Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Finding Ourselves in the Story – Gospel in Preparation for the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Finding Ourselves in the Story – Gospel in Preparation for the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

This is the epic story in which we are invited to find ourselves, for it is our story. It is not an easy story, for many of the hardships which Jesus predicts for his disciples will be faced by us, as well. It cannot be otherwise, for evil is real and, this side of heaven, death and destruction still reign as enemies.

But, thanks to the cross, they are vanquished enemies.

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Our Great Defender – First Reading in Preparation for the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Our Great Defender – First Reading in Preparation for the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

I do not know what struggle you are facing nor how hard and bitter the fight. I do know that we all tremble when we see the hosts arrayed against us. Every one of us comes, from time to time, to the place where we cry in terror, “Alas, my Master! What shall we do”. God’s gentle reply is always, “Fear not, for those who are with you are more than those who are with them.” My hope for you is that in all such times, Elisha’s prayer will be answered again–“O Lord open his eyes that he or she may see”–and you will see the reality that has always been there: we are surrounded by the Lord’s hosts and chariots of fire.

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Master or Steward? – Gospel for the Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary time

Master or Steward? – Gospel for the Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary time

Now, perhaps, we can see our lives as God sees them. We are stewards, not owners. Everything we have, everything we are, including life itself, is an entrustment from God to be invested in service to him and our neighbor. Whatever talent we have was given to invest in His service. Whatever time we have is to be invested in our neighbors. Whatever money we have is His and is to be used for Him. Of course, like all stewards we are to take part of what he gives to meet our legitimate needs, but even that is His, though He is very glad for our use of it.

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Being Prepared – Second Reading of the Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Being Prepared – Second Reading of the Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

I have always loved the idea that we should live with an intensity as though He was coming back today, but do the work we would do for him if He weren’t coming back for a thousand years! When he returns he should find us eating and drinking, studying, saving, serving the community, marrying, raising children, exercising, building a business, vacationing, working at church or doing a thousand other things that are good, right, and appropriate, but doing them all for His sake, for the love of God and our neighbor! That’s how we stay ready: “So, whether you eat or drink, whatever you do, do all to the glory of God”

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Her Husband’s Crown – First Reading for the Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Her Husband’s Crown – First Reading for the Thirty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Earlier in Proverbs the author tells us that “A wife of noble character is her husband’s crown” (12:4). Some may read this as objectifying or demeaning women, but it is the opposite. The author is simply acknowledging the fact that there is something truly regal and majestic about the June Tobolowski’s of the world and the countless other women like her, no matter where they come from or what social class they belong to. And the blessings that flow forth from their lives redound to everyone around them.

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