Tuesday, May 23, 2017

My Household

‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ They told him, ‘Become a believer in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, and your household too.’ Acts.16:30,31

Paul and Silas have miraculously been freed by an earthquake from their prison shackles. They stopped the gaoler from killing himself, telling him they haven't run off. The gaoler, recognising the hand of God is over Paul and Silas, becomes a believer, saving not only himself but his entire household.

Jesus works in households, in families. It is well proven that if a mother and father actively practice their faith their children will grow up doing likewise. This is both a wonderful blessing and a fearful responsibility. Fearful as we are talking about eternal salvation of our children and children's children.

I must be authentic and demonstrative in my Catholic faith. In this season of Eastertide this is made easier. How? Easter joy! There's something incredibly attractive about people filled with joy, especially joyful parents to their children

Holy Spirit, fill me with Easter joy today that I may be an authentic witness to my household.
Little Flower, please pray for me.



Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Divine and de Branch

It is to the glory of my Father that you should bear much fruit, and then you will be my disciples.
Jn.15:8

Jesus is explaining the relationship between himself and his disciples using the analogy of vine and branches. Branches bear fruit when they are connected to the vine and are pruned.

There's a great line from the Steve Green 70's classic, "He'll take care of the rest" that goes;

"Remember, He is divine and you are de branch"

Staying connected to Jesus is a daily decision for a disciple. Daily prayer time helps. The point of discipleship is to bear fruit, says Jesus. And the point of bearing fruit is to glorify the Father.

So here goes. Another day in the vineyard bearing fruit for the glory.

Lord Jesus, I reconnect to you this morning. May I bear fruit to glorify the Father today.
Little Flower, please pray for me.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

A Peace the World Can't Give

Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you, a peace the world cannot give, this is my gift to you.
Jn.14:27

Jesus had just promised to his disciples that the Holy Spirit will be sent once he leaves. The first fruit of the spirit is peace, a peace the world cannot give.

It's a standing joke how beauty pageant contestants in their open speech always throw in the line, "and I pray for world peace".  The world could certainly do with that today. But Jesus is offering something the world cannot give, it can only receive it. That is, his peace.

It's only through Jesus that a man can look over the place where his four daughters drowned and then say, "It is well with my soul" (Horatio G. Spafford). This is the peace beyond understanding.

So, today I receive this priceless gift from Jesus and say, no matter what happens, it is well with my soul.

Jesus, thank you for your wonderful gift of peace. Help me pass this on to those I meet today.
Little Flower, please pray for me.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Joy and the Holy Spirit

So they shook the dust from their feet in defiance and went off to Iconium; but the disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.
Acts 13:52

Paul and Barnabas are on their mission trip, preaching to the Jews. Their message is rejected by the Jewish leaders so they turn their attention to the pagans of the town where their message is joyously received.

Nothing has changed. The message gets preached. By some it is rejected, by others it is received with great joy. Where the Good News is accepted the Holy Spirit arrives with great power, changing lives.

We are currently involved in a Life in the Spirit Seminar. The message is being preached. Some are skeptical while others are rising up and asking for more.  I guess, like Paul and Barnabas, we continue preaching the truth of the Good News irrespective of the reaction of the listeners, praying for them all the while.

My "preaching", to be authentic, must be reflected in my daily life, starting with my family. Today...

Come Holy Spirit. I can't do this without you. Fill me afresh this day that I may be a witness to you, the Father and the Son.
Little Flower, please pray for me.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Son of Encouragement

He (Barnabas) urged them all to remain faithful to the Lord with heartfelt devotion; for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and with faith.
Acts.11:24

Barnabas is sent to Antioch to check out the news that a church was growing from Greek converts. He instantly recognised God's hand in what was happening and encouraged the church to continue its grace-filled work.

Barnabas the encourager continues his particular ministry. Of him the Bible records he was a powerful preacher, an encourager, a good man filled with the Holy Spirit and with faith.

He sounds like the sort of man I would enjoy hanging around. He sounds like the sort of man I wish I was... today.

Holy Spirit of God. Fill me that I may be an encourager to those I meet today.
Little Flower, please pray for me.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Less Fear More Boldness

The rulers, elders and scribes were astonished at the assurance shown by Peter and John, considering they were uneducated laymen;
Acts:4:13

The Jewish leaders are astounded at the boldness of Peter and John whom they had arrested for healing a cripple in the name of Jesus. The transformation of Peter and John from ignorant nobodies to proclaiming somebodies was undeniable and astonishing.

There is creative, fearless genius in everyone, just waiting to be released, waiting for the right conditions. For Peter and John the right condition was being filled with the Holy Spirit before the Sanhedrin. There result? The name of Jesus was lifted up and glorified.

There are times when I make myself cringe and then times when I astound myself at my boldness, wondering where what I have said has come from. Today, for me, let there be less cringe and more boldness, that the name of Jesus may be lifted up.

Lord Jesus, fill me with your spirit of boldness that I may glorify your name.
Little Flower, please pray for me.





Friday, April 21, 2017

Filled with Holy Spirit

Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, addressed them, ‘Rulers of the people, and elders! If you are questioning us today about an act of kindness to a cripple, and asking us how he was healed, then I am glad to tell you all...
Acts:4.8-10

Following the miraculous healing of a cripple at the Temple, Peter and John are brought before the Sanhedrin and interigated. Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, boldly proclaims the risen Jesus as not only the saviour of the cripple but of all mankind.

Peter the former sand-pile displays again how he has now become the rock. He is now the embodiment of the new name Jesus had given him. The reason for the the conversion? The Holy Spirit. The risen Jesus had breathed on the Apostles and given them the Holy Spirit. Now the power of the Holy Spirit is released and at work. And the Holy Spirit's work? To proclaim the name of Jesus...

I have been given the Holy Spirit, been "breathed on by Jesus", at my Confirmation. Now is the time for that power to be released.

Come Holy Spirit, fall afresh on me.
Fill me with your power, satisfy my need.
Only you can make me whole,
Give me strength and make me grow.
Come Holy Spirit, fall afresh on me.

Little Flower, please pray for me.