Friday, November 18, 2011

Hanging on His Words

November 18, 2011

Friday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time

By Melanie Rigney

Judas and his brothers said, “Now that our enemies have been crushed, let us go up to purify the sanctuary and rededicate it.” (1 Maccabees 4:36)

We praise your glorious name, O mighty God. (1 Chronicles 29: 13)

The chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people, meanwhile, were seeking to put (Jesus) to death, but they could find no way to accomplish their purpose because all the people were hanging on his words. (Luke 19:47-48)


“And the first shall be last and our eyes are open and we’ll hear like never before/and we’ll speak in new ways and we’ll see God’s face in places we’ve never known.” (Jesse Manibusan, “Open My Eyes.”)


When you went to Mass last Sunday, what was the point of the priest’s homily?

When you last met with your group reunion or prayer group or Bible study, what was the quietest, softest-spoken person struggling with?

When you read yesterday’s Scripture, a devotion, or other spiritual material, what was God saying to you?

When you spoke this morning with your spouse or child or partner or roommate, what was he or she joyous or fearful about?

Those words, however we encounter them—with our eyes, ears, hearts, souls—can protect us. They serve as our spiritual armor, just as Jesus for so long was protected from those who wanted to do him ill because he had the real-world armor of the crowds around him, “hanging on his words,” as Luke tells us today.

But did they really listen, or were they just along for the ride because Jesus was the fad, the rage? Most likely fell in the latter category. But those who listened and learned and grew stronger because of what they learned through him went on to change the world.

Are you really listening, or are you just along for the ride, going through the motions? The choice is yours.


Spend some time with the readings. What phrases are meant for you today? How can they protect you from the challenges you face?