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Contemplating today's Gospel

Today's Gospel + homily (in 300 words)

Thursday 1st of Lent

1st Reading (Esth 12, 14-16, 23-25): Queen Esther, seized with mortal anguish, had recourse to the Lord. She lay prostrate upon the ground, together with her handmaids, from morning until evening, and said: «God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob, blessed are you. Help me, who am alone and have no help but you, for I am taking my life in my hand. As a child I used to hear from the books of my forefathers that you, o Lord, always free those who are pleasing to you. Now help me, who am alone and have no one but you, o Lord, my God. And now, come to help me, an orphan. Put in my mouth persuasive words in the presence of the lion and turn his heart to hatred for our enemy, so that he and those who are in league with him may perish. Save us from the hand of our enemies; turn our mourning into gladness and our sorrows into wholeness».
Responsorial Psalm: 137
R/. Lord, on the day I called for help, you answered me.
I will give thanks to you, o Lord, with all my heart, for you have heard the words of my mouth; in the presence of the angels I will sing your praise; I will worship at your holy temple and give thanks to your name.

Because of your kindness and your truth; for you have made great above all things your name and your promise. When I called, you answered me; you built up strength within me.

Your right hand saves me. The Lord will complete what he has done for me; your kindness, o Lord, endures forever; forsake not the work of your hands.
Versicle before the Gospel (Ps 50:12a.14a): A clean heart create for me, o God; give me back the joy of your salvation.
Gospel text (Mt 7,7-12): Jesus said to his disciples; “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Which one of you would hand his son a stone when he asks for a loaf of bread, or a snake when he asks for a fish? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to those who ask him. “Do to others whatever you would have them do to you. This is the law and the prophets.”

«For everyone who asks, receives; whoever seeks, finds»

Fr. Joaquim MESEGUER García (Rubí, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, Jesus reminds us of the need and power of prayer. We cannot understand our Christian life without being related to God, and in this relation, prayer takes a central place. While we live in this world, we Christians find ourselves on a pilgrimage road, but our prayer gets us closer to God, opens up the door of his immense love and brings forward the Heaven delights. This is why, our Christian life is a constant request and search: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you” (Mt 7:7), says Jesus to his disciples.

At the same time, the prayer gradually turns a stone heart into a flesh heart: “If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to those who ask him” (Mt 7:11). The best summary we can ask God can be found in Our Lord's Prayer: “Your kingdom come and your will be done, on earth as in heaven” (cf. Mt 6:10). We, therefore, cannot ask just anything in our prayers, but something, which is really for our own good. If nobody wants to hurt himself, we should not want any damage for others, either.

Sometimes we fail to see God's concern for us, for we find our prayers seemingly unanswered or may even feel God does not love us. In such moments, it will do us good to remember this advice from Saint Jerome: “It is certain God gives to everyone that asks, that he that seeks finds, and that he that knocks it shall be opened: It is clearly seen that who has not received, who has not found, who has not been opened, is just because he didn’t know how to ask, how to seek or how to knock at the door”. Let us therefore ask God, in the first place, to make our heart kind like that of Jesus Christ.

These days, Jesus has a “high voltage” religious conversation with Nicodemus. Do not miss the face of the child who listens to them and who ..., little by little, falls asleep ... The "Gospel for the Family" explains it to you simply!


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