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Todays Readings


Bukas Loob sa Diyos Covenant Community
Reflection for September 2010
Word: A true disciple possesses the heart and character of Christ.
Order: “Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14: 27)


The heart of Jesus is full of love and compassion.  We learn a lot about this in the bible.  In Matthew 11:29, Jesus said; “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart”.  In Matthew 9:36, we also read: “At the sight of the crowds, His heart was moved with pity for them because they were troubled and abandoned, like sheep without a shepherd.”  His heart was also moved with pity, when He saw the widow at Naim, (Lk 7: 11-13).  Jesus knew the depths of His Father’s love for us, as revealed in the parable of the Prodigal Son.  He himself, out of love for everyone, allowed Hs heart to be pierced by our sins (CCC 2269). 

The Catholic Encyclopedia tells us that if we consider the life of Jesus in the light of reason, we will find that His strength, poise, and grace are His most characteristic qualities.  

His strength shows itself in His way of life, His decisiveness, authority, and His rugged, nomadic lifestyle – He had nowhere to rest His head (Lk 9:58), which leaves no room for weakness or sentimentality.  Jesus’ strength and resolve are demonstrated when He prayed and fasted for forty days and nights in the desert and then withstood the temptations of Satan (Mt 4: 1-11).  

The strength of Christ's character gives rise to another quality which we can perhaps describe as ‘poise’.  His strength lies in his ability to keep a perfect equilibrium between feelings and reason.  His body is the perfect instrument in the performance of His duty; His emotions are wholly subservient to the will of His Father.  In Jesus, there are no ifs, buts, or maybes.  He maintains a perfect balance between the life of His body, His mind, and His emotions.  His character is so fully formed; there is no room for vacillation or equivocation.  Another trait of Jesus which may be considered as flowing from His poise is His inalienable peace, a peace which may occasionally be ruffled, but can never be shattered either by His inward feelings or outward encounters. 

The character of Christ carries with it the trait of grace, which does away with all harshness and lack of amiability.  Jesus sympathizes with all classes, with the rich and the poor, the learned and the ignorant, the happy and the sad.  He moves with the same sense of familiarity among all classes of society.  He chooses common fishermen for the cornerstones of His kingdom, and by His kindliness trains them to become the light of the world and the salt of the earth.  He bends down to St. Peter whose character was a heap of sand rather than a solid "foundation”, and graciously forms Peter into the rock upon which He build His Church.  

In the first week of September, the Theme is: We have the heart and character of Christ when we renounce all our possessions and follow Him.  To persevere in being disciples of Jesus Christ, we should no longer be attached to the pleasures, honors, and titles of the world, or to carnal relationships.  Then we can have the Promise of the Week:  “…the gracious care of the Lord our God (is) ours; prosper the work of our hands.” (Ps 90: 17)                            

The Theme for the second week is:  We have the heart and character of Christ when we forgive unconditionally.  When we pray the Lord’s Prayer, we are reminded that as our Lord readily forgives us when we are sincerely contrite, so too, should we forgive others unconditionally.  The Promise of the Week is: “I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky; and all this land that I promised, I will give your descendants as their perpetual heritage.” (Ex. 32:13) 

For the third week, the Theme is:  We have the heart and character of Christ when we are trustworthy stewards.  We should be fully devoted to God, completely trust in His providential care, and serve only Him.  The promise of the week is:  “He raises up the lowly from the dust; from the dunghill he lifts up the poor…."  (Ps 113: 7)           

The Theme for the last week is:  We have the heart and character of Christ when we share our lives with the poor.  We are reminded to lead virtuous lives, shared with the poor if we want to reap the eternal consolation promised by God.  The Promise of the week is:  “Blessed is he who keeps faith forever, secures justice for the oppressed, gives good to the hungry.” (Ps 146: 7)