theROCK

Results filtered by “The Eucharist”

What We Put in our Minds & Body Matters

main image

 What we put in our minds matters and what we put into our bodies matters. What we put into each, changes us. When you surround your mind with what we perceive as good and true and beautiful, it influences our desire to pursue that in life. St. Paul wrote about this in Philippians 4:8 "Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things".

So think about Jesus. Don't just think about Jesus, be Jesus. When we receive Eucharist, Jesus then resides in us. Total perfection becomes one with you. You are made perfect! This is the most profound union we can have with our God here on earth. Dr. Edward Sri makes the point as it relates to the mind, "When we come back to our pews after receiving Holy Communion, it is not the time to look around and see who's at Mass, or daydream about the football game in the afternoon, or develop our 'parking lot exit strategy'. And, it's certainly not appropriate to leave before Mass is over. This is the most intimate time we have with our God - to talk to him from the depths of our hearts. As he is lovingly dwelling within us, we should use these profound moments to tell him we love him, to thank him for blessings in our lives, to pour out our hearts to him with whatever may be troubling us, and to quietly rest in his love and listen to him."

Fill your mind with what matters so that the body follows.

We Are All Children of God

main image

Hindsight is always 20/20. As we look back on history, knowing that Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, along with 2,000 years of theological study, the Sadducees can seem a little silly. Yet during Jesus time there was a belief about who the Messiah would be and what he would accomplish. This Jesus didn’t look much like the warrior king that would return Israel to its previous glory. From the Sadducees perspective they needed to discredit this impostor as soon as possible. They devised a plan. They came up with a seemingly impossible and absurd scenario. A woman had married, and before she could have a child, her husband died, so she married her brother-in-law as prescribed by the law. This happened to her not once but seven times. If there were a resurrection how absurd would it be to simultaneously be married to seven men?

How does Jesus respond? He says we are all children of God. There is no need for marriage as a type of estate planning. While that was important in this life it has no meaning in heaven. Instead, we are more like angels and will have eternal life with and in God. In fact to God we have never died. Jesus knows of his upcoming death and resurrection and he also knows that we too, by virtue of our baptism, will rise with him to eternal life. This is the good news! This is the kingdom Jesus has come to create, where everyone has come from God and everyone must return to God. A kingdom of love and mercy vs a kingdom of earthly power and exclusion. A kingdom that somehow exists in our world today but in an imperfect way. It is the kingdom that is tangibly present to us in all the sacraments, particularly in the Eucharist. This, is the resurrection we live for, a life with the Holy Trinity, the communion of Saints and the heavenly host for eternity.

The Effort of Zacchaeus

main image

When I was a young boy, I had a book that I used to love to bring to Mass. It was the story of Zacchaeus. I must have read that story a hundred times. I found it fascinating that this short guy would climb a tree to see Jesus.

When I read it again today, through the eyes of an adult, I hear Jesus speaking to us about conversion and discipleship in “Eucharistic” ways. Consider what it takes to attend Sunday Mass. Yes, for some of us it takes little effort. For some, maybe it's a little more difficult. It surely takes the effort of Zacchaeus climbing a tree for families with little ones to make it to Mass on Sunday. It takes the effort of Zacchaeus fighting the crowds, for an elderly couple, or for one who has worked many hours during the week and would rather spend a few hours relaxing.

But, they come to Mass. Why? Because we know that the Eucharist changes lives. At each Mass, Jesus invites himself to our home - our very being, just as he did to Zacchaeus. When we receive him and welcome him into our heart - our home, with great joy we can allow ourselves to be changed. Zacchaeus was a sinner, just as we all are sinners. Through the healing power of the Eucharist, we find strength for conversion. Like Zacchaeus of old, we can become disciples to the poor and those in need through our conversion. So, whether you climb a tree, fight crowds or not, know that salvation can come to your house - not by any merit of your own, but through the power of the Eucharist - the Son of Man, who has come to seek and to save.

Previous12