Archive for the ‘Cycle A’ Category

Lucky Thing 11-22-2020

Sunday, November 22nd, 2020

Ever had the experience – I know I met this person somewhere
before but I don’t remember where or when. Then it all clicks, I
remember.
Somewhere in heaven. When they first crossed paths, they didn’t
notice one another. It was only after sitting side by side at the same
dinner table several evenings in a row that they started turning their
heads a second time so as to almost say, “Don’t I know you from
somewhere?” Neither said anything. Then one evening they found
themselves facing one another across the table. Their eyes could not
help but meet and their faces had similar scars.
Finally, one said, “I’ve been noticing you for some time now. You
look so familiar, but I can’t place where we may have met. I thought
maybe it was in prison somewhere, but it wasn’t, because I never forget
a face I knew there.”
“Funny you say that, I had a similar feeling about you, but I can’t
place you. Anyway, my name is Joseph” – and he reached out across the table to shake hands. When they clasped, they both remembered
immediately. The scars on the hands from the imprint of the nails – they
remembered their crosses!
“Now I remember you,” Joseph said. “We were crucified with that
fellow, Jesus.”
“That’s right,” Samuel piped in. “I’m surprised to see you in
heaven. You said some pretty rotten things to Jesus.”
“I know. I was scared senseless, but didn’t want to let go of my
macho image, so I took it out on Jesus.”
“Well, how did you get in here saying those things?”
“When I heard you admit your crime and ask for Jesus’ help, I
knew that’s really how I felt in my heart, but couldn’t find the words.
Lucky thing for me Jesus paid more attention to my heart than to my lips
that day.”
On this Feast of Christ the King, We are All very lucky people.
That Jesus, our Lord and God, pays more attention to our hearts than to
our lips. Lucky thing!

Make Sure To Keep Yourself In The Love Of God Today; The Rest Will Take Care Of Itself 11-15-2020

Sunday, November 15th, 2020

Introduction:
I have a wonderful memory growing up in a small valley town. I spent a
lot of time around the church; a lot of priests would visit our home for
dinner (moms a great cook). I remember a lesson I learned when the
topic of the end of time came up. A wise priest gave me good advice;
“Make sure to keep yourself in the love of God today – the rest will take
care of itself.”
I believe there are three things we can do something about today;
1. How loving are our thoughts—right now in our life?
2. How loving are our words—right now in our life?
3. How loving are our actions—right now in our life?
First: our thoughts. How judgmental are we in our thoughts about
other people? Do we tend to pass judgment on them—judgment that is
often unkind and unfair?
There’s a Peanuts cartoon that shows Charlie Brown and
Linus standing side by side. Charlie is looking at a drawing of a
man that Linus has just made. Charlie says to Linus, “I see you’ve drawn the man with his
hands behind his back. That shows you are insecure.
Linus replies, “I didn’t put his hands behind his back because
I am insecure. I did it because I can’t draw hands.”
That story makes us ask ourselves, “Do we tend to read into
situations? Do we tend to judge others recklessly, as Charlie did Linus
in that cartoon?
That brings us to our second point: our words or speech. Do we
use our speech to talk about the faults of others? Do we use it to gossip
about other people?
Perhaps you’ve heard the story about three church leaders – a
Catholic, a Protestant, and a Jew, all from the same town. They
decided to make a retreat together. In the course of their retreat,
they shared with each other one of their most embarrassing
shortcomings.
The Catholic priest said, “I must tell you both that I’ve been
gambling lately.” The Jewish rabbi said, “And I must tell you both that I’ve
been gambling a lot lately.” Finally, the Protestant minister said, “I must tell you both
that I can’t keep a thing to myself. I am an incurable gossip.”
That story makes us ask ourselves, “Do we use our speech to
gossip about others?”
That brings us to our third point: our actions.
Some years ago, nine physically handicapped people
successfully climbed Mt. Rainier in Washington State. One of the
climbers had an artificial leg. Another climber was an epileptic.
Two others were deaf, and five were blind.
In spite of the handicaps, the nine people negotiated the
14,000-foot mountain together, up and down, without accident.
When asked about the amazing feat, one of the blind
members of the party said simple, “We got a lot of help from one
another.”
That story makes us ask ourselves, “How much are we helping one
another in our mutual efforts to climb the mountain that leads to God and heaven?
How prepared are we to meet Jesus at the end of the world? How prepared are we to meet Him, right now, in just three areas of
our life?
First: our thoughts. Do we judge other people recklessly?
Second: our words. Do we talk about other people unkindly?
And finally: our actions. Do we turn our back on other
people’s needs?
If we aren’t doing too well in these areas now, what makes us think
we will do better in the future?
Let’s close with a prayer:
Lord, give us a mind that will think thoughts that are kind and fair.
Give us lips that will speak words that are true and charitable.
Give us hands that will do deeds that are modeled after the ones
you did for people in your own lifetime.
“Make sure to keep yourself in the love of God today—and the rest will
take care of itself”

Ya Buts 11-8-2020

Saturday, November 7th, 2020

This gospel reminds me of two special stories.
The first story:
There is a town that has four separate neighborhoods. The first
neighborhood is called, “Yabuts.” The people who live there think they
know what needs to be done. As a matter of fact, they talk about it quite
convincingly – up to a point. When told they have an opportunity for
something, the conversation goes something like this: “Ya, but…” The
“Yabuts” have the answer. It just happens to be the wrong answer.
The next neighborhood is known as the “Gunnados.” Now they
are some of the best-intentioned folks you could ever meet. They really
understand what needs to be done, and they would have done it, if they
had only followed through. They study everything that is required very
carefully, and just as an opportunity drifts past them, they realize what
they were “gunnado.” If only they had done what they were “gunnado.”
Another neighborhood is known as the “Wishawoodas.” These
people have an excellent perspective on life – hindsight. They say, “I ‘wishawooda’ this, or ‘wishawooda’ that…” They know everything that
should be done, only it’s after the fact.
The last neighborhood is known as the “Gladidids.” They are a
truly special group of people. The “Wishawoodas” drive by the
“Gladidids” homes and admire them. The “Gunnados” want to join
them, but just cannot quite get around to it. The “Yabuts” could have
been “Gladidids,” but destiny just did not smile on them. The
“Gladidids” are pleased that they are disciplined enough to do what they
know they should do instead of always doing what they wanted to do.
These are the four neighborhoods. In which neighborhood do you
live? In which one would you rather live? 1) Yabuts 2) Gunnados 3)
Wishawoodas 4) Gladidids.
The second story:
There is an ancient story about three demons who were arguing
over the best way to destroy the Christian mission in the world. The first
demon says, “Let’s tell all the Christians there is no heaven. Take away
the reward incentive and the mission will collapse.” The second demon
says, “Let’s tell all the Christians there is no hell. Take away the fear of punishment and the mission will collapse.” The third demon says,
“There is one better way. Let’s tell all the Christians that there is no
hurry” and all three immediately say, “That’s it! All we have to do is
tell them there’s no hurry and the whole Christian enterprise will
collapse.”
Some things can’t be put off to the last minute- the foolish
bridesmaids needed to be reminded of this. We are reminded – happy is
the person who takes to heart this message and does something about it
today.