Sunday, November 15th: Mark 13:24-32
"But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And then He will send out the angels and gather His elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven. "From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that He is near, at the very gates. Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away before all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father"
In the Gospel today, there are many "images" that our Lord is drawing in our mind: to name a few: tribulation, sun, moon, stars falling from heaven, glory, four winds, tender, fig tree, Word. When you read this passage today, read it slowly and let a word(s) rise in your heart. Jesus will show you, it will linger with you. Stay with Him there, don't run away, just "Be with Him". He knows those topics rising in our heart better than we do ourselves and He knows how to "Be present to us", in the midst of it all. There is something He wants to say to you today and its very personal, its between you and Him, will we let him in? into our hearts?
As an artist appreciates contrasts, as it quite often adds to the beauty of the final piece of work. Here to, a contrast is painted for us by our Lord: The contrast of suffering and "endings" along with tenderness, growth and new beginnings! Times of suffering (tribulation) and times of beauty and wonder (glory), times when things we counted on fall through for us (sun failing to shine) and times of sweet tenderness, growth, and promise of a new beginning and life (the fig tree tender, sprouting new leaves). The Lord wants us to know, in all times and moments, He is Present, in the midst of it all, and He does not want us to live in fear, He wants us to live with Him, in His company, attuned to Him, to His voice, in His Word in the present moment. His Word is Truth and it is unchanging. His company is Peace.
The trouble is, we so easily forget His Presence and then fear creeps into our hearts especially in those moments that are difficult. But the Lord wants us to live in His company always, so that we can live in peace, trusting Him right now, because trust in Him brings us into living life with a sense of inner freedom, this "freedom of the children of God" , the freedom in living in His Love. How do we live in this place of trust and peace? Let us listen, the Lord, the Master is teaching us, (His disciples) in His Word- "Learn"-"From the fig tree, learn its lesson." What is the lesson? To live attuned and attentive, to wait and watch for Him in my life right now, today! Present moment is all we have anyways, the rest is known to the Father. Let us choose to live the present moment with Him right now!
Mother Teresa used to tell us: "Leave the Past to the Mercy of God, the Future to His Providence and the Present to His Love"
Questions to ponder
1.) In my life right now, where is the Lord working? What is He putting on my heart as a topic to talk about? (you can sometimes find that out by just watching where your thoughts keep going). He wants to be with you, in the midst of the mess.
2.) What is the Lord trying to teach me right now? Is there a lie I've accepted or a truth that I'm not seeing? What is He saying to me? What does He want to talk about? Can I stay with Him right now, in the midst of it all, and seek His presence in my life.
3.) What are you attuned to very much right now in life? Talk to the Lord about it-and open your heart to Him.
I am praying for you! God Bless you all!
You are our future and we love you- our youth!
In Jesus' Love,