Wednesday, December 14, 2022

† "..the one who takes no.. "


†Saint Quote
"Never give up prayer, and should you find dryness and difficulty, persevere in it for this very reason. God often desires to see what love your soul has, and love is not tried by ease and satisfaction."
–St. John of the Cross

†Today's Meditation
"The reason why the soul not only travels securely when in obscurity, but also makes greater progress, is this: In general the soul makes greater progress in the spiritual life when it least thinks so, yea, when it rather imagines that it is losing everything …There is another reason also why the soul has traveled safely in this obscurity; it has suffered: for the way of suffering is safer, and also more profitable, than that of rejoicing and of action. In suffering God gives strength, but in action and in joy the soul does but show its own weakness and imperfections. And in suffering, the soul practices and acquires virtue, and becomes pure, wiser, and more cautious."
—St. John of the Cross, p.149

An Excerpt From
Dark Night of the Soul

†Daily Verse
"Hearken to me, O house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been borne by me from your birth, carried from the womb; even to your old age I am He, and to gray hairs I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save."
–Isaiah 46:3-4


click to read more


St. John of the Cross

St. John of the Cross (1542–1591) – also known as San Juan de la Cruz – was born to a poor family in Old Castile, Spain. His father married below his rank and was disinherited as a result. After his father's early death, John was raised in poverty by his mother. He studied and served at a local hospital while committing himself to severe penances. Uncertain of his life's direction, he was told in prayer that he should enter religious life in order to bring reform. John joined the ancient Carmelite Order and received permission to observe their original rule of life, quickly earning a reputation for his humility, obedience, and religious fervor. He later met St. Teresa of Avila, a reforming Carmelite abbess who recognized the greatness of John's virtue and requested his assistance to found a monastery of friars under the primitive Carmelite rule, as she had done for her nuns. Together they founded the Discalced Carmelites, a contemplative order of strict religious observance. His reforms began to spread, and as a result John was captured, imprisoned, and physically abused by his fellow friars. His sufferings helped him to write his most famous work, Dark Night of the Soul. After nine months he made a miraculous escape and he went on to found and govern several Carmelite monasteries. St. John of the Cross became an authority on the spiritual life, and his profound writings and poetry are considered among the greatest of all Spanish literature. Because of his invaluable writings he was named a Doctor of the Church and the patron saint of mystics, contemplatives, and Spanish poets. His feast day is December 14th.
Find a Devotional for This Saint


Memorial of Saint John of the Cross, Priest and Doctor of the Church

• Readings for the Memorial of Saint John of the Cross, priest and doctor of the Church

Reading 1 IS 45:6C-8, 18, 21C-25

I am the LORD, there is no other;
I form the light, and create the darkness,
I make well-being and create woe;
I, the LORD, do all these things.
Let justice descend, O heavens, like dew from above,
like gentle rain let the skies drop it down.
Let the earth open and salvation bud forth;
let justice also spring up!
I, the LORD, have created this.
For thus says the LORD,
The creator of the heavens,
who is God,
The designer and maker of the earth
who established it,
Not creating it to be a waste,
but designing it be lived in:
I am the LORD, and there is no other.
Who announced this from the beginning
and foretold it from of old?
Was it not I, the LORD,
besides whom there is no other God?
There is no just and saving God but me.
Turn to me and be safe,
all you ends of the earth,
for I am God; there is no other!
By myself I swear,
uttering my just decree
and my unalterable word:
To me every knee shall bend;
by me every tongue shall swear,
Saying, "Only in the LORD
are just deeds and power.
Before him in shame shall come
all who vent their anger against him.
In the LORD shall be the vindication and the glory
of all the descendants of Israel."

Responsorial Psalm PS 85:9AB AND 10, 11-12, 13-14

R. (Isaiah 45:8) Let the clouds rain down the Just One, and the earth bring forth a Savior.
I will hear what God proclaims;
the LORD–for he proclaims peace to his people.
Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him,
glory dwelling in our land.
R. Let the clouds rain down the Just One, and the earth bring forth a Savior.
Kindness and truth shall meet;
justice and peace shall kiss.
Truth shall spring out of the earth,
and justice shall look down from heaven.
R. Let the clouds rain down the Just One, and the earth bring forth a Savior.
The LORD himself will give his benefits;
our land shall yield its increase.
Justice shall walk before him,
and salvation, along the way of his steps.
R. Let the clouds rain down the Just One, and the earth bring forth a Savior.

Alleluia See IS 40:9-10

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Raise your voice and tell the Good News:
Behold, the Lord GOD comes with power.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel LK 7:18B-23

At that time,
John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask,
"Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?"
When the men came to the Lord, they said,
"John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask,
'Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?'"
At that time Jesus cured many of their diseases, sufferings, and evil spirits;
he also granted sight to many who were blind.
And Jesus said to them in reply,
"Go and tell John what you have seen and heard:
the blind regain their sight,
the lame walk,
lepers are cleansed,
the deaf hear, the dead are raised,
the poor have the good news proclaimed to them.
And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me."


Daily Meditation: Luke 7:18-23

Blessed is the one who takes no offense at me. (Luke 7:23)

The Greek word for "takes offense" in this verse is skandalon, which means literally "to stumble or get tripped up." It's also where we get the word "scandalize." So it makes some sense that Jesus would say this in reference to his cousin, John the Baptist. It wasn't so much that John was offended by Jesus but that he was getting tripped up.

Imagine John, in jail after preaching repentance all his life. He hears that Jesus, the One whose way he has prepared, is talking about loving one another and being poor in spirit more than he is calling everyone to repent of their sins. Had John been looking for a different kind of Messiah? Had he been wrong all along? Or was he being stretched to see things differently?

We don't know exactly what was going on in John's mind when he sent some of his disciples to Jesus. But we do know that Jesus' teachings can stretch even the most devoted of his followers. All we have to do is recall how Peter tried to stop Jesus from becoming the suffering servant that Jesus knew he was meant to be (Matthew 16:21-23).

There are also many stories in the Bible of people who start to follow Jesus but end up slipping away because he is different than what they expected. Remember the followers who rejected Jesus after he said he was the Bread of Life (John 6:52, 66). Or think of the rich young man, who couldn't bring himself to part with his possessions (Mark 10:17-31).

Just as he did with Peter, the rich young man, and all his followers, Jesus was offering John's disciples the chance to open their eyes and their hearts in a new way. He wanted them to see the breadth and scope of God's merciful love.

Advent offers us that same chance. Jesus wants to open our eyes more and more to who he is, even when his teaching stretches our expectations. This is a wonderful season of grace when he can show us that he came to heal and forgive and restore—even when we don't think we deserve it. Even when we don't think someone else deserves it. And that's good news!

"Jesus, help me not to stumble when your teachings stretch me. I want to follow you with all my heart!"

Isaiah 45:6-8, 18, 21-25
Psalm 85:9-14

blessed no offense at me

From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"I am the LORD, and there is no other."

Do you know the first commandment? Protestant versions vary in wording, and they've attempted to redo them to a degree. Last night, a deacon told us in a men's conference team meeting, that a lady had taken offense at the 10 commandments he was teaching them, as if to say God was mean.

Yet, it is the case of "modern" culture, to take offense at anything they have deemed offensive...what does this mean? It means that they want to rule the their own rules, their own thoughts, what they want to be true...and there is no room for humility in this train of thought, much less...obedience, the very thing that makes one thrive in Heaven.


We pray today;
"I will hear what God proclaims; the LORD–for he proclaims peace to his people. Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him, glory dwelling in our land. Let the clouds rain down the Just One, and the earth bring forth a Savior."


In the Gospel today we heard our Master and Teacher:
""Go and tell John what you have seen and heard..."

And our Lord goes on to say what HE has said and done, because what He says goes, and it comes to be. The Book of Heaven speaks about the Word, and the Incarnation. Now that the incarnation of God in Jesus has we have bound Heaven and Earth through Him. It is through Him now that all things exist and commune of Heaven and Earth. No one goes to the Father, except through the Son.
And let me expound on the Son of God. Our Lord, is God's part and heart for the world. The heart still suffers, by the sins we do, by the closing of hearts, there is no room at the inn, when Jesus is coming...He is not welcome. I wonder what it would be like if you, my child, knocked on people's doors, to proclaim the word of God, would you be welcomed or rejected? Think of a loved one that you know is not living a life with God, but is living in sin. You call them, ask them if you can come share the Good News. If they allow you to come into their home, that is one step. There is a next step...the opening of the heart. In my house, there are many statues and pictures of Jesus and Mary. But are they welcome into my heart?
The Book of Heaven speaks about what offends God. It is offensive to not let Him inside of one's very self and being.

When I choose sin, I shut the doors to Him living and working in me, if even for a few moments. What wasted time! What dark times! Are you tired of darkness?

We should be. And so, I ask that we become a welcoming people of God. Those that always call on Him and want to be with Him. What would Heaven be like without Jesus, without our Father? It would be an empty place...with no light, no true light, and thus, this would not be Heaven. For He is God, and there is no other.

My Lord, My God, My all, help us love Thee, as we ought!



click to hear



If one day you don't receive these, just visit
God Bless You! Peace

Powered by
GoDaddy Email Marketing ®