Beads of Joy 06-27-10
Shall We Follow Him Always?
©2010 James Dacey, Jr. SFO
What a truly special message we have to learn from today. Jesus must have shocked His disciples when He told them not to look back, and not to bury their own dead. This is one of the things I enjoy most about Jesus. He never did what we might figure that we would do, instead He did what the will of His Father so desired of Him to do. Today we are reading and reflecting on Luke 9:51-62 (Departure from Jerusalem & The Would-be Followers of Jesus). Here Jesus teaches us that nothing, absolutely nothing, no matter how important we may perceive it; should ever distract us or detract us from proclaiming the Kingdom of God. I believe this is something we must all take very seriously. Sometimes people get so involved with keeping busy doing God's work, that they forget about their relationship with Him. Nothing is more important for us then to know Jesus personally. Yes we do his bidding and serve Him with a whole heart. But let us not forget to also love Him, and know Him.
We learn from: The Catechism of The Catholic Church, (1721) God put us in the world to know, to love, and to serve him, and so to come to paradise. Beatitude makes us "partakers of the divine nature" and of eternal life. With beatitude, man enters into the glory of Christ and into the joy of the Trinitarian life. Isn't that such a beautiful teaching. Embrace the Catechism, and God's word. Today we learn that we must stay fully focused on Jesus. We must stay on course and no matter what is going on around us, we must not leave the trail and road that is laid out before us by God, that directs us to God. I will be the first to say this, "But I have so many things I have to do in my life, so many responsibilities, so many loved ones to take care of. I have to put them first." I would agree that they indeed do come before me. But I must not lose sight that before them, must come Jesus. Jesus first, Others second, You (meaning me) last; always last. The true life of J.O.Y.
Do we not all know that following Jesus requires great sacrifices in our lives? God gives us the grace to be able to manage this in our everyday lives. No matter how much we think we know and we feel "this is good"; it by no means means that God sees it as good. What we see as good, maybe the very thing that is keeping us away from Him. We must trust that staying fully focused on God alone will allow everything to fall in place in our lives. We'll see that some things will be eliminated from our lives, while other things take different positions of priority. We must trust in Jesus with every single fiber of our being. I will say from personal experience that trusting in Him is what gives me the strength, the foresight, the wisdom and the courage to move forward. Even when the road ahead makes us, want us to look back for whatever reason, we must not. We must continuously look ahead and forward at Him alone, no matter how hard the road ahead looks. The road ahead for Jesus to His Crucifixion looked bad, no life ahead, only death. But in His obedience to the Father, that road of doom and gloom is the very road that defeated death for all eternity for all of us. Keep the faith everyone, keep the faith.
Today I ask you this: Will you keep your hand on the plow and not look back, but rather stay stern and firm to the course leading your life to the Kingdom of God? Be bold and strong in your conviction, in your life and what it is you do everyday. Nothing in this world or even on this planet or in this universe, or even the entire universe, is worth looking at if it takes our eyes off Jesus. Nothing. Do not allow this world, our leaders, anyone to tell you anything different. Keep your eyes fully focused on Jesus. Just take a moment to further today's reflection on these few scriptures. "And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God's will." 2 Corinthians 8:5, "Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him." Psalm 62:5. Please trust in Jesus, give Him your fullest and best attention. Your life will never be the same, and as you stay focused you will better understand your purpose in this life. To know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him.
Your brother in Christ Jesus & His Most Blessed Mother,
Jim (The Rosary Man) Dacey Jr SFO