"So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect." (Matthew 5:48)

Friday, July 21, 2017

Mercy Over Sacrifice

        In today's Gospel reading from Matthew 12 (and in Matthew 9 too), Jesus quoted "I desire mercy, not sacrifice" from Hosea in response to the Pharisees' question. I think I see why God prefers mercy over sacrifice from us. Let's say that you have two sons trying to please you. The first son knows that he is unworthy of your love and does things to "punish" himself in some way, hoping to win you back, while the second one, also feeling unworthy but goes on joyfully doing good deeds to help others. I think you would be more pleased by the second son and even feel sorry for the first one, for self-sacrifice is still self-centered – an act with no joy in it – while helping your neighbor is following the second greatest commandment of God.

***Going All Out With God

        People tell you to move a step closer to God, good advice – but I tell you to run to God and jump right into his lap, hold onto him tight and shout as loud as you can "I love you"! After all, your heavenly Father loves you more than you can possibly imagine, so you can totally let yourself go, letting him satisfy your deepest longings for all eternity! You'll be one smartest and most blessed person in the world when you take full advantage of all his promises and generous offers! Yes, he becomes all yours at the wish of your heart! We should live for nothing but the God of Christ! (Note. what I have recommended above may seem to be extreme, but it is in fact what God deserves and we should do. Think about it.)

**Strengthening Your Union With God

        When we do fun things with friends, we bond with each other; but stronger bonds are formed when we go through difficult times together. And there is no better way of strengthening our union with God than offering up all our sufferings to him, for out of love he always suffers for our sake – that is, he is happy when we are happy, and unhappy when we are unhappy!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

A Piece of General Advice

        All of us are at various stages of spiritual growth. You may not be ready to serve God with all your heart yet, but the important thing is to always leave that door ajar for him, and the time will come when you are called to serve him more and better. Think of God as your loving Father. If he is not on your mind constantly yet, just keep him in your mind. 

Our Homecoming

        Communion thoughts. Since God is my creator and knows everything about me, then, of course, I should let myself be his completely. It's only logical and natural to go back to where you came from. Receiving the Lord in the Holy Eucharist is a direct invitation to do just that. All obstacles on our return have been cleared by our loving Father.  

*Wrongheaded Thinking

        Wake up! God is the same yesterday, today, and forever; we are the ones who move away from him. It is completely wrong to feel or think that we have moved ahead and God belongs to the ancient past. 

*Most Wonderful Name

        In today's first reading from Exodus 3, Moses, hearing the voice of the Lord from the burning bush, asked him, "When I go to the children of Israel and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' if they ask me, 'What is his name?' what am I to tell them?" God replied, "I am who am." And he added, "This is what you shall tell the children of Israel: I AM sent me to you." "I AM" is truly the most wonderful name fit for God, and only the Lord himself can give it to us.

*Side Benefit of Union With God*

        The main reason for seeking union with God is to please and glorify him by showing that we love him as our Father and want to belong to him completely. One great side benefit of union is that your transition from this earth to heaven will be absolutely smooth and joyful. 

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

What We Fear Most

        I had a scary dream this morning in which I was being chased by someone. I woke up and asked myself what we fear the most in life. The answer was clear: the loss of our life. And it's also clear to me that all the more important we should seek eternal safety in Christ.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

How to Live Each Day

       You've heard that we should live each day as if it's the first day of your life or the last day of your life. It's even better to live each day as if it is your day of judgment.

*Life Is Like a Dream

        If life seems to be like a dream, that's because you have gotten to know Christ and found that he is the true reality.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Most Signifiant Statement

        If you ever want make a significant statement in your life, make the statement that you are with God all the way, known to him alone.

On Approaching the Lord

       There are many beautiful articles, statues, pictures, etc., in many religious gift shops, aimed at aiding you along your spiritual journey, but there is also the hidden danger that attachment to them can hang up your spiritual progress. If you are able to focus upon the Lord, I would recommend that you bypass all such possible distractions and go directly to him. Never let the trees blind you so that you lose sight of the forest.

*More Than Forgiving Us

        Communion experience. Not only Jesus can take away our sins, he's the only one who can remove all our prejudices as well.        

*Heart-to-Heart With God

        We can only touch the heart of God with our own heart and never with our mind. That's why preaching with the mind is never effective. It must be heart-to-heart communication all around.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Sad State of Souls

        In the city I visited, mentioned earlier (6 posts back), I also saw homeless people everywhere. This made me think that if we live from day to day, not thinking about nor knowing where we are going, we are basically lost. Even if we have set goals, we are still lost if the these goals are worldly ones. Sadly, many people do not realize this until their moment of death. This city also shocked me somewhat when I read in its visitors' guide not only where to shop for fashion, jewelry, souvenirs, etc., but also where to get tattooed and buy sex toys! What Jesus said in Matthew 24.37-39 comes to my mind: As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. In those days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be also at the coming of the Son of Man. 

God Our Liberator

        Without God as our light and guide, we become followers of the world and/or ourselves. It's only by following God (the God of Christ) that we can be liberated from sin and it's enslavement.

What We Should Look Forward To

        Since we were created by God, returning to him would be going home to the Father. How can we possibly not feel happy about it? It is what we should look forward to with great expectation and start rejoicing now.