Sunday, December 15, 2019

Friday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time – Daily Reading for Today

Friday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time – Daily Reading for Today

Today’s Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 357

1st Reading – TB 11:5-17

Anna sat watching the road by which her son was to come.
When she saw him coming, she exclaimed to his father,
“Tobit, your son is coming, and the man who traveled with him!”

Raphael said to Tobiah before he reached his father:
“I am certain that his eyes will be opened.
Smear the fish gall on them.
This medicine will make the cataracts shrink and peel off from his eyes;
then your father will again be able to see the light of day.”

Then Anna ran up to her son, threw her arms around him,
and said to him,
“Now that I have seen you again, son, I am ready to die!”
And she sobbed aloud.

Tobit got up and stumbled out through the courtyard gate.
Tobiah went up to him with the fish gall in his hand,
and holding him firmly, blew into his eyes.
“Courage, father,” he said.
Next he smeared the medicine on his eyes, and it made them smart.
Then, beginning at the corners of Tobit’s eyes,
Tobiah used both hands to peel off the cataracts.

When Tobit saw his son, he threw his arms around him and wept.
He exclaimed, “I can see you, son, the light of my eyes!”
Then he said:

“Blessed be God,
and praised be his great name,
and blessed be all his holy angels.
May his holy name be praised
throughout all the ages,
Because it was he who scourged me,
and it is he who has had mercy on me.
Behold, I now see my son Tobiah!”

Then Tobit went back in, rejoicing and praising God with full voice
for everything that had happened.
Tobiah told his father that
the Lord God had granted him a successful journey;
that he had brought back the money;
and that he had married Raguel’s daughter Sarah,
who would arrive shortly,
for she was approaching the gate of Nineveh.

Tobit and Anna rejoiced
and went out to the gate of Nineveh
to meet their daughter-in-law.
When the people of Nineveh saw Tobit walking along briskly,
with no one leading him by the hand, they were amazed.
Before them all Tobit proclaimed
how God had mercifully restored sight to his eyes.
When Tobit reached Sarah, the wife of his son Tobiah,
he greeted her: “Welcome, my daughter!
Blessed be your God for bringing you to us, daughter!
Blessed is your father, and blessed is my son Tobiah,
and blessed are you, daughter!
Welcome to your home with blessing and joy.
Come in, daughter!”
That day there was joy for all the Jews who lived in Nineveh.

Responsorial Psalm – PS 146:1B-2, 6C-7, 8-9A, 9BC-10

R. (1b) Praise the Lord, my soul!
or:
R. Alleluia.
Praise the LORD, O my soul;
I will praise the LORD all my life;
I will sing praise to my God while I live.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
or:
R. Alleluia.
The LORD keeps faith forever,
secures justice for the oppressed,
gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets captives free.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
or:
R. Alleluia.
The LORD gives sight to the blind.
The LORD raises up those who are bowed down;
the LORD loves the just.
The LORD protects strangers.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
or:
R. Alleluia.
The fatherless and the widow he sustains,
but the way of the wicked he thwarts
The LORD shall reign forever,
your God, O Zion, through all generations! Alleluia.
R. Praise the Lord, my soul!
or:
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia – JN 14:23

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Whoever loves me will keep my word,
and my Father will love him
and we will come to him.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel – MK 12:35-37

As Jesus was teaching in the temple area he said,
“How do the scribes claim that the Christ is the son of David?
David himself, inspired by the Holy Spirit, said:

The Lord said to my lord,
‘Sit at my right hand
until I place your enemies under your feet.’

David himself calls him ‘lord’;
so how is he his son?”
The great crowd heard this with delight.

Catholic Daily Reflections

Delight in the Lord

Saint Ephrem, Deacon and Doctor – Optional Memorial

The great crowd heard this with delight. Mark 12:37b

This passage comes from the end of today’s Gospel. Jesus just gave a teaching to the crowd and they listened to it “with delight.” Jesus’ teaching produced much pleasure in their souls.

This is a common reaction to the teaching and presence of Jesus in our lives. The Psalms are filled with images like this. “I delight in the Lord.” “How sweet are Your words.” “I delight in Your commands.” These and many other references reveal one of the effects of Jesus’ words and presence in our lives. His word and His presence in our lives is extraordinarily pleasurable.

This fact begs the question, “Do I delight in Jesus’ words?” Too often we see the words of Christ as a burden, restriction or limitation to what we want in life. For that reason, we can often see the will of God as something difficult and burdensome. Truth be told, if our hearts are rooted in sin or in the pleasures of the world, then the words of our Lord may sting and feel like a burden to us. But that’s just because we find them in contradiction to the many unhealthy things we become attached to.

If you find that the Word of God, Jesus’ words, are hard to hear, then you are starting to head down the right road. You are starting to let His Word “do battle,” so to speak, with the many other lures and enticements that ultimately only leave us dry and empty. This is the first step to being able to delight in the Lord and His words.

The good news is that if you can allow His Word to cut through the many unhealthy attachments you have in life, you will begin to discover that you greatly love His Word and delight in His presence in your life. You will begin to discover that the pleasure and delight you experience from His presence in your life far outweighs any other passing attachment or pleasure you may have. Even sin can produce a false sense of satisfaction. In that case, the satisfaction is more like a drug that soon wears off. The delight of the Lord is something that continually draws you higher and fulfills you more deeply every day.

Spend time, today, pondering whether or not you truly do allow yourself to be filled with delight in the Lord’s presence and His words. Try to taste their sweetness. Try to let yourself be drawn in. Once “hooked,” you will seek Him all the more.

Lord, I desire to delight in You. Help me to turn away from the many attractions and enticements of this world. Help me to seek You and Your Word always. In the discovery of Your Word, fill my soul with the greatest delight. Jesus, I trust in You.

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