One Minute Reflection – 30 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Readings: Genesis 21: 5, 8-20a, Psalms 34: 7-8, 10-11, 12-13, Matthew 8: 28-34 and the Commermoration of St Paul
“And he said to them: Go. But they going out went into the swine and behold, the whole herd ran violently down a steep place, into the sea and they perished in the waters. And behold the whole city went out to meet Jesus and when they saw him, they besought him, that he would depart from their coasts.” – Matthew 8:32,34
REFLECTION – “LORD, what is man that You are mindful of him, or the son of man that You visit him? What has man deserved that You should give him Your grace? What cause have I, Lord, to complain, if You desert me, or what objection can I have, if You do not do what I ask? This I may think and say in all truth: “Lord, I am nothing, of myself I have nothing that is good; I am lacking in all things and I am ever tending toward nothing. And unless I have Your help and am inwardly strengthened by You, I become quite lukewarm and lax.”
But You, Lord, are always the same. You remain forever, always good, just and holy, doing all things rightly, justly and holily, disposing them wisely. I, however, who am more ready to go backward than forward, do not remain always in one state, for I change with the seasons. Yet my condition quickly improves when it pleases You and when You reach forth Your helping hand. For You alone, without human aid, can help me and strengthen me so greatly that my heart shall no more change but be converted and rest solely in You. Hence, if I knew well how to cast aside all earthly consolation, either to attain devotion or because of the necessity which, in the absence of human solace, compels me to seek You alone, then I could deservedly hope for Your grace and rejoice in the gift of new consolation.
Thanks be to You from Whom all things come, whenever it is well with me. In Your sight I am vanity and nothingness, a weak, unstable man. In what, therefore, can I glory and how can I wish to be highly regarded? Is it because I am nothing? This, too, is utterly vain. Indeed, the greatest vanity is the evil plague of empty self-glory because it draws one away from true glory and robs one of heavenly grace. For when a man is pleased with himself he displeases You, when he pants after human praise, he is deprived of true virtue. But it is true glory and holy exultation to glory in You and not in self, to rejoice in Your name rather than in one’s own virtue and not to delight in any creature except for Your sake.
Let Your Name, not mine, be praised. Let Your work, not mine, be magnified. Let Your Holy Name be blessed but let no human praise be given to me. You are my glory. You are the joy of my heart. In You I will glory and rejoice all the day and for myself I will glory in nothing but my infirmities. … ” – Thomas `a Kempis CRSA (1380-1471) – The Imitation of Christ – Book 3 Chapter 40 –Man Has No Good In Himself And Can Glory In Nothing
PRAYER – All-powerful God, to serve You is to reign. Your love gave Your Saint Paul the courage to proclaim the truth of Christ and to preach and live in the light of the Kingdom. Grant that by the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Paul, our lives may bear witness to the faith we profess and our love bring others, to the peace and joy of Your gospel. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen