Jesus said to his apostles, “Behold I am sending you like sheep in the midst of wolves: so be shrewd as serpents and simple of doves. But beware of men…” (Matthew 10:16). Jesus, in the verses that follow, reassures his followers, “…do not worry about how you are to speak or what you will say. You will be given at that moment what you are to say. For it will be the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (Matthew 10:19, 20a).
Jesus also tells his disciples, and us, of the suffering, endured when preaching and following his word. “…You will be hated by all because of my name, but whoever endures to the end will be saved” (Matthew 10:22).
The call to serve others requires that we live prayerfully in the now, cling with our pain and the sins and flaws of our humanity to the foot of the cross, and trust, with peace and joy, in the graces of the Spirit and the ultimate promise of eternal life. Like the apostles, we are told to be alert, wise, and prudently cautious of the sleekness of “serpents” and the wiles of the world that can deceive and distract us from our mission. To be “simple as doves” invites us to be humble and express dependency on God with gratitude for our talents, our baptismal gifts of the Holy Spirit, and the practice of fruits and virtues flowing from them.
A life lived in union with our eucharistic King is about a love that exists in the intimacy of relationship with our triune God. It is a love shared within the heart—a pure, awesome, and profound gift! From this love flows the works of our ministries. Sufferings and sorrows, as well as joys, are the sacrificial offerings of one who gives totally of self to the beloved.
What return of eucharistic love do I offer today?
Let Us Pray:
Father God, thank you for the gift of this day and the people, love, burdens, and work in it! Now you let your servant go in peace; your word has been fulfilled; my own eyes have seen salvation which you have prepared in the sight of every people; a light to reveal you to the nations and the glory of your people…(Luke 2:29-32) Keep me united with your Son in his sufferings, death, and burial so that I may rise to new life in him who lives and reigns forever and ever. Amen. (Gospel Canticle and Prayer adapted from Night Prayer for Friday in Ordinary Time)
Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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