May 31, 2008
Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin
Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival. When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Assuming that he was in the group of travelers, they went a day's journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, "Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety." He said to them, "Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?" But they did not understand what he said to them. Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart.
Introductory Prayer: Lord Jesus, I ask you to help me always to look for you in my daily life. I want to spend my entire life seeking you, because you are at the same time a friend and a mystery. I can never stop knowing and loving you.
Petition: Lord, grant me a deeper knowledge and love of Christ.
1. The Temple Jesus wanted to be with his Father. It was natural that when he was old enough, he should seek him in his Father’s house: the Temple. What Christ came to do, however, was to reveal that the definitive Temple is he himself: “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up” (John 2:19). From now on, those who seek the Father will find him only in Jesus. Where Jesus is, there is the Father: “Whoever has seen me has seen the Father…. Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?” (John 14: 9-10).
2. The Eucharist I sometimes hear people say that God has abandoned us: He has put us here on the earth and left us to our own devices. Yes, he is waiting for us in heaven, but in the meantime we have to fend for ourselves. Then I ask them, “Can God get any closer to us than to be really inside of us through the Eucharist? God wanted to be with us in our trials so badly that he became a man to walk at our side, to show us how to conquer the world and all of its tribulations. Even today we find Jesus in the Eucharist. He is really present: body, soul and divinity. Jesus never leaves us alone; he is always there for us in the Eucharist. If we can’t find God in our lives, it isn’t because he has abandoned us, but maybe because we have abandoned him. He is with us. He gives us strength to grow in personal holiness as his followers. We need to grow in our appreciation for the Eucharist.
3. Prayer We find Jesus in a special way in our daily prayer. Prayer is not an option for us; it is a must for our souls. As water is needed to keep a plant alive, so prayer is needed to keep our souls fresh and ready. We should turn our hearts to God in prayer every day. When we confront struggles in our lives, we need to pray to God to see them not merely as obstacles to our happiness, but rather as opportunities. Prayer helps us see these trials in a positive spirit.
Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, help me to seek you in everything I do. You are the way, the truth, and the life. Only in you can I truly find peace for my soul.
Resolution: I will pray a Hail Mary for vocations.
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