Monday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time




Monday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time

Today’s Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 335

1st Reading – JAS 1:1-11

James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
to the twelve tribes in the dispersion, greetings.

Consider it all joy, my brothers and sisters,
when you encounter various trials,
for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.
And let perseverance be perfect,
so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
But if any of you lacks wisdom,
he should ask God who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly,
and he will be given it.
But he should ask in faith, not doubting,
for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea
that is driven and tossed about by the wind.
For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord,
since he is a man of two minds, unstable in all his ways.

The brother in lowly circumstances
should take pride in high standing,
and the rich one in his lowliness,
for he will pass away “like the flower of the field.”
For the sun comes up with its scorching heat and dries up the grass,
its flower droops, and the beauty of its appearance vanishes.
So will the rich person fade away in the midst of his pursuits.

Responsorial Psalm – PS 119:67, 68, 71, 72, 75, 76

R. (77a) Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
Before I was afflicted I went astray,
but now I hold to your promise.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
You are good and bountiful;
teach me your statutes.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
It is good for me that I have been afflicted,
that I may learn your statutes.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
The law of your mouth is to me more precious
than thousands of gold and silver pieces.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
I know, O LORD, that your ordinances are just,
and in your faithfulness you have afflicted me.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.
Let your kindness comfort me
according to your promise to your servants.
R. Be kind to me, Lord, and I shall live.

Alleluia – JN 14:6

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the way and the truth and the life, says the Lord;
no one comes to the Father except through me.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel – MK 8:11-13

The Pharisees came forward and began to argue with Jesus,
seeking from him a sign from heaven to test him.
He sighed from the depth of his spirit and said,
“Why does this generation seek a sign?
Amen, I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.”
Then he left them, got into the boat again,
and went off to the other shore.

Catholic Daily Reflections

Jesus Sighed…Deeply

The Pharisees came forward and began to argue with Jesus, seeking from him a sign from heaven to test him. He sighed from the depth of his spirit and said, “Why does this generation seek a sign? Amen, I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.” Mark 8:11-12

Jesus “sighed from the depth of His spirit.” It is clear this was no ordinary sigh. It was a sigh that was more than emotion. It was from the “depth of His spirit.” What was going on with Jesus?

This sigh reveals a pain and suffering in Jesus that was spiritual in nature. It was a pain and suffering that came as a result of being rejected by others. But it wasn’t just that He was hurt or offended, because He wasn’t. The suffering He felt was from His love. It came as a result of Him loving the Pharisees deeply and realizing that they were rejecting the grace He wanted to offer them. This hurt not because Jesus was sensitive to being hurt; rather, it hurt because of His boundless love for them.

It’s interesting that we rarely think of Jesus’ love for the Pharisees. Often, we only think of Him being harsh to them and condemning them. But every strong word He directed toward them was aimed at converting them out of love. It was an attempt, on His part, to shake them out of their indifference and rejection of grace. It was an act of love.

Reflect, today, upon the “Pharisees” in your life. Perhaps you do not encounter those who are proud or haughty, or maybe you do. The Pharisees in your life are those who reject the free gift of love you try to offer. They are those who are so hurt, confused or bitter that they find it very hard to let love in. They throw up every sort of defense there is to avoid letting your love in. And when you see this rejection, it hurts. It may then tempt you to have anger or condemnation.

But how should you react? You should do as Jesus did! You should sigh, and “sigh deeply.” You should feel the hurt of their rejection and feel holy sorrow for them. At times, you may need to confront them as Jesus did. But never out of your wounded pride. You should confront only because you judge that it’s the best way to win them over. You will know that this is an act of love when you feel that deep sigh within your spirits.

Lord, help me to love with a pure and holy love. Help me to feel a holy sorrow over my sins and the sins of others when I encounter their sins. Let that holy sorrow compel me to love more deeply. Jesus, I trust in You.

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