfigured, Peter, James, and John were asleep (Luke 9:32)! Upon awakening they discovered Jesus in glory along with Moses and Elijah. How much do we miss of God's glory and action because we are asleep spiritually? There are many things which can keep our minds asleep to the things of God: Mental lethargy and the "unexamined life" can keep us from thinking things through and facing our doubts and questions in the light of Christ's truth. The life of ease can also hinder us from considering the challenging or disturbing demands of Christ to forsake all for him and his kingdom. Prejudice can make us blind to something new the Lord may have for us. Even sorrow can be a block until we can see past it to the glory of God. How spiritually awake are you to Christ's presence and word of life for you? Peter, James, and John were privileged witnesses of the glory of Christ. We, too, as disciples of Christ are called to be witnesses of his glory. We all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being changed into his likeness from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:18). The Lord wants to reveal his glory to us, his beloved disciples. Do you seek his presence with expectant faith, reverence, and willing obedience? copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=feb28)

Meditation: 20 - 21 March 2021
Meditation: How does God bring us into an inseparable bond of love and unity with himself? God is a covenant-maker who draws men and women to himself in a bond of peace and friendship. God established a covenant with his people when he freed them from slavery in Egypt and brought them to his holy mountain at Sinai. "I will be your God, and you will be my people" (Exodus 6:7; Leviticus 26:12). But his people time and again broke covenant with him and did not follow his ways (Jeremiah 31:32) - "each did what was right in his or her own eyes" (Judges 17:26 and 21:25). God, nonetheless, continued to send his prophets to draw his people back. A new and everlasting covenant  When the prophet Jeremiah was sent to the exiles to offer them a message of hope and restoration, he spoke of a new covenant that would surpass the previous covenant which God had made. God intended to establish a new and everlasting covenant that would wipe away the sins of his people and open the way to God's throne of mercy and grace (his undeserved favor and blessing). This new covenant would be sealed with the blood of the perfect sacrifice that Jesus would offer to the Father when he died upon the cross to atone for our sins. At the beginning of Jesus' ministry John the Baptist prophetically pointed to Jesus as the "Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world" (John 1:29). Jesus, the only begotten Son of God, was sent from the Father in heaven to became a man for our sake so he could as man offer the one perfect sacrifice that would unite us with God and give us everlasting life. 
Jesus used strong language to describe the kind of self-denial he had in mind for his disciples. "He who loves his life loses it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life" (John 12:25). What did Jesus mean when he said that a follower of Christ must hate himself or herself? The expression to hate something often meant to prefer less. Jesus says that nothing should get in the way of our preferring him and the will of our heavenly Father above all else. Paul the Apostle reminds us that "what is sown in the earth is subject to decay, what rises is incorruptible" (1 Corinthians15:42). Do you believe in the power and victory of Christ's saving cross and resurrection? And are you ready to reject whatever is contrary to God's commands and to trust him for the strength and joy to embrace his will for your life?
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=mar21)

REFLECTION FOR 7th SUNDAY IN EASTER, 24 MAY 2020
The Ascension of the Lord        What does Jesus  Ascension Mean
The Ascension of Jesus (from the Vulgate Latin Acts 1:9-11 section title: Ascensio Iesu) is the physical departure of Christ from Earth into the presence of God in Heaven.  Ascension Day, also known as, Holy Thursday, the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord or The Feast of the Ascension of Jesus Christ, commemorates the moment Jesus ascended into heaven.
Ascension Day is traditionally celebrated the 40th day after Easter Sunday, that commemorates Jesus Christ's ascension into heaven according to Christian belief.  40 days after the resurrection, Jesus and his disciples went to Mount Olivet (Mount of Olives), near Jerusalem.  Ascension of Christ (Luke 24, 51) Ascension Day is the 40th day of Easter.  It occurs 39 days after Easter Sunday.  It is a Christian holiday that commemorates Jesus Christ's ascension into heaven, according to Christian belief.  Ascension Day marks the 40th day after Jesus Christ's resurrection, according to Christian belief.  Ascension Day, commemorates the moment Jesus ascended into heaven 40 days after Easter to sit at his Father's right hand. 
Jesus' disciples in Jerusalem watch his departure from Earth.  Acts: 1:1-11 of the Bible?  Show Jesus' farewell to the apostles.  The passage states:  "Then they gathered around him and asked him, 'Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?' "He said to them: 'It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority.  "But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.'  "After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight."
WHAT HAPPENED TO JESUS ON ASCENSION DAY
The Apostles gathered to bid farewell to someone (Jesus) who never caused pain to anyone but came to this earth that he may assuage all pain, someone who never in his life trampled upon another, but raise up each one upon whom his glance fell, who never sought glory yet his name today dims all human renown and power.  Jesus led his disciples up to the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.  He then said that the time had come for him to be returned to God.  (The King James Bible states) that after Jesus ascended, two angels descended from above and said to his followers: "Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven?  "This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven."
Because the Apostles saw Christ ascend into heaven and were assured of his help with no human power or means they undertook to evangelize the whole world.  What amazing, shattering effect Christ's words had and still have on the lives of all human.  From his words a world transforming power emanates.  Life radiates from Christ's words and has been doing so for centuries.  

REFLECTION: 05 - 06 DECEMBER 2020
​Meditation: John the Baptist's life was fueled by one burning passion - to point others to Jesus Christ and to the coming of his kingdom. Who is John the Baptist and what is the significance of his message for our lives? Scripture tells us that John was filled with the Holy Spirit even from his mother's womb (Luke 1:15, 41) by Christ himself, whom Mary had just conceived by the Holy Spirit. When Mary visited her cousin Elizabeth John leaped in her womb as they were filled with the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:41). The fire of the Spirit dwelt in John and made him the forerunner of the coming Messiah. John was led by the Spirit into the wilderness prior to his ministry where he grew in the word of God and was tested in preparation for his prophetic mission. John's clothing was reminiscent of the prophet Elijah (see Kings 1:8). Let the Holy Spirit purify and transform your mind and heart  John's baptism was for repentance - turning away from sin and taking on a new way of life according to God's word. Our baptism in Jesus Christ by water and the Spirit results in a new birth and entry into God's kingdom as his beloved sons and daughters (John 3:5). The Lord Jesus comes to baptize each one of us in his Holy Spirit so that we may walk in his truth and holiness and radiate the joy of the Gospel to all we meet. God's word has power to change and transform our lives so that we may be lights that point others to Jesus Christ. Like John the Baptist, we too are called to give testimony to the light and truth of Christ. Do you point others to Jesus Christ in the way you live, speak, and treat others? Lord, let your light burn brightly in my heart that I may know the joy and freedom of your kingdom. Fill me with your Holy Spirit and empower me to witness the truth of your Gospel and to point others to Jesus Christ. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?  _year=2020&date=dec6)

REFLECTION: 07 - 08  November 20
Me
ditation: Are you missing out on what's most important in life? Being unprepared can lead to unnecessary trouble and even disaster! What good is a life-jacket left on the shore when the boat is sinking? Jesus' story of ten single ladies waiting for a wedding procession in the middle of the night seems strange to most westerners today. But Jesus' audience knew all too well how easily this could happen to them.  The consequences of being unprepared to meet the Lord
Jesus warns us that there are consequences for being unprepared. There are certain things you cannot obtain at the last moment. For example, students cannot prepare for their exams when the day of testing is already upon them. A person cannot get the right kind of character, strength, and skill required for a task at hand unless they already possess it, such as a captain with courage and nautical skills who must steer a ship through a dangerous storm at sea.
When the Lord Jesus comes to lead you to his heavenly banquet will you be ready to hear his voice and follow? Our eternal welfare depends on our hearing, and many have trained themselves to not hear. We will not be prepared to meet the Lord, face to face, when he calls us on the day of judgment, unless we listen to him today. The Lord invites us to feast at his heavenly banquet table. Are you ready?

copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=nov8)

16 - 17 January 21
Meditation: Who is Jesus for you? John calls Jesus the Lamb of God and thus signifies Jesus' mission as the One who redeems us from our sins. The blood of the Passover Lamb (Exodus 12) delivered the Israelites from their oppression in Egypt and from the plague of death. The Lord Jesus freely offered up his life for us on the cross as the atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 Corinthians 5:7). The blood which he poured out for us on the cross cleanses, heals, and frees us from our slavery to sin, and from the "wages of sin which is death" (Romans 6:23) and the "destruction of both body and soul in hell" (Matthew 10:28).
Lord Jesus Christ, fill me with the power of your Holy Spirit that I may grow in the knowledge of your great love and truth. Let your Spirit be aflame in my heart that I may joyfully seek to do your will in all things.
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=jan17)

Meditation: 10 - 11 April 2021,
Do you know the joy of the resurrection? The Risen Lord Jesus revealed the glory of his resurrection to his disciples gradually and over a period of time. Even after the apostles saw the empty tomb and heard the reports of Jesus' appearance to the women, they were still weak in faith and fearful of being arrested by the Jewish authorities. When Jesus appeared to them he offered proofs of his resurrection by showing them the wounds of his passion, his pierced hands and side. He calmed their fears and brought them peace, the peace which reconciles sinners and makes us friends of God.  Through the gift of faith we recognize the Risen Lord and receive new life  When Thomas finally had the courage to rejoin the other apostles, the Lord Jesus made his presence known to him and reassured him that he had indeed overcome death and risen again. When Thomas recognized his Master, he believed and exclaimed that Jesus was truly Lord and truly God! Through the gift of faith we, too, proclaim that Jesus is our personal Lord and our God. He died and rose that we, too, might have new life in him. The Lord offers each of us new life in his Holy Spirit that we may know him personally and walk in this new way of life through the power of his resurrection. Do you believe in the good news of the Gospel and in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring you new life, hope, and joy? Lord Jesus Christ, through your victory over sin and death you have overcome all the powers of sin and darkness. Help me to draw near to you and to trust in your life-giving word. Fill me with your Holy Spirit and strengthen my faith in your promises and my hope in the power of your resurrection.
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=

REFLECTION: 21 - 22  November 20
Meditation: Do you allow the love of Christ, who is your Lord and King, to rule in your heart? Augustine of Hippo (354-430 A.D.) said, "Essentially, there are two kinds of people, because there are two kinds of love. One is holy, the other is selfish. One is subject to God; the other endeavors to equal Him." Jesus came not only to fulfill the law of righteousness (Leviticus 19), but to transform it through his unconditional love and mercy towards us. The Lord Jesus proved his love for us by offering up his life on the cross as the atoning sacrifice for our sins. His death brings freedom and life for us - freedom from fear, selfishness, and greed - and new abundant life in the Holy Spirit who fills our hearts with the love of God (Romans 5:5). Do you allow God's love to purify your heart and transform your mind to think, act, and love others as the Lord Jesus has taught through word and example? 
Lord Jesus, be the Master and Ruler of my life. May your love rule in my heart that I may only think, act, and speak with charity and good will for all. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit:https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=nov22)

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30-31 January 2021

Meditation: Do you believe that God's word has power to set you free and to transform your life? When Jesus taught he spoke with authority. He spoke the word of God as no one had spoken it before. When the Rabbis taught they supported their statements with quotes from other authorities. The prophets spoke with delegated authority - "Thus says the Lord." When Jesus spoke he needed no authorities to back his statements. He was authority incarnate - the Word of God made flesh. When he spoke, God spoke. When he commanded even the demons obeyed.  Faith works through love and abounds in hope
Augustine of Hippo (354-430 AD) remarked that "faith is mighty, but without love it profits nothing. The devils confessed Christ, but lacking charity it availed nothing. They said, 'What have we to do with you' (Mark 1:24)? They confessed a sort of faith, but without love. Hence they were devils."  Faith must be nourished with the Word of God
Faith is both a free gift of God and the free assent of our will to the whole truth that God has revealed. To live, grow, and persevere in the faith to the end, we must nourish it with the word of God. The Lord gives us his Holy Spirit to enlighten our minds that we may grow in his truth and in the knowledge of his great love for each of us. If we approach God's word with trust and submission, and with an eagerness to do what the Lord desires for us, then we are in a much better position to learn what God wants to teach us through his word. Are you eager to be taught by the Lord and to conform your mind, heart, attitude, and intentions according to his word of truth, goodness, and love?  
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=jan31)

REFLECTION FOR 13/14 JUNE 2020

JESUS IS THE BREAD OF LIFE.

The Eucharist gives us life by uniting and connecting us with Christ, with Christ's body, the Church, and with all whom the Eucharist calls us to serve.  To share this communion now is already a taste of the fullness of life that is promised in the Eucharist.  We should allow our faith in the Eucharist to lead us to actions that all may be fed.  Let us reflect on the integral connection between the Eucharist and life giving acts.  When the Israelites experienced hunger and thirst during their wandering in the wilderness, it was God's daily provision of manna that sustained them for the journey.  Therefore Jesus in the Eucharist sustains and strengthens us on our Heavenly journey.  Spend sometime in prayers reflecting on the life giving effects of the Eucharist in your life.


REFLECTION: 17-18  OCTOBER 2020
​​​​Meditation: What do we owe God and our neighbor? Scripture tells us to give to everyone whatever is their due and to "owe no one anything, except to love one another" (Romans 13:6-8). The Jewish authorities sought to trap Jesus in a religious-state issue. The Jews resented their foreign rulers and despised paying taxes to Caesar. They posed a dilemma to test Jesus to see if he was loyal to them and to their understanding of religion. If Jesus answered that it was lawful to pay taxes to a pagan ruler, then he would lose credibility with the Jewish nation who would regard him as a coward and a friend of Caesar. If he said it was not lawful, then the Pharisees would have grounds to report him to the Roman authorities as a political trouble-maker and have him arrested. We have been "stamped" with God's image and likeness This story has another deeper meaning as well. We, too, have been stamped with God's image since we are created in his own likeness - "God created man in his own image ..male and female he created them" (Genesis 1:26-27). We rightfully belong not to ourselves, but to God who created us and redeemed us in the precious blood of his Son, our Lord Jesus Christ (see 1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Paul the Apostle says that we are to present our bodies as a living sacrifice to God (Romans 12:1). Do you acknowledge that your life and everything you possess belongs to God and not to yourself? And do you give to God what rightfully belongs to him? copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word,  ource:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?  year=2020&date=oct18)

REFLECTION: 28 - 29 NOVEMBER 2020
Meditation: What do you do when someone you love very dearly and miss very much has been gone a very long time but promises to return soon? Do you ignore their absence, or do you anticipate their return and send them messages to let them know how much you long to be with them again? Jesus' parable about the long-expected return of the Master to his household brings this point home. How do we watch and wait for the Lord's coming?
How does the Lord want us to be watchful and vigilant for his return? The kind of watching the Lord has in mind is not a passive "wait and see what happens" approach to life. The Lord urges us to vigilance and to active prayer that his "kingdom may come" and his "will be done on earth as it is in heaven". We are not only to watch for Christ, but to watch with Christ. The Lord wants us to have our hearts and minds fixed on him and his word. He wants us to be ready for his action and work of grace in our lives and in our world. Those who "wait" for the Lord will not be disappointed. He will surely come with his grace and saving help. Do you watch for the Lord's action in your life with expectant faith and with joyful hope? The season of Advent is a time for rousing our minds and hearts for the Lord's coming. As his servants we watch for his will - continually seeking him. We watch for his word and his power - that he may act now to save and to deliver. And we watch for his visitation - he will surely come again! Servants of the Lord rouse yourselves! Be vigilant, be alert, be "watchmen" for the Lord pointing the way for his coming. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=nov29)

Meditation: 06 - 07 March 2021
Meditation: What can keep us from the presence of God? Jesus' dramatic cleansing of the temple was seen by his disciples as a prophetic sign of God's work to purify and restore true worship and holiness among his people. The temple was understood as the dwelling place of God among his people. When God delivered his people from slavery in Egypt, he brought them safely through the Red Sea, and led them to Mount Sinai where he made a covenant with them and gave them a new way of living in moral goodness and holiness embodied in the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:1-17). God also gave Moses instruction for how his people were to worship him in holiness and he instructed them to make a Tabernacle, which was also referred to as the "tent of meeting" where the people gathered to offer sacrifice and worship to God. The tent of meeting was later replaced by the construction of the temple at Jerusalem. The New Testament Scripture tells us that these "serve as a copy and shadow of the heavenly sanctuary" - God's true Temple in heaven (Hebrews 8:5). Jesus' cleansing of the temple is also a prophetic sign of what he wants to do with each of us. He ever seeks to cleanse us of our sinful ways in order to make us into living temples of his Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19). God desires that we be holy as he is holy. Do you thirst and hunger for God's holiness?

copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager

Meditation:  6-7 February 21.  Who do you take your troubles to? Jesus' disciples freely brought their troubles to him because they found him ready and able to deal with any difficulty, affliction, or sickness which they encountered. When Simon brought Jesus to his home, his mother-in-law was instantly healed because Jesus heard Simon's prayer. Jerome, an early church bible scholar and translator (c. 347-420), reflects on this passage:  "Can you imagine Jesus standing before your bed and you continue sleeping? It is absurd that you would remain in bed in his presence. Where is Jesus? He is already here offering himself to us. 'In the middle,' he says, 'among you he stands, whom you do not recognize' (Cf. John 1:26) 'The kingdom of God is in your midst' (Mark 1:15). Faith beholds Jesus among us. If we are unable to seize his hand, let us prostrate ourselves at his feet. If we are unable to reach his head, let us wash his feet with our tears. Our repentance is the perfume of the Savior. See how costly is the compassion of the Savior."  Do you allow Jesus to be the Lord and healer in your personal life, family, and community? Approach the Lord with expectant faith. God's healing power restores us not only to health but to active service and care of others. There is no trouble he does not want to help us with and there is no bondage he can't set us free from. Do you take your troubles to him with expectant faith that he will help you?
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=feb7)

Meditation: 23 - 24 April 2021,
Meditation: Do you know the peace and security of the Good Shepherd who watches over his own? The Old Testament often speaks of God as shepherd of his people, Israel. The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want (Psalm 23:1). Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock! (Psalm 80:1) We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture (Psalm 100:3). The Messiah is also pictured as the shepherd of God's people: He will feed his flock like a shepherd, he will gather the lambs in his arms (Isaiah 40:11). Jesus says he is the Good Shepherd who will risk his life to seek out and save the stray sheep (Matthew 18:12, Luke 15:4). He is the Shepherd and Guardian of our souls (1 Peter 2:25). Do you listen to the voice of the Good Shepherd who calls you to himself? The words which Jesus spoke upset many of the Jewish leaders. How could he speak with the same authority which God spoke and claim to be equal with God? He must either be insane or divine. Unfortunately some thought he was mad even though he cured a man who was blind from birth. We are faced with the same choice. Either Jesus is who he claims to be - the Son of God and Savior of the world - or the world's greatest deluder! We cannot be indifferent to his claim. For those who accept him as Lord and Savior he offers the peace and security of unending life and joy with God. Do you know the peace and security of a life fully submitted to Christ? Lord Jesus, you are the Good Shepherd who keeps watch over our lives. May I be ever attentive to your voice and submit fully to your wise rule for my life. Draw me near to you that I may always find peace and joy in your presence.
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager.

REFLECTION: 26-27  SEPTEMBER 2020
​​​Meditation: What kind of future are you preparing for? Jesus encourages us to think - to think about the consequences of our choices, especially the choices and decisions that will count not just for now but for eternity as well. The choices we make now will affect and shape our future, both our future on earth as well as in the life of the age to come.
A transformed heart filled with gratitude and respect
God wants to change our hearts so that we will show by our speech and by our actions that we respect his will and do it. God offers each one of us the greatest treasure possible - indestructible peace, joy, and friendship with him in his everlasting kingdom. We can lose that treasure if we refuse the grace - the free gift of God's blessing and strength - which the Lord Jesus has won for us through his victory on the cross. The Lord Jesus fills us with the gift of the Holy Spirit who works in and through us for the glory of God. Do you seek to please God and respect his will and loving plan for your life? Allow the Holy Spirit to fill your heart with the peace, joy, and righteousness of God's kingdom (Romans 14:17).
Lord Jesus, change my heart that I may only desire that which is pleasing to you. Help me to respect your will and give me the strength, joy and perseverance to carry it out wholeheartedly.
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=sep27)

REFLECTION FOR 4 / 5 JULY 2020

As people of faith we know that God is with us and always walks with us every day, especially in these difficult days.  We will continue to pray for everyone especially those who are sick and for the families of those who have died because of this virus, not only in our community but everywhere.  Reflecting from Saint Paul's message in Romans 8-9-13 ......we should always pray for the Spirit of God to abide with us, never to live by the demands of the flesh.  Jesus also invites us in Matthew 11:25-30 ....that we should come to Him with all our burdens that He will make it easier for us.  Let us prayerfully surrender all our worries and burdens onto the Lord in this difficult time, He will save us.  

Meditation: 3 - 4 April 2021,
]f Jesus had not risen from the dead and appeared to his disciples, we would never have heard of him. Nothing else could have changed sad and despairing men and women into people radiant with joy and courage. The reality of the resurrection is the central fact of the Christian faith. Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, the Lord gives us "eyes of faith" to know him and the power of his resurrection. The greatest joy we can have is to encounter the living Lord and to know him personally. Do you celebrate the feast of Easter with joy and thanksgiving for the victory which Jesus has won for you over sin and death?
Lord Jesus Christ, you have triumphed over the grave and you have won new life for us. Give me the eyes of faith to see you in your glory. Help me to draw near to you and to grow in the knowledge of your great love and power.
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=apr4)

Reflection 8-9-20
Does the Lord Jesus seem distant when trials or adversity come your way?  It was at Jesus' initiative that were experienced fishermen, they feared for their lives.  While Jesus was not with them in the boat, he, nonetheless watched for them in prayer.  When he perceived their trouble he came to them on the sea and startled them with his sudden appearance.  Do you look for the Lord's presence when you encounter difficulty or challenges?
​copyright @ 2020 Servants of the Word, source: dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager

(For full Reflection, please visit https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=aug9)

Meditation:  2 - 3 January 2021
Why did Jesus, the Sinless One, submit himself to John's baptism? John preached a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 3:3) - of which Jesus had no need. However, in this humble submission we see a foreshadowing of the "baptism" of his bloody death upon the cross. Jesus' baptism is the acceptance and the beginning of his mission as God's suffering Servant (Isaiah 53). He allowed himself to be numbered among sinners. Jesus submitted himself entirely to his Father's will. Out of love he consented to this baptism of death for the remission of our sins. Do you know the joy of trust and submission to God?
Do you want to see your life transformed by the love and power of Jesus Christ? And do you want to become a more effective instrument of the Gospel of peace, mercy, and righteousness? Examine Jesus' humility and ask the Holy Spirit to forge this same attitude in your heart. As you do, heaven will open for you as well. The Lord Jesus is ever ready to renew us in his Holy Spirit and to anoint us for mission. We are called to be "light" and "salt" to those around us. The Lord wants his love and truth to shine through us that others may see the goodness and truth of God's message of salvation. Ask the Lord Jesus to fill you with his Holy Spirit that you may radiate the joy of the Gospel to those around you.
Lord Jesus, fill me with your Holy Spirit and inflame my heart with the joy of the Gospel. May I find joy in seeking to please you just as you found joy in seeking to please your Father. 
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager

(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=jan10)

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REFLECTION: 03-04  OCTOBER 2020
​​​Meditation: What is the message of the parable of the vineyard? Jesus' story about an absentee landlord and his not-so-good tenants would have made sense to his audience. The hills of Galilee were lined with numerous vineyards, and it was quite common for the owners to let out their estates to tenants. Many did it for the sole purpose of collecting rent.
The Lord's vinyeard in the house of his people
Why did Jesus' story about wicked tenants cause offense to the scribes and Pharisees? It contained both a prophetic message and a warning. Isaiah had spoken of the house of Israel as "the vineyard of the Lord" (Isaiah 5:7). Jesus' listeners would have likely understood this parable as referring to God's dealing with a stubborn and rebellious people. This parable speaks to us today as well. It richly conveys some important truths about God and the way he deals with his people. First, it tells us of God's generosity and trust. The vineyard is well equipped with everything the tenants need. The owner went away and left the vineyard in the hands of the tenants. God, likewise trusts us enough to give us freedom to run life as we choose. This parable also tells us of God's patience and justice. Not once, but many times he forgives the tenants their debts. But while the tenants take advantage of the owner's patience, his judgment and justice prevail in the end.
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=oct4)

REFLECTION FOR 6th SUNDAY IN EASTER, 17 MAY 2020
First Reading: Acts 8:5-8, 14-17 Second Reading: 1 Peter 3:15-18 Gospel: John 14:15-21
The center of Jesus whole life was love. Jesus is reminding and preparing us that He is going to leave us but He will not leave us alone.  He also tells us that He chose us; we did not choose Him.  Let us look at these words and figure out what these words meant in our lives. "Whoever knows my commandments and observes them is the one who loves me.  And whoever loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and reveal myself to Him." Pray and reflect on the statements above and you will be taken aback to find out how much these words have played a role in your life.  It was as if Jesus left us all we needed to be familiar with to always stay with Him  His commandment is LOVE, "love one another,"  Jesus whole life shows how to LOVE and FORGIVE.  What about you.........?  Have you learned from Jesus what an authentic love is all about? Some of the feelings about what it might mean to keep His commandment to LOVE.
            *Pray for each other especially those most in need of our prayer in this time of Pandemic Covid-19.
            *Invite those who have the authority and resources to help make things better to do so, to prefer love.
            *Attain to the marginalized and offer them support in their struggles and pain especially in this time of fear and challenges by Covid-19
            *Get to the poor and be poor with them, offering them whatever you may have that they may need and you can share with them in this difficult time. As we are scared, weak, and feel hopeless just like we are now in this time of Corona virus, we remember that Jesus promised us, "the Spirit of truth" who "remains with you and will be in you."  Then we know again that we are not alone.  Jesus sent His Spirit to be with us, to teach us again and again how to love Him, and He promised that we will be loved by the Father.  God has plans and promises to every one of us.  We are not alone and we are loved.  We have been prearranged with the Spirit who makes it possible for us to go after Jesus and love others as Jesus did and as Jesus commended us.  We do what we can and God takes care of the remaining in our lives through the overwhelming power of the Spirit.  As we all are struggling with this new way of life that is so strange and frightening.  I pray that we all may find out what these words have meant in each of our lives, we know and believe God is with us all times and it is encouraging to know his love is endless. 

Reflection for 29-30 Aug 2020
Meditation: What is the way to glory and victory in the kingdom of God? Jesus told his disciples that he must first suffer rejection, be crucified, and then rise again on the third day. In so many words he explained that there could be no victory and no glory without the cross. Jesus' prediction of his suffering and death on the cross caused his disciples great dismay and disbelief. Peter, who was often the first to react to whatever Jesus had to say, wanted to protect Jesus from any threat or harm. That is why he rebuked the very thought of Jesus having to face rejection, condemnation and crucifixion.
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding  and all my will, all that I have and possess. You have given them to me; to you, O Lord, I restore them; all things are yours, dispose of them according to your will. Give me your love and your grace, for this is enough for me. (Prayer of Ignatius of Loyola, 1491-1556)
copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=aug30)​


Meditation: 19 - 20 February 2021
Meditation: What is the significance of Jesus spending 40 days and nights of solitude, prayer and fasting in the Judean wilderness? In the Old Testament 40 days was often seen as a significant period of testing and preparation for entering into a covenant relationship with God. In the days of Noah, God judged the earth and destroyed its inhabitants in a great flood because of their idolatry and total rejection of God. Noah and his family were spared because they obeyed God and took refuge in the ark for 40 days. When the flood subsided God made a covenant with Noah and promised that he would not destroy the human race again. Jesus came to fulfill that promise.  God's Word and Spirit sustains those who seek God's will Matthew, Mark, and Luke tell us in their Gospel accounts that Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit into the wilderness. Mark states it most emphatically: "The Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness" (Mark 1:12). Why was Jesus compelled to seek solitude for such a lengthy period? Was it simply a test to prepare him for his ministry? Or did Satan want to lure him into a trap? The word tempt in English usually means to entice to sin or wrong-doing. The scriptural word here also means test in the sense of proving and purifying someone to see if there are ready for the task at hand. We test pilots to see that they are fit to fly. Likewise God tests his servants to see if they are fit to be used by him.  Two conditions for the kingdom - repent and believe How do we enter the kingdom of God? In announcing the good news of the Gospel Jesus gave two explicit things each of us must do in order to receive the kingdom of God: repent and believe. Repent means to turn away from sin and wrong-doing in order to follow God's way of love, truth, and moral goodness. When we submit to God's rule in our lives and believe in the Gospel message the Lord Jesus gives us the grace and power to live a new way of life as citizens of his kingdom. He gives us grace to renounce the kingdom of darkness ruled by pride, sin, and Satan, the father of lies (John 8:44) and the ruler of this present world (John 12:31). Repentance is the first step to surrendering my will and my life to God. Repentance means to change - to change my way of thinking, my attitude, my disposition, and the way I choose to live my life - so that the Lord Jesus can be the Master and Ruler of my heart, mind, and will. Whatever stands in the way of God's will and plan for my life must be surrendered to him - my sinful pride, my rebellious attitude, and stubborn will to do as I please rather than as God pleases. If I am only sorry for the consequences of my own sinful ways, I will very likely keep repeating the same sins that control my thoughts and actions. True repentance requires a contrite heart and true sorrow for sin (Psalm 51:17) and a firm resolution to avoid the near occasion of sin. The Lord Jesus gives us the grace to see sin for what it really is - a rejection of his love, truth, and wisdom for our lives and a refusal to do what he says is right and good for us. His grace brings pardon and freedom from guilt, and breaks the power of bondage to sin in our lives through the strength and help of the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. If we yield to the Holy Spirit and not to our sinful inclinations, we will find the strength and help we need to turn away from all wrong-doing and whatever else might keep us from living in his truth and love.  To believe is to take Jesus at his word and to recognize that God loved us so much that he sent his only begotten Son to free us from bondage to sin and harmful desires. God made the supreme sacrifice of his Son on the cross to bring us back to a relationship of peace, friendship, and unity with our Father in heaven. He is our Father and he wants us to live in joy and freedom as his beloved sons and daughters. God loved us first and he invites us in love to surrender our lives to him. Do you believe in the Gospel - the good news of Jesus Christ - and in the power of the Holy Spirit who transforms each one of us into the likeness of Christ?  copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=feb21)

REFLECTION: 31 October -  1 November 20
Meditation: Who doesn't desire the praise and respect of others? We want others to see us at our best with all of our strengths and achievements - rather than at our worst with all of our faults and shortcomings. God sees us as we truly are - sinners and beggars always in need of his mercy, help, and guidance. Misguided zeal and pride Jesus warned the scribes and Pharisees, the teachers and rulers of Israel, to teach and serve their people with humility and sincerity rather than with pride and self-seeking privileges and honor. They went to great lengths to draw attention to their religious status and practices. In a way they wanted to be good models of observant Jews. "See how well we observe all the ritual rules and regulations of our religion!" In their misguided zeal for religion they sought recognition and honor for themselves rather than for God. They made the practice of their faith a burden rather than a joy for the people they were supposed to serve. True respect for God inclines us to humble ourselves and to submit to his wisdom and guidance. We cannot be taught by God unless we first learn to listen to his word and then obey his instruction. Lord Jesus, you became a servant for my sake to set me free from the tyranny of selfish pride and self-concern. Teach me to be humble as you are humble and to love others generously with selfless service and kindness. copyright © 2020 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager (For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2020&date=nov1)​

​Meditation: 17 - 18 April 2021,
Meditation: Aren't we like the apostles? We wont believe unless we can see with our own eyes. The Gospel accounts attest to the reality of the resurrection of Jesus from the grave. Jesus goes to great lengths to assure his disciples that he is no mere ghost or illusion. He shows them the marks of his crucifixion and he explains how the Scriptures foretold his death and rising.
The door to heaven and key to paradise is through the cross
The centrality of the Gospel message is the cross - but fortunately it does not stop there. Through the cross Jesus defeated our enemies - death and Satan and won pardon for our sins. His cross is the door to heaven and the key to paradise. The way to glory is through the cross. When the disciples saw the risen Lord they disbelieved for joy! How can death lead to life, the cross to victory? Jesus shows us the way and he gives us the power to overcome sin and despair, and everything else that would stand in the way of his love and truth. Just as the first disciples were commissioned to bring the good news of salvation to all the nations, so, we, too, are called to be witnesses of the resurrection of Jesus Christ to all who live on the face of the earth. Do you witness the joy of the Gospel to those around you?
copyright © 2021 Servants of the Word, source:  dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager
(For full Reflection, please visit: https://www.dailyscripture.net/daily-meditation/?ds_year=2021&date=apr18)

REFLECTION FOR WEEK OF 26 APRIL 2020
​​When battered by life's storms, or immersed in a dense fog of suffering and uncertainty, we may feel alone and unequipped to handle the circumstances.  Yet with words that echo through thousands of years into the corners of our hearts, the Lord says to us, "Do not fear: I am with you" (Isaiah 41:10).
He speaks these words not as one who merely observes our pain, but as one who experienced immense suffering.  And the very wounds that bear witness to his suffering indicate the essence of our identity and worth: we are loved by God. 
Reflecting on the healed wounds of the Risen Christ, we see that even our most difficult trials can be the place where God manifests his victory.  He makes all things beautiful.  He  makes all things new.
He is always with us.  Jesus promised this when he gave the disciples the same mission he gives to each of us: Go.
Go be my hands and feet to a world enslaved by fear.  Go to the woman who is unexpectedly pregnant and fears the future.  Go to your friend who fears reprisal at work because he takes a stand for the protection of human life.  Go to your aging parent in failing health who fears being a burden.  And go to others, too, for their support. 
We don't need to have everything figured out. We can simply follow the guidance of Our Blessed Mother, the first disciple: "Do whatever he tells you" (John2:5). Walk with each other.  Do not be afraid to embrace God's gift of life.  Whatever storms or trials we face, we are not alone. He is with us.  
"Behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age"  (Matthew 28:20).
Used with permission. 2017, United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.