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Saturday, March 31, 2012

Be discreet and be silent!

The Gospel writer, Marc, does not put much emphasis on miracles. Jesus sends the healed lepers home telling then not to say anything about what happened. He does the same with the deaf and dumb that he healed, also with the blind to whom he restored the sight! They must not talk about what happened!

When Jesus brought back to life the daughter of Jabirus, Talitha, and the weeping women were utterly stunned by that, Jesus order them strictly to keep quiet. No one must know about it.
In such circumstances is it not unrealistic on Jesus’ part, to impose silence?

Why did Marc insist so much on this call to silence?

Marc's Gospel was written he in the seventy’s (1st Century) and it was addressed to the Christian communities living under the Roman Empire. It must be said that, at the time, the Emperors and the Empire were a most fascinating WHOLE!

So it was that, sometimes after his death, the Emperor was laid in the Pantheon, the Gods’ world. There, statues and temples were erected in his honour.

The Historians vied with zeal and it was who would put the emperor in the best light!

This explains the reason why the people were often tempted to put the “Messiah”, Jesus, on a par with the emperor. For example: the Emperor was « a Son of God », therefore, Jesus too should be a Son of God. The Emperor was seen as a « Saviour and a God », consequently Jesus too was to be seen as a Saviour and God.

According to their biographers, the Emperors had worked miracles during their lives, so it was assumed that Jesus too would have had accomplished miracles!

Jesus: An almighty and authentic Emperor? A radiant Son of God? A successful Wonder worker? It cannot be so: because Power and Success are no criteria fitting God’s Kingdom as announced and lived out by Jesus. He who pretends he is a believer of an Almighty and invincible God is also ready to go and wage war in His name.

No! The characteristics of the God of Jesus are not Power, or Might or Domination, or Wonder worker! On the contrary, the witness of Jesus’ life shows clearly that God is, “He who is identified with the poor and the afflicted.”

Hermann-Josef Venetz

Translation: Claire-Marie

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The third human temptation is the need for control, importance, and power. The devil tells Jesus to bow down before the power systems of this world: “All of these I will give to you” (Matthew 4:8). Make these into your actual belief and security system. Formal atheism is rare, but this kind of practical daily atheism is almost the norm.

Jesus refuses to bow down before these little kingdoms, the corporations, the idols of militarism and materialism, race and nationality, and all imperialistic thinking. He knows that the price of such love of power is to “fall at Satan’s feet and worship him!” Matthew 4:9).That’s a very heavy judgment on all the security systems of this world.

These will finally and inevitably demandyour full allegiance, loyalty, and attention, but it will all feel like you “are just doing your job.” When Jesus saw through this one and said, “You must worship the Lord your God, and serve God alone,” then the devil left him (Matthew 4:10-11). When you can face these kinds of well-disguised demons, Satan doesn’t have a chance.

From Radical Grace: Daily Meditations, p. 296, day 310


Saturday, March 17, 2012

A very happy Saint Patrick's day to all my irish friends

I bind unto myself today

The virtues of the starlit heaven,

The glorious sun's life-giving ray,

The whiteness of the moon at even,

The flashing of the lightning free,

The whirling wind's tempestuous shocks,

The stable earth, the deep salt sea,

Around the old eternal rocks.

I bind unto myself today

The power of God to hold and lead,

His eye to watch, His might to stay,

His ear to hearken to my need.

The wisdom of my God to teach,

His hand to guide, His shield to ward,

The word of God to give me speech,

His heavenly host to be my guard.

From claire-marie

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

I like to share with you: Richard Rohr's thought; with much gratitude

Since I am God's making through my parents love, I and all of us are who we are, simply and, as for me, I think my job and Mission in life is to promotes freedom from systems, so that everyone is free to be and to enjoy to be simply herself, himself!

« We fear nothingness. That’s why we fear death, of course, which feels like nothingness. Death is the shocking realization that everything I thought was me, everything I held onto so desperately, was finally nothing (read Kathleen Dowling Singh’s The Grace in Dying).
The nothingness we fear so much is, in fact, the treasure and freedom that we long for, which is revealed in the joy and glory of the Risen Christ. We long for the space where there is nothing to prove and nothing to protect; where I am who I am, in the mind and heart of God, and that is more than enough.
Spirituality teaches us how to get naked ahead of time, so God can make love to us as we really are. »

Adapted from Radical Grace: Daily Meditations , p. 333, day 344

Monday, March 12, 2012

Letting go

The notion of a spirituality of subtraction comes from Meister Eckhart (c.1260-1327), the medieval Dominican mystic. He said the spiritual life has much more to do with subtraction than it does with addition. Yet I think most Christians today are involved in great part in a spirituality of addition.

The capitalist worldview is the only one most of us have ever known. We see reality, experiences, events, other people, and things—in fact, everything—as objects for our personal consumption. Even religion, Scripture, sacraments, worship services, and meritorious deeds become ways to advance ourselves—not necessarily ways to love God or neighbor.

The nature of the capitalist mind is that things (and often people!) are there for me. Finally, even God becomes an object for my consumption. Religion looks good on my résumé, and anything deemed “spiritual” is a check on my private worthiness list. Some call it spiritual consumerism. It is not the Gospel.

Richard Rohr Adapted from Radical Grace: Daily Meditations , p. 114, day 123

Sunday, March 11, 2012

For the lenten season, I woould like to share with you the thoughts of Father Richard Rohr. For today "do-it-yourself"...which is tought for food as I feel it...


A common saying is, “God helps those who help themselves." I think the phrase can be understood helpfully; but in most practical situations it is not true. Scripture clearly says, in many ways, that God helps those who trust in God, not those who help themselves.
We need to be told that very strongly because of our "do-it-yourself" orientation. As educated people, as Americans, as middle-class people who have practiced climbing, we are accustomed to doing it ourselves. It takes applying the brakes, letting go of our own plans, allowing Another, and experiencing power from a Larger Source to really move to higher awareness. Otherwise, there is no real transformation, but only increased willpower. As if the one with the most willpower wins! Willfulness is quite different than willingness. They are two different energetic styles and normally yield very different fruit.

Adapted from Radical Grace: Daily Meditations, p. 77, day 84

Sunday, March 04, 2012

I send you as lambs amidst wolves

The Good News of Jesus and his praxis constantly faced with resistance from pious a

nd powerful prople. They could not admit that Jesus presented, with him, an unemployed person in the middle of a liturgy in the synagogue. They could not admit that Jesus sat at the table and ate with sinners, thieves, prostitutes. They could not admit that Jesus condemned the stoning of the woman taken in adultery. They could not admit that for Jesus, compassion had priority over sacrifice…

To love is good, they said, but love should not defy law and order, love should not throw overboard our representations of good and evil, of purity and impurity of what is important and what is not important, of what is up and what's down!
Yet what Jesus announced and what he practised in his own life is exavtly what the Kingdom of God is supposed to be and will be. There will be no up or down, there will be no important people and less important people, there will no room for exclusively important people, while the less important would be excluted from the elite circle. In the kingdom of God the last and least of men have their own dignity and the sinners have their chance and their own worth!

So It is no wonder that Jesus, as he sent his disciples on the way said to them: "Go, behold I send you as lambs amongst wolves."

Hermann-Josef Venetz

Translation: claire-marie

Courtesy of the author